Motherhood Myths

I have been thinking a lot about the role of a mother/wife lately. More specifically, I have been thinking about the attached expectations, and how realistic our own expectations are.

When I was about ten-years-old or so, I started a journal (separate from my other, daily journals), where I was writing about what a mother should be. Basically, I decided to write an instruction manual to my future self–the me who is now–about how to raise my children. Oh, how I wish I could find that book. I know that I didn’t write a lot, but I’m sure the minimal contents would still be good for a tremendous belly-laugh. The only thing that I remember for sure was that I was going to play the piano with my babies on my lap, telling them the notes as I hit them, so that they would grow up learning music just like they did language. I actually tried that with N~. It maybe lasted 15 minutes. Babies aren’t interested in music theory.

As an aside: I did find some of my other early writings. Most notably, I found short stories and poems that I wrote for writing contests in middle school. Be prepared, I plan to share. If for no other reason than to preserve them for my future.

But, anyhow, back to motherhood. I have been planning on writing about the expectations that we place on ourselves (and I still plan on writing about it, but not today). From talking to other mothers, I am fairly convinced that most of us feel like we aren’t measuring up. I know that I feel that way on a regular basis. So I’m curious:

What are your motherhood myths?

What are the things that you entered into motherhood/wifehood believing would be, that now seem unattainable or unrealistic? What ideal do you look back on now and think, “Yeah, right!”?

Seriously, folks, I have never begged for comments before, but I’m really curious. And I think that it could be a fun conversation. So how about it? What hasn’t turned out exactly as you imagined?

And if everything has gone just as you thought it would, I suppose you can tell me that, too. But I’ll warn you: Perfect people creep me out. 😉



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6 responses to “Motherhood Myths

  1. I honestly thought that my child would be well dressed and her hair would be done so cute ALL THE TIME. Unrealistic – especially since I’m a tomboy, myself, and when Anna is playing in the dirt in the backyard – who really cares if she has matching hairbows in her hair???

  2. In many ways, motherhood is WAY better than I ever imagined. But there are many things I felt totally unprepared for. I had no idea how mentally, physically, and emotionally draining motherhood can be. When I was younger and thinking ahead to my own future, I had no clue that at times I would feel so exhausted. So far, it’s been an extremely humbling experience.

  3. Cindy

    I thouht that my kids would listen to me. Serioiusly. I thought when I told them something they would have to obey, “because I said so” and that would be that.

    I think I believed that because I loved my kids so much that we would always have great relationships and they would want to “choose the right” because they could see my love for them and trust that what I was teaching them was right.

    I guess both of these thoughts are much the same…..

  4. I’m still early on in the process, but I swore my child would never watch Barney. Now that that ideal has been shot down, I’ve been trying to keep a very open mind and let go of all of the “My child will never…”

  5. Oh my gosh, I could write a book of nothing else!! haha.
    I would never yell, I would do art projects every day, we would dance together all day, we would have picnics outside whenever possible, I would NEVER need a break from my kids, I would LOVE playing with them.

    Then there were a whole bunch of them that weren’t so idyllic but were more practical: I would nurse my babies, but only for 4 months. I would go back to work at 3 months. I would NEVER let my baby sleep with me, control me or manipulate me 🙂 I would play lots of loud music so the baby would learn to sleep through noise. All KINDS of things that turned out to be entirely and totally crap 🙂

  6. Hmmm. . .

    I swore we’d never cosleep. I thought that I wouldn’t feed them McDonald’s or anything with caffeine. I didn’t want to breastfeed (I thought it was weird and yucky – ha). I thought that my career was what I would be proudest of in my life.

    . . .of course, I also thought that I never have children or want to have children.

    **I really like this topic. Do you think I could use it for a future Topic of the Month for LRT? Probably the September topic. Let me know! 🙂

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