I was thinking today about the fine line a mother must walk. There are two very poor choices, which are polar opposites. Then there is a chasm of untouchably sensible options between. But what I generally see is people on one side or the other. (Yes, I know. I'm American. I am surrounded by extremists.) You have your post feminism independent moms, and your accidentally codependant moms.
The first extreme is the mom who demands her rights as a woman. She probably thinks that her children have no right to change her schedule. Instead of embracing the lessons of motherhood that include servanthood, she has the tendency to cling to her rights. This might sound really negative, but think about it. As women who have grown up after the feministic movement, this has been pounded into our heads, over and over again. In many (almost) positive ways. (If it weren't at least fairly positive, we would recognize it much easier.) I am not against the many good things feminism has done, like giving woman the right to vote, and sexual harassment in work places being addressed. But I never realized how negatively it had affected me until I became a mom. If you would have asked me before I had kids, I would have told you that I was very "un-feministic" in my views. But now I realize that although I don't desire to be feministic in my thinking, there is actually lots of the wrong kind of independent thinking that is down deep somewhere inside of me.
The second extreme can often be the conservative homeschool mom, or the naturalistic breastfeed-til-she's-five mom. The "job title" isn't really important though. Just like the feminist, the co-dependant mom is hard to spot at first because the tendencies can be deeply ingrained in one's thinking, and they can be seemingly positive. But in full force, these thought processes can be destructive. This mom can often be the mom who is totally worn out, doesn't take time for herself, doesn't ever ask for help. She can be the mom who wants ten kids, but is ready to kill the one or two that she does have, because there aren't healthy boundaries set.
Today I won't expound on either of these topics.
But over the next few weeks I plan to address both extremes:
The symptoms of both that I see coming out in my own life.
Ways that other people's solutions to or problems with these extremes have helped me.
A few practical (and hypothetical) ways that I want to find balance in my own life.
Have a great, balanced day!
Labels: balance, Codependant, Feminism, independant, Mom, motherhood, stressed out