Mothers, let mothers mother.
I’m a guy. I know I shouldn’t weigh into things of which I cannot empathize with, but I feel like this word is necessary. It is absolutely astounding the pressure that mothers put on other mothers to raise their children the same way they do.
In our years of parenthood, we constantly run into other mothers who are not short on opinions of how other mothers should raise their children. As I talk with mothers in the church, young and old alike, there seems to be an unhealthy amount of pressure put upon mothers in the comparison department.
I began making a list of questions that mothers receive (I’m sure I missed some here, ladies, feel free to fill in the rest):
- Will you use prenatal vitamins?
- How much do you exercise?
- Do you drink anything with caffeine?
- Are you going to have a natural child-birth?
- You’re surely going to breast feed, aren’t you?
- Co-sleep, no sleep, or let them sleep?
- Cloth diapers or disposable?
- Are you going to stay at home or send them to daycare?
- Do they know their letters yet?
- It’s really important that they have social interaction with other children their age. What type of potty training methods will you use?
- Public, private, or home school?
- Organic food or Happy Meals?
- Vaccines or no-vaccines?
- You really aren’t going to let them play in this weather, are you?
Mothers, let mothers mother. She is raising her children – not you.
And, in most situations, she loves her children more than you do. In fact, she knows her children more than you do. Your children are unique, her children are unique. And God has determined that she would raise her own children, and you would raise yours, so do not get in His or her way.
You have the right to share how you raised your children, but you do not have the right to impose your practices on another mother.
Fellas have this way easier than you ladies do. For the most part, we just respect whatever someone is doing, and unless someone is in danger, we usually don’t intervene.
Ladies, we have much to learn from you in many arenas in life. In this department, you might be wise to learn from the fellas. Do your best to nurture the children that God has given you, offer advice when asked, but leave mothering of someone’s children to the person God has entrusted those children to.
Mothers, let mothers mother.
Travis Agnew serves as the Lead Pastor of Rocky Creek Church in Greenville, SC. His most recent book is Just (About) Married.
5 thoughts on “Mothers, Let Mothers Mother”
Only cool points gained with this post! AWESOME!
Thanks for saying this, Travis. Women need each other. We have a lot to learn and a lot to share, the key is to be appropriate and sensitive. As you stated, being a mother is hard enough. We don’t need pressure from each other in the areas of individual preference or personal conviction. We DO need to build each other up in truth. Rather than burdening us down, the Truth sets us free!
Good word, Angela.
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