A Feminist Appreciation for Great Bad Mothers
Feminism embraces the fact there is no such thing as the perfect mom. Patriarchy, on the other hand, has always occupied itself with erasing women’s identities and situating women within a madonna-whore box that wants women to either be pure and virginal or promiscuous and loose. In a patriarchal society, a mother’s attachment to a child immediately domesticates her and pins her down to a matronly, apron-wearing, kitchen-dwelling, pram-pushing figure that’s robbed of sensuality and adventure.
Of course, we now know that patriarchy is just a big fantasy and that women are much more complex than what they’re made out to be. Although we (mostly men) see our mothers as pure saints who have lived holy lives, we know that doing so only denies them their humanity, forcing them to live up to unrealistic ideals of femininity and motherhood.
In this feminist appreciation of great ‘bad’ mothers, we’d like to demolish mom-guilt in its entirety by celebrating the moments that most moms go off-script. Let’s go!
Let everyone sort out their own dinner
How is it that parenting is associated with teaching people life skills for their own use while mothering always feels like you’re tending to people’s wants and needs? It’s honestly okay to resign from the kitchen and let your partner and the kids navigate the kitchen!
Indulge in your guilty pleasures
Being a mom shouldn’t mean that you’re a nun, so why not occasionally indulge in a few more glasses of wine than you’re used to? Also, is retail therapy really that bad if mommy-self-care exists? A night out with your single friends isn’t a crime either because, like, aren’t you a cool mom?
Running away from your kids…
…temporarily, of course! You are a cool mom who needs a night out with friends or even a weekend, so leaving your kids alone with a good babysitter or your loving and understanding partner is exactly what you need. You’ll come back more refreshed and clear-headed until you need your next trip again.
Saying “no”, “never” and “forget about it”
It’s a moms duty to say no, not just to her kids, but to anyone who might be asking too much of her. We all know that a moms plate is full at almost every point in her life, so saying no to a demanding boss, for instance, actually means that you’re saying yes to yourself. You need that.
Mother’s day shouldn’t be the only day where moms get spoiled and everyone should know this by now. Don’t be afraid to remind your partner and your kids that you’re expecting breakfast in bed tomorrow or that the TV belongs to you for the whole weekend. All these are very important things.
Cut off the apron strings
In fact, it’s okay to throw the whole apron away! Sometimes moms might feel the need to be there for every single soccer game or every single first moment, but chances are your kid might not even remember. Also, they might not even place as much importance on some of the things you do. Go ahead, trust your child a bit more by giving them a bit more independence. You’re not God and you can’t be there for everything.
Being an emotional wreck
It’s okay to not be okay. If you need to lock yourself up in your room and cry from exhaustion, it’s more than encouraged. Every feminist knows that crying is not a sign of weakness, so go ahead and let it all out.