Sarah is one of the first bloggers that I connected with. An incredibly supportive blogger, she will go out of her way to help others: “Bloggers Beating Cancer” being a brilliant example. As well as being a lovely person, she is a brilliant blogger too. Sarah has recently overhauled her blog and it is looking very swish. I love her blog and find that I can relate to a lot of her parenting posts; she also shares the most amazing recipes and her days out posts make me want to move to London! I am delighted to welcome Sarah.
Sarah from Mumzilla
One of the immediate feelings I had about impending motherhood was a relegation of self. Suddenly it didn’t matter what I wanted or needed, baby had to come first. And of course, I didn’t mind at all – it’s not difficult to give things up for a few months if the alternative is too horrid to comprehend, is it?
But this feeling continued beyond pregnancy. I persevered through pain and bleeding, and endless sleepless nights to establish breastfeeding, because in my mind, it was “best” for baby. I was so exhausted I could barely function – I lost touch with friends, or they simply left me behind and moved on. From someone whose friendships meant everything, I became a lonely, tired and struggling woman. All anyone was ever interested in was the baby. I didn’t matter anymore.
I told my now-husband that I was finding it hard to bond with the baby, that I didn’t think I loved him like other mother’s love their children, and his reaction was simply to pick him up and take him away, as if my very existence as a non-perfect mother was polluting him. He later said I just wasn’t a maternal person, which hurt, but is probably true, even now, when I love my son more than anything.
I gave up my career because it didn’t fit around what my son needed, which I don’t resent him for because it’s not his fault, it’s an inflexible society, but this caused me to fade further into the background, into a person who ferried, entertained, and cleaned up. My well educated and useful mind relegated into shopping lists and a quick school gate chat. I don’t look down on parents for whom this is everything (like my own mother), because I truly and deeply admire those who can fully give themselves over to their children with full hearts, but for me, it isn’t enough. I wish I was like that every day, but I’m not.
People don’t look at you once you become a mother. You are filed away as “A Mum”, and things that you want and need to be happy – for me, an annual weekend away with the friends who didn’t desert me, are considered selfish and wrong and harmful for your child. You should want to be with your child at all times – they aren’t an extension of you, you are merely an extension of them. You are so-and-so’s Mummy, not even worthy of your own name.
Why does motherhood have to mean giving up on the person you are? I was her for 29 years before I got pregnant, and I was starting to get fond of her. People don’t even look at me anymore, it’s all about my child. I’m not asking for a lot, but I would like to be remembered and treated as a person in my own right, and not as a mere facet of my child, at least now and again.
I’m still a whole person. And my name is Sarah.
Thank you Sarah. I found that this post brilliantly articulated something that I struggle with and feel on a daily basis. Becoming a Mum can mean you soon feel you have lost your identity. Also, wanting time away from your family doesn’t make us a bad person! On Instagram this week, Mother of Daughters was criticised by a mum because Father of Daughters had shared a picture in which he commented that Mother of Daughters was out for the evening. Mother of Daughters was working! However, it is annoying how people are quick to judge. So what if she had gone on a night out? That doesn’t make her a bad mum. I doubt that Father of Daughters gets the same criticism levelled at him when he goes out or to work! Like Sarah says, we need to show the world that we are still a whole person (and that might mean we still have a social life…sometimes!)
A thirty something Mum who decided to create her own little patch of internet to try and make some money for herself through writing rather than other rude-internet money making ways. She doesn’t make a lot of money, but she’s made some brilliant friends and doesn’t feel lonely anymore.
You can find Sarah:
We need you!
We are the real face of feminism. We are reclaiming it and redefining it. Yes, we might have children but we can still be a feminist. Us mothers want our voices to be heard too. We are part of the feminist movement. We want to be seen and heard! The Mother Feminist series is inviting all of you to share what feminism means to you:
- Do you like the term feminism?
- What does feminism mean to you?
- Do you call yourself a feminist?
- Has your outlook on feminism changed post-children?
I want to hear your opinions, ideals and feminist role-models. If you would like to get involved then please drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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