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Motherhood is, without any speck of doubt, one of the most daunting and overwhelming tasks in the whole wide world. From creating a tiny human from scratch, taking care of his innumerable needs to keeping him safe and sound, being a mother is as close to magic you can get in real life. However, even though there is a lot of beauty and warmth that accompanies the tag of motherhood, there is yet another aspect of being a mother, which is not often talked about.

Mom-shaming: The sad reality of motherhood

While you may feel an instant connection with an absolute stranger who is struggling with her baby, there is a host of outside judgment or ‘mom-shaming’ comments coming from mothers, who constantly pick and scrutinise the parenting decisions of fellow mamas. There is this undying need to criticize, question and even ridicule the choices of a mother, whether it is pertaining to being a working mom, the decision to opt for formula, breastfeeding or even extended breastfeeding.

It is important to note that while we recognize and understand how this ruthless judgement of our parenting skills can dent our self-esteem, not a lot is talked about the toxic internal monologue most mothers battle on a daily basis. Yes, most moms, more often than not, are their own worst critic. If you are still not sure how your judgmental inner dialogue is shaming your abilities as a mother, we suggest looking for the below-mentioned signs.

You think you have failed if your kids get hurt

Kids are tiny curious creatures, who are constantly learning a little bit more about the world around them with every passing day. So, they shuffle, touch, run, climb, jump and basically do everything in their power to touch (and experience) objects around them. So, unless and until you decide to tie them up to their beds and never let them leave, they are going to topple off the bed, scrape their knee, fall from a chair and even put their hands in a piping hot cup of tea. So, if your kid hurts yourself, learn to feel his pain without feeling guilty. Take care of your little one without reprimanding yourself about the same. Remember, accidents happen, no matter how careful you are.

You beat yourself down for not being a ‘super mom’

Frankly, we don’t even know what the term ‘super mom’ even means. If anything, it emphasizes the toxic notion that mothers are inherently blessed with superpowers and if you haven’t figured them out yet, it is your problem. Let us remind you that you don’t have to do everything perfectly or remember everything related to your child to be a good mother, you are taking care of your baby, which is applause-worthy in itself. Try and not beat yourself down about the little things that slip your mind.

​You judge yourself for the post-baby weight

One of the harshest things that you can do to yourself, is to judge and ridicule your post-baby weight. Thanks to a sea of social media platforms, we are constantly fed the notion of how quickly a mother needs to lose her baby weight and get back in the pre-baby figure. If you are beating yourself down about not being able to fit into pre-baby clothes, you need to remember that it took your nine whole months to put on that healthy weight for your baby. You cannot ridicule the same body which gave birth to your little one because it no longer fits the societal standards. Instead of trying to squeeze yourself in older clothes, learn to love and honour your body. Your goal should always be to stay healthy, irrespective of the size.

You constantly put yourself last

Sadly, our culture has propagated the idea of a mother who sacrifices her needs for everyone in the family for so long, that it has become embedded in our subconscious minds. While as a parent, it is absolutely your responsibility to cater to the needs of your children, it does not mean that you have to put yourself last and ignore your own needs and wellbeing.

You reprimand yourself for not being more involved with your kids’ school

Yes, there are mothers who volunteer for bake sales and are always available to get the class ready for annual day dances and other school functions. If you constantly beat yourself down for not being able to give enough time to your child’s school activities, you have to remember that doing something is always better than nothing. The fact that you stay up late with your children to see them rehearse one last time, try and help them with their drawing lessons and gear them up for fancy dress competitions, all the while juggling home, office and kids is commendable. Give yourself enough credit and know that you are trying!