Advice. We give it and we get a LOT of it…especially when it comes to parenting. Moms get so much advice from the moment they disclose they are in the process of becoming a parent. No matter how a women chooses to become a mother, there is plenty of advice(and criticism) to be given. As children grow, so does the amount or advice…and criticism.
Over 5 years ago, I chose to leave a toxic, abusive marriage. It was a horrible process during which I lost my way many times and almost lost my kids. I was grasping at straws, fighting tooth and nail to hold on to my sanity as well as my kids. In the midst of it all, I received one of the wisest pieces of advice, one I will live by for the rest of my life, from the most unlikely source….the court appointed child representative for my kids, Beth McCormack.
“Just be their mom……”
she said and continued, “They know you love them but they are hurting too…..just be their mom and keep loving them…..”
She repeated, “Just be their mom…” many times through the course of my very messy divorce. At first it frustrated me when she would say it because I was so angry and confused. I thought I was being their mom. I thought I was loving them. And I was….but I could not see it. I wanted her to tell me exactly what to do…..and she was. But I did not realize it.
“Just be their mom……”
I may not have always been the best mom, the mom my kids wanted or the mom my kids needed but I have, and will always, love them. What I needed was help to refocus and trust myself.
“Just be their mom……”
As moms we really do know our children best. I have often spoken to women over the years about trusting the “mom gut.” Trusting that intuition takes strength and support. Moms are often overwhelmed and afraid. We worry about the criticism and judgment of others when what we need to focus on is our children.
“Just be their mom……”
When we mother, and not smother, we love our kids. When we mother, creating reasonable boundaries, we love our kids. When we mother, setting individual expectations, we love our kids. When we mother, creating opportunities for failures, consequences, successes and celebrations, we love our kids. When we mother, accepting each as a unique human, we love our kids. When we mother, trusting our own intuition and gut, we love our kids.
“Just be their mom……”
Now, more than ever, women need each other. We are all struggling in one way or another. Women, in general, have the weight of the world on their shoulders. Moms are making choices that are right their family and already doubt themselves enough. We need to lift each other up, help and support one another rather than criticize each other for the difficult choices we are having to make. So when another mom asks you what to do, respond with the best advice ever……
“Just be their mom……”

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