Motherhood is one of the most rewarding, challenging, exhausting, humbling, and fulfilling journeys that women dream of when expecting their first child. But if you didn’t have a good example of what a good mom was growing up, the question of “Will I be a good mom?” often creeps in. Listen up, mama — whether you are thinking about trying for a baby, are expecting, or have little ones already, you are not your mom (repeat, you are not your mom).
This means that you can do things differently. It also means that whether you had a mother who was a role model or not, you are capable of defining the kind of mother you want to be. There is a highly competent and loving mama in all of us, and here’s what you need to know about being a good mom even if you didn’t necessarily have one to look up to.
How to Be a Good Mom if You Didn’t Have The Best Example
1. Take a Look at Your Childhood Experience
Before having my daughter, I questioned how I was going to fill the role of being the amazing mama I dreamed of being without having the example I yearned for growing up. Here’s the thing — through some in-depth talks at therapy and taking a look at my childhood and what my inner child would have wanted out of a mom growing up, I was able to see exactly what I didn’t want to be. So, while I may not have had the best example growing up, it sure did teach me a ton about the type of mama I wanted to be by recognizing the things I didn’t want to be.
2. Don’t Be Afraid to Reach Out For Help
Oh, and speaking of therapy, don’t be afraid to reach out for help (seriously). Entering into motherhood is uncharted territory for all new moms and even moms with multiple children. Adding new children to the mix can be a whirlwind for a period of time. If you find yourself struggling and just needing an outlet to talk about motherhood, therapy can be a fantastic resource. There are often new mom groups that can also be an excellent way to just share experiences with other fellow mamas. A group like this may help fill that void of maybe not having your own mom to lean on during this time.
3. Find a New Positive Example/Role Model
A role model or a good example of what a good mama is doesn’t necessarily have to be your own mom. It could be a fellow mama friend, an aunt, or a sister. Look into your support group and see who inspires you with their ability to shine in motherhood. Hey, this new role model may just give you that confidence you need to know that you got this motherhood thing in the bag.
4. Say I’m Sorry
Listen, no one is perfect. Not even those mamas who had great examples growing up. And, as often as we remind our kids of the importance of saying, “I’m sorry,” it’s important for us to own our mistakes and say sorry too. This sets a great example for our little ones and makes us the role model our kiddos look up to.
5. Give Yourself Grace
Being a good mom includes holding yourself accountable and saying you’re sorry when you make mistakes (which trust me, we all do!). But don’t forget to give yourself grace. Even the moms who had great examples growing up are all learning to parent as they go along this motherhood journey. Those of us who didn’t have an example may take a little bit longer to learn about the kind of mother we want to be. It also takes time to fully grow confidence in the incredible role we mamas will ever have (being a mom).
Evolve Into The Mother You Wish You Would Have Had
While we can’t choose our parents, we have control over the kind of mother we want to be. So, how to be a good mom when you didn’t have a good example? Choose to grow into that mother you always wished you had. Find that new role model, say you’re sorry, and pat yourself on the back for owning up to the fact that none of us are perfect. Then, give yourself grace and feel darn good about all the growth you make day in and day out in this journey called motherhood.