Mothers Have Needs Too!

Allison Gilbert, LMFT, Santa Cruz Counselor Lic: MFC 24087

Know Your Worth

Self-Worth vs Net Worth
Mothers who "take time off" from their careers are particularly vulnerable to having a low self-worth.  I began to understand why this happens after reading, "The Soul of Money" by Lynne Twist.  She shows how our culture tends to equate self-worth with net worth.  A self-worth that's based on how much you earn, how much money you have, and how many material possessions you own is not a self-worth that many mothers can have.

For the mother at home, the thought process often goes like this: If I don't have any of my own income, I'm "taking time off" and not "pulling my own weight" and so I don't deserve to spend any money on myself.  I don't deserve to ask for what I want.  My needs have to come last.

True Worth
When there's no way out...(when putting your precious ones in daycare all day isn't an option for you) realize there's no way at all to scramble for the self-esteem that making money can buy.  This is your moment when a breakthrough can happen.  If you don't have any money to buy the material possessions that gets you self-worth in our society, then where can you find your worth?

What is important and valuable to you?  Is it your possessions or your relationship?  And what are you really worth?  What value does all the many unpaid tasks you perform daily really have?  What are they worth to the community?  How much would your husband or the community need to pay someone else to do your job?  Is it even possible to find someone else who can do your job as well as you? 

Putting Children First
Change your perspective on what is valuable and you can help change our culture to one that puts children first.  Start by knowing your own worth.  You are so important.  Your family couldn't function without you.  Society owes you a debt of gratitude.  The future of our world is in your hands.  You matter.  The little people you work with on a daily basis matter to the world.  The relationships you are developing are more important than anything that money can buy.

2007 Allison Gilbert, M.A., L.M.F.T.; Free Tips

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 "Allison, you were a lifesaver. I hope you don't mind my rhapsodizing about your help, but I am still incredibly grateful to you for helping our family in our time of need, and so I will continue boasting about how awesome you are to just about anyone who will listen."-Mother of a preschooler and a newborn

"Thanks for everything. You have been such a great  help! My husband told me that he thinks this is the best we have ever done."  -Mother of a preschooler and a toddler

"I love getting your emails, Allison!  Keep up the great work!" -Mother of elementary school children, who also owns an online business