work is 24/7 with no bathroom breaks. The job requires wisdom,
intelligence, patience, skill, physical labor, & inner strength,
yet gives little recognition & no pay. In fact, the world gets a
free ride on the backs of dedicated mothers willing to perform this
selfless service out of the deep and abiding love they have for their
You Are Important!
have a natural talent and skill to be nurturers. This allows them to be
able focus on the needs of others. Some women have the knack for
knowing just how to meet other's needs before they are even
articulated. This is a skill that fosters safety and security in the
children who are lucky enough to have nurturing mothers. It enables children to grow in self-confidence and self-esteem. Unfortunately, this skill can sometimes make it hard for mothers to remember to occasionally focus on themselves.
danger is that if you don't meet your own needs, mothering can become a
drain of precious energy. You might find that your patience grows thin
and your marriage becomes strained or you may find yourself resenting
the job of motherhood. The entire family can lose when their source of
emotional support is unable to be there with the enthusiasm that is
needed. You are an important lifeline for your family. When you are
caring for others in this way, you will need to get support for yourselfto continue to do this job well.
Mothers Need Support Our
culture values independence. The word, "dependence" is usually
associated with the weak and powerless. When you become a mother, you
become dependent in a lot of ways but this doesn't necessarily mean you
have to be weak and powerless. In fact, if you are raising young
children, you couldn't possibly be weak and powerless. It takes a lot
of strength to raise children and to manage a household. Giving birth
itself takes physical and emotional strength. After giving birth, your
body will need to recover as you transition into the new life of caring
for a baby. People bring packages of food and sometimes a parent or
in-law will stay to help. This is a fact of family life - we are interdependent
with one another and we care for and about each other. Your parents and
husband and extended family care for you as you care for your children
and eventually you will care for your parents as they age, just as your
children will care for you. (See In The Shelter Of Each Other, by Mary Pipher)
tricky thing about all this is to know how to care for yourself when
you are a caregiver. Sometimes it's simply knowing how to ask for
support when you need it. Caregiving can be an all-consuming occupation
where the focus is on the other person's needs, be that person a child
or an elder. It can be exhausting and isolating. Caregivers benefit
from the support of others so that they can do their job well. This is
where family, support groups, parenting classes, co-ops, therapy
groups, private psychotherapy or counseling can help. Getting the support you need can make all the difference in your caregiving.
Support Groups and Psychotherapy
groups and co-ops are ways to find peers to support you through this
time in your life. The isolation will be broken when you find that
there are other people who experience the same things that you do. You
will be renewed through developing friendships and connections with
others. Caring for yourself by having someone to talk to is invaluable
for a mother. But sometimes there are things that are not very easy to
discuss with friends and then it helps to have a counselor or therapist to talk to.
can help. Sometimes just knowing you have set aside this special time
just for *you* can make all the difference in the world. When you get
to talk to a psychotherapist or a counselor, your needs,
feelings and questions are your only focus. Just having that
uninterrupted time to be heard and to hear yourself can rejuvenate your
whole outlook. You'll become better at meeting your own needs too.
You'll begin to remember your values, interests and joys. Caring for
yourself in this way reawakens a profound understanding of how
important you are. You'll feel a renewed sense of pride in the job of
motherhood and will have more energy to mother with love.
Sessions are affordable and you can use your insurance:
Anthem Blue Cross, Aetna, Blue Sheild, APS, MHN, ValueOptions, Coastal & many others, just ask..
Quotes from Satisfied Mothers:
"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
Allison Gilbert, LMFT Office in Soquel, Santa Cruz County or Video Conference 831-425-4475 firstname.lastname@example.org