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Happy Children's Day (to Children's Caregivers!)
Issue #83: Send me some true stories from the Dark Side 👽
Happy Children’s Day…
to the few children who read this newsletter (I love your everything),
to the parents who had to prepare school projects and find costumes in honour of this historic occasion (I feel your pain), and
to the childfree folks who will probably realize it is Children’s Day today only when they see this email (I envy your sleep).
Last week, I wrote a post about how a well-rested woman is a myth.
The post began with an intro in which I noted how the world - which happens to be teeming with existing mothers - fails to inform women about the honest realities of motherhood.
Many Mommy-readers wrote back to me saying that this part of the intro rang too true.
Expecting/aspiring parents will find enough on the internet and their social media feeds about what bliss parenthood is. In fact, adults of a certain age can find it hard to escape such posts and targeted advertising, almost aggressively pestering them with parenthood promotion.
And while parenthood - when done at the right time with the right partner for the right reasons - can definitely have many many moments of bliss, it is definitely no endless parade of cute video moments that you see on your Instagram feed.
If you thought it is, well…
All jokes and gifs aside, I truly believe that becoming a parent is the biggest responsibility most of us will ever shoulder in our lifetimes. And it is a real travesty that almost all of us are undertaking this enormous venture with our eyes blindfolded to the complete picture of what it actually entails.
When someone takes on the role of a parent without fully realizing what it might entail, it is not just unfair to them, but also to their children.
So this Children’s Day, let us right that wrong. For the children.
I want to hear from the parents this week - especially mothers.
What are the gruesome parts of motherhood that nobody warned you about?
The sugar-coated depiction of pregnancy, childbirth, and motherhood in popular culture and social media notwithstanding, real moms know that the sales pitch is very different from the actual experience of motherhood.
Reality comes with a ton of physical pain, mental load, emotional turmoil, and societal judgment.
What is a motherhood challenge that you wished someone had told you about before you became a parent?
Share your stories, experiences, and "Fair Warnings" for expecting/aspiring parents here (this button will come again at the end of the post, so you can keep scrolling):
It might not be something big enough to have changed your mind about becoming a mother altogether. Just something that would have helped set your expectations better and braced you to prepare more realistically.
Your responses will be completely anonymous (even to me).
You can also send me multiple responses if you have more than one story in mind.
I should also add, I am defining “motherhood” here in the broadest possible terms.
It includes anyone who is a primary caregiver - including adoptive moms, single moms, single dads, stay-at-home dads, trans moms, and challenges associated with all other permutations and combinations of primary caregiving scenarios out there.
So send me your unadulterated stories of the behind-the-scenes struggles of parenting. And I will put together your stories in future newsletters of Womaning.
Here are some of my previous posts on the unspoken challenges of motherhood/parenthood that might help kick-start some thoughts:
On childbirth and why no woman can do it “right”
On breastfeeding and - you guessed it - why no woman can do it “right”
On male infertility and the toll it takes
⭐Mental/Emotional Challenges of Motherhood
Clothes shopping for children (even infants) is a minefield of gender stereotypes
Gender biases that are taught to children as early as nursery rhymes
The Mental Load of Motherhood
On the importance (and the woeful lack) of Paternity Leave
⭐Societal Judgement reserved for mothers
On how society judges your child’s surname
Judgments reserved for working mothers
Stay-at-home dads and how the world sees them
Here is the button again where you can send me your stories:
❤ to the kiddos who are the only ones with the power to make it all feel worth it,