With the media bombarding women with unrealistic expectations for mothers, it is any wonder that today’s mothers feel under huge pressures to be perfect. Stay-at-home mothers feel guilt for not providing financially as it takes two people to make ends meet. Working mothers feel the guilt of attempting to balance a career and a family at the same time. Any person worth salt would recognize that mothers are often the glue that holds families together. People do not like other people talking poorly about their mother, even if she has many flaws. In fact, no matter how unfit or imperfect your mother may be, she was still your mother. Your mother might have been a bad cook. She might have been a drug abuser. She might have been a terrible person. However, her imperfections are not open to public scrutiny. This article examines a 21st century motherhood model in contemporary society.
Good mothers are difficult to model. According to the US Census in 2008, there are over 82 million mothers in America. Many mothers go about their business with little regard for their impact on society. As a matter of fact, the value of a good mother is often forgotten, except for the customary card on Mother’s Day. Not all mothers are built the same when it comes to character. Some women are openly unfit or unprepared to be mothers. The notion of an unfit mother is a legal definition which may vary from state to state. However, an unfit mother may be defined as a mother who fails to take care of the basic needs related to the physical, mental, and spiritual state of a child.
For example, Susan Smith, who was from South Carolina, became the poster child for a bad mother. She had appeared on national television proclaiming that her two children had been kidnapped. In reality, Smith had driven her car into a lake, drowning her children. She had done this act in pursuit of her own adulterous relationship. Smith was later convicted in 1995 and sentenced to life in prison for murdering her two sons, Michael Daniel Smith, 3, and 14-month-old Alexander Tyler Smith. Many individuals would point to her as an abusive or neglecting mother. Furthermore, there are so many famous women who are esteemed as the modern day feminist model, but these women often do not represent the ideal mother figure.
The Right Model
Good mothers distinguish themselves with an unselfish behavior. They are the ones who go the extra mileso that everyone’s mental or physical condition is properly cared for. In fact, true mothers put their families’ needs ahead of their own. Of course, this selfless image runs counter to the “ME” only culture. King Lemuel must have realized this fact when he outlined his motherhood model in Proverbs 31. The mother described in this passage is a loving wife, kindhearted mother, a champion of the oppressed, a business woman, a godly figure, and insightful advisor. The author notes about this woman, “Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her.’” Therefore, character does count if an individual wants to use the right model for good motherhood.
Today, many people take a good mother model for granted. Some people complain about their mothers and how they do not fit today’s media model of an ideal mother figure. These unrealistic expectations cause some women to despair because they do not fit this unrealistic expectation. When there is a mother of unique character in society, she should be celebrated and cherished. In the daily grind of living, many folks lose sight of the positive influence of the right kind of mother. A good mother creates a legacy for future generations. Let’s hope that the positive model will never be forgotten.
Dr. Daryl D. Green writes on contemporary issues impacting businesses, society, and across the globe. This article is an excerpt from his new book, Don’t Be An Old Fool, 2nd edition. Formore information, you can go to nuleadership.com or http://www.darylgreen.org.