Is Motherhood the Loneliest Job in the World?
I often wonder about that. I mean, I’m a mom and I know a lot of other moms. Most of my closest friends, I take that back, all of my closest friends are moms. Our kids go to school together or they were friends from when I was in school. Either way, my mom address book is busting at the seams.
Yet, most of the time, I feel utterly alone. There are times when I feel like no one really knows what it’s like to have to clean up after the three year old and the puppy when they both have an accident at the same time or when all of the kids are talking to me at once and yet all I hear is the teacher’s voice from the Charlie Brown and Peanuts movies.
I know though, in my head, that I’m not alone. But still… it’s hard to NOT feel that I am and I’ll tell you why.
Moms are perfectionists. Yes, even I like to believe and try to get it all together. Find someone who has it more together than you and forget it, your kids and the two of you will never play on the same playground again.
We judge. Don’t judge me. I’m just saying… that moms, even in our most open of conversations, can be judgmental. We cleverly disguise it with advice on how we would handle it if it affected us, or a simple “hmm. My baby didn’t have that problem.” As if! I bet your baby did have that problem. But we smile and pretend in present company like it’s not a big deal.
We talk. A lot. We talk to our friends, our mothers, our friends’ mothers. You name it we talk and with talk can often come gossip. It’s natural. It’s how we share information and communicate with other moms. Unfortunately we don’t always know when to not gossip. Don’t want to be gossiped about? Don’t share anything of real importance with other moms.
As much as we are social we are also anti social. We will hide away for fear of looking like we’re losing it or being judged by someone else. I should know. I did it for almost two years after Shorty was born. All I got out of it was a severe case of postpartum depression and the knowledge that some of my friends had moved on without me.
I guess that as lonely as motherhood is, it’s because we make it that way. I’m still waiting for the day when moms will come together without judging one another’s houses, living situations, work preferences or even whether or not they should breast or bottle feed. Until that day happens we’ll still be lonely but at least we’ll be together right?