The role of mothers in parenting cannot be over-emphasized. Mothers are gifts to humanity, as they play several roles. Especially present day mothers, who have to juggle career with family life, it can be quite tasking.
A major role of a mother in parenting is to nurture the child. Like the father, a mother is also a nurturer (read Parenting 3). Only that in the case of a mother, she nurtures the child by feeding, ensuring that the nutritional needs of the child is met. This is why women would sacrifice anything to ensure their children eat. She also ensures that the child is well clothed. She equally nurtures the child with values.
Another role of a mother is companionship. It is unarguable that most mothers spend more time with their children than the fathers. This creates bonding and sense of love for the children. Such children grow up to become loving and lovable people. Any child deprived of motherly love and time usually ends up being difficult to relate with. This is one of the reasons for breakups in relationships and marriages, when one or two unloved adults meet, there will likely be issues relating with each other.
Mothers also pay the role of teachers. They teach their children almost everything, from school homework to how to wear shoes. This role is meant to be complemented by fathers, so that the values being taught can be reinforced. Children are quick to see through the vulnerability of mothers, and might sometimes disobey the instructions of mothers, but when the father reinforces that instruction, the children tend to fall in line.
Mothers also acts as guides and counsellors for the children. As children grow up into adolescents, mothers help them to understand the changes happening in their bodies and how to deal with such changes. Children that lack this guidance end up experimenting and sometimes becomes victims of drug abuse, teenage pregnancy and might even end up with juvenile delinquencies.
Mothers also help to provide balance in the home. They are like glue that holds everything together when all threatens to break lose. They calm the nerves of fathers, provide warm embrace for children when they have been hurt while suppressing their own emotional needs just to ensure everyone is fine.
It is a Herculean task being a mother in present times. Managing work challenges and family life can be very demanding, yet most women are doing quite a good job at this.
This is perhaps why Proverbs 31 is dedicated to the Virtuous woman. “She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.” Proverbs 31:27.
When a woman has to combine her role and that of the father, it comes with a lot of challenges and could leave the children half-formed in character. This is also the case with a single father. We will deep dive into this when we look at the challenges of single parenting.
We will round up on the roles of mothers in parenting next week and then proceed to single parenting.
Have a great week ahead.