The Top 6 Signs You’ll Be a Great Mom
“I was just trying to be a good mother!” claims the Witch from Into the Woods, who locked Rapunzel in a tower for 14 years and blinded Rapunzel’s prince. Sometimes it’s hard to know how to be a good mom. The Witch thought she was protecting Rapunzel from the world, which sounds like a good thing. Moms should protect their kids, right? But maybe in a different way. One that’s more healthy, safe and loving. The Witch truly went a bit overboard and wasn’t keeping Rapunzel’s best interests at heart.
So, how can you tell what you need to be a good mom? Motherhood, unfortunately, doesn’t come with a guidebook with a list of what to do and not to do. But don’t worry. Adoption Choices of New York has you covered. Here are our top six signs you’ll be a great mom:
- You Don’t Go to Extremes
In all seriousness, the Witch from Into the Woods is an extreme example. Parents outside of a fairytale wouldn’t lock their child in a tower to protect them from the world. However, there are many parents who fall prey to becoming “Helicopter Parents,” who are overprotective and overbearing because they want what’s best for their children (sound familiar?).
Motherhood can be difficult. On the one hand, you want to protect your child, but also prepare him or her for the real world. You want to teach them how to succeed while also helping them overcome failures. Encourage them without putting excessive pressure or unrealistic expectations on them. It’s a true balancing act. If you go to any extremes, you may lose your child’s trust and have a strained relationship. But, if you are able to maintain balance in your life and avoid going to these sorts of extremes, you’re well on your way to being a great mother!
- You’re a Good Listener
If you read the “Movies that Celebrate Mothers” post from last week, you’ll notice mothers can experience issues with her child when there is a lack of communication. It causes strain when one or both parties don’t feel they’re being listened to. Relationships can only improve when you learn to listen to each other. If you don’t know if you’re a good listener or think you may need help in this area, research active listening and practice it in some of your day-to-day conversations.
Active listening builds trust and understanding between two people. Trust and understanding are crucial in a strong, healthy mother/child relationship. Especially in a mother/adoptee relationship, you want your child to feel comfortable enough to talk to you about anything. So give it time. Don’t rush it. When you’re a good listener, trust and understanding will come naturally.
- You Communicate
On several “you are a good moms” lists you’ll see “you know how to say ‘no.’” Children want a lot of things, but sometimes they want things that aren’t good for them (did you ever want ice cream for every meal of the day when you were a kid?). Good mothers have the advantage of experience and more developed cognitive processing skills. Instead of saying ‘no,’ she will explain why something isn’t a good idea.
Communicating your decisions with your child not only helps them understand where you’re coming from, but it also strengthens their own decision-making skills.
- You Know When to Compromise
In a similar vein, kids need a lot of things. Many times, needs and wants won’t align. Most kids don’t want to eat their vegetables, but they need the proper nutrients in their diet. Kids don’t need the newest games and toys, but having some of these things can make them happy. A good mother knows how to find the balance between wants and needs and knows when to compromise.
- You Don’t Take Things Personally
Whether you are a birth mother or adoptive mother, you know you’ll make a great mother when you’re able to deal with negative situations in a healthy way. For instance, if friends and family don’t support your decision to choose adoption, you know not to take everything said personally. To look beyond the words and understand what they are trying to say. Anger is often a secondary emotion. Words expressed in frustration and anger don’t always mean to relay those emotions. In some cases, those words may be hiding fear or concern.
Discernment is essential in motherhood. We all know that children are prone to lash out when they don’t get their way and say things they don’t mean. Even through the hurt, a good mother can express her love and empathy instead of reacting poorly back.
- You Approach Parenting with LOVE
The most important thing to being a great mom is Love. For birth moms, placing her baby for adoption is an incredible act of love. For adoptive parents, bringing their child home and raising him or her as best they can is all done out of love. As long as you approach motherhood through loving your child — wanting what is best for your child, putting their needs ahead of your own, putting forth the effort to understand and support them — it’s hard to go wrong.
There are so many different ways to go about the specifics of motherhood, but if you start with a core of love — even if you make mistakes along the way — your child will recognize that love and the strength of the bond between you.
Signs You’ll Be a Great Mom
The fact you’re reading this article means you’re actively looking for advice on how to be a good mom, and there is a lot to be said for that. Motherhood can be hard, and mothers will always question whether they have what it takes to be a good parent. Take it as a sign you’re doing something right!
Ultimately though, every parent, child, relationship and family will be a little unique. When you’re really doubting, talk to your family, talk to your child about it. Let them know how you’re doing your best and you’d love their opinion on what works for them. Show them topics like this are okay to talk about with you. Mothers don’t have to be perfect to be great parents. Do the best you can for your child. Listen to your child and try to understand what they need. Love and support them no matter what.
You are going to do great!
For more tips and advice, you can also check out our Secrets to Successful Parenting article or see our other Resources.