Both first-time mothers and experienced mothers will likely say the same thing — the pregnancy journey is never free of worry. And, those worries, oftentimes, carry into the postpartum. Some of the common worries held by new mothers include:
- That their child will get hurt in an accident
- That someone will hurt or kill their child
- That their child won’t feel safe in the world
- That their child will get kidnapped or abducted
- That their child will be bullied
If that was not enough, many mothers worry about their mothering capabilities, as well as how they should mother their child. For example, the Pew Research Center reported that, despite nearly half of the workforce being made of women, eight-in-ten adults said that women face a lot of pressure to be an involved parent. These same women are pressured to be “perfect mothers,” taking it upon themselves to meet every single need of their child while also potentially ignoring their own needs, such as self-care. Furthermore, one study concluded that feeling the pressure to be a “perfect mother,” as well as fulfill intensive mothering norms, could have a severe impact on women, especially in relation to their stress levels, family, and work outcomes.
In 2019, NBC News put together reflections from mothers regarding the messy truths about being a mother and living up to others’ expectations of motherhood. Here are just a few of their reflections:
“We may not want to say it out loud, but motherhood is hard. When I had my first child, I was too embarrassed to tell a single soul that I wasn’t the over-the-moon, picture-perfect new mother I was supposed to be.”
“It is beyond comprehension what the worry [about mothering] did to my wellbeing. I never wanted to acknowledge the reality of my situation, and, therefore, I never allowed myself to ask for help. Don’t be like me. Ask for help and support from all those around you. You are so worth it!”
“It [mothering] could get a bit messy. But you can do it all your way if you write your own rules rather than follow others’ rules.”
The BAD MUTHAS Campaign — Recognizing Hope Smith
Companies like the luxury skincare brand MUTHA™ understand the pressures of motherhood and the expectations to be a “perfect mother” and conform to society. That’s why they launched the BAD MUTHAS campaign, spotlighting mothers of all shapes and sizes while trying to combat the trend of shaming mothers who don’t adhere to traditional parenting norms. Their slogan: “If loving our child in our own beautiful way is bad, then we don’t want to be good.”
While many BAD MUTHAS are recognized throughout the campaign, one mother takes centerstage — Hope Smith. Hope is the Founder and CEO of MUTHA™ and the original BAD MUTHA. As part of the campaign, Hope recalls her motherhood and parenting journey, including the insecurities she faced, as well as the unwanted or unwarranted criticism she received from others.
“I started off being a “BAD MUTHA” by ignoring traditional advice and having two home births. Since then, I’ve broken lots of rules and always done what was best for my child or family.”
“My first two pregnancies were pretty easy. After the second pregnancy, I found out I couldn’t carry again. I was shamed online for being greedy and wanting to use a surrogate when I already had two children. It was also assumed I wanted a surrogate because I was lazy and didn’t want to gain weight. How horrific is it to send such hurtful messages to a woman grieving the pregnancy she wouldn’t get to have?”
Because of experiences like hers, Hope, through the BAD MUTHAS campaign, is reaching out to mothers to accept themselves as parents and promote positivity amongst mothers. “It was uniting in solidarity to end the clicks and whispers of trying to one-up each other,” said Hope of the campaign. “It’s about supporting each other, whether it’s in the workplace or when raising a child.”
Encouraging Self Care With Mothers With MUTHA™ Products
Aside from the BAD MUTHAS campaign, MUTHA™ is doing much more to help mothers, and all women, feel positive and take better care of themselves. In fact, that’s the purpose of MUTHA™. MUTHA™ brand products are designed to MUTHA™ women as their own mother would. Its mission was, and still is, to nourish women with products that strengthen their confidence, shrink their insecurities, and help them love everything about themselves.
The idea for MUTHA™ was conceived from Hope Smith’s own pregnancy journey. After striking out when searching for a natural, beneficial product to help prevent stretch marks, Hope created her own — in her own kitchen, nonetheless. Word spread about the effectiveness of her body butter, and, eventually, MUTHA™ was launched in 2019. Now, MUTHA™ offers dozens of products that are designed to pamper and celebrate mothers, and all women, including deodorants, body oils, face moisturizers, and more.
Get to Know More BAD MUTHAS
Hope Smith once said, “Be a BAD MUTHA. Know one. Raise one. Be one. Support one.” In the spirit of the BAD MUTHAS campaign, read more about BAD MUTHAS like Hope Smith who are spreading motherhood positivity. Some BAD MUTHAS include: