Did You Know That Your Child’s Happiness Depends On Your Mental Health?

I lost a dear cousin last Friday. I was howling like a banshee after her husband broke the news to me. I couldn’t recognise the sounds coming out of my mouth, I was that distraught!. She was only 46 years old and left behind 3 children between ages of 11 and 14 years old. While we are all reeling in shock, I know the mother is the fulcrum of any family.

Fulcrum Definition:

  1. the point on which an object balances or turns
  2. the person or thing that everything else depends on

 

While the first definition is true of motherhood, the second definition is what is most under rated. Women often underestimate the role they play and don’t actually understand the impact they have on their family, particularly the children and their mental health. Providing a comfortable home and the latest lifestyle gadget is not enough. Your wellbeing is equally important, if not more so.

 

For the next generation to feel secure and self-assured, they need to be around mothers who themselves feel safe and emotionally stable. But, how many working mothers, in their day to day juggle when they are:

  • In burnout
  • Stuck in jobs they hate
  • Live in fear of losing their jobs
  • Too busy to find time to socialise with friends
  • Having disrupted night sleep because the children don’t sleep through the night or they themselves are too worried to sleep well
  • No time for exercise
  • Depressed, anxious
  • Stressed out
  • Too exhausted to have sex
  • Just existing

 

Stop to think about how important their wellbeing is to their children? 

 

Research increasingly shows that ‘maternal mental health is one of the most crucial determinants of a child’s mental health’ according to the Education Policy Institute. The few mothers that realise their importance to their children’s mental health often have to fight hard to live the life of balance that allows them to meet the many demands on their time. 

 

The tragedy is that a lot of women pay for this lack of knowledge with their own health. They accept that the constant exhaustion is par for the course. They medicate the anxiety and depression away. They accept debilitating perimenopausal symptoms as a norm. 

 

Everything is normalised apart from the one that is not normal: It is not normal to live out of balance. It is not normal to be tired all the time. It is not normal to just exist. You are meant to live thrive and live in balance.

 

Not only that, your children need you to stop and prioritise yourself because when they lose you, they are lost. When your mental health is compromised, their mental health suffers. You are the fulcrum of their lives but do you even realise that? Do you understand that responsibility stretches to your health and wellbeing?

 

Mothers have no problem sacrificing for their children. What exactly do they think they are sacrificing though? How clever is it to work long days and weekends, and when you are not working ‘be there’ for the kids in that absent minded way, and then collapse at the end of the night in a heap of exhaustion?

 

What would your children rather like? A fully present mother with firm boundaries that protects her time with her family or mother who over gives and is constantly exhausted and in a bad mood?

 

You have a choice now to turn things around, your children need you alive, not dead with work colleagues spouting empty accolades. That is indeed cold comfort to a child trying to work out what happens to her hair at the start of the school term because mummy is no longer there.

 

As my heart is breaking at the loss of my cousin, this is my rallying cry to mothers everywhere, your children need you to prioritise your health and wellbeing.

 

If you want to find out how to prioritise your life, grab a free session with me here.

 

If you want to find out more, you can watch my free webinar here.