Powerful Woman as Mother

phpRsCElAPMThe popular stereotype of woman suggests that she is easily influenced by the opinions of others and victimized by her role as a mother. This tired stereotype of mother as victim does not match the experience of real mothers. A woman is transformed by the experience of becoming a mother. Mothering unlocks in her an instinctual intelligence that generates confidence in her own authority. Inevitably, this increased confidence changes her relationship with others.


Not wanting to be dominated by others is a legacy of the new mother because in becoming a mother a woman also gives birth to herself. When a mother thinks about her experience in a truthful way, when she is honest with herself, she will see that the act of mothering is not one-sided. It is reciprocal. Once we appreciate that the mother/child dyad is mutually beneficial, we can change the stereotype of motherhood as burden into the archetype of mothering as transformation.

Mothering is not just something we do for our children. It defines us. And, it also liberates us. When we mother in a creative and transformative way we can easily move between our role as mother and our other roles. When being a mother comes from our strengths and our good opinion of ourselves rather than from an imposed script, we embody a powerful and unique feminine presence.


This embodiment of mother no longer identifies with control or coercion. Unlike the desperate stereotype of the fearful, out-of-control mom, the mother of the new archetype is not attached to outcome. She knows how to be in the moment, to pay attention, to take responsibility for her own feelings, and even how to let things go. She learns how to care deeply from an objective place.

We have inherited a subservient and wounded view of mother. I suggest that we reject it in favor of an authentic archetype, one in tune with our intrinsic nature and more robust than any stereotype will ever be.

By trusting ourselves we begin to live our own original lives.

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Peggy O'Mara

About Peggy O'Mara

Editor and Publisher of peggyomara.com. Longtime natural living advocate, award winning writer, and independent thinker.

3 thoughts on “Powerful Woman as Mother

  1. Mommy Theorist

    Sigh…. Was walking and talking with a fellow mother tonight, saying how pleased I am with my relationship at present with our 3.5-year-old daughter. I said, I’m not bribing, I’m not threatening, we’re talking and arriving at peaceful solutions all the time now. It feels great. We’re in sync.

    But these words in the post reverberated and caused a twinge of heartache because of their familiarity: “…a subservient and wounded view of mother.” When I’m feeling unsupported by my husband or without help and without family nearby and exhausted and imbalanced, this is the archetype that activates.

    I swing in pendulum. Maybe the times in bliss are lasting longer and longer… But whenever we’re in blissful sync, a shadow of the wounded mother bird lurks and I can’t quite shake it.

  2. Mommy Theorist

    ….I also had the realization yesterday, when my husband got home from work, that I often am holding it together, keeping a cheerful smile, keeping my energy aloft, until he gets home. Then I feel a sense of relief and I let go and sometimes the buildup from the emotional rollercoaster I’ve been on with Toddler all day needs to find a vent and things get a little “steamy” — either tears or agitation or exhaustion that I’ve been suppressing come out once Toddler is sleeping. Does anyone else feel this relief once hubby gets home or once Toddler goes to bed?

    Powerful Woman as Mother, yes. With my captive audience, I put on a good show. But, am I Powerful Woman Alone? Or just human?

    • adminadmin Post author

      I used to count the minutes until my husband came home and then would expect him to immediately take over. I once did a workshop in which one dad said he needed to catch his breath before he got home. I wonder now how it would have been if I had given my husband a half hour to make the transition to home and if I had slowed down a bit and calmed myself before he got home. But, like you said, we’re just human, doing the best we can. And, we all fall apart with those we love. That’s a good thing; that’s what home is for.


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