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I often feel my efforts as a mother mean nothing.
I am sure most of you relate with me.
If my sons Karthik or Vaibhav get good marks and perform well at school, then everyone says they are born intelligent. “They have it in them". "They have interest in reading and studying, so they learnt and picked up fast." They make it sound like, Karthik and Vaibhav were born with knowledge of alphabets, phonics, reading skills and numbers. No credit for me "the mom". It does take lot of effort for sitting with them, breaking my head, teaching them the same thing repeatedly, making them write, and explaining to them the same thing over and over again. Isn't it?
Both my sons eat all the meals by themselves and eat all kinds of food and salads. I started them early on salads, sprouts, raw onions, cucumbers and spices. In-fact, it was hard fto get them to eat some healthy foods. And, it was harder to get them to eat by themselves. I stopped keeping jam /sauces/ spread and even sugar for a while at home. They threw tantrums and gradually moved to eating chutneys, vegetable curries and dals. Today they enjoy eating everything by themselves. When, we go to our friends’ houses, folks are amazed that both of them eat regular food by themselves. But, till, date all I have heard is "They love to eat, so they eat everything. They are independent". But, Hey! It took me lot of effort to get them to this. Isn't it?
I have taught my sons to do their own work and help me too, like eating their own meals, picking their plates , putting them in the sink, wiping the table after they eat, packing their own snacks and so on. They help me too. They put away the vessels; sweep the house when I am sick or overloaded with work. Everyone, obviously appreciate them, "Wow! Such good kids!" But, I haven't heard "Good job, you have taught them life skills". It does take effort to teach them and make them to do such things. Isn't it?
Now, if Karthik behaves badly, what will the same folks do? The will out-rightly blame me. If he yells then it is because I yell. If he throws things around, then it is because of me. I must have been throwing things around so he does the same. If he lies, then it is because of me, I haven't inculcated values in him. If he throws tantrum it is because I don't love him enough, cuddle him enough. And once, he didn't do well in a test at school and I was blamed. It is such a double standard society. Isn't it?
I am glad that my sons perform well at school, they have learnt to do their own work and I am proud of them. It is fine if I am not given credit, for good behaviors. But, when I get blamed for their bad behavior it does hurt. I am either responsible for their good and bad things or not responsible for both. But, sadly it never happens. Isn't it?
I have seen that mothers get no credit but do get blamed for sure in many families, So I guess, it is a universal truth. :-)