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Our Definition of “Good Mothering” is Bad For Mental Health

Our Definition of “Good Mothering” is Bad For Mental Health

Families are central to Mormonism, and creating eternal families through making and keeping covenants with the Savior is at the core of our work here on earth. However, it seems that primarily mothers, are talked about as the heart, or the center, of the families. Preparing to be a “good mother” is emphasized in Primary, Young Women’s, and continues as a central thread woven throughout Relief Society lessons and discussions.

When we speak of “good mothers” in church, we often hear stories of mothers’ great sacrifices (like a pioneer women burying a child along the trail West), frequent heartache and long-suffering (Elder Holland’s talk ‘Behold Thy Mother’), and the great joys, blessings, and the eternal significance of mothers. These themes echo family research that highlights a paradox of parenting — it is considered to be one of the most rewarding aspects of life while simultaneously being associated with increased stress, dissatisfaction, and even depression.

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Motherhood, Guilt About Not Being Productive, and Beliefs about Motherhood that Hurt Us: KSL Radio Mom Show

Motherhood, Guilt About Not Being Productive, and Beliefs about Motherhood that Hurt Us: KSL Radio Mom Show

Get more information on my new book The Assertiveness Guide for Women

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Overcoming Insecurities: Studio 5

Overcoming Insecurities: Studio 5

Think of the last time you felt insecure. Ideally, we want to have good confidence, but all of us, men and women, experience insecurity in some form or another; those nagging uncertainties that can leave us feeling vulnerable and make us doubt ourselves. Sadly, our weaknesses and flaws (perceived or real) can make us feel like we’re not “good enough” or worthy of receiving love in our relationships. Thankfully, we have the opportunity to reframe out mindset and expectations so that we can overcome insecurities and choose confidence. Here are some questions to ask yourself to help you get started:

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Aspirational Shame and Motherhood: The Mom Show

Aspirational Shame and Motherhood: The Mom Show

What a delight to talk with Lindsay Aerts for her new KSL Newsradio show “The Mom Show”. We talked about motherhood, self-care, and aspirational shame. Listen to the entire interview below.

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Power of Play

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I was lucky enough to be featured on Dr. Christina Hibbert’s podcast Motherhood a few weeks ago.  We spent an hour talking about the importance of Moms in their child’s life- focusing on the power of play!

Play is a crucial part of healthy development for our children, and guess what? It’s an essential part of a healthy YOU, too. Through play, we can better understand our children, their needs, and what we can do to help them through the hard times. We can also strengthen relationships and build connections that last a lifetime. And when we approach life and motherhood more playfully, we not only set the example for our kids; we actually learn, create, relax, and live better, too. In this episode, I’m talking with Clair Mellenthin, LCSW, an expert on play therapy, and she’s got some valuable lessons each of us needs to hear about the power of play—for us, for our children, and for our families. Don’t miss this fun, fact-filled, play-inspiring episode! And visit my website DrChristinaHibbert.com for more on this and other “Motherhood” topics!

http://webtalkradio.net/internet-talk-radio/2015/11/09/motherhood-moms-kids-the-power-of-play/

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End the Mommy Wars: Dr. Julie Hanks on KSL’s Studio 5

End the Mommy Wars: Dr. Julie Hanks on KSL’s Studio 5

We’ve all heard the term “mommy wars.” Originating in the 1980s, it refers to the negative cultural experience of mothers being pitted against each other based on their different lifestyle choices. While there are many aspects of motherhood that could be included under the umbrella concept of mommy wars (breastfeeding vs. bottle feeding, etc.), the most significant dichotomy is that of working moms versus stay-at-home moms. But this framing is no longer relevant, as it doesn’t reflect the creativity and real lives of so many women who have a variety of experiences. Here are some steps to change the way we think about motherhood and end the mommy wars for good!

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Highly Educated Women Are Having More Babies: Julie Hanks, LCSW Interview with WSJ’s Marketwatch

timthumbWasatch Family Therapist founder and owner Dr. Julie Hanks, LCSW had the opportunity to be interviewed for the MarketWatch section of the Wall Street Journal about her experience pursuing a career while also being a mother. It is very encouraging and exciting that recent studies show that women with advanced degrees and education are also having children. Whereas in the past, women either had families or great jobs, today the tide is turning, and we no longer have to choose!

What are the factors causing this change? Fathers helping with domestic responsibilities and raising children, a mobile workforce, and increased opportunities are among the reasons that highly educated women are having more babies.

Here’s an excerpt:

Julie de Azevedo Hanks, is the owner and executive director of Wasatch Family Therapy in Salt Lake City, Utah, and the mother to four children. On Saturday, she will graduate from University of Louisiana at Monroe with a Ph.D. in marriage and family therapy. “Tomorrow, I will be Dr. Julie Hanks.”

When it came to education and children, her motto for the past 25 years has been, ‘I refuse to choose!’ “Women seem to be challenging the long-held notion that an education/career and family are mutually exclusive,” Hanks says. “It’s no longer an either/or decision.”

She’s not alone. The number of highly educated women who are remaining childless into their mid-40s has plummeted over the last two decades, according to a new study by the nonprofit Pew Research Center, which crunched U.S. Census data.

Read the full article here.

 

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Moms With 3 Kids Most Stressed: KSL News

A recent survey on Today.com found that mothers with 3 children report the highest level of stress – more stress than moms who have 4 or more children.

KSL news reported Devan Dolan reached out to me to see why I think moms with 3 children report the most stress.


 

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How To Handle Complicated Mother Relationships on Mother’s Day: B98.7

Mother’s Day can bring up mixed feelings for some folks. Not all relationships with mother are joyful. Todd & Erin invited me to stop by this morning for an “Emergency Mother’s Day Intervention” to give suggestions about how to handle the pain of “complicated” relationships with your mother, the pain of dealing with infertility, and more.

Click arrow to listen below…

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Self & relationship expert Julie de Azevedo Hanks, LCSW is wife of 22 years and mother of 4, a performing songwriter, a licensed psychotherapist, a popular media contributor, and director of Wasatch Family Therapy. Watch Julie on KSL TV’s Studio 5, listen on B98.7 radio, and read her national advice columns on Psych Central, and Latter-day Woman Magazine. Follow Julie on Facebook & Twitter.

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I Am Not a Superhero. I’m a Mom!

Last night was my first wake-up call to that fact that I do not have superhero powers to protect my children against pain, embarrassment, and hurt. It was a humbling and I have to admit, very tender experience for me to have. I guess I should back up a little bit?

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