Mothering Across Cultures

By: Carolyn Coleman

2899074519_08a3497194_zSome mothers pick up her baby as soon as she hears a cry; some mothers turn and walk away. Both mothers love their children, but express their love in different ways.

In my years of working and always sharing day to day thoughts on how we raise our kids, I’ve learned that what works for some mothers doesn’t work for others. Across cultures the ultimate task of mothers is to make her child feel loved, valued, and accepted. I always say to people, do what works for you and your child.

I can remember when my son was only a few days old, I was breastfeeding him and someone told me to give him a bottle at night with cereal because it would help him to sleep through the night. I took this person’s advice and my son slept so soundly that I was afraid. When I shared what I did with his pediatrician, she quickly reminded me that what works for some parents doesn’t work for all parents.

My Mom passed away long before I gave birth to my son, so I am amazed at how I mimic so many of her mothering characteristics. I was very close to my Mom and always thought she was an amazing mother. Without even a thought I do so much of what she did as a mother. The mother that I am today is a copycat of the mother she was.

Maternal instinct is more universal across cultures and what compels us to protect and nurture our children. Something as basic as putting a child to bed, potty training, tooth fairy to the first day of school all differ across cultures.

In the end whatever your culture or tradition, we all want and desire the same of our kids, a happy healthy life.


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