Mothers


“The hand that rocks the cradle,
is the hand that rules the world.” 

(William R. Wallace)

  • "The love of mothers for their children is what keeps the whole world revolving.  The social fabric of a group is woven, in the first place, by the efforts of women. 

    Women make day-to-day living possible for men, women and children, weaving the strands by growing and processing food; obtaining water and fuel; managing clothing and cleaning; performing reproduction, lactation and childcare; nursing others through infirmities and old age; sharing information and coordinating efforts with other women in their families and communities; storing emergency provisions; being the primary investors in the  human capital of the family's children, and so forth.  What women do is the foundation of human security in every society. 

    Women's caring labor for others is assumed to be both inexhaustible and free, like the air we breathe....(many) completely ignore their insights and concerns by shutting them out of decision-making.  Even under the worst of abusive conditions, we assume women will still provide their free, caring labor and keep the society running from day to day. 

    And they will - because they would do anything to keep their children safe.  Not only every good custom or policy, but also every bad custom or policy, can depend on mothers to keep it all going. 

    Ask mothers for their insights on how to heal the world, and then let us really listen.  And as mothers, let us reflect on what we would say if we thought we would be heard, and then let us stand up and say it boldly...because we love our children."   ("Mothers remake society when they begin to stand up," Valerie M. Hudson is a professor and George H.W. Bush chairwoman of the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University, 2013) 
What Mothers Can Do
  • Many women mother children, including aunts, grandmothers and next-door neighbors.  Continue to respond to your marvelous nature which is to nurture and strengthen the children and youth of today. 

  • Spend unrushed, one-on-one time with your children.  Really listen, talk, laugh, play, hug, and honestly praise them.  
  • Be available to your children when they are at home, leave and return from school, leave and return from dates, and when they bring friends home.  
  • Keep your voice soft and calm while raising your children.  Don’t scream or yell in the home, and your children won’t either.  
  • Don’t spend all your time running children to and from activities.  Children need time with their mother more than time with a coach.
  • Teach your children to be honest and responsible.  Teach them it pays to be good.  
  • Read to your children regularly.  Teach them to love good literature.
  • Teach your children to pray, and to look to a higher source for help when needed.
  • Be together for family meals, so you can share the day’s experiences.
  • Look for teaching moments—which often occur at mealtime, bedtime, walks, and other special times.   

  • Teach your sons and daughters to have high moral standards.  Teach them the importance of sexual purity - of chastity before marriage and fidelity within marriage. 

    One mother in a Wall Street Journal editorial  observed:  "With the exception of some Mormons, evangelicals and Orthodox Jews, scads of us don't know how to teach our own sons and daughters not to give away their bodies so readily...Still, in my own circle of girlfriends, the desire to push back is strong.  I don't know one of them who doesn't have feelings of lingering discomfort regarding her own sexual past.  And not one woman I've ever asked about the subject has said that she wishes she'd 'experimented' more."  (Jennifer Moses, "Why Do We Let Them Dress Like that?" Wall Street Journal, Mar. 19, 2011, C3) 
  • Enjoy motherhood.  Be willing to stay up at night when your children need to talk.  Make time for quiet time before bed—stay and talk, and they will open up if you will listen.  Most children are trying to avoid going to sleep anyway.  This is a great time to tell stories and teach values—a perfect opportunity, because they are more open.  They love to talk as long as a parent will stay and talk.
Local Organizations
Additional Resources

Parent-Child Assistance Program (PCAP)

http://depts.washington.edu/pcapuw/
Assist mothers in obtaining alcohol and drug treatment and staying in recovery.
Link mothers and their families to community resources that will help them build and maintain healthy and independent family lives.  Help mothers prevent the births of future alcohol and drug-affected children.