Mom Wants to Know If She’s the Jerk for Saying Her Kids Aren’t Her Greatest Accomplishment
Nobody likes having things assumed about them. For example, it might be easy to assume that a mom’s greatest accomplishment is having children, but that might not be the case, and that doesn’t necessarily mean that she’s a bad mom.
One mom shared on Reddit that she was chatting with her neighbors, and everyone was sharing their greatest accomplishments. She wrote, “When it came to me, Tom said ‘Oh, well we know what your greatest accomplishment is, obviously. You have three beautiful, well-behaved children.'”
She could’ve nodded, smiled and agreed with Tom, but she didn’t. Instead, she was shocked. She responded by saying, “No, That’s NOT my greatest accomplishment. And by the way, I resent the assumption that having kids is my greatest accomplishment. You have kids, why didn’t you say that?”
Tom explained that his children aren’t his greatest accomplishment because he didn’t give birth to them. This infuriated mom responded, “Let’s not boil women down to their biological functions, kay?”
The other mothers in the neighborhood, including Tom’s wife, agreed with him that their children are their greatest accomplishments. One of these mothers even called “asking me if I needed to talk to someone, and asked if I was depressed, because my statement was worrisome. She ended up reaching out to my husband to encourage me to get help, because it seems I’m unhappy being a mom and that puts my kids at risk.”
This mom turned to Reddit to ask if she’s really crazy to say that she has had greater accomplishments than having kids. She wrote, “I love my kids, but they are not my everything. I had a whole lifetime before. I ran marathons, climbed mountains, wrote a novel that was published and did moderately successful in the 00s, and have a MFA in creative writing.” She added that her greatest accomplishment was “climbing Kili and Denali the same summer I knocked off the final 14ers of the contiguous US states, with my now husband.”
The Reddit community overwhelmingly agrees that having greater accomplishments than giving birth to children does not make her a bad mother. One person pointed out the double standard here between mothers and fathers. “He [Tom] doesn’t think his kids are his greatest accomplishment because he has a sense of self outside of his role as father. He doesn’t think women feel the same way. In his view, the pinnacle of womanhood is clearly motherhood, and if it’s not, you’re a bad woman and a bad mommy. Nobody should be aghast that she doesn’t feel that way if they’re also fine with the fact that he didn’t feel that way. There shouldn’t be a double standard here and the only explanation for it that I can find is that he doesn’t think women can be whole people like he is.”
Another Reddit user added, “I am fed up with people who reduce women, moms to the utility of their uterus and motherhood, especially when they give men, dads a pass.”
Another person pointed out, “If anything it sounds like they might be a little bitter over the fact that you have accomplished so much.”
What’s your greatest accomplishment? Do you think a mom’s greatest accomplishment should be having children? Do you think the other moms are just jealous?