Friday, September 2, 2011

It's NOT Mormon Moms Who Are Depressed!

It's all moms!! Seriously. My sister blogged this over at Yahoo! Shine. I think this has huge ramifications, so of course I had to blog it too.

The original article, Trying to Be 'Supermom' Can Raise Risk for Depression, hits the nail on the head. Trying reading the article but swap out "working mom" and "stay-at-home mom" for "Mormon mom" and "Supermom" for "Mother in Zion Syndrome" and you could have any article from the past ten years that's been written about Mormons and depression.

The study does point out, though, that women who work at least part time are less likely to be depressed UNLESS they are women who don't cut themselves any slack. If they are the type of women who have high expectations for things to work out and be perfect, they are in trouble. If they aren't sure how working and having a family are going to shake out, they do better.

It's that last part that I think is important for a couple reasons: 1) the so-called "Mother in Zion Syndrome" isn't a Mormon thing; it's an American thing and 2)it's okay for women to be unsure of their choices and work things out as they go--especially when it comes to division of labor between the spouses.

Sometimes this whole motherhood thing gets so complicated and emotional that as women we fail to realize that each of us is born with different talents, abilities, and paths. We pick on each other and we judge each other and force each other to justify our choices over and over. Think about how many times you've had to justify your job (or lack thereof), your number of children, or the amount of housework your spouse does. If we were really being true to ourselves and, as Mormon women--Christian women, we wouldn't do this to each other.

The best part of the whole article was this quote, "Women who have a realistic expectation are more likely to choose men who are going to help out around the house," Correll [associate professor of psychology at Stanford] said. "If you choose someone who will be a helpmate to you, that may lead to lower levels of depression."

That's true no matter your job status, you marital status, or your gender. As Pres. Uchdorf said, lift where you stand.

Have a great Labor Day!
Oh, and if you want to read a quick tidbit about my sister and I and our angsty teenage mood issues, check out this one: .


Anonymous said...

You are so wrong! Mormon moms have this stigmatic attitude passed down by their husbands to be perfect. If the woman across the street can do it with 3 additional children, why can't you? That's at least the prevalent thought. This then causes the woman to regress, swallow the pain and attempt to remain perfect in the eyes of the Mormon community. All happy faces--no problems. Nothing could be further from the truth. Mormon moms are also the most heavily drugged up, sedated women on the planet. They are bread from an early age to push out kids, keep the household running and please their husbands as their husbands see fit--even if it means sinning. When you face up to that fact, you will then find happiness.

Laura said...

Just as a note: I don't respond to anonymous comments. I figure if you really want to to talk then you will stand by your comments and put a name to them.

Anonymous said...

I wasn't expecting a response, I was offering an opinion. But since you did respond, your non-comment says more about you than you intended.