Ask any mom and she’ll probably say two things about mom rage: One, it’s very real. And two, we didn’t expect to feel this way.
What we might not say as often, however, is that we’re sorry for the times when our mom rage found undeserving targets. For the times our mom rage blew up on our kids, on our friends, and yes, on you.
So I’ll say it now: I’m sorry for the times when my mom rage fell on you.
For a while, I thought it was just me. I thought there must be something wrong with me. I’ve been shocked by the intensity of my feelings sometimes. I didn’t expect to be so impacted by mom rage. But it isn’t just me. I’m not alone. And I’m sorry I didn’t realize that sooner.
Related: Your burnout is not your fault
There are a million reasons for mom rage…
Anxiety. Postpartum mood disorders. Depression.
The constant feelings of overwhelm that motherhood brings.
Living in a world that has felt like it is literally falling apart at the seams for the past few years.
Living in a world that expects moms to do it all, to be it all, to have it all—as if that were even possible—so that we constantly feel like we’re falling short.
I’m sorry that I sometimes forget we’re on the same team, that you’re on my team.
Living in a society that tells us to smile more but warns us about using exclamation points in our emails, urges us to lean in but not too much, and reminds us to make sure to prioritize “me time” but only when it’s convenient for everyone else.
The unending messiness of motherhood. The toys and clothes littered around the house. But also the million open tabs in our brain—school permission slips, PTA volunteer requests, work emails to return, books that we aren’t reading with our kids—all taking up space and draining our emotional hard drive.
The fear—the paralyzing fear— that we aren’t a good enough mother, a good enough professional, a good contributor to the family, a good enough friend, a good enough wife, a good enough person.
And then there’s the exhaustion. The bone-tired exhaustion. Our bodies are tired because a hot minute after our babies start sleeping through the night, perimenopause night sweats started and now we’re up past midnight waiting for our teen to get home. Our hearts are tired because we carry the emotional weight not just of our families, but of the world too. We care so much and feel too much.
There is so much about our mom rage that is justified. There are just so much to be angry about these days. But it isn’t you I’m angry at, and I’m sorry for taking it out on you. You are my safe place, my soft landing, and over the years, I’ve come to rely on you to catch me when I fall and when I spin out of control. Sometimes this is too much to put on you. But you’ve done it anyway. And I’m so grateful to you.
But I’m also sorry. Sorry for the times when you had to catch things that weren’t yours to catch. For the times when mom rage exploded all over you. For the times I hurt you with my own heartache.
Motherhood is all-consuming and I feel inadequate to manage it sometimes. Fortunately, I don’t have to do it alone. Because I have you.
Sure, there have been and will be times when we’ll disagree. When we won’t see eye-to-eye. When we’re angry with each other. We’re flawed and imperfect humans sharing a live together, after all.
But I’m sorry that I sometimes forget we’re on the same team, that you’re on my team. I’m sorry for forgetting that you too carry the emotional weight of our family. That you too stay up late to supervise our tween’s sleepover and get up early to handle carpool. That you too worry about whether we getting any of this parenting thing right or whether we’re doing it all wrong. That you too are pissed that we live in a country that preaches about bootstraps instead of providing some boots, that we live in a society where the patriarchy still holds court, that we live in a world where emperors wage wars that takes the lives of innocent children.
I’m sorry for the times when mom rage pushed you away, instead of leaning on you. I’m sorry for taking my anger at all these other things out on you. I’m sorry for the times when my mom rage exploded and you were caught in the line of fire.
Even when I’m angry at the world for all the things there are to be angry at, please know how much I love and appreciate you. I married you for a reason—because you are a good man, with a big heart, and caring soul. And it was the best decision of my life.
Motherhood is all-consuming and I feel inadequate to manage it sometimes. Fortunately, I don’t have to do it alone. Because I have you. And I’m so very grateful for that.