10 Reminders Every New Mom Needs When She's Feeling Insecure

Ad failed to load

I'd like to think that I will always have a handle on things, especially as a mother. I would like to think that I can control every situation and answer every question and give my son absolutely everything he needs. What can I say? I'm realistic like that. However, I know that's simply not the case and, when the realization that I can and probably will fail becomes too much, insecurity rears its ugly head. Thankfully, I've learned to rely on the reminders every new mom needs when she's feeling insecure; reminders that can push everything back into perspective, strengthen my resolve and boost my self-esteem and confidence.

I knew how important (and numerous) my responsibilities would be as a mother, don't get me wrong. I knew that caring for another human being requires a lot of time and effort and attention. However, I didn't realize how those responsibilities would affect me physically, mentally or emotionally, until my son was in my arms. All of a sudden, I was overwhelmed with an intense purpose, and I was afraid I wouldn't be able to live up to it. All my faults and past mistakes and insecurities came boiling to the surface, and it was difficult to convince myself that I really and truly was capable of being the mother this precious, perfect kid needed and deserved.

I still have those feelings (on a regular basis, actually) now that my son is a two-year-old toddler and becoming more adventurous, more spirited and more independent on a daily, if not hourly, basis. I still, from time to time, start to feel insecure and doubt my abilities as a parent. When those moments wash over me and I start to feel like I'm lacking, I remind myself of the following. After all, we're all so much stronger than we think we are.

Ad failed to load

"Motherhood Isn't Innate"


Contrary to sexist gender stereotypes, women don't just innately know how to be mothers. Sure, natural instinct does kick in from time to time and there are moments when you experience that "I just know" feeling. However, you have to learn how to parent, and how to parent in an way that makes you feel comfortable, works best for your family and is beneficial for your unique child.

So when you're feeling insecure, remember that there's nothing innately wrong with you. You're not missing some "mom gene" and you're not even required to know exactly what to do at all times just because you're a mother. There's a learning curve to this whole mom thing, and you need to be kind to yourself and grant yourself the room (and the permission) to learn as you go.

"You're Learning, Even When You Make A Mistake"

I spent the majority of my first few weeks and months and, hell, even year as a mother, terrified of making a mistake. I didn't want to let my son down in any way, ever and for any reason. I didn't want to "mess up" and I didn't want to be the reason he felt disappointed or hurt or scared or anything other than ridiculously happy every second of every day. Yes, clearly I had pretty healthy and reasonable expectations.

However, I have learned that making mistakes is why I have become a better mother than I was a year ago. I have learned more from my mishaps than I have from the moments when everything went smoothly. While my mistakes are usually a shot to my ego and make me feel insecure, they also remind me that I can get through anything, I can learn even when it hurts, and I can always be better tomorrow.

"Every Parent Is Afraid..."


No, really. We are all living in a perpetual state of mild-to-severe fear. We're all worried we're not being the best parents we could possibly be. We're all afraid for our children. We're all hoping we're not causing irreparable damage. We've been afraid the moment they entered the world (if not before) and we will continue to be afraid, because that's what happens when your heart is walking around outside of your body.

Ad failed to load

"...And You're Not Alone"

I would argue there isn't a parent in the world that doesn't or hasn't felt as insecure as you are or have. You're not alone in your fears or your doubts. You're not alone in your anxiety or your uncertainty.

So, with the knowledge of solidarity comes the chance to find a community. Find people who support you and who you feel comfortable with, and then share your true feelings with them. Sometimes it helps just to know that we're not alone, and whatever it is we're feeling — while unique to us and ours to own — is being felt by others, too.

"You Have People Who Support You, So Use Them"


Whether you're married or you have a co-parent you're raising your child with or you're a single mother, there are people and resources that can and will support you. Take advantage of your support network, no matter how big or small.

If you're feeling insecure to the point that you're overwhelmed, find some time to focus on yourself and just yourself. Do something that benefits you; practice some self-care; hand off your parenting responsibilities to someone else for a few hours and get the time and space you need to gain some necessary perspective.

"It Always Feels Worse Than It Actually Is"

While this isn't necessary helpful (at least it isn't for me, especially in the moment) it's always a good reminder. Whatever emotion I'm experiencing will, eventually, pass. When I'm feeling overwhelmed, I know that if I take the necessary steps I will soon feel relieved. I know that when I think the world is crashing down around me and something is going to go horribly wrong, the world will remain where it is and things won't be as catastrophic as I had imagined.

It's easy to get lost in the heaviness of motherhood and feel ill-equipped, but you are so very much equipped. It's never as bad or it looks or it feels, so take a few steps backwards, take some deep breaths and wait for the storm to pass. I promise you, it will.

Ad failed to load

"You're Capable And Powerful. More Than You Know."


You are strong. You are capable. You are powerful. You are a force. You deserve to take up space. You are entitled to your feelings. You are smart. You are resourceful.

In other words, you got this.

"You've Already Accomplished So Much"

Whenever I'm starting to feel insecure and over my head, I look back at what I've already accomplished. I think about my pregnancy, and how I got through something so difficult and scary and, at times, heartbreaking. I think about labor and delivery, and how I was able to bring another human being into the world. I think about the late night feedings and breastfeeding struggles and the days I continued to function on little-to-no sleep.

You've already accomplished so much as a new mother (and a human being). You've already done so many things and met so many goals. You're a capable human and the next challenge is nothing you can't handle.

"If You're Worried, That Means You're Doing A Great Job"


If you're spending your precious time worried about being a good mother, you're a good mother. If you're putting in that much thought as to how you can be the best possible parent to your child, you're a great parent. Don't forget it.

Ad failed to load

"Your Baby Loves You"

They really do. Even when you fail, they love you. Even when you don't love yourself (and you really should, because you're awesome), they love you. Even when you're unsure and insecure and anxious and afraid, they love you.

In other words, you're doing great, mom.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

5 Parenting Habits That Increase Your Chances Of Successfully Potty-Training Your Child

From starting solids to learning to walk, every childhood milestone presents its own unique set of challenges — but this is especially true of potty training. Indeed, the very thought strikes fear into the heart of many a toddler parent, particularly…
By Jacqueline Burt Cote

Getting Pregnant Might Mean Losing The Plus-Size Body I Love

For the last two years, I haven’t been my body’s biggest champion. I’ve gained 50 pounds. The stress of helping a parent get sober, a house purchase, and a new job got the best of me. But now, at 36, with talks between my husband and I about having a…
By Loren Kleinman

7 Hilarious Differences Between Having A Baby In Your 20s Vs Your 30s

I was 24 when I had my daughter. And even though that pregnancy was neither expected nor pleasant, I was optimistic. Sure, I guess your 20s are "supposed" to be about finding yourself, finishing college, starting your career, and navigating less-than…
By Candace Ganger

Babies "R" Us Was The First Place I Went When I Found Out I Would Be A Mom

For years I struggled to have a baby, and the sight of toys and layettes made my heart hurt. For me, Toys "R" Us and Babies "R" Us were a complete no-go zone, a reminder of everything I was missing out on. My mom would walk the long way around Target…
By Becky Bracken

New Moms Have Two Options: Be "Sad & Fat" Or "Desperate & Thin"

As the line goes, the worst thing you could say about me, I've already thought about myself. In the early postpartum period with my son, it was: "I am overweight, lonely, and heartbroken." It was four days after I brought my son into the world, and I…
By Danielle Campoamor

6 Fascinating Facts About Spring Babies: You Could Have A Leader On Your Hands

Does the season in which you are born affect you or are all seasons pretty equal? It turns out that there are many ways in which the your child's birth season could give you an insight into things to come. Whether you are expecting a baby in the next…
By Shari Maurer

Kids Will Love These TV Shows & Movies Coming To Netflix In April

It's that time of the month again: as March draws to a close, Netflix gets ready for a little bit of spring cleaning. Though some TV shows and movies will have to find homes elsewhere, their departure makes room for all kinds of exciting new media. A…
By Megan Walsh

I'm A Stay-At-Home Mom &, Face It, These 11 Stereotypes Are Totally True

Hello, friends! It's me, your resident stay-at-home mom. You know, there's a lot that's said about me and my kind, and the vast majority of it is not even remotely true. For example, this whole "we're lazy, vapid, unambitious, anti-feminist, backstab…
By Jamie Kenney

The Pressure To Worry About The Gap Between Kids Is So Bad For Moms

"Two under two is absolutely crazy," a friend recently told me upon hearing the news that I was expecting a second child. "Why would you do this to yourself? Seriously, why?" However harsh her words, she was only echoing the same feelings I'd been ba…
By Marie Southard Ospina

To Be Honest, I Couldn't Survive Motherhood Without My Job

The decision to work outside the home once you've become a parent can be a complicated one. Some people don't really have a choice, and go back to work because they're either a single parent or can't sustain their family on one income. Some choose to…
By Priscilla Blossom

I Feel Guilty That My Kid’s Dad Is A Better Parent Than Me, & That’s BS

I was scared, and he was sure. I was clueless, and he was well-researched. I was making mistakes, and he was picking up the pieces. From the moment I found out I was pregnant until just last night, when I threw my hands up in the air and left the alw…
By Danielle Campoamor

These Millennial Parents Are Taking Gender-Neutral Parenting To An Entirely New Level

A woman on the subway looks at my bulbous shape and asks, “What are you having?” I take a deep breath and throw a glance to my 5-year-old. “I’m having a baby,” I say to the woman. “No, no” the woman says laughing as she pushes further. “Are you havin…
By Madison Young

My Daughter Is Obsessed With Being "Pretty" & I'm Way Past Terrified

Last week, when I picked up my daughter after school, she immediately wanted to know if I liked her hair. "Is it pretty?" she asked. Her hair was pulled up into two ponytails that were intertwined into thick, long braids. A shimmering pink and purple…
By Dina Leygerman

7 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 20s, But I Will

I was 24 when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter. The pregnancy was a surprise, since I was on birth control (side note: antibiotics and birth control don't mix), but my partner and I decided to continue with the pregnancy and committed to m…
By Candace Ganger

7 Things I Wish My Partner Had Said To Me In The First Hour After Giving Birth

I don't know if it was the buzz of the surrounding machines, the non-existent cry of our son as the doctors tried to resuscitate him, or the fact that I'd already been through labor and delivery once before, but I knew something was missing after I h…
By Candace Ganger

Moms’ Groups Weren’t For Me, Sorry

I go to my moms’ club everyday of the week, but not usually on weekends. My moms' group is a place I can always count on finding fellow mothers who understand the daily struggles and triumphs of parenthood and of juggling life’s responsibilities. Dep…
By Samantha Taylor

I've Had 3 Miscarriages But *Please* Keep Telling Me About Your Pregnancy

I can feel the tension the moment my friend announces her pregnancy. I can hear the forced nonchalant attitude she's willing herself to exude as she fishes for the ultrasound. I know why I was the last to learn that she was expecting; why she keeps l…
By Danielle Campoamor

7 Early Signs You're Going To Need An Epidural, According To Experts

Even if you've constructed an elaborate birth plan, it's impossible to control every aspect of labor and delivery. Complications can occur, proactive measures might be necessary, and your mind is subject to change when those damn contractions really …
By Candace Ganger

11 Essential Products To Pack In Your Hospital Bag, According To OB-GYNs

The minute you go into labor (or think you're going into labor), chaos ensues. You and your partner are likely to get a little frantic, just like in the movies, so you most definitely want to have a hospital bag packed before the day comes. This prec…
By Abi Berwager Schreier

7 Photos You *Must* Take In The First 6 Months Of Motherhood

In my experience, becoming a mom is like becoming an amateur photographer. There's just something about the need to capture every single coo and sorta-smile that leaves you obsessed with all things photography. I know I couldn't stop taking selfies w…
By Candace Ganger