We all have similar concerns as parents; we want to be good mothers. We want to pass down the good things we’re taught by our mothers or mother figures, but we also want to break any generational trauma. Not only that, but we can have incredible values and lessons we’d love to share with our children and have trauma that passes down the line.
We really want to end this to stay positive, but the truth is what it is!
What is generational trauma?
Generational trauma is trauma that’s been passed down from one generation to another. Trauma is defined or described as an experience that happens in someone’s life that causes serious harm, whether it’s emotional, physical, or mental.
Whatever the event might have taken place decades ago has significantly impacted the way the individual involved understands, copes, and heals from the trauma. Wondering how it’s passed down or what it might look like? Families and situations will always differ from one to the next, but these are relatively common.
- The family might seem to be emotionally numb, or they strongly hesitate to talk about their feelings.
- Discussing feelings or emotions might seem like a weakness to a family.
- Trust issues with people that are “outsiders,” and there’s usually continual conflict.
- There are signs of anxiety or an overprotectiveness of children and family members even when there is no threat or danger.
- Unhealthy relationship boundaries.
- Learning unhealthy survival behaviors.
There are ways to break those generational traumas. Some people might not even know they’re dealing with any, but there’s a way to break through.
What Not To Pass On
Whether it’s trauma-related or not, there are things as mothers we don’t want to pass on to our children. Let’s take a look.
- Unnecessary Harsh Criticism: Constructive criticism is essential for growth. It doesn’t have to be handed out in a harmful and harsh way. That leaves damage and insecurities.
- Internalized Oppression: This is similar to harsh criticisms. It’s more about oppressing kids through fear of what will happen if they do or don’t do something. Kids need more positivity and guidance.
- No Appreciation For Mental Health: Kids go through things too! They may be young, but life happens, and little ones can deal with depression and anxiety. Let’s keep that in mind.
- The Authoritarian Parent: Fear-based parenting should blow on out the window. When we act as harsh parents with harsh consequences for anything, our kids will avoid coming to us when the going gets tough.
So, now we know what to avoid. There are so many positive things we can pass down that are just like mamas!
- Making time even though we’re busy. It’s healthy and essential to our kids when they see us stop what we’re doing and spend time with them. They won’t stay little forever, so take the time to have those moments you’ll all cherish.
- Mama’s cheer their kids on when they’re doing the right thing. It’s not always about how good our kids do something so much as it is about doing what’s right and good.
- Forgiving and forgetting are essential. Too many parents hold onto the wrong choices or behaviors kids display. Let it go! Reminding them of every mistake throughout their lives will only crush their spirit.
All of those little things our mama’s and mama-figures did… do them! The things that mattered, the compassion on sleepless nights, cups of cocoa after a nightmare, talks in the care about their little lives and the big things going on, and memories being made every day! Give them the love and support you would’ve and do want! You’ve got this, mama! You’re likely already doing a fantastic job!