10 Signs You’re Experiencing Matrescence and How to Cope

Posted 30 May 2024

Have you ever wondered why motherhood brings such a whirlwind of emotions?

Matrescence is the process of becoming a mother.

Much like adolescence is the process of becoming an adult. This transition involves significant emotional, mental, psychological, and social changes. Understanding these changes is crucial, as it helps new mothers navigate their experiences and fosters better mental and emotional well-being during this transformative period.

10 Signs You May be Experiencing Matrescence

Emotional Waves

During Matrescence, many mothers may experience sudden and intense emotions. You might feel incredibly happy one moment and very anxious or frustrated the next. These emotional shifts may happen due to hormonal changes, relationship changes and the realisation that parts of self and life are changing. Understanding that these feelings are normal can help you feel more at ease. It’s important to recognise and support your emotions by talking to loved ones, seeking support, and giving yourself grace during this period.

Identity Shift

Becoming a mother often leads to a reevaluation of your self-identity, values and roles. You might feel like a different person than you were before pregnancy or giving birth. This change can cause confusion and a sense of loss as you adapt to your new role. Embracing this new identity can help you grow into your role as a mother and discover more of who you are as a person.

mother's responsibility

Increased Sense of Responsibility

Mothers often feel a heightened awareness and concern for their child’s needs and well-being. This can manifest as constant worry about your baby’s safety and health, which can sometimes feel overwhelming. Balancing this sense of responsibility with self-care is crucial for your well-being.

Changes in Relationships

Your relationships with your partner, family, and friends may shift significantly. You might feel isolated from those who don’t understand what you’re going through, or you may need different kinds of support than before. Open communication and seeking support from those who understand can help navigate these changes.

Mental Load and Cognitive Changes

The mental burden of managing a household and caring for a baby can be heavy. You might experience forgetfulness, difficulty concentrating, and challenges in making decisions. This increased mental fatigue can be stressful and exhausting, so finding ways to share the load and take breaks is important.

Social Isolation

Many new mothers feel disconnected from their pre-motherhood social circles. You might find you have less time for social activities and feel left out of friends’ lives, leading to feelings of loneliness. Seeking out new social networks of other mothers can provide much-needed support and companionship.

Self-Doubt and Imposter Syndrome

 It’s common to question your abilities as a mother and feel like you are not enough. You might compare yourself to other mothers and fear that you are not meeting necessary standards, which can lower your self-esteem and increase anxiety. Acknowledging these feelings and seeking validation can help build your confidence. It’s important to note imposter syndrome is common and there is no such thing as the “perfect” mother.

Shift in Priorities and Values

Your life goals and values may change after becoming a mother. For example, you might decide to prioritise family over your career or develop new interests that align with your role as a parent. Accepting and adjusting to these changes can be challenging but also rewarding, as they reflect your evolving identity.

Heightened Empathy and Emotional Sensitivity

Many mothers become more emotionally responsive to their child’s needs and the feelings of others. This is due to high-levels of oestrogen during this phase of life. This increased empathy can strengthen bonds with your child and others, but it can also lead to emotional exhaustion if not managed carefully. Finding balance and setting boundaries can help maintain emotional health.

Need for Community and Shared Experiences

There’s often a strong desire to connect with other mothers and share experiences. Joining mom groups or seeking advice from peers can provide valuable support and a sense of solidarity during this transition. Building a supportive community can help you feel less alone and more understood.

How to Cope with Matrescence

Emotional Support

Seeking coaching, therapy or joining support groups. Sharing your feelings with trusted friends and family can also provide relief. There are hotlines and online communities specifically for new mothers that offer support and advice. Coaching and counselling can help you navigate the emotional complexities of Matrescence

Self-Identity Exploration

Engage in self-reflection and pursue hobbies or activities that affirm your identity outside of motherhood. Journaling, reading self-help books, or attending workshops can support this exploration. Exploring your interests and maintaining a sense of individuality can help you feel more balanced and fulfilled.

Open Communication with Partner

Regular check-ins and practicing active listening with your partner can strengthen your relationship. If needed, couples therapy can provide additional support and help address any issues that arise from the changes in your dynamics. Clear communication ensures that both partners feel heard and supported.

Managing the Mental Load

Share responsibilities with your partner and use organisational tools to ease the mental burden. Set realistic goals and break tasks into manageable steps to reduce stress. Prioritising tasks and delegating can help manage the daily demands of pregnancy and motherhood.

Building Social Connections

Join local mum groups or participate in community activities to combat feelings of isolation. Reconnect with old friends and find new social support networks for the connection and understanding you need. Building a supportive network can provide emotional and practical support.

Combating Self-Doubt

Practice positive affirmations and set realistic expectations for yourself. Celebrate small wins and acknowledge your efforts to boost your confidence. Recognise that every mother’s journey is unique and that it’s okay to seek help when needed.

Prioritising Self-Care

new mums taking time for self care

Schedule regular self-care activities and delegate tasks to ensure you take time for yourself. Mindfulness practices, such as meditation, can also help manage stress and maintain your well-being. Taking care of yourself is essential for being the best mother you can be.

Adapting to New Priorities

Embrace the changes in your priorities and set flexible goals to help you adjust. Seek balance between your new responsibilities and personal interests for long-term satisfaction. Allow yourself to evolve and grow with your new role.

Enhancing Emotional Resilience

Practice mindfulness and engage in stress-relief activities to build emotional resilience. Use resources like meditation apps and stress management workshops for guidance and support. Developing strategies for resilience can help you navigate the ups and downs of motherhood.

Seeking Professional Help When Needed

Recognise when to seek professional help and find the right professionals, such as coaches, therapists, coucellors or maternal health specialists. They can offer tailored support and address any specific challenges you may face and support you develop and provide new strategies, valuable insights and goals.

Recognising the signs of Matrescence is crucial for understanding the emotional, mental, psychological, and social changes that come with becoming a mother.

By seeking support and utilising coping strategies, you can navigate this transformative period more effectively. Embrace the journey of motherhood and the personal growth it brings.

Book a Complimentary Matrescence Discovery Session

Are you navigating the emotional waves of Matrescence and seeking support? Matrescence Coaching Sessions offer a compassionate space to explore these profound changes. Gain insights, share your experiences, and find practical strategies to cope with the emotional, mental, psychological, and social shifts of becoming a mother.

Book your complimentary Matrescence Discovery Session today and embrace this transformative journey with confidence and support.

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