What Is Matrescence? A Journey into Motherhood.

Posted 27 Dec 2022

Matrescence is a term that refers to a woman’s journey and transformation into motherhood. 

First coined by anthropologist Dana Raphael in the 1970s. It refers to the process of becoming a mother and the psychological, emotional, social, spiritual and physiological changes that come with this monumental transformation. This transition is often marked by a range of experiences, including feelings of joy, excitement, and anticipation, as well as feelings of grief, frustration, fear  and sadness. In many ways, the process of Matrescence is akin to other major life transitions, such as adolescence or menopause.

The term “matrescence” is derived from the Latin word “mater,” which means mother, and the suffix “-escence,” which denotes the process of becoming or emerging. Thus, even the word itself speaks to the emergence of a new part of self and that Matrescence is a journey of meeting the mother you are becoming.

Matrescence woman

The exact length and entry point of awareness into Matrescence is individual and it is not only birthing women who share in this experience. Surrogates, adoptive mothers, mothers who have experienced misscarriage and even women who choose not to have children experience Matrescence. This is because Matrescence starts and is shaped from the moment a woman starts to form beliefs and ideas around motherhood and what it would mean to experience motherhood.

So if Matrescence affects all women and is so profound then why aren’t more people talking about it?


One of the key aspects of Matrescence is the recognition that becoming a mother is a transformative experience that can have a profound impact on a woman’s sense of self, her relationships, and her overall well-being. This recognition is important because it can support mothers to understand and bring light to the changes they are experiencing, and it can also help those around them to provide support and understanding that mothers truly need during this time.

matrescence motherhood


Despite the profound impact of Matrescence on a woman’s life, it is often not given the attention and support it deserves. Many women feel isolated and overwhelmed during this time, as they adjust to their new roles and responsibilities alongside. In order to support women during this important transition, it is important for society to recognise the significance of Matrescence and provide the support and resources that new mothers need to thrive.

In conclusion, Matrescence is the process of becoming a mother. This journey can be both rewarding and challenging, and it is an important time of growth and transformation. By recognising and acknowledging the significance of Matrescence, we can better support and understand mothers as they navigate this important transition.


If you are looking for support as you navigate your emergence into motherhood book here for your complimentary Matrescence Journey Session


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