Mothers spend years supporting and rearing their children. Did you ever wonder what keeps them strong? Researchers from the Arizona State University said, "Things like unconditional acceptance by friends and authenticity in relationships play essential role in keeping moms happy, and thus grounded in their tasks with child rearing and development."
The research team asked more than 2,000 well-educated, upper middle-class mothers what factors helped them cope with motherhood. The researchers said, "Out of a total seven, four factors stood out as main contributors to helping mom's equanimity of spirit and keeping distress at bay. They are unconditional acceptance, feeling comforted when needed, authenticity in relationships and friendship satisfaction."
The research team reported that being married, per se, was not related to mothers' psychological well-being - the quality of the marital relationship was more significant. Professor Suniya Luthar said, "Relationships with spouses are important but clearly not determinative to a mother's well being. Our results yield little support for views that as a group, upper-middle class mothers' well being is primarily tied to their investment in their children and their roles as parents, and instead, suggest far stronger ramifications for feelings of being personally supported."
The study appeared online in Developmental Psychology.