The Amazing Culture of Motherhood
With Mother’s Day soon approaching, we here at Mynder got to thinking about who we’d all be celebrating this year – of course our own mothers, but we also know a thousand other women who are amazing mum’s. It made us realise that there’s so many incredible people that we’d love to celebrate this year, and so many people that we haven’t gotten the chance to learn about. So, we decided to share with you some of the motherly traditions that women partake in across the world!
France is lucky enough to have amazing childcare – it’s widely available, and there’s no negative stigma around utilising it. Children can be enrolled into childcare from the age of three, and the day starts at 8:30, and ends at 4:30, something that I’m sure all mothers would appreciate across the world. The kids also have a ‘doudous’ (another word for ‘blankie’), and they form quite an attachment, to the point where there’s special pockets in classrooms for them to put their doudous during the day (very cute!) French mother’s also handle praise a little different to what Australians do – they often hold back their words of encouragement, so that their children do what they love purely out of enjoyment, not just to please their parents.
When Ethiopian women give birth, it’s customary for them to isolate themselves for up to six weeks before interacting with the community and other family members, and during that time, the baby doesn’t yet have a name. Mother’s in Ethiopia also get celebrated during a three day festival. After the rainy season, families come to celebrate, daughters bring home veggies and cheese, and sons bring home meats, then they feast, dance and sing with one another!
Mother’s are extremely important to Indian culture – and during October, a ten day festival is held to celebrate the “Divine Mother”, a goddess named Durga, and throughout the festival, gifts are also given to mothers across the country, and feasts are held to celebrate women everywhere. Mother’s in India also aren’t allowed to find out the sex of their baby in advance – it’s a law! But once they have their little one, it’s customary for them to co-sleep until the age of six or seven.
Brazil puts a certain emphasis on baby girls looking particularly feminine – so it’s customary for newborn children to have their ears pierced almost immediately. It often occurs that if a baby girls ears aren’t pierced, she may be mistaken for a boy by people on the street. Brazilian mothers also have a superstition around hiccups, it’s said that the cure is simply to put a wad of paper on a baby’s forehead! It’s also a cultural norm to elect to have a caesarean section as opposed to a vaginal birth.
Russian mothers are lucky in the maternity leave department compared to a bunch of other countries around the world – leave can last up to three years helping expectant mothers to prepare, and helping them adjust to a newborn in their life. However, a lot of women choose to return to work once the baby is a year old, or even earlier, to keep their careers on track, even with paid leave available. One of the traditions in Russia involves bundling up babies in snowsuits and blankets in strollers and letting them nap outside, even when it’s cold! This is so the child can have the freshest air possible – it’s also customary for Russian children to not have a bedtime.
Wow – it’s incredible to explore the different traditions and customs of motherhood across the world. This Mother’s Day, we’d like to take a chance to reflect on the fact that no matter how different we are, where we come from, how old your kids may be, what your career is, or how you choose to parent – all mothers have the same thing in mind – raising the best little bubs possible! Happy Mother’s Day everyone x