The 7 Stages of Motherhood
Motherhood is the ultimate transformation, a powerful and thrilling metamorphosis. Yet the vast majority of parenting books focus on the how-tos of baby and child care, not on the care or development of mothers. Ann Pleshette Murphy—the former editor of Parents magazine, current parenting contributor to Good Morning America, and herself the mother of two—looks at the emotional lives of mothers, at how we change and grow from the moment we get pregnant to the day we watch our kids graduate from high school.
The 7 Stages of Motherhood urges women to reflect on the seismic shifts they undergo at each stage of their children’s lives and to focus on their own evolution. Only by doing so, says Murphy, can we give children the best of ourselves. Many new moms assume that once things “get back to normal,” they’ll jump right back on their pre-baby path. But there’s no going back, according to Murphy, and that’s actually good news. Each stage of motherhood has its own challenges and opportunities. Motherhood forces us to hone muscles we never knew we had; to question our choices and goals; to reshape our relationships with family, friends, our spouses; and, most important, to rethink who we are and where we’re going. There’s as much circling, sliding, falling back as there is surg-ing ahead—and Murphy provides exactly the encouragement women need to overcome obstacles and celebrate their strengths. Writing with wit, warmth, and unfailing empathy about the challenges mothers face at each stage, Murphy offers insightful advice and gentle reassurance, showing moms how to make the most of their lives as they raise their children.
Drawing on hundreds of interviews with leaders in the field, a wealth of personal experience, a decade at the helm of Parents magazine, and, of course, countless conversations with other mothers, Murphy offers women invaluable advice about how to cope and how to thrive along with their children. She identifies periods of particular intensity in a mother’s life and provides indispensable tips about how to manage at each stage, from the roller-coaster ride of early childhood through the ambiguities of adolescence and the tumult of the teen years. The 7 Stages of Motherhood is an exuberant, joyful, not-to-be-missed journey, full of life-changing insights and affirming wisdom and support: a buoyant contribution to the literature of maternity and self-discovery.
From the Hardcover edition.
“Ann Pleshette Murphy is one of my heroes.”
–T. Berry Brazelton, M.D.
“No one is in a better position to support and inform parents than Ann Pleshette Murphy, whom every parent can look to with extreme confidence because her years of personal experience as a mother, unlimited access to experts and perhaps most important, the special warmth and honesty with which she approaches the joys and challenges of parenthood. As the extraordinarily successful and highly respected editor-in-chief of Parents for more than ten years, she has been able to bring a unique perspective to supporting, advising, and best of all understanding child-rearing issues–always going beyond the obvious and reaching out with depth and empathy. Any parent who reads this book will gain insight and increased confidence.”
–Nancy Samalin, director of Parent Guidance Workshops, NYC & bestselling parenting author whose newest book is Loving Without Spoiling & 100 Other Timeless Tips for Raising Terrific Kids
“Ann Pleshette Murphy is every Mom’s–and Dad’s–best friend. She has captured the complexities, joys, and sorrows of parenting and presented them in ways that help us manage the usual and unusual crises of caring for children in the midst of a busy life. She is like a good parent to her readers: she lends a helping hand, she is a supportive voice in your ear, but her greatest joy is seeing you go off on your own, confident and competent.”
–Samuel J. Meisels, President, Erikson Institute, author of Winning Ways to Learn
“Ann Pleshette Murphy knows what to expect after you’re expecting. Her stories and insights about mothering do more than teach the facts of children’s development. This is a book about adult development–about how running the emotional gauntlet of parenting changes us forever.”
–Justin Richardson, M.D., co-author of Everything You Never Wanted Your Kids to Know About Sex (But Were Afraid They’d Ask)
“Heartwarming, witty, and wise . . . Let Ann Pleshette Murphy be your guide on this charming tour through motherhood.”
–Harvey Karp, M.D., author of The Happiest Baby on the Block
“Annie Murphy has told us rare and liberating truths about parenting. A skilled journalist, she is incredibly observant of herself and her children without being self-serving or narcissistic in the rendering. Her respect for her kids, and ours, sets a standard for parenting books.”
–Kyle Pruett, M.D., author of Fatherneed: Why Father Care is as Essential as Mother Care for Your Child
“The 7 Stages of Motherhood comes straight from the heart. Annie Murphy creates a personal connection with each reader, sharing her own struggles and exhilarations, her down to earth wisdom and her breadth of knowledge about what is often one of the most important of life’s journeys–motherhood. Filled with heartwarming as well as heart wrenching stories, supported by the most modern research and practical parenting tips, the author reaches out her hand in friendship to the reader and helps her through the myriad stages of emotional development motherhood creates. It’s a must read for any mother, any woman contemplating motherhood–and for those who love them!
–William Pollack, author of Real Boys, Real Boys’ Voices, and Real Boys Workbook
From the Hardcover edition.