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Making Sure Your Mamá Lets You Be a Mamá

You've given birth to a precious child and are exhausted, as any woman would be after bringing life into the world. Luckily, your mamá comes to the rescue. She knows you fell asleep mid-sentence and that you haven't washed your hair in weeks. So, she rushes your front door. "I want to help you with this transition," she claims. "You need me!" She hollers, maybe while clutching her chest.

She was once a new mother, after all.

Suddenly, your mamá has basically moved in. She's the chef in your kitchen and has rearranged your furniture ("The couch looks much better there!"). She's a proud abuela and is enamored with your child.

But she's not letting you be a mamá. So, how can you accept help from your mami without her taking over? Here are some helpful tips.

Ask Her to Teach You

Most abuelas deem themselves parenting experts. So what if they dropped you on your head? "You turned out just fine!" Your mamá says with a shrug. And she's right.

So, ask your mamá for guidance instead of fighting with her. Whether it's a lesson in swaddling, or how to make that nutritious pudding you had as a child, she can help if you let her. Once she instructs you on the how, tell her she's taught you so well that you want to try it on your own. That way, she'll feel proud, like she's helped, and that you can handle your new role.

Enlist an Army of Distraction

The more people who stop by for a visit, the less your mamá will take over. She won't have a choice but to let you change diapers and breastfeed ("She's not eating enough!" Your mamá screams when the baby falls sleeps on your bosom) because our mamas love to entertain. She's going to be too busy making cafecitos for your brothers, sisters, and primos to hover over your breasts.

Buy Her a Collection of Novelas

If your mamá is anything like mine, she's addicted to novelas. I could be lying on the floor in the fetal position and her eyes remain glued on María Angela and José Alberto's first kiss.

Distract her with something else that she loves and she may just forget her overbearing role.

Nod at Her Unsolicited Advice

A quick nod may be all your mamá needs to feel that her opinions on parenting matter. It may go in your ear and out the other, but she may ease up because she doesn't feel shut down.

Set Boundaries

You need to stand up for yourself. Yes, it's terrifying, but you're a mother now. You created life. You pushed for hours on end, or recovered from C-section, because you are strong and can handle anything.

Tell your mamá how you feel and what you need... gently.

Present a United Front

You and your partner need to stick together. If the rules and regulaciones come from both of you, she may conform. She will also realize that her daughter has a strong, loving partner caring for her daughter and grandchild.

And that's all our mamás really want.

Explore More: baby care, mamá a mamá, familia, Latina Mom, baby talk
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