Woman Sparks Debate After Saying She Loves Her Daughter but Regrets Being a Mother
Karla Tenório, an actress, writer, and mother to her 13-year-old daughter, Flor, eagerly dreamed of embracing motherhood. Yet, upon stepping into this role, she found herself dealing with a decision that turned out to be one of her greatest regrets.
Karla’s maternal regret surfaced immediately after she gave birth to her daughter.
Karla deeply adores her daughter, but the reality of parenting doesn’t match her expectations. Despite meticulously preparing for two years, she was caught off guard—what she had read didn’t reflect her actual experience of motherhood.
“I’ve hated being a mother since the moment my daughter’s head came out during childbirth.” Karla had complications during labor that left her with overwhelming regret, but she realized that she already had no way of turning back. Despite suffering from postpartum psychosis later on, she persisted in trying her best to be the perfect mother.
She thought she was the only one regretting motherhood.
Due to guilt, Karla stopped doing many activities in her pursuit of being the perfect mother. However, as time passed, she delved deeper into the topic and gradually opened up to discussing her emotions. It was then that she realized other women shared her sentiments.
Ultimately, Karla proudly accepted herself as a repentant mother. She expressed, “Acknowledging my feelings, embracing my regrets, and declaring myself a ’repentant mother’ freed up space within me for other emotions to blossom. With less space filled by guilt, love, and happiness flourished. I know I have something to offer to the world. It might not be perfect or complete, but it’s mine! And I find that beautiful.”
People worried about Karla’s daughter when they discovered she was a repentant mother.
All sorts of questions arose: “How come she doesn’t like being a mother?” “How can she be a good mother if she doesn’t like being one?” Nevertheless, Karla explained that having a child and being a mother are two different relationships. She emphasized that it’s possible to hate motherhood while still loving your children.
“I don’t like being a mom. I definitely don’t. But I love my daughter a lot. It’s a special kind of love I can’t quite explain. I work hard to give my best for her. We really love each other. We’re not just a mother and a daughter; we’re also good friends and partners. Our relationship is strong and works for us because it’s built on love, truth, and respect.”
But Karla believes it’s important not only to portray the romantic side of motherhood.
She thinks that romanticizing motherhood can be harmful and potentially lead to feelings of sadness, depression, and even death. Karla also believes it is vital to prepare women who have not had children yet and are planning to have them about the reality of motherhood.
To support women experiencing unhappiness, guilt, and suffering in motherhood, Karla initiated a movement called ’Repentant Mother.’ Expressing her purpose, she said, “I want to hear the stories from other mothers because this movement is about love so that when my daughter grows up, she can make a real and conscious choice about motherhood.”
Readers of Karla’s story also believe you can hate motherhood and love your children simultaneously.
- “Some women were born to be mothers, while others weren’t. That doesn’t mean those who weren’t can’t be good mothers and love their kids. The issue lies in feeling incomplete, where motherhood overtakes everything else in life for some women.” — Maria Victoria Ruiz Osorio
- “Being a mother is very complicated, altering life significantly, bringing both joys and challenges. I’m sure many feel the same way but don’t discuss it. Karla says she loves her daughter, and that’s the most important thing for me. Some people say they love being mothers, but they don’t act like mothers should. It’s better to recognize what it is, but do the best you can for your beloved child.” — Isabel Suta
Parenthood is beautiful, yet we shouldn’t deny the challenges that come with it. Today, more people are uniting to share the raw reality of parenting, drawing from their own experiences so that nobody feels alone in this journey.