| | | |

The Difference Between Gratitude and Toxic Gratefulness in Motherhood Transcripts

Please note: Transcripts for the No Guilt Mom Podcast were created using AI. As a result, there may be some minor errors.

Brie Tucker: I feel like we’re being gaslit for our emotions. We’re being told that no, no, no, no, you don’t really feel bad.

You don’t really feel bad. Or if you do feel bad, feel sad, mad, resentful,

you know, overwhelmed, , anything like that, then. You are wrong.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, you’re just not appreciating what you have.

Brie Tucker: there is a difference between practicing gratitude and toxic gratefulness,

JoAnn Crohn: Welcome to the No Guilt Mom podcast. I am your host, JoAnn Crohn, joined here by the lovely Brie Tucker.

Brie Tucker: Wow. Hello. Hello, everybody. How are you?

JoAnn Crohn: We get to talk about something very close to my heart today that I like every time I see a post on social media. Or anything about it, it riles me up, it makes me mad, I want to, like, rage against everything, and it’s something that we’re going to call Toxic Gratefulness in Motherhood.

Brie Tucker: Okay. Right now I’m hearing Britney Spears in my head. No, no, no, no, no, no. Don’t you know that you’re toxic? I

JoAnn Crohn: so toxic, and this is started from a meme that I saw on Facebook, that said, This morning I saw a quote saying, What a privilege it is to clean a house made dirty by healthy children playing, to wash dishes because we were able to eat three meals today, and to do piles of laundry because we all have clean clothes to wear.

Everything. day. And that sort of thing gets me so mad when it’s posted, not just because of the picture, but because of the hundreds of comments under it from women saying, yes, I needed that reminder today. Oh, thank you. Thank you for that reminder. And no one else is saying this is BS. Like, why are we putting this out here? Because it’s just perpetuating this myth that moms need to do everything on. Their own and totally negating women’s anger about it.

Brie Tucker: Right. Like I feel like, so I, I 100 percent agree with you on this because I feel like there was a big problem in the way that that message was conveyed. What it did was it was, there is a big difference between practicing gratitude and having appreciation for things. And being shamed and guilted into You should be happy that you even have this life.

JoAnn Crohn: Yes, like we see, we see this in our balance community too. I remember just one of our balance members the other day was saying like, Hey, like I want to bring up in my house that I need more help, but every time I bring it up, I’m accused of complaining. And that’s.

Brie Tucker: That doesn’t, it

JoAnn Crohn: don’t want to be a complainer, but I feel like messages like this is what gets us into that mindset about thinking that, you know, we can’t complain about anything.

We need to be grateful and that the reason we feel this anger is that we’re not grateful enough, right? We don’t appreciate the things around us. Yep, it is BS because it’s, it’s so harmful. It’s so harmful. And. I believe also that it keeps us as women down. Like it keeps us from making a change from changing things in our society.

So we’re going to discuss today exactly how to get around this toxic gratefulness, and we’re also going to talk about the patriarchy and spoiler alert, it is not about horses, so we hope. That you enjoy this episode of the no guilt mom podcast. Okay.

Brie Tucker: so let’s talk about how, wait, patriarchy isn’t about horses? What?

JoAnn Crohn: I’m just Ken. Let’s talk about this, shall we? Because I think that the, first of all, the Barbie movie, amazing. but it resembles patriarchy in so many forms. And I think before I even saw this movie, I didn’t even realize. The pervasiveness of it, the patriarchy. I thought it was just like, Oh, you know, it’s like this hate against, you know, that men put these restrictions on women, but it’s not.

It’s actually our entire society putting these restrictions on women. That means women putting these restrictions on other women. And that is the confusing part about when we hear the patriarchy, because we think as women. We should be standing up for each other, right? That, like, everyone has their best interests. But there’s also these rules that we have as women in society. I mean, you could think of these rules, right, Brie? Like, these unsaid rules to be a

Brie Tucker: Well, like, how we’re supposed to be, the caretakers of everybody. We’re supposed to make, it is our job to pretty much keep our families going. We are the onsite coordinator. We are the planner. We are the emotional support slash therapist. We are the cuddler. We’re also most of the time, like we’re not, Oh, and I don’t know, this might just be me, but I feel like the message is often conveyed to that if we aren’t successful in a career, then we’re. We’re lacking still so like we had to be successful on in what we do professionally on top of everything else and do it with a smile and gratitude hashtag

JoAnn Crohn: It The smile, yes, it’s the smile and the gratitude and the, you can’t be seen as a complainer. Like, don’t be seen as a complainer. In fact, probably this podcast episode, there are, I would bet, a number of people who turned it off as soon as we mentioned the word patriarchy. I would bet, because it is seen as complaining and not being grateful and not being very womanly or whatever you want to call it.

Because other women, they will get mad at you for not playing by the rules because they have to play by the rules. So why shouldn’t you like, they’re the ones who are nice and sweet. So Why should you be allowed to be angry? Like, no, I’m not dealing with that. You’re out. Like, and if you look in your life, there is actually instances in my life I can look back and see how you’re pushed out of certain groups. With certain norms. Have you watched Bama Rush? The Amazon Prime

Brie Tucker: no, what is that?

JoAnn Crohn: Oh my gosh. Okay, you gotta check out this documentary. It is about the University of Alabama sorority rush.

Brie Tucker: Oh, yeah. I know a little bit about that.

JoAnn Crohn: the, the lengths that these girls go through. And it’s kind of sad as well watching it because every single one of the people she interviewed, the filmmaker, they said the reason they were joining a sorority is because they finally wanted to find their people.

They wanted to be accepted. They wanted a friend group to accept them. And so, they, they saw Rush as This chance to get in and then she had other stories about girls being rejected by their sororities for one single little misstep that went against the rule. The code of conduct of the sorority. 1 girl got booted because she was wearing another sorority sticker.

when she saw all of these other people doing things against the code of conduct that. They kind of picked and choosed just because they wanted her out like they didn’t like her they wanted her out They felt she wasn’t a good fit and I feel like that is what’s told to women a lot You’re just not a good fit and a lot of times That good fit is usually somebody who is pushing back against the norms, who is wanting things to be different. That’s what I would argue. other times it’s just like, you’re just not a great person to get along with, but that is too partly pushing against, back against the norms.

Brie Tucker: for those who don’t know, I’m, I’m an Alpha Gam Delta alum, so I was a sorority girl in college. Way, way go AGDs! Shout out to my squirrels! Anyway, uh, I would definitely say that for starters, that documentary, even though I haven’t seen it, I do know about, like, Uh, specifically the University of Alabama, uh, in terms of a sorority and rushing and things like that.

And yeah, that is a really good example of you have a very set of, uh, well, first of all, let me back this up being in a sorority in college in the nineties and rural Missouri was very different than it would have been in Alabama. And yeah, they have a, it’s, it’s way more intense down there and there is.

There are so many rules and conduct and things that you are expected to do. and it’s interesting because I think people would somewhat say, like, that are in that. And even in the sorority that I was in, it would be like, well, you signed up for this. Like, you knew what the rules were in the beginning and you signed up for it.

I had a great experience. I loved all those things, but the sorority I was in was a, you would have loved it. We were a little bit more of the, uh, let’s push back against the norms and not necessarily follow what everybody else does. We were the, we were the anti, yeah. Yeah, we were the anti sorority sorority.

I feel like at my campus, but I don’t know. I mean, that that was just my take. Maybe that made me feel better. I don’t know. But I, but I think that that’s a really good example, though, of like, how we’re like, again, you and I joke all the time. And please, I hope that people know that, like, sometimes we joke sometimes jokes are made because you don’t totally understand the backstory of it.

Or, you had personal experiences. Ours are personal experiences. The whole hashtag blessed thing, like, I can’t take it. I cannot take it. because Again, it comes back to what we were talking about. You’re being told that you have certain norms that you have to fit into and certain expectations like this whole thing that you’re just talking about with this documentary.

Uh, and with that post that started this whole episode that you have to be grateful, you have to be grateful. No, it doesn’t. No, no. Little Missy. It doesn’t matter. And the little Missy as well would be said, like, it doesn’t matter that you feel like your husband. is not a partner in your marriage. It doesn’t matter that you’re expected to work 40 hours a week and then do 40 hours more at home with no help.

It doesn’t matter that your kid is having trouble in school. If you just worked better with them, they would be able to figure out how to read or do their long division, right? Like ignoring all the other things that are going on that make us feel like, Oh my God, I am drowning. I am failing. I should be happy just because my, my kids are healthy. I should be happy just because I’m married. Even like, no,

JoAnn Crohn: It doesn’t make sense. It does not make sense. It is really pushing down that anger to keep women in place. That is my very, like, big opinion about it

Brie Tucker: fifties, mommy’s little helper and all the, all the

JoAnn Crohn: Mommy’s little helper was Xanax, yep.

Brie Tucker: on because that’s what it took to make them be able to get through the day. And, and we still have that same culture now. Like we still have that same culture. Of doing what it takes to get through the day and

JoAnn Crohn: Ooh. Let’s talk about what it takes to get through the day right after this break. Okay, getting through the debris like there has been a mommy wine culture for a very very long time and It’s one of those instances where instead of really looking at the reasons behind the mommy wine culture I think that a lot of people have Said and labeled it as just like bad. It’s like alcoholism. You need to get help. You need to get help damn Well, I need like damn well like moms need help. They need help, but not in that like

Brie Tucker: we need help in a lot of ways. Yes. And it’s, it’s a way to cope, to get through things. And we’re not saying that it is right or it is wrong. There is a point where any, any coping mechanism can go from healthy to unhealthy. Anything can be like that. Um, but it, we still acknowledge and see this openly in society that we are, that we as women are struggling. And that we’re doing our best to get through the day to day instead of stop stepping and taking a step back and going like, wait a minute. Why does this all have to be up to me to figure it out, right?

JoAnn Crohn: Well, I also think that, you know, patriarchy damages men as well. They are expected to work long hours, they’re expected to achieve the highest levels in their career, never show emotion, never show weakness, um, and those are The things that they’re dealing with, which make it hard for them to like everybody is struggling in the system, which is why, like, I always wonder why we keep a going, like, is it this,

Brie Tucker: why why have we not bucked the system already completely and turned into Barbie land? I don’t know.

JoAnn Crohn: Is it this adverse, like, thing to change? Like, it was really interesting talking about Barbie with my sister. Because, um, my sister looked at it and she’s like, Yeah, like, I just didn’t see it as that revolutionary. And I’m like, Oh, tell me about this. And she’s like, Well, you know. When we went to Girl Scout camp, that’s how it was.

Like, women supporting women, women cheering women. It’s what, like, we, we do, we have No Guilt Mom for. It’s the environment that we want. And she’s like, I just didn’t see it that revolutionary. And I’m like, but you know what? That environment we experienced? Is so different to how the rest of the world operates, like when you’re in a total female environment where there is no competition placed in front of you, where you are just supporting each other and trying to, you know, make good together, it is revolutionary. But like when you put women in competition with each other, which I think so much of society does, like, especially with these Oscar nominations that just came out, they’re like First of all, there, there’s so much sides to these Oscar nominations, but um, One of them is like, oh, you say that women directors aren’t nominated. Well look, here’s a woman director that was nominated, so you’re wrong. Um, excuse me,

Brie Tucker: We’ll give you a Here’s your

JoAnn Crohn: I know, could you imagine? can you imagine them saying that, being like, Oh, no male directors are nominated. Well, look, here’s Alexander Payne. He’s nominated. That means we’re not sexist. Like it is never, ever told that way for men ever.

And yet for women or for people of color, it is always like that. Always. Being like, nope, we can’t be that way. Just because like 90 percent of the population, 90 percent of the winners are white males, it means we’re not sexist because we’re racist. We have this population covered. It’s so stupid!

Brie Tucker: It is those little tiny pieces don’t make up for The larger picture for sure. So like, I just feel like we’re coming back to when we’re being told just to be happy with what we have and be grateful for it. I feel like we’re being gaslit for our emotions. We’re being told that no, no, no, no, you don’t really feel bad. You don’t really feel bad. Or if you do feel bad, feel sad, mad, resentful, you know, overwhelmed, anything like that, then. You are wrong.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, you’re just not appreciating what you have.

Brie Tucker: And again, like, we’re trying to get to the point of like, there is a difference between practicing gratitude and

JoAnn Crohn: Mm hmm.

Brie Tucker: gratitude, persona, Toxic gratefulness,

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, there is, there is a difference in that. And, uh, we’re going to talk about that difference right after this. saying that positivity is bad. Positivity is not bad. Gratefulness is not bad. Um, just being forced gratefulness upon you without being able to vent the other emotions, that is bad. Uh, I just reading this book by Gabrielle Bernstein, uh, called Super Attractor.

And she’s all about, Uh, positivity and like the law of attraction, basically feeling and getting on the same vibe as the universe. I know it sounds woo. It sounds woo. Um, but getting on the same vibe as the universe so that things just naturally come to you. And it’s really interesting because she has this book and she gives you little steps to take along the way.

And one of them is, I can’t remember, it’s like choose a new choice, or make a new choice. Where it’s this three step process, when you get a thought in your head that makes you feel bad. And there’s a lot of nuance to this, so know that it’s not like, I’m mad right now. That’s a thought that makes me feel bad.

That anger is telling me something, so we’re not going to apply it to that. More like the thought that I’m not enough or nobody wants me around. Those kind of thoughts. So if you find one of those thoughts, like no one wants me around, number one, you acknowledge it. You’re like, okay, this is really hurtful.

I’m having this thought right now. Number two, you forgive yourself for it. You say, you know, I forgive myself for having this. This is a natural thing. And then number three, you make a new choice on what thought to think like, You’re like, Oh, and even if your new choice is just like, I am opening myself up to the creative possibilities that are waiting for me right now.

Like it doesn’t have to be something big. It actually has to be something believable. Like you can’t go from nobody wants me around to everybody likes me because that’s not believable to you. But. I think it is a believable twist just to be like I’m opening myself up to possibilities right now. And that brings you a certain amount of calmness, of stability versus this thought that like causes a lot of anxiety and fear.

So when we talk about gratefulness and positivity, looking at it that way, thinking that, okay, it’s good to feel good. I don’t want to feel angry and anxious and fearful all the time. Those emotions are actually very uncomfortable. Very uncomfortable! And they don’t bring the joy to the world that I really want them to.

They’re good to acknowledge that they’re there because that is going to be the first steps to take action for them. But for me to take action, I really need to get myself in a positive place so that more people are attracted to it. Um, so I think it’s a really interesting concept, the difference between being grateful and the toxic gratefulness.

Brie Tucker: yeah. And so, like, we were talking off camera earlier about how, like, we both practice our own gratitude and, and, and, like, you, um, like, for instance, for me, I was going to say how you do it, but you can explain how you do it. I do mine, like, I try to at the end of the day, because I, I’m, I’m at a point right now where, like, I’ve got a lot going on in my life and I could definitely, uh, Definitely notice that I’ve got some burnout that is definitely going on because I’ve got, I’ve become a bit of a negative Nancy.

That’s not normally my personality. Normally pretty optimistic, up high going kind of gal. So practicing gratitude, trying to make it realistic. I do it at the end of the day, normally about my husband will be like, okay, so what are you grateful for today? And sometimes my gratitude is literally just, well, Uh, I managed to make it through the whole day without like grinding my teeth.

Uh, you know, uh, we had a day where, uh, nobody said anything mean to one another in the house. So that’s a positive and like, and some of the graduates are like, and you know what? I’m just grateful that, um, that you helped do the dishes after dinner tonight. I mean, I know that it was. It’s your chore, and you do it all the time, but I want you to know that I’m grateful for that, and that really makes me feel good that, like, we have that going on.

And that is, sometimes that is the best I can come up with for gratitude for the day. Other days it’s really great, like, oh, we had a fantastic day, I’m so happy that we have our whole family together, and that we can see each other all the time, blah, blah, blah. But some days it’s like, literally, I just made it through the day without grinding my teeth and getting a migraine. So, I’m grateful for that.

JoAnn Crohn: Yeah, I like, I like to do mine as wins, like trying to find the wins at the end of the day because I, I have this association with the word

Brie Tucker: Okay. And that’s fine.

JoAnn Crohn: so mad at it. Yeah, and that’s fine. But when I look at wins, it could be something so small as like, Oh my gosh, I figured out this tech issue that was bugging my entire team and I’m very excited about it. Or I got a really great email of thanks today and that was pretty cool.

Or I felt really good doing this video or this one comment on Instagram was a really interesting conversation. And I liked that. So looking at those things that brought me a little bit of joy, brought me that win, brought those things in.

And then it takes, I take it a step further where I try to feel the feelings I felt during that, because gratitude is. It doesn’t work unless you take yourself back to feeling those good feelings. And it’s funny, because when you just sit there, and I’m like closing my eyes right now, and I try to like, bring the feelings back, like I, I look back and I’m like, Okay, what did I feel when I finally figured that out?

And I’m like, I feel it in my body, I feel it going up like, into my skull, you know that little bit of a head rush you get where you’re like, Ha! Like so fun. And you can redo those feelings. It’s rewiring the brain when you practice doing that. It’s a form of meditation. Because if you could practice doing that when you’re not stressed, your body is going to be better able to access it when you are stressed. Um, and I find that that works really

Brie Tucker: Yeah, I feel like when I’m, when I’m going through it, I, I get to relive that moment and I’m happy. I’m warm. I’m fuzzy. So yeah. And notice at no point in there did I say, I’m grateful that my kids are healthy. I’m grateful that I have a

JoAnn Crohn: hmm. Mm hmm.

Brie Tucker: Like, I don’t, I just feel like that is, it’s, it’s telling you that you, You’re, you’re wrong. You’re bad. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with that stuff. And we’re here to tell you that it’s not, it’s, it’s okay to hate that part of the day is okay to hate those things when they’re happening.

JoAnn Crohn: that it is a part of human nature. I mean, I talk about this a lot. It’s called hedonic adaptation, where you get used to the good things in your life. So that you want, like, more of that good thing. And it’s just a part of the human brain. Like, you get used to those having healthy kids.

You get used to, like, Having laundry to clean up, uh, up having a laundry machine, like, I mean, I remember the days in my apartment where we had to go down like three whole stories into the garage and like, look for a washer that was actually open. And then we had to spend all day, like babysitting that washer do our laundry.

And it’s not 1 of those things where I take my laundry basket now. And I’m like, I am so grateful. I don’t have to do it anymore. No, I’ve adapted to that. And it doesn’t bring me as a human joy as it once did when we first, you know, got the washing machine and that’s okay That’s okay. It doesn’t mean i’m a bad person because i’ve adapted to it.

It’s just human nature so Accepting that human nature and also accepting that it’s okay to want more. In fact, I want you to want more. I want you to want more because if you don’t want more, like you’re not going to grow. You’re not going to become that example for your kids. You’re not going to become that role model who’s pursuing all of these great things in your life. And you’re not going to show your kids exactly what they can be versus what society wants them to be. And that’s really the most important thing.

Brie Tucker: You, you have a whole lot ahead of you. You can do anything. You can be in any type of situation and you, and nobody expects you to be perfect and happy and have a pasted on smile 24 seven, because. That’s just not realistic. I mean, it’s just not. Or, they’re step bird

JoAnn Crohn: I’d rather you be a real person. Wait. smile, I have no way to communicate with you. Or nothing in common with you.

Brie Tucker: All I can think about is that video for the 90s, Black Hole Sun, and how they have these, like, terrible smiles, like, UGH! I can’t. I can’t! Mmm.

JoAnn Crohn: of you before you go? Can you please rate and review the No Guilt Mom podcast? It helps. It’s us get the message out to so many more moms. We’d be so grateful for you. Um, and out, we will out on the air with your little screen name. I know that Apple podcast doesn’t let us put our real names unless they’re already in our account. I’m no guilt mom on every single thing I review. So

Brie Tucker: So if you see No Guilt Mom

JoAnn Crohn: it’s me. it’s me.

Brie Tucker: But yes, give us, give us a little, share some love! Let us know what you thought of this episode! Do you agree? Do you not agree? Uh, do you feel like we’re being a little too harsh on things? What, what are you grateful for? Share that too. Like, would love to hear

JoAnn Crohn: until next time, remember the best mom’s a happy mom. Take care of you. We’ll talk to you later.

Brie Tucker: Thanks for stopping by. 

Brie Tucker

COO/ Podcast Producer at No Guilt Mom
Brie Tucker has over 20 years of experience coaching parents with a background in early childhood and special needs. She holds a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Central Missouri and is certified in Positive Discipline as well as a Happiest Baby Educator.

She’s a divorced mom to two teenagers.

Similar Posts