' A mother is not a person to lean on, but to make leaning unnecessary' Explain.' A mother is not a person to lean on, but to make leaning unnecessary' Explain.

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mwestwood eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Psychologists contend that it is the parents of children who instill confidence in their children, particularly the mother.  Studies have repeatedly shown that mothers are the parents who also provide the necessary security for a child to develop into a mature adult.  In his book The Art of Loving--a great guide to the different kinds of love--by psychologist Eric Fromm, a child goes to different stages of love, beginning, of course, with selfish love, then developing love of brother/sister, love of parent, erotic love, and finally,hopefully, reaching altruistic love.  Once people truly mature, they become their own parents, From explains, and the maternal and paternal loves are incorporated in their own psyches so that they are, then, independent of their parents.  This is the goal of the good parents.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The idea here is that mothers (and parents in general) are supposed to be in the business of raising their kids to be independent.  I totally agree with this, thought it's probably easier to say that when my kids are as young as they are.

This quote says that a mother should not be encouraging her kids to lean on her (to need her).  Instead, she should be encouraging them not to need her.

I try very hard to have my daughters do whatever they can for themselves and make all they decisions they can for themselves because I don't want them to lean on me and my wife -- I want leaning to be unnecessary.

accessteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

What is the main job of parents in terms of bringing up their children? It is to make sure that they can stand by themselves without the support of anyone else when they grow up. So although a child will obviously lean on their parents whilst growing up, a good parent will try to give them more opportunity to stand on their own two feet. It is interesting to note however that this is very much a cultural view - other cultures do not see independence as a goal of parenting and criticise Western cultures for their lack of emphasis on the extended family and creating children who do not need the wider family to support them.

lynn30k eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The ultimate function of a good mom is to make children so confident in themselves and their ability to handle the problems of life, that they can stand on their own. "Give them roots, and give them wings", to paraphrase an old saying. I'm a teacher as well as a mom, and it is painful to watch some parents continually bail their kids out when they make mistakes; not that they shouldn't help, but when a child is never made to take responsibility for their actions, they are being taught that they can do as they please and never have consequences. It is a perfect setup for failure in the important things in life.

linalarocca eNotes educator| Certified Educator

A mother is someone who fosters independence in their children. Parents need to raise children to become self-fulfilling adults that can go out into the world and satisfy their own needs. An individual will succeed with the skills and knowledge they have acquired in a healthy family environment.

("Family" may take on many meanings in the context of this explanation of parent-child relationship.)

missy575 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Moms exist to make children able to support themselves... eventually. It takes time to make this quote actually come true. Kids do need their mommies for a long time while they are living at home, and sometimes even more when they leave. But the mother who can TEACH how to deal with experiences through every struggle, pain and triumph is the one who will actually achieve unnecessary leaning.

besure77 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that a mother is both a person to lean on and responsible for making leaning unnecessary. As a child grows they will always need their mother whether it be for advise or just a shoulder to cry on. It is also a mothers responsibility to teach the child how to become responsible, productive adults. This is what helps them to make decisions on their own and support themselves.

lrwilliams eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would agree with Post 4 in that we still need to lean on mothers even after they have enabled us be independent. As a parent I hope that my children eventually find it "unnecessary " to lean on me, but also hope that they have a reason to lean on me occasionally.

epollock | Student

A mother is not someone who should be looked at as the person to do things for someone, but as a supporting influence in a child's life to give aid and comfort for the decisions that the child makes on their own. A great mother allows a child to grow, and that involves making the right choices as well as making the wrong choices and accepting the consequences.

krishna-agrawala | Student

Mothers (and also fathers) look after and take care of their children when they are young and not capable of taking care of themselves. Thus a mother helps and supports her children in so many different ways, and she does it so willingly and lovingly. In turn the children learn to depend on their parents.

The joy and satisfaction that a mother gets in taking care of her children, tend to emphasize the role of mother as someone who will always support and help her children when they are in need. However this overshadows the fact that the greatest joy and purpose of motherly love and care is not just to help the child when in need, but to protect and nurture the child to make him or her strong and capable. Thus while mother gets joy in serving her child, her greater joy is in seeing the child become strong and independent.