I’m Done Listening to My Family About How to Be a “Good” Mother
Their judgment is clear every time, and my aunt is the only one who is bold enough to say it with her chest: I am a bad mom.
Do you talk to your children?When are you coming home?
Haven’t you done enough, given enough, submitted enough?How do I claim it?
Ukamaka Olisakwe grew up in Kano, Nigeria, and now lives in Vermont. She was awarded an honorary fellowship in Writing from the International Writing Program at the University of Iowa. In 2014, she was chosen as one of Africa’s most promising writers under the age of 40 by the UNESCO World Book Capital. In 2018, she won the Vermont College of Fine Arts’ Emerging Writer Scholarship for the MFA in Writing and Publishing program.
Her works have appeared or are forthcoming in the New York Times, Longreads, The Rumpus, Brittle Paper, Rattle, Jalada, and more.
Enter your email address to receive notifications for author Ukamaka Olisakwe
Confirmation link sent to your email to add you to notification list for author Ukamaka Olisakwe
More by this author
Finding My Freedom Within Marriage and Motherhood
Navigating the burdens of expectation as a married woman in Nigeria
More in this series
I Gave Up Pants—But Femininity Is Just As Binding
I stopped wearing pants in the name of physical comfort, with the emotionally uncomfortable result that I now present as a woman who wears dresses all the time.
Learning to Delete the Old Versions of My Digital Self
For a long time, I believed you had to keep these records. I knew so little about who I was and what I wanted.
Why I Gave Up On England
Leaving began to feel like a comfort; if the country couldn’t get out of its rut, then at least I could get out of mine.