The evolution of TV Moms along with feminism and family dynamics

The evolution of TV Moms along with feminism and family dynamics

I grew up in the ‘90s watching some of my favorite television shows where parenting and motherhood were carefully broken down into two categories– the very lovable stay-at-home mom and the incredible working-mom. These women were born to be mothers, they raised their children without fear, doubt or worry — at least we never saw any of it.   The role of moms portrayed in television has evolved and is now more relatable than ever. These messy-haired, sweatpant wearing moms remind us that life is often messy and complicated. But they also show us that it’s okay to be scared and sometimes it’s even alright to think about running away from it allHere are a few of the most popular moms that have helped to pave the way for the new generation of television moms that we all love — or love to hate.

June Cleaver - Leave it to Beaver
June Cleaver from Leave it to Beaver

The Perfect Little House Wife

June Cleaver from Leave it to Beaver is the epitome of the picture-perfect housewife. Her life revolves around the needs of her family. She loves to cook, clean and even needlepoint. Let’s face it, this kind of perfect doesn’t exist in the real world, but it sure is nice to dream about.

Carol Brady of The Brady Bunch
Carol Brady of The Brady Bunch

The Glowing and Sweet Mom

Carol Brady from the Brady Bunch series makes parenting look easy – and she is taking care of 6 children. Okay, she does have the reliable help of a trusted maid. But Carol Brady is always cheerful and ready to help out any of her children. She is always glowing with love but can be firm when needed.

Roseanne Barr from Roseanne
Roseanne Conner from Roseanne

The Sarcastic and Messy Mom

Roseanne Conner from the hit show Roseanne doesn’t fit into the mold of previous television mothers, and her family is anything but normal. She and her husband are raising three seemingly happy children all while facing extreme financial hardships. The house may be a mess but the guidance she offers her children, while wrapped in a unique sarcastic flare is as powerful and full of love as one can possibly get.

Lily in How I met your mother

The Anxious and Scared Mom

For the first time ever, these women had their own ideas about life, careers, and parenting. We understood when Lily from How I Met Your Mother was unsure of her decision to be a parent. It was comforting to see the very real and raw emotion of a mother who didn’t instantly fall in love with motherhood and a woman who wasn’t afraid to admit that she considered the possibility of running away from it all.

At some point, you’ve stared at your television and questioned the currently popular “mom”. You might have blinked and thought you were watching your own parenting adventures. Your own children might laugh and declare that you are exactly like that mom in their favorite television program.

tv moms

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The parent we are is often due to influence and in this day of age, it can often come from social platforms, including the television. We all have our favorite television moms that for one reason or another we either looked up to, wanted them to be our mothers or never wanted to be that parent.

So, which mom are you?

69 thoughts on “The evolution of TV Moms along with feminism and family dynamics

  1. This is a really great read and very true these TV mom’s are definitely reflected in society today.Awsome job can’t wait to read more …

  2. I don’t think I fit into any of the above categories! Some days I boss the perfect housewife while others I’m out living life to the fullest with piles of washing awaiting me at home!


  3. Being a mum would be a scary and challenging thing, but I’d love it. I want to adopt children and make a lovely family. Though I’m not sure I’ve seen make examples of that on the telly.

  4. God sometimes I feel like the mama from Malcom In The Middle 🙁 🙁 But not usually! I don’t know. I haven’t seen a mama with PTSD (who isn’t totally stigmatized and garbage) that I can think of. Maybe I’ll have to write it..Hey studios, wanna serialize my blog? Haha 😉 Thanks for the fun read!

  5. Wow, we sure have seen the advancement of how motherhood is portrayed on the television. I also really like the mom from the show the Middle.

  6. I laughed so much when reading this, because of how much things have changed with time. Its so weird at times to think that it was like that. I LOVE Claire from Modern Family totally think I would be like that as a mom. LOL Oh man i havent thought of the brady bunch in years.

  7. Haha I think I am sarcastic mom mixed with anxious mom lol. This is so great, though, it is nice to see more modern ideas/experiences reflected in today’s TV.

  8. I can picture a little bit of myself in each of these characters. It’s interesting how the stereotypical role of a mom changes throughout the years. I wonder what our kids will have to look up to? I strive to set a good example for my kids, but I know I can’t be perfect like June Cleaver.

  9. How I Met your Mother was such a good show!! I’m so sad it’s done. 🙁 I love that the shows now showcase all the different moms that are there. I for one, feel I lean more towards the June Cleaver mold (I truly love cooking, although it’s a good day if I’m not in yoga pants). As long as we support each other as moms, it shouldn’t matter where we fall. 😉

  10. It was a lot of fun reading this post, taking a trip down memory lane. I think so many of us were influenced in so many different ways through watching models on the screen and off. It all helps form and determine the values of the women we eventually become. We all like to relate to ourselves as being the mix of those people that we think were best – but I suppose the true test is in how we appear to those we love and care about. Hopefully we can become a good role model for them.

  11. It really is amazing to look back and see how Moms have been portrayed throughout the years and see how the “norm” has changed along with our society. There is such a big difference between what is portrayed now and what was portrayed in the years past.

  12. Love Roseanna – I’d forgotten about that show…it was a great one! Love how I met your mother too – great matriarchal characters!

  13. Ooh interesting discussion – I suppose I would be quite a strong mum. I take the responsibility of showing my 3 girls that they can achieve anything they want to, quite seriously. I’d love to be the perfect house proud mum but I’m not always that successful!

  14. Well, I am not yet a mom but in the future I would want to be the glowing and sweet mom. I want my children to grow with positivity in their hearts.

  15. I always wondered how the Brady’s did it! He didn’t seem to ever work late and she was always so calm! I think Roseanne was such a big hit because it really showed how every family is not the Brady bunch and was the start of showing how messy life can be but still awesome and still family. The roles have definitely changed and I think for the best!

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