Opinion: The term “mother” is a role, not a relation


I pose with some of the vital mother figures in my life on my 16th birthday. For many people their mom is their No. 1 best friend, but for me, the case is different, as I have multiple mother figures in my life.

There’s one woman who carried me for nine months and who brought me into this world. However, there are multiple who helped raise me. Genetically, I have one mom, but throughout the course of my life, I have found multiple mother figures and have discovered the term “mother” is a role, rather than a relation.

A mother’s role in a child’s life is highly crucial, as it comes in different ways and through different people. My biological mom has always been the best mom I could ever ask for, but she isn’t the only one who had a part in making me the person I am today. 

A mother figure consists of someone who is there for you, understands you, knows you better than most and loves you unconditionally. For me, the multiple mother figures in my life have represented different aspects of an “ideal” mother in their own ways. Each mother figure has a different yet similar motherly role. When I need help with friends, I have someone. When I need help with family issues, I have someone. Regardless of the range of a minor or major event in my life, I have someone by my side – it’s what drives me to be that person for others. 

For many people, their mom is their No. 1 best friend, but for me, the case is different, as I have multiple motherly figures in my life. Despite only being 16 years old, I’ve already had various people help me navigate life. Hardships are made easier when you have multiple role models and sources of constant support. 

The term “mother” is all about the relationship you have and the role people play in your life. Just because someone carried you for nine months doesn’t mean they’re the only person who will play the role of a mother in your life. This relationship comes in many different aspects and is found in the most random places. I know that, for me, one of the most important people to me that have played this role came into my life when I least expected it. 

The comforting feeling you get from a mother is one that is quite incomparable. Whether it’s through a hug, a conversation or even a small gesture like a hand on the head — it’s the little things that add up to make a mother a significant role rather than a biological relation.