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The Maternal Revolution

Updated: Feb 28, 2023

Hard truth: American mothers lack support, respect, and equality. Moms currently face a host of issues: they have no federally paid parental leave, childcare costs are astronomical, oftentimes they lack quality and safe childcare options, maternal death rates are rising, and they lack safe and competent maternal healthcare. Deep inequality exists between mothers and among mothers and the greater population. American mothers have fierce competition with each other, are often isolated, pitted against one another and lack community and inner motherhood support.

These unacceptable facts prompted Bonsie Skin to Skin Babywear to highlight an organization who is actively fighting to rewrite these wrongs: The Maternal Revolution.

A photo of Mellissa Wood and Natalie Stanback, founders of The Maternal Revolution
A photo of Mellissa Wood and Natalie Stanback, founders of The Maternal Revolution

The Maternal Revolution is an organization working to revolutionize American motherhood; what it looks like, feels like and how it's valued and perceived. They endeavor to confront and alleviate the current inequalities that exist within the maternal space while also fostering sisterhood and creating pathways that lead to maternal social policies.

In 2020, after a discussion about the inequality and lack of support American moms experience, Natalie Stanback and Mellissa Wood were inspired to “be the change” they wished to see. They want to incite a movement that will ultimately address and adjust the way in which society views and values Moms. A revolution, of sorts, that will foster equality, sisterhood and improve social policies that benefit ALL moms in America.

Photo of four moms posing with their babies in front of a neutral background. The babies are wearing Bonsie Skin to Skin Footies.

When asked about her experiences as a new mom, Mellissa explained her challenges that sparked the need for the movement that she and Natalie started:

“As a new mom, I experienced a secondary postpartum hemorrhage eight days postpartum that required surgery and ultimately left me struggling with postpartum depression and psychosis. During that time, I felt so lonely and scared inside my struggle and would have benefited greatly had there been maternal mental and physical safety nets provided to mothers postpartum.”

The primary challenge that Natalie experienced was isolation and navigating the many new changes that come with motherhood.

“Looking back, I didn't really have a lack of support. But I did experience feelings of isolation and loneliness in acclimating to my new normal, the weight of my new role and responsibilities. I didn't feel my husband could specifically relate and I honestly couldn't sufficiently put my new feelings and frustrations into words. I did/do have a sister-group of moms that was formed from a breakout group of an online forum. We all delivered twins around the same time and the group became a priceless resource for so many who needed support, an ear, and simple sisterhood. Ultimately, I adjusted, but there were moments of despair that I simply had to work through."

"I know this endeavor is not one that every mom is able to navigate on her own.”

The Maternal Revolution is working towards change in a plethora of ways. Through social media platforms where they highlight issues and adversities, current events, emerging resources, and the promotion of sisterhood within the maternal space. Through their Momviews series where they interview moms from all walks of life to create connections, spark ideas and highlight commonalities that will help move the needle on change. They’re also launching a forum which women can access to review and contribute to past experiences with Doula services. In addition, there are multiple campaigns on deck at The Maternal Revolution to address healthcare access, inequities, community, and social policies that will be released in the coming months.

Although we would all like to see more change and support for moms, change is occurring in the form of sisterhood and unity amongst mothers; watching this change occur has been the most rewarding impact that Mellissa has witnessed:

“The most rewarding moments to me come from seeing how, slowly, change is occurring inside of motherhood. Change that’s not only happening because moms are uniting in common goals through our platform, but because we’re having dialogues and opening up to each other in an effort to create equality and sisterhood inside of motherhood before creating change outward.”

Moms sitting on couch talking and laughing with their babies sitting in their laps

Natalie echoes similar sentiments while she reflects on the positive connections created within their platform.

“It has been exceptionally rewarding to see and witness the response to our platform, in that so many are able to relate to and identify with our content. That we can erect a platform that facilitates the congregation's diversity within the maternal space that enables various voices and experiences to be amplified. It is through this congregation that we endeavor to incite the sisterhood that will bring about the REVOLUTION that rearranges the way that the Maternal Experience is perceived, valued and supported in our country.”

The Maternal Revolution is a movement of which all are welcomed to join by following along on their social media, @thematernalrevolution, subscribing to their website, participating in the upcoming campaigns, and reaching out directly to share ideas and lend your voice to a cause that will benefit us all.

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