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The new generation mothers

In traditional practice, especially in Filipino culture, women are expected to be full-time mothers and must remain at home to take care of their children.

They are required to teach the future generation how to adapt to social expectations through the kind of parenting that is an “old school” type of discipline.

But now that the world is entering an era of modernity, a new generation of mothers is challenging the norm.

They are the new generation mothers, redefining the parenting culture in the country by seeking to break the generational cycle of trauma and abuse.

In celebration of Mother’s Day last May 12, republicasia puts the spotlight on two mothers from two generations to tell two stories of parenting with one shared goal: to nurture a generation of kids anchored on gentle love and empathy.

Being a Millenial mother

Motherhood is a test of perseverance. This is especially true for a millennial mother like Ciara Magallanes, now a mother of two—Olivia and Akasha. In the process of becoming a mother, she has been prepared by the universe to stand tall against any adversaries in life. 

After graduating from college, Magallanes immediately entered the corporate world as an airline employee while her boyfriend-turned-husband was a graphic artist for a certain global brand. 

Although her life was somewhat stable, she along with her husband made one of the biggest decisions in life: leaving their careers to be a palengke vendor

One may wonder why. Magallanes told republicasia that business might be a good source of stable finance. 

“Some would say na dapat maghanap ka ng iba. But then again, ‘yung time na ‘yun, ‘yun ang nakikita naming maaaring pagkakitaan,” she said. 

Although the two were not initially supported by their parents, they stood firm in their decision to run a business. It did not, however, turn out good at first. 

“Ang kita po namin noon would be 600-800 pesos a week. That was way back 2013 until 2016 so ang hirap talaga pagkasyahin. It really became a challenge, especially when I gave birth to our [first] daughter,” Magallanes shared. 

She mentioned how they had to put out all the stops to raise Olivia. They would sometimes get their food from their in-laws whenever the money they got from their business was not sufficient enough. 

“‘Yung time na nagkasakit ‘yung anak namin. We had to sell… Umabot po kami sa time [na] mga mid-2020, pandemic po, struggle din kami. Nagsasangla kami ng jewelries noon, wedding rings, kuwintas na bigay ng nanay ko para lang makapag-survive noon. Doon ‘yung mga life-changing na mga decisions na natuto kaming maging responsable,” she narrated. 

But with strong dedication and belief in oneself, their business has started to grow bigger. From the footwear business, they also started selling T-shirts, pillows, food snacks, and essential oils. 

“I gave birth to our second kid ng 2022. Thankfully po, okay na po kami noon. We got better. Unti-unti na pong nagiging okay ‘yung buhay namin,” she said. 

When asked whether they had any regrets about leaving their past careers to become a palengke vendor, Magallanes said that they never regretted anything despite going through many hardships. 

“Doon kami nagsimula bumuo po ng pangarap. Even going back, parang hindi ko po talaga maalala na nag-regret kami with our decisions. We were happy that we were together, na magkatrabaho kami sa maliit na negosyo.” 

As a mother, one of the most challenging things for Magallanes is to balance her time. 

“I need to make time for both of them together. And also as a wife, I need time for my husband. I also need time for myself–for me not to lose my sanity. I need time for my work. I need time for the gawaing bahay,” she said. 

Despite struggling with time management, Magallanes underscored the importance of ‘me time’ to prevent burnout and enhance your mental and physical preparedness as a mother. 

She said that we should break the notion that mothers should not have time for themselves, only for their children. 

“May nakagawian tayong notion na kailangan ‘pag nanay ka nasa pamilya ka lang, nasa anak ka lang. ‘Pag nagreklamo ka na pagod ka, ang maiisip ng ibang tao nagsisisi ka na bilang ina. But no kasi mom ka, but you are still an individual. Babae ka na may sarili ring needs na kailangan mong i-fill,” Magallanes said. 

Magallanes said that having a ‘me time’ helped her cope with her anxiety and allowed her to think of strategies on how to be a better parent to her children. 

In 2020, Magallanes became one of the founding members of Madiskarte Moms PH, an online community that helps mothers run and grow a small business. 

The group has been conducting online seminars and reviewing products on social media that teach mothers the basics of running a business, particularly in online selling. It also has an award-giving body called ‘Gawad Madiskarte,’ which recognizes the achievements of mothers in business. 

“Our life doesn’t stop on becoming a mom. We don’t diminish naman the word ‘mom.’ Being a mom itself is a very wonderful thing ‘eh. Pero ‘yung mga mommies na career women before, ‘yung gusto magsimula na or ‘yung gusto din magsimula ng sarili nilang career, natutulungan sila ng Madiskarte Moms PH.” 

The group currently has thousands of women members nationwide and abroad.  

Becoming a Gen Z mother 

Like Magallanes, motherhood has also been a series of hurdles for a Gen Z mother like Jezreel Galboso. She is now a mother to her 2-year-old son, Astro. 

Before becoming a mother, Jezreel had a complicated life. As a teenager, she used to drink alcohol and roam around with her friends. 

When the pandemic hit the country in 2020, she decided to stop attending school and instead applied for an online job. 

It was in 2021 when she got pregnant at the age of 18. Her romantic partner was her long-time friend in high school. 

“Honestly, during that time in my age, sobrang hesitant ako eh. Kinakabahan ako kasi takot ako sa parents ko, takot din ako sa parents nya. When I knew that I was pregnant, pareho kaming nagulat,” Galboso said. 

Given their young age, both their fathers disapproved of her pregnancy. It was only their mothers who somehow pushed them to keep and raise the baby. 

For nine months, Galboso and her partner had to stay in different houses due to their fathers’ disapproval. 

“Nag-stay po ako sa sister ko for mga 3 months and then the rest po, palipat-lipat [na]. Minsan naman po nagi-stay naman kami sa bahay pero hindi po kami nagtatagal,” shared Galboso. 

“Hindi ko rin naman po sila masisi kasi I understand and kasalanan din naman po namin since maaga din po akong nabuntis. Pero, at the same time, sobrang bigat po. Buong pregnancy ko po sobrang lagi lang akong malungkot,” she added. 

Just when she thought her relationship with her family would never be okay again, everything changed when she gave birth to Astro. Both their fathers eventually accepted them. 

“Noong nabalitaan po nila na lumabas na po ‘yung baby, nag-offer po sila na susunduin po kami which is sobrang nagulat po kami noon. Since that day onwards po, bigla po talagang naging okay lahat,” she narrated. 

As a first-time mother, Galboso quit her job and dedicated her entire time raising Astro for one year. In fact, her dedication to provide sufficient breastfeeding to her child would unexpectedly lead her to helping other babies as well. 

“Kasi noong kakapanganak ko [pa] lang, naging obsession ko ‘yung pag-pump ng gatas. Pero sobrang oversupply ko [na] po pala. So ‘yung mga milk ko, na-idonate ko din po sa ibang baby,” she said. 

Unfortunately, Galboso had to face another massive challenge in her life when she and her partner separated in August last year. 

Galboso shared that their relationship was starting to get ‘problematic’ due to many misunderstandings. Although the two tried to work out things for their kid, it still did not work out in the end. 

“I’m still trying to heal from what happened and sobrang hirap po bilang nanay. Syempre, sino ba naman ang may ayaw na may kalalakihan na complete family ‘yung anak ninyo. Pero I just [also] want what’s best for Astro. If better po na separate lives na lang po kami nong daddy niya, okay lang po if magiging okay din po kami,” she shared. 

Galboso mentioned that her former partner is still providing support for Astro after the separation. 

When Astro turned one year old, she went back to work as a nail stylist and started building her nail business called reelnailz

“Hindi ko po siya inexpect na mag-go-grow. Nagsimula lang po sa isang client, dalawang client hanggang sunod-sunod na araw-araw na po akong may client,” Galboso said. 

As a working single mother, it was hard for Galboso to balance her time between taking care of Astro and attending to her clients. It was, for her, very mentally and physically challenging. 

Yet never did she think of giving up for her son. In fact, Astro has always been her inspiration to persevere and move forward in life. 

And one thing she is proud of as a mother is that she was able to raise a bibo, healthy Astro. 

“If there’s one thing na maipagmamalaki ko po is okay po ‘yung anak ko. He’s healthy, he’s smart, he’s everything. With or without his daddy, we’re both fine and he’s doing well,” Galboso said with a genuine smile. 

From being a woman hesitant of embracing motherhood, Galboso gradually learned the ins and outs of being a mother. She is now ready to become a gentle Gen Z mother to Astro—her greatest treasure in life. 

Parenting and content creation

Magallanes and Galboso shared one thing in common: they are both content creators and use social media as a platform to inspire many mothers. 

Magallanes is known on social media as Mommy Diaries PH. The platform was originally a blog until she decided to turn it into a vlog to catch up with the trend. 

Mommy Diaries PH usually provides parenting tips to first-time Filipino mothers based on her personal experience as a Millenial mother. 

“Through my channel, nakakatulong po ako ng mga tips and it’s really heartwarming whenever I receive messages from parents, especially from new moms [saying] na ‘Mommy Diaries, nakakatulong ka sa akin. Hindi ko alam kung paano i-navigate ‘to, itong motherhood journey’,”  Magallanes said. 

She also said that her channel was also one way to show the reality of being a mother—one that is imperfect so people will realize that it is okay to commit mistakes as parents as long as you learn from them. 

When asked how she came up with parenting tips, Magallanes revealed that aside from personal experiences, she is also currently studying a six-month course on Clinical Psychology for Children to equip herself with parenting knowledge. 

This is to ensure that her online content is grounded in professional research and real-life experiences. 

Meanwhile, Galboso is famous on TikTok for producing relatable mommy content with Astro. She often documents her motherhood journey and close bond with her son. 

But what makes her videos more engaging is her ability to incorporate Gen Z trends and connect them with the bubbly and cute personality of Astro. 

“‘Yung pag-grow po ng account namin is very unexpected kasi nagkaroon lang po siya ng isang video na nag-trending and then simula po [noon], nagsunod-sunod na po. Gusto ko lang po talaga i-document din ‘yung motherhood ko and yung bond po namin. And, mostly po talaga pinagtitripan ko lang po siya sa TikTok,” Galboso shared while laughing. 

Despite coming from a different generation, both mothers are hoping to redefine the parenting culture in the country by breaking the generational cycle of trauma and abuse. 

Magallanes advocates for “intentional parenting.” 

“Basically, it would be parenting my kids intentionally. Intentionally means you listen to their voice, you make them feel understood, you don’t make them feel inferior to you. So, ang tingin nila ay pareho kayo. There’s a two-way relationship na hindi lang si nanay ang tama, hindi lang si tatay ang tama,” she explained. 

She further said that parents need not use corporal punishment when disciplining their kids. As long as you parent them intentionally, your kids will listen to you with open hearts and calm minds, not driven by fear. 

Although Magallanes recognized that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to parenting, she emphasized that it is still best to communicate with your partner and kids what is the best way to raise a child. 

Galboso, on the other hand, underscored the importance of “openness” when parenting your children. 

“I grew up in a household na wala pong nagso-sorry, na parang ‘yung magulang po ‘yung tama palagi. So hindi po siya masyadong calm, hindi po easing ‘yung feeling. I want him [Astro] to feel safe na makipag-communicate po sa’kin and if I’m wrong, I’m gonna [say] sorry kahit magulang po ako,” she said. 

Galboso also shared that one aspect of being a Gen Z mother is being open-minded to a lot of things due to easier access to information. 

While she respects some ‘pamahiin’ in raising a child, she believes that many Gen Zs today are more inclined to follow professional advice and science when it comes to parenting. 

Both of them also advise other mothers to take it easy, be patient, and be gentle to yourself. While other people may help you on how to properly raise your kids, it is still your responsibility to know what is the best parenting approach for your child. 

For Magallanes and Galboso, parenting requires lending a listening ear and open mind so their children would grow up being humane and empathetic. 

Indeed, it really takes a village to raise a child. 

Check out more stories from Future Forward here. Follow republicasia on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram to get the latest. 

Managing Editor: Henrick Chiu 
Creative Director/Photographer: Sven Gaffud
Producer: Danica Rae Ulanday
Writer: Joshua Gerona
Video Editor: John Gabriel San Luis
Graphic Artist: Jadelyn Isiderio 
Hair & Makeup Artist: Macky Hilario 

Production Staff: 
Angela Cantiga
Michelle Ann Javier
Ma. Carmela Maurice Marinda 
James Andu
Ralph Castro
Euxim Garcia



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