The Meaning of Motherhood Course


The Meaning of Motherhood Course

199.00 225.00

Explore the complexities of motherhood with honesty, compassion, and intellectual curiosity

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The Meaning of Motherhood

Mom groups and classes typically cover how-to logistical issues like how to swaddle a baby or how to manage difficult behavior in your child. But there are deep psychological, emotional, and philosophical issues around becoming and being a mother that deserve more of our attention:

What is lost and gained in the transition to motherhood? What are the cultural messages around being a good mom or bad mom? What does it mean to create a new human consciousness?

The Meaning of Motherhood explores these complex philosophical questions with compassion, openness, and intellectual curiosity.

Finally, a safe space to have an honest, open and enlightening discussion about the true meaning of motherhood. This course is perfect for those struggling to make sense of the identity shift that takes place when a woman has a baby, and for those that are thinking about starting a family.
— Laura, Meaning of Motherhood alumna



The transition to motherhood is perhaps one of the biggest changes in a life, full of overwhelming and confusing emotions, huge physical changes, and profound mental shifts, but often doesn’t get the kind of recognition it deserves. In week 1, we’ll discuss the identity of motherhood and what it means to develop this new identity. What is lost, what is gained, and how do we understand the transition to motherhood?


There are so many responsibilities, expectations, and judgments around what it means to be a mother. In week 2, we’ll explore, and challenge, some of the personal and cultural messages that we carry around that inform our judgments about what a good or bad mom is, and how these messages can impact the self-image and well-being of mothers.


How do you wrap your head around making a person? How do you relate to a child with whom you are so intimately connected, but who has a distinct and unique experience with independent thoughts, desires, fears, and hopes. In week 3, we’ll explore how this creation of life can raise a deep sense of vulnerability, anxiety, and confusion about the meaning of mortality and human existence.


Our experiences provide us a kind of knowledge that we simply couldn’t have any other way. In week 4, we’ll discuss how the experiences of motherhood provide new insight and deeper understanding of the human experience, particularly with respect to time, compassion, love, and meaning.

I loved the depth of this course. A room full of real stories and experiences, hopes and fears. It was magical to feel safe around my confusing and muddy path to motherhood.
— Cameron, Meaning of Motherhood alumna


You do not need to identify as a mother to take this course. Although it may be particularly poignant for those who are about to become, are considering becoming, or who have already become mothers, it will be illuminating for anyone who wants to better understand the emotional, psychological, and philosophical complexities of motherhood, including partners, caretakers, and perinatal professionals.

In addition, this course recognizes that there are many paths to motherhood, many types of families, and many gender expressions that intersect with the identity of motherhood. During the course, we will be likely discussing some physical components of pregnancy, birth, and the postpartum experience that impact many moms, while also understanding that this is not everyone's experience.

As someone who does not yet have children of my own, I feel like I have gained a lot of valuable insight into the realities of motherhood that are not often discussed in our culture, and therefore might be better prepared to face them.
— Carly, Meaning of Motherhood alumna


Mondays, February 3, 10, 17, and 24, 2020


The Ready Set Grow Café | 5429 NE 30th Ave, Portland, OR 97211

$225, Early bird: $199 until January 13, 2020. Registration closes January 27, 2020.

Register with a friend and get 25% off with promo code FRIEND25.

Maximum of 15 participants. Scholarships available for those experiencing financial hardship; send email to to inquire. Priority will be given to those from marginalized communities, including people of color and LBGTQ people, as well as single parents.



Danielle LaSusa PhD helps moms grapple with what it means to make a person. She is a Philosophical Coach and co-creator of Think Hard podcast, which brings philosophy to the real world. She has a PhD in philosophy, a Graduate Certification in Women’s Studies, and is a certified Philosophical Counselor. When her daughter was born, she damn near broke her brain trying to figure out what the hell happened. Now, she helps other moms make sense of motherhood. Learn more at