You know what I would LOVE to get my hands on, as a mom?
I don’t need another semi-generic (by necessity, to be fair) book about infant care, or nursing, or raising a toddler. I mean, they’re ok to an extent, but they’re always riddled with phrases like “find what works for your child!” and “you know your child best!”
“No I don’t!!” I remember thinking as a brand-new mom. “I just met him too!”
What I could really use is a book written specifically about my kid that includes advice relevant to our exact situation (as it changes over time, of course). Is that too much to ask??
Fine, maybe it is. But if that book did exist, I wouldn’t expect it to hold a shred of value for anyone else on the planet. That’s how unique I think this parenting business is.
Some parents feel like they’ve “seen it all” (and might therefore feel comfortable giving advice about it all), but really, they’ve only seen it all with their kid(s) in their specific situations. Just because they always had great luck breastfeeding or potty-training in a certain way doesn’t mean their strategies are going to do a thing for me, or anyone else.
It’s helpful to hear stories and ideas, of course, but what is not helpful is the judgment. That dang J word.
Where is all this coming from, you ask?
Yesterday was official Moms 4 Moms Day, originally declared by the Connecticut Working Moms group and later embraced by Babble, the Bump, and some other outlets. Twitter was flooded with #moms4moms comments.
I only heard about all this because our Moms group here in my town got on board. They posted pictures of local women along with phrases like “I had a natural home birth” or “I had a planned C-section” (ohh the silly controversy) and “I’m a working mom” or “I’m a stay-at-home mom.”
The ultimate point is:
The more I talk to other moms and experience things for myself, the more true I find that statement to be.
For example, I’m pretty happy that I’ve been able to experience both the SAHM and working mom gigs. Now I can say with at least some authority that both are equally hard (I promise), just in different ways. I won’t go into the whole thing here, but suffice it to say that I would never dream of judging a mom about either of those things.
Same goes for the birthing business. Why does everyone care how other people get their babies out? (I mean, judgy care, not curious care.) It’s like saying, “How’d you get to work today? You DROVE? Ooohhh….I biked. This is awkward.” Isn’t the important thing that you got there? And maybe your route of transportation isn’t anyone’s beezwax? (Wow, I haven’t used that word in a long time. Liked it.)
Anyway, I just wanted to give a little shout out to the anti-mom-judgment movement (a day late, naturally).
If you want to read more Moms 4 Moms statements, check this out.
Fellow moms: have you ever felt judged as a mom?
I can’t say I’ve ever been 100% aware of judgment coming at me, but I’m always slightly paranoid about it.
I’m careful not to post pictures of my son with his pacifier in, for example, in case anyone judges me for letting him still use it. Same thing happened when we turned his car seat to face forward a little sooner than some of my more conservative mom friends would have (don’t worry–he was over a year old and weighed enough, etc…see, still paranoid!!).
Do you think moms are coming around on this judgment stuff, or are haters always gonna hate?