My Inspiration

My Inspiration

Monday, 14 May 2012

A White Flag Is Waving...

Could we maybe put a stop to the war that's going on?

I'm not talking about the one with all the guns and stuff (As if I would talk about politics on my blog. If I can't even tell my close friends about my political stance, how could I write it in a blog?), I'm taking about the mommy war that's going on.

I'm talking about the moms judging moms war.

I'm talking about this.

If you've been around for a while, then you know that Cuinn and I loosely base our parenting style on the all of a sudden popular Attachment parenting. We co-sleep. I still breast feed, we don't spank, we don't do sleep training, we parent in a pretty natural way.

I've talked about it here on this ol' blog, mostly because I've been lucky enough to not get negative comments HERE yet. Maybe you agree with me, maybe my blog is just too little, maybe it doesn't matter. I write about it, mostly, because I can't talk about it.

And it hurts.

It hurts that Cuinn and I get a lot of unwanted advice that goes totally against what we're trying to do here. We co-sleep not out of necessity, we like it. I don't sleep train my kids not because I'm weak but because I feel like it's wrong. I still breast feed not because it's easier, but because Aislynn's not ready to give it up. I'm following my kids lead.

It also hurts when an article like this comes out, because with it, comes a lot of negative attention. Like this. That child was not misbehaving. He was acting like a 3 year old. He was sitting on that couch, with nothing to do, and asking for his mother's attention. Which she gave him. Yes, he was attached to his mom. But why is that turned into a bad thing? The only wrong thing I see while reading this article and watching the video, is how one sided that reporter is. She is attacking this mother's parenting. And by the way, I think the mother was doing a pretty amazing job at defending herself and explaining that while this parenting technique ISN'T FOR EVERYONE it does work for her.

That's the whole point though. It's not for everyone one. It's not the only way to parent. It might not even be the right way to parent, but it's her decision. Yes, she did go on the cover of the magazine to showcase it, which is an issue I'll talk about in a minute, but this parenting style is her choice, because the boy is her son, and if she screws it up? Well that's her problem too.

The other thing that hurts about this war is coming from the side I'm fighting with.

Because while I applaud this woman and the guts it took for her to make this kind of stand, I also kind of want to smack her. It's this kind of "fighting back" that makes me, a fellow AP'er, look like a crazy person. 

It's not just her though. It's all the other very loud, very judgmental, very opinionated, very holier than thou parents who think that they are doing it right and if you're not doing the same thing, well then social services better come and snatch your kid up right now.

For example, some parents who do the whole cloth diapering. Which I am all for by the way, it just doesn't fit into our lifestyle because we don't own a washer and dryer, and it's just not conducive with out life right now. I have found that a lot of parents  (mostly moms. I'm sorry but it's true), who do cloth diapering have this attitude that they are better than you. Like the woman I overheard in the Pampers aisle the other day.

I had to run to the store because we were out of diapers, and while I was looking at the different deals that were going on at the time and trying to decide, a woman stated, very loudly, "Oh, thank GOD I do cloth diapering. I would NEVER subject my child to the dangers of disposable diapers. Seriously, what are those mom's thinking?!?" Then she saw me and just looked at me and said, "Whoops! Sorry." 

All I could do was stare at her, with my jaw on the floor, and want to cry.

Look, I think it's fantastic that you think you are saving thousands of dollars on diapers, (I know, you've done the math, but realistically, I know for a fact how much I have spent on diapers, and hunny, it ain't getting near what you told me it would...) It's also awesome that you are helping to save the environment, Also, cool that your kid has adorable bums in their cloth diapers.

Seriously, I really am proud of my friends who cloth diaper, I do think it's really cool.

But do not, for one second, think that you are better than me for doing so.

Because I can turn around and think I'm better than you for something else.

And this war on parenting is never going to end.

So, as a mum who is doing the best she can as a mother, I am imploring all you other mommy's. Stop judging. Stop fighting. Stop.

When you see another child throwing a temper tantrum in the mall, don't say to your friend, "this is what I would do." Remember that time when your kid wasn't acting perfect.

When your mommy friend is telling you about a victory they had, even if you don't agree with what they're doing, tell them they're doing a great job.

Stop bragging about everything your child is doing that another child isn't.

Be happy for the other mommy's, support one another in the valley's and raise each other up in the victories.

We should be in this together, not against each other.

Now, go hug your kids.


pippasmum said...

I was so shocked when I had Pips and the world was so filled with unwanted advice. I was doing the best that I could with a very difficult, colicky baby and nothing helped. The unwanted advice, that always smacked of criticism, only ever made it worse. Good for you for your choices.
And, for the record, I was exclusively a cloth-diaperer with baby one. With #2, he always leaked out and it didn't take long for us to go to disposables. We personally love the Presidents Choice Green Brand but I just hate the smell of disposables and these don't smell. I don't think I'm better or worse, though. Just sane.

Paul Bishop said...

"Oh, thank GOD I do cloth diapering. I would NEVER subject my child to the dangers of disposable diapers. Seriously, what are those mom's thinking?!?" Then she saw me and just looked at me and said, "Whoops! Sorry."

This passive-aggressive approach, if that's what she was using, really gets under my skin. I have rarely met anyone in those circumstances who was actually sorry. Even if they were, they weren't being sensitive enough to keep their opinions quiet enough to not be openly judgmental.