Mommy judgmentalism. This topic has been weighing on my mind a lot lately. I sincerely enjoy following other moms’ blogs and Instagram feeds, just to support them and commiserate, if need be. But most importantly, each mother experiences motherhood uniquely, and I find that fascinating. But when some of these mothers share their experiences, they can be inundated with a barrage of judgments and vitriolic comments from their fellow mothers! It blows my mind. Motherhood is one of the most difficult journeys we as women can undertake, as evidenced by all of the risks that come along with pregnancy and childbirth, psychological afflictions only associated with motherhood, and not to mention the enormous responsibility of this helpless human’s survival depending entirely on you. If there is ever a calling that needed endless solidarity and support, it is motherhood! And yet it is in mothers that we find the most divisive and discouraging behavior toward their fellow mothers!
Far too often I see mothers apologizing and feeling guilty about the strangest things! Why are you feeling guilty about your C section? You are not less of a mother because of it. The goal of child birth is a healthy baby and a healthy mama. Period. Why are you apologizing for letting your baby cry for a little while one night? If you need more sleep to be the best parent you can possibly be for your baby, then do what you think is best for both of you! Don’t be afraid of everyone finding out that you formula feed your baby. The cold hard fact is that not every woman can breastfeed. Another fact: two of the smartest most successful and healthy people I know were exclusively formula fed. Those two people are my mother and my husband. You are a mother, and we all know you are doing the best you can. No one knows your children and what they need better than you.
Cosleepers, crib users, baby wearers, stroller users, babywisers, kid doesn’t sleep through the night until he weans-ers, breastfeeders, formula feeders, cloth diaperers, users of disposable diapers, baby led weaners, baby food users, attachment parents, give me just two minutes to be by myself without someone hanging on me parents, corporal discipliners, gentle parents, we are all a part of this awe inspiring club called motherhood. We all produced new life and we all should be damn proud of that. We all know how freaking impossible it is, yet how blissfully fulfilling it can be at the same time. We should build up and support each other, not tear each other down. You never know what is going on behind the quick picture and caption on Instagram, or the few pictures and words on someone’s blog. That mom you are shaming for letting her baby cry it out might be struggling like hell with post partum depression, and a full night’s sleep might make a world of difference on her world outlook and her baby’s well being. That mom you are lecturing on “breast is best” might be a breast cancer survivor who has had a mastectomy. That mother you are accusing of not caring about SIDS because she cosleeps with her baby might not be able to afford a crib. Or they could have reasons for doing what they do that you would consider totally illegitimate. But what you think doesn’t matter as long as the children are loved and cared for in whatever manner works best for their mother. Stop apologizing for mothering how you see fit. We all can learn from each other.
Give a mom a break. We are all in this together. Stop separating us into feuding camps and instead think of us as one kickass community with a common goal: loving and raising these kids as best we can.