Let’s face it, as moms we are under a tremendous amount of pressure raising our little ones in the hopes they will be happy, healthy, and well adjusted. Some of us are stay-at-home moms (been there), while others are working moms (done that). What all of us have in common, (aside from the soul crushing mom guilt) is the way we are unabashedly and publicly criticized for every single action we do. Ladies, throw back that last sip of wine or non alcoholic beverage of choice and follow this mama down the rabbit hole.
Use Your Words
Ever since I got pregnant with my first, I’ve been considered public property. Someone to poke and prod at and offered some terrible, but well meaning advice. Listen up people, give me some space! I can’t tell you the number of hands I’ve deftly swatted from my belly. When my husband asked very cautiously about feeling the baby, I told him, “Sure, but rub at your own risk. I might let out a big one!” I’m more of a “my body, no touching” type of gal. If you love getting the attention from strangers or family members rubbing your belly, go for it! You, do you. The point is, to properly state how you feel about the belly rubs (well anything for that matter) without feeling bad about it. Do what you always tell your toddlers to do, “Use your words!”
Save Your Drama, Mama
I will listen and I will offer some suggestions, but when my drama radar goes off, I will immediately steer the conversation or exit abruptly. Being a sympathetic sister is one thing, but being sucked into the nonsensical meanderings of someone else’s grossly detailed mini drama is not for me. It shouldn’t be for you either. It drains so much energy and time that could be put into other more joyful activities. Keep those friends at a distance and surround yourself with positive energy.
Different Strokes For Different Folks
Parenting is hard! There is so much information out there and so many different philosophies, from CIO to Co Sleeping, Free Ranged Kids to Attachment Parenting, Spoon Feeding to Baby Led Weaning, Traditional Gender Roles to Non Gender Conformity, etc. You get the jist. It’s very easy to be judgmental and very difficult to be empathetic. Last week this mother was freaking out over some checked luggage, while her twins were screaming and trying to escape their stroller. My eldest and I approached and started talking to the boys which eventually calmed them down, which in turn calmed their mom down. That could’ve easily been me and I would’ve been so happy if someone came up and tried to distract my kids. Not every solution works for every family and every kid is different. You, do what works for you. Other people can keep their comments to themselves.
Just Say No
Nancy Reagan’s War On Drugs may have not been too successful, but those three words are near and dear to my heart. I am an overachiever by nature and am often one task shy of losing my sanity. Prioritizing what is truly important and just saying “No” to ancillary tasks, is key to my daily survival.
- No, I will not bake a dozen nut-free/gluten-free/vegan cookies for tomorrow’s bake sale. They will either be store bought or nothing at all.
- No, I will not participate in carpools. My work schedule will not allow for an environmentally conscious form of travel.
- No, we cannot be Facebook friends. See, “Save Your Drama, Mama.”
Just say, no! It will set you free!
In conclusion, as moms we will always be judged. The key is to just not let it get to you. In the daily struggles of trying to keep a well balanced household (kids fed and clean), just take a minute and turn off all that excess noise. Love yourself, ladies. Treat yourselves kindly.
Happy Womens’ History Month. In the lyrics of Miss Demi Levato, “Baby, I’m Sorry. I’m not Sorry! Feeling so bad, got me feeling so good.”