From the dawn of time, women have always compared themselves against one another. Scratch that. Women have always judged other women. I am no saint but some ladies take it to another level.
As a mom who frequents a few mommy message boards, the judging and criticizing is exacerbated. It all begins when those pink (or blue, or digital) lines show up.
There are so many debates that come up during those 9 months.
- Do you heat your deli meats up?
- Can I drink caffeine?
- I ate a fingerful of Feta, should I go purge so I don’t harm my fetus?
Once you get past what you can and can not (or should and should not) eat and drink, the debates get a little more intense.
- Natural birth vs. “Gimme drugs NOW!”
- Breast feeding vs. Formula Feeding
- Vaginal birth vs. Too Posh to Push
See how I say versus, because really its an all out cage match with these debates. No poster is left unscathed.
Then you pop your kid out, with or without drugs (or ripped from your uterus, like my little guy) and you start debating again.
- Co-sleeping vs. “My kid will be in his crib from Day 1”
- CIO vs. “You are a monster if you let your child cry for more than 2 seconds”
- Cloth diapering vs. Disposables
- Homemade baby food vs. Store bought
- Extended Rear Facing vs. Forward Facing
- When to Get Rid of the Paci, Bottle, etc.
Seriously, this list goes on and on.
And you know what I say to all this?
Why do you care?
How is it anyone else’s business what I do with my child? As long as my child isn’t sitting on my lap while I’m driving with a propped up bottle of Diet Coke, what’s it to you? As long as the child is feed, dry and thriving, keep your opinion to yourself.
I will be the first to admit that I participated in many of these debates. I’ve rolled my eyes and guffawed at many of the above topics. Maybe now that I have a 2 year old, and less time on my hands, these topics are getting old. There’s never a resolution. The pro-formula feeders aren’t going to magically change their minds and throw out their cans of formula, and vice versa. It’s one thing to want to educate, but to suggest that someone is not a good mother for not doing what you do is just plain asinine.
Not to sound all puppies and rainbows, but we should be supporting each other. Being thrown into mommyhood (especially for the first time) is like being thrown to the wolves. It’s a new adventure and that adventure is different for each and every women.
What’s best for you and your family might not be what’s best for mine.
Let the debate begin!