This being said, I despise the judgement that seems so prevalent among mothers towards other mothers these days. I'm a part of a facebook group for mothers in our community, and while I understand that there are many different walks of life, ages and philosophies within this group that will inevitably disagree, I am continually amazed at what assholes some of us can be towards others. I feel like most mothers want what's best for their kids, even if we go about it differently. But often times, a mom will post a question and use a disclaimer " no judgements please!" before stating her issue that she needs suggestions for.
It shouldn't be that way.
And it's not just online.
I've felt the stares at the playground when I let my kids take their shoes off and run free..or when I ignore the tantrum my fourteen month old is throwing because I strapped her in the stroller and she wants out. My sister and I took the kids to target a couple of weeks ago and Sal didn't want to be buckled into the double kids cart, so I allowed him to stand on the platform part with the understanding that if he wanted off, he needed to say "stop the cart". My sister pushed the kids through the aisles to help me out. At one point, Sal decided he wanted off and didn't tell her, which resulted in the cart rolling over him. Of course he started to cry, and my first response was to reprimand him for not telling his auntie he wanted off rather than console him. An older woman who saw the incident, stops to tell us "You should really strap him in", and after an exchange with her in which we told her "he's three. He doesn't like to be strapped in", she says something about "poor boy, he's hurt." with a look of disapproval in her eye.
It irks me. Just keep your opinion to yourself. He's my child. He shouldn't have stepped off the cart without asking to stop. He knows this. Am I sorry he got hurt? Of course. But he knew better.
Consequences sometimes hurt. He needs to know that.
Anyways, fast forward to today.
I took my kids to the park for one of our last play dates as a trio. We had loaded sand toys and drinks into the stroller and hit the playground. I'm trying really hard not to be a helicopter parent, but instead stand back and let them learn (and take falls) on their own. This, I admit, is difficult for me, even though I feel it's best for their development into capable and confident individuals. I knew that letting my kids go in their own direction might earn me a judgement or two, but I took a seat anyways. I checked in with each child every minute or so, but didn't follow either one around. Carla wanted to ride the see saw with other kids, so I went over and helped her make her way up. I then went and sat down again.
At this point another mom came up to me, " ....I just wanted to say......" and I started thinking, " oh shit, here it comes..she's gonna give me her two cents on my lazy parenting"...." You make having two little ones and being pregnant look so easy!" She added that she and her friends have seen us at the park before and they're always amazed at how well behaved my kids are and how well they listen.
Did I get some mad mom props today?
Wish more moms would compliment each other instead of judge.
....and then we came home to a 30 minute tantrum by the three year old because the French fries we got at chik-FIL-a were not long ones, and the 14 month old is still crying from her crib an hour after I put her down for nap.....
I'm far from perfect. My children are far from perfect. But man oh man, did that other mom make my day today.