Mom v. Mom {A Mother’s Plea to Stop the Madness}

MOTHERS. PLEASE. STOP. THE. BULLYING. {…or insert whatever you want to call it.}

Did you hear that loud and clear?

I’m actually yelling here.

STOP THE JUDGEMENT, THE RELATIONAL, THE VERBAL, THE CYBER…the whatever we are doing to each other. We all know how extremely hard, emotionally draining, and exhausting it is to be a mother — and then we choose to use the tiny bits of free time we have to make judgement upon others choices? Judgement based in no fact, no understanding, just in what we see in one instagram picture or Facebook status or tweet? Does this make us feel better about ourselves? Who you do you think is emulating this behavior? I’m begging you/me/your sister/neighbor/best friend to please STOP.

I fear social media is to blame for the crescendo in this problem. We’ve all vested ourselves in it. I’ll raise my guilty hand as I paint beautiful pictures of my happy life and perfectly dressed children waiting for the likes to come flooding in. And then one off-worded comment nudges us. Maybe the context was misunderstood, but nonetheless, we recoil in shame with our head to the corner to lick our wounds. We begin to judge our own choices, calculated decisions we made based on all the information we had in the moment. This is detrimental to the Mothering Race, and it’s coming from within.

A couple of weeks ago, I clicked on a link shared via facebook. It was a response blog from a stay-at-home-mom rebutting a blog written by a working mom. The 21st centuries great debate. The response was ugly and mean. It made me feel wrong, and it filled me with an anger that hasn’t really subsided. Y’all. The debate is OVER, no one is going to win. Why must we break each other down over this topic on a constant basis? I have a much better solution — everyone go find a mom who is doing it differently than yourself, give her a huge hug, a huge pat on the back, and order her a pizza for dinner. I’ll start.

Jenn, your pizza arrives at 5pm. You are an awesome, amazing woman and mother {among other things}, and I’m not sure how you make it all happen with three little people at home. DOUBLE ROCKSTAR Status to Infinity and Beyond!

We spend precious time over-explaining our choices and decisions to erase the doubt outside of ourselves. My 16 month old son recently took a drink out of a fish pond. Found a bowl, dipped it in, and lapped it up with a huge sense of accomplishment. I could feel the eyes upon me as I held back laughter and quickly told him “no-no.” But I went further, I pretended to wipe his tongue/mouth and squirted disinfectant on his hands. What exactly was that going to fix as the water descended into his belly? I’m like in the 10th%tile on the germ scale. I put on that show for the other eyes. A wasted opportunity to giggle with my boy and explain why we don’t drink out of fish ponds.

The judgement and bullying comes so dramatically and without any relational thinking. The other week, one of our contributors posted a list of baby items to not register for. Her opinion. One of her items was breastfeeding supplies — she didn’t feel comfortable opening them in front of a shower full of guests. Cue the controversy. The likes of, “You’ve set the breastfeeding movement back 20 years!” ended up in her comments box. Destructive. I actually happen to not agree with the contributor, and I registered for a slew of breastfeeding supplies and welcomed them with open arms. I never thought of the fact that someone would feel weird in the situation, but I certainly didn’t judge her for her opinion or feel as though I needed to tell her why she was wrong. There was no wrong in her choice. No one was harmed by her choice. So why was she bullied for it? Can you imagine how that made her feel? Why would we make one of our own feel like that?

We have started a Perspectives in Parenting series over here! Such excitement from our team, and so much worry about how to perfectly craft words that don’t enrage the bull. Disclaimers in every post. Shields up and ready for battle. This is sadness to me. One of our newest contributors bravely told her story of how she and her wife brought a child into this world. HER personal story shared directly from a Mother’s Heart — you could feel it reverberating in her words. She wove an everyday analogy through her story, keeping things lighthearted. And she got slammed. Constructive comments or questions are always welcomed! But not words that make others feel small.

I am extremely lucky to have a group of mother friends who have stripped themselves of all judgement. Do you know how empowering this is? To have a 5 year running group text message full of insight, ideas, and support without one iota of closed minded opinion! And there are MAJOR differences between us. I’m sure many of you can relate, and you have your own support circles. Houston Moms Blog has taken this microcosm and created a majorly amazing community full of the same insight, ideas, and support and pushed it out into our beloved city. We support each other, we rise/fall and move together. We don’t tolerate judgmental bullying. We will not let our kids learn through these actions. Let’s shed this skin. Let’s be MOTHERS together. Let’s make this village the greatest it can be. Goodness — can you even imagine what would be possible if we were all holding hands???

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Sarah, a New Orleans native, transplanted to Houston after Hurricane Katrina and has never looked back. Mom to big sister Maggie {Aug 2011} who keeps her on her toes, the most adorable little brother Jack {Nov 2013}, and one final addition arriving in August 2016! Sarah is constantly striving to have it all as she juggles working on the managerial and operational end of the healthcare industry, planning adventurous weekends to explore all Houston has to offer with her husband and kids, and keeping up with friends and family. You can follow along with Sarah’s daily life on Instagram at @sarahschnure.


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