Sunday, October 9, 2011

When Mothers Attack

Mothers have a pretty crappy job.

Literally. We clean butts, we wipe butts, and we are responsible for anything that happens to come out of those butts.

What bothers me most is when other mothers choose to think that they have superior parenting skills or the right to tear down other mothers in their quest for perfection.

Recently, Allison at MotherhoodWTF? wrote a couple of posts that really seemed to enrage some folks. You can see those posts here and here. I encourage you to read the comments.

One of the women who commented, Mrs. C has a blog of her own that I have now read. To be fair, you should probably read that as well. The only thing that I will note is that she appears to only have one child, aged 13 months.

As much as I love my child, I know that I am not always a great parent. I know that there will be days that the parenting skills that I have assembled to this point will fail me, I know that each day that Z grows smarter and more independent she is developing ways to thwart the rules and disciplines that we have set in place. I race through life, trying to stay on top of her new skills (locks on closet doors, taking bedrooms doors off of their hinges, covering the seat belt button when I strap her in so that she does not free herself to dance naked in the back of the car).

Until Z was about 18 months, I thought I was a super mom. I though I had it down pat. I could leave the house with nary a diaper bag (just a few diapers and a travel supply of wipes in my purse), spend the day with friends and their babies. My child never had a pacifier, she never cried in public, I thought she was perfect, I even started to think that I was.

And I think that everyone lives in that babymoon bubble for a while.

And then our children turn on us. They begin to climb things that shouldn't be climbed, have temper tantrums in the most awkward places, to talk back, to bite, hit, scratch and lie.

All children do this. It's about pushing boundaries, it's about trying to find their place in the pecking order of their worlds.

My point is that we mothers have to deal with this day in and day out, it wears on our frazzled nerves, our broken patience, our self esteem. We bloggers have a great way to dispel some of the frustrations that plague us, a way to vent all that is wrong with our parenting, our children, our lives. We have other mothers that offer support, suggestions, helpful shoulders to lean on when we are at our worst.

To tear one another down, to alienate other moms by placing ourselves on a pedestal is not the way that this community should function.

I know that I have never been anywhere in public where any mother has walked up to me and called me a "shitty ass parent" or my kid a "demon" - they may have thought it - but it was never spoken.

I am not sure if people feel protected by the anonymity of the internet and therefore feel that they can be people through this medium that they would never think to be in public, but it is mean, it is spiteful and it is counter-intuitive to the blogging culture.

Finally, we are all trying to do the same thing. We are trying to raise good, healthy, respectful children in an insane world. We are trying to teach them morals and values that we hold dear. We are trying to make sure that they stay alive to become the adults we know that they can be. And we are trying to do a good enough job that their college savings won't have to be used for therapy instead.

Can't we all play nice and attempt to be more understanding?

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for writing this post. I wrote on a similar topic a while back. I think it is something we all face as parents, and we all need to learn.


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