What I’m going to say here isn’t new. It’s all been said before. Many times before, actually. By many voices.
But so many people still don’t get it. So I’m going to say it again.
Ladies – until we learn to support one another even when the decisions we make differ, we cannot expect men to have our backs. Period. When they see us picking at each other, going after the weakest in the herd, belittling, bashing, taking cheap shots . . . why should men hold themselves to a higher standard?!
My oldest duckling gave birth to a beautiful baby girl in early May. It is such an amazing experience, watching her navigate the waters of motherhood. And little Henry – yes, my granddaughter’s name is Henry – is an absolute gem. Being a grandmother is a pretty sweet gig!
All throughout her pregnancy and these first few months of motherhood, my oldest has often lamented how vicious other mothers can be. No matter the choice, someone will tell you it’s wrong. This. Has. To. Stop.
If you breastfed, great. But you better have the back of every mom who uses a bottle. And you bottle mamas? You need to stand with our breastfeeding sisters who are STILL fighting for the right to nourish their precious little ones without having to hide in a bathroom.
If you gave birth naturally, I have MAD amounts of respect for you! But I’m asking you to cheer on others who used pain medication to get through the process. And PLEASE understand that for some of us – myself included – the only way to safely deliver our little ones was to undergo surgery. How the baby got here matters less than getting that little one here safely. So let’s just end the argument over what type of delivery is best and agree that any time a baby arrives healthy and loved, how he or she arrived really doesn’t matter much.
Home school, public school, or private school? Or maybe even “unschooling” (at least I think that’s what it’s called!)? I have to be honest, that decision wasn’t easy years ago when my kiddos were little and it doesn’t appear to have gotten any easier today. What matters most is parents who care and are willing to do their part to help their children get the most out of their education regardless of where they are getting the education.
The list could on for quite some time –
Do you supervise your children during their play or do you adopt a more “free-range” philosophy?
Organic food or boxed mix mac and cheese?
Homemade baby food or store bought?
Do you let children explore all sorts of activities – sports, dance, martial arts, etc. – or do you make them select just one thing and focus on that?
Have you chosen not to have children at all? Awesome. But could you please love on a kid or two as an aunt/friend/surrogate mom? The more positive influences kiddos encounter, the better the odds that they will be fantastic adults!
You get the idea.
And my request is simple – have each other’s backs! If another mom asks you for advice, let her know what worked for you and then cheer her on REGARDLESS of whether she does it exactly like you or not. Just as each of us is unique in our personalities and preferences, the ways we approach mothering will vary from one woman to the next.
I’m so very tired of watching women shred each other for the choices we make. We can do better. And I’m hoping we will choose to do just that.