Don’t pretend it doesn’t exist or you haven’t participated in it…. You know you have! If not of another mom, then you have for sure judged yourself. Oh yeah. Now you are listening. Let’s stop the mommy shaming.
I recently wrote a post about how it was hard to like my daughter at first. I loved her but I didn’t like her. Based on the comments – both positive and negative – I realized this shaming thing…is real.
It is not a new epidemic either.
Moms have been judging other moms for generations (and judging the generations above and below them).
Hey my generation are you listening? We are wise and powerful and have the opportunity to break the cycle!
But how, you ask? Well, we start with ourselves.
Stop judging yourself! If you don’t feel shame you can’t feel shamed by others.
If you believe you are doing the best you can and your best is pretty great, then you will be winning.
Listen up: this parenting thing is rough. It is the hardest job on the planet.
There is no handbook (for the love of God where is the handbook?!). No, seriously, they don’t come with instructions because every kid is different. And every parent is different. And every situation is different.
So stop comparing!
Stop worrying what someone else is doing and what others are thinking about what you are doing.
First of all, we would need a time machine to visit our kids at 40 and then travel back in time to parent a completely different way and then see if that 40-year-old kid is any better off. You know my prediction? Same kid either way.
Here is the thing, our actions have consequences.
We shape our children’s future. But underneath, whatever path they take in life, they are the same core human being. And that human being is formed by love.
If you parent with love and the best intentions you are WINNING.
I’m going to say that again.
If you parent with love and the best intentions, you are succeeding at parenting and your child will grow up to be an adult that was loved. They will succeed. No handbook needed.
So if you yell more than you like, if you are in your pajamas in the school pick-up line, if your kid isn’t taking advanced algebra in 3rd grade, it is ok.
You are doing the best you can. THAT IS ALL THAT MATTERS.
Frankly I didn’t write this post because of the judgements. I wrote it because of the positive comments. Because every time I write a post that isn’t all positive I get the same positive feedback.
“Wow, thank you for always being so honest.”
This strikes me every time.
Why is this a thing to be highlighted? Why aren’t we all honest all the time?
This is my reality. I am perfectly imperfect.
I learn from every bump in the road and I am an amazing parent, even when I am on my phone hiding in the bathroom. Because I am unapologetically human and I am doing everything in my power to keep my children alive with as much love and good intentions as possible.
It is exhausting and also unfathomably rewarding.
So to recap: we stop the cycle by starting with ourselves.
If you don’t know how to be unapologetically human and stop beating yourself up, then contact me and I will help you. I’m serious. It’s my life’s mission and it is why I run happily to work every day.
Laugh at yourself and the ridiculousness that is parenting as often as possible.
Second: let’s create awareness.
When you hear someone being hard on themselves for their parenting, tell them they are doing great and to stop beating themselves up. When you see a mom drinking Starbucks at Target at 9pm high five her. When you see the dad who is not giving in to his kids tantrum at the park smile, wave, and say “you got this man.”
I’m not on Twitter. I know, I know, 2018…what ever. But I am on Facebook and Instagram. Let’s use the hashtag #stoptheshaming and post at least a couple times a month something real with your kids with this hashtag.
When your mom or aunt or grandma judges, tell them why it is not ok.
It starts with us.
Then we teach our children that they are perfect just the way they are and they are enough.
That is how the cycle breaks.
Old video of me, but it makes the point…(click here to watch it).