I've been doing some thinking after reading through some posts on a "Natural Parenting" facebook page. It's like a freaking train wreck, I just can't stop reading. It's made me think a lot about "mommy wars" and our desire, or need, to rank our parenting and compare it to everyone else's.
100 years ago, if you're children all survived, you were rocking the parenting thing. If they didn't all survive, you still weren't doing bad. What you did in your own home with your own children was no one else's business, they were yours and you could do with them how you pleased. Now, I'm not saying that was a good thing or something we should strive to get back to because let's face it without the "help" (overseeing) of the community, things get out of control at times. But now it seems like we've come a full 180 from there.
Now, every bit of your parenting is picked apart by everyone you know and it IS their business (or so everyone thinks). We seem to give points for everything now.
Did you have a natural birth? 1 point.
Did you breast feed? 1 point. For a year? 2 points. For two years? 3 points. Until kindergarten? a bazillion points.
Did you do a delayed vaccination schedule? 1 point. Not vaccinate? 30 points.
Cloth diapering still seems to be one of those things we haven't come up with a way to necessarily rate your parenting on, and it's still a fairly new concept (to our generation anyway), but you can bet it's coming.
Back to your parenting....
Do you scold? -1 point for yes. Do you spank? if yes, just drop out now.
Are you feeding rice cereal to your kid? No gets you 1 point. If you grow your own oatmeal (I really have no idea how oatmeal is made so I'm just going to assume you grow it for the sake of argument)? another bazillion points.
Feed your baby only homemade baby food? 1 point. Organic? 2 points. Farmers market, organic, homemade? 70 points. (I'm just making up the point scale, can ya tell ).
Is your kid sitting rear facing to a year? 5 points. For 2 years? 40 points. Until they can drive? 6,328 points.
Have your kid potty trained by 3? 1 point. By 2.5? 3 points. By 2? 5 points. By 1.5? 10 points. Elimination communication (look it up, it's a real thing)? 10,215 points.
Do you read to your kid? 1 point. Every night? 2 points. Every hour? 10 points. What's a book, you ask? Just stop the survey now, you're not going to beat the rest of us.
Is your child speaking at 3? 1/2 a point. At 2? 3 points. At 1.5? 7 points. At 1? 13 points. They came out fluently bilingual? 2,349 points (obviously you read to them in the womb in both languages all day every day).
Do you give your child toys that don't require batteries, but instead require imagination? 10 points. Build your own imagination toys from organic trees? 872 points.
I'm really running out of things to judge you on here
Anyway, my point is, why does it have to be a race to collect the most points? If you make an informed decision, it's none of my business, or is it?! Has it somehow become my business in the last 70 years? How did we get here? Why do we feel the need to compare ourselves to others that aren't walking in our shoes? Why do we feel like we have to live up to some unattainable parenting Ghandi? Did the parenting "experts" do this to us or did we create them?
Anyone have any thoughts or comments. For the record, I didn't score very well on the point system LOL!!! And I don't care
I am tired of explaining to everyone why my 2 YO isn't potty trained...I am tired of people "making sure" I am still breast feeding...
I am tired of giving reasons why I vaccinate my kids...
Also tired of people saying I am a germ freak because I want my kids to wash/sani their hands.
Also tired of reading about all my friends on FB working out and doing it all being hero moms...cause right now, I am not.
I am jealous, depressed, and angry this week...can you tell?! I feel awful! AHHHHHHH!
You're a good mommy!!! You are, you just need some time off!!!
I love you
I didn't score very high on your judging either. I think I scored higher when I just had one but it's just too hard to be that good with two I feel I have accomplished something when everyone is still alive at bed time!!
I completely forgot to add in points for the discussion I read on that site that started my whole thought process, the dreaded cry it out method.
For the record, this board is full of amazing mommas and not once have I ever felt judged. This is a poke at the generality of mommy wars and NOT at anyone on here. We have an amazingly supportive and diverse group of women here. It comes from some very hateful things I was reading on that facebook page in the comments section where they apparently are not as amazingly supportive to each other as we are!!!
Oh and on the "tired of people saying" thing...
no my 2.5 year old doesn't talk much, no I can't do something about it. He'll talk when he's ready.
And I'd love to make my baby stop crying. Any "helpful" tips will earn you a punch in the face!!!
I love this board. I feel so "weird" IRL compared to other moms. I don't really like to talk parenting/babies to other moms IRL because they always bring up stuff to compare and then look at me like I have three heads when I say that Aiden is not STTN and that's okay. We won't go into the comments I've gotten about starting cloth diapers, cosleeping, etc. The choices I've made are MINE, not yours! The choices you make are YOURS, not mine! As long as the kids are safe, who cares? If everybody was raised exactly the same and turned out exactly the same this would be a pretty boring world.
And what do all those points win you? NOTHING. Why bother counting?!
OH, and you forgot the "you wanted a natural birth but ended up with a c/s.... -500,000 points"
Last edited by alwayssmile; 05-20-2011 at 04:41 PM.