Saturday, September 06, 2008

Judgement Strikes Again

Every now and then, this subject rears it's ugly little head. Here lately, I've spoken to a few different friends that are feeling judged about there mothering.. There are many different subjects that get mother's going whether it be working/staying at home, breast feeding/bottle feeding, spanking/not spanking..... the list goes on.

So, I thought it was time that I resurrect this little post I made a couple of years ago. The last time I posted it, I received quite a few e-mails asking me who ticked me off so bad. And a few from friends wanting to know if they had offended me personally. So before you ask those questions... It happens to me regularly that someone comments on my parenting..... I can make you a list if you really want to know. I've been corrected for everything from painting Emma's toe nails when she was a baby to carrying her when she was too old (and I would say that almost 5 years old is probably a little old to be carrying a child around unless THEY HAVE A BROKEN LEG) and though I haven't gotten any comments yet, I see them coming so I'm going to go ahead and get it out there. Chloe just turned one and she's still breast feeding. With Emma, I was so disciplined and I slowly tapered off feedings and gave her her very last one right before she turned one. Well, Chloe has been sick and is cutting a tooth and in an effort to comfort her, instead of tapering it off, we seem to be increasing feedings. I have always said that if they started to pull on my clothes that was it, I was going to cut them off cold turkey. Well, Chloe's pulling and you know what I do? I CAVE... Lesson one in motherhood.. Never say what you are not going to do... That's the surest way to insure that you do it! But honestly, this post isn't about someone offending me. If you don't think I'm doing something right, you're entitled to your opinion... Even if it is wrong :). I figure if I want to personally take Chloe a fresh, warm, snack to her classroom when she's in Kindergarten, then it's my prerogative.

This is just so those of you that are feeling the pressure know that I've got your back. Remember that this post pre-dates Chloe...

Ok, I just need to vent a little here. I love my daughter. She means everything to me. I feel confident in my parenting. I know that I will make mistakes but I also know that I have her best interest at heart and I want nothing more than for her to one day be the woman that God wants her to be. I pray daily for God to give me the wisdom to make the right choices in raising her. I also know that every child is different and that it is usually the mother that spends the most time with their child and therefore knows what is best for her child (at least children Emma's age). I believe that there are no pat answers and that every child is different. Like I said, I feel like I do a good job. However, I am not arrogant enough to think that I am qualified to raise someone elses child or tell them how to do so and frankly, that drives me nuts. From day one, moms (especially new moms) have people critizing if they let their babies cry or if they pick them up too often and not let them cry, whether they have a pacifier or not, how long they take the pacifier. Then their is how often you change your kids diaper. People critize if you take your child out of the house too early or accuse you of being an over protective parent if you keep them home too long. Then when the child gets older, it's what food you let them eat, how much TV you let them watch, or my favorite, how you discipline. The list goes on and on. Don't get me wrong, I'm very cautious about all of these things but I just don't think I have the right to judge a mom who is say overworked and needs a break and let's her child watch three hours of TV a day as opposed to the two recommended by the american pediatric association. Seriously, can people actually be taking care of their own children if they are so worried about how someone else takes care of theirs. If someone is truly concerned about the well being of the child involved, the best thing you can do is encourage the mom. Since day one, my family has made it a point to tell me what a great job I'm doing. I'm so thankful for that. A lot of my friends don't have that. It makes me confident in my approach and helps me to be consistant. The worst thing you can do to a mom is make her second guess herself. There is one reason that people criticize others, insecurity. Most mom's love their children more than they love themselves and that alone is to be commended. When you've gotten up several times a night to take care of a newborn, then you've earned the right to make choices for that child, THAT CHILD not any other. Come on people, mom's need support!

And back to the current... I don't think my feelings on this have changed.

Blessings,
Dana

13 comments:

Keith said...

Dana, You are a great mom. Lynn and I thank God that you are the mother of 2 out of three of our granddaughters. I'm so proud of you and them. (Adam too) We know how much you love and care for Emma and Chloe (Adam too) and that makes us love you all the more. We loved being there for Chloe's Bday
Love ya, Papa

Trey and Stephanie said...

Hi Dana,

Im a friend of susan and hannah in florida. I had to laugh reading this post. I nursed both my daughters until 18 months & I have been scolded on everything you mentioned and more. I have a very petite daughter, so I have been told I dont feed her enough! I agree about saying "never"! It almost always comes back to bite ya!

Lu said...

I think you do a great job as a Mom.... And I totally agree- we all need to be more supportive! Oh and about nursing... shoot girl! If Chloe wants it and you (and Adam) are ok with it.. go for it!!! I know its not the norm to nurse past a year, but I even get comments about nursing Grayson exclusively at his age (8.5mos)... people are always gonna have something negative to say, so forget them!!! I also have a fantastic support system on my side.. my grandparents tell me all the time that I am a great mom and that means the world to me!

becky said...

i probably said it then and i'll say it again...AMEN sista!!! i have absolutely loved getting in touch with so many of my girlfriends from high school lately b/c you quickly learn that you are NOT alone in this world that is completely the most wonderfully insane thing we will ever be a part of....motherhood!! and it's nice to get assurance from friends when you don't get it from family (b/c don't we all do it differently??) and you, my dear, are one of my personal mommy heroes.

The Tyree Family said...

Thank you for bringing this post back. I think it's so easy to get wrapped up in ourselves and what we're doing thinking we've chosen the best path for our children that we can forget that other moms are also doing what they think is best for their little ones. there are many good roads to take that will lead to healthy, well developed children - not just one. and about chloe, don't be so hard on yourself!!! You should do what you think is best for you and her based on your needs ("your" meaning both of you) and not based on what you think other might or might not say or think. Mind your own business PEOPLE!!!
Love you - think you're great!!!

Mandy said...

I think you just confirmed every mom's thoughts in this one post. We will never please everyone. Just to have faith that you are doing the best you can and forget about the other people. Tough to do, especially when they breathe down your neck about 'issues' that aren't really issues. As all have said above, you are a great mom. :)

Lynn said...

Hi - I loved this the first time, and I love it again. We think you are a wonderful Mom in every way and thank God for sending you Adam's way and giving him the good sense to fall in love with you. Keep following God, your heart and your God-given mothering instincts. They are right-on!
-Lynn

Erica Cameron said...

Amen!

Stephanie said...

You know by all the emails I send you that I look up to you so much and am thankful for your friendship and advice in becoming a mother. I know right now I think pregnancy is tough, I also know that it just gets tougher, I mean better once they're born! So you can be expecting some more emails from me, you are my mommy role model=)

Tony and Susan said...

you are very wise! thanks for your support, for your ear, and for being that non-judgemental friend!!

Michael and Hannah said...

I felt a lot of social pressure (not really ever verbalized by anyone, now that I think of it... it was mostly my insecurity) about weaning Wesley at 12 months. He and I both had a hard time giving it up though, and I continued nursing until I had to wean him cold turkey when I got pregnant with Anna Kate. Which was very emotional and traumatic for me, although Wesley didn't seem to miss a beat. This time around I'm not letting social pressures steer me. I'm still nursing Anna Kate, and I have no plans on trying to wean her anytime soon. It's God-formulated nutrition, it's perfect nutrition, it's always ready, can never be accidentally left at home, and it's FREE!!! Exactly which part of that is supposed to be making me want to quit right now??? I'm feeling very liberated in my nursing past the 12-month mark with baby #2!

megmwatson said...

If Siena hadn't weened herself at one I would prob still be nursing at almost two. I miss 2am feedings with both of my kidds. That was some our best bonding time. If we don't take these special moments now they pass us by. Megan

Supabloggasuprememama said...

I have felt the pressure, and will continue to, as well. people just need to back off. amen sistah.