This one goes out to all the sanctimommies
Between the criticism we get from our own families and the rants people post online, it seems that everyone feels entitled to weigh in with their opinion on other people’s parenting. Laura Mazza of Mum on the Run is fighting back, with a epic explanation of why it’s never, ever okay to judge a mom for her parenting choices.
“Don’t judge me,” she begins. “If I complain about my children, don’t say I don’t love them. If I say how perfect they are, don’t tell me I’m too braggy.” And yes, that Pin Art is totally flipping the bird at anyone who disagrees.
Her words are spot on. Everyone rolls their eyes at the #blessed mom, and people can be just as cruel if you’re honest and admit when you’d rather hide in the bathroom than face your children. But the truth is parenting is like that, with highs and lows. Talking about both sides of the coin doesn’t make us annoying or bad people, it makes us honest.
Mazza also takes on the great bottle versus boob debate. “Don’t judge the mother who is formula feeding. Don’t call her lazy,” she writes. You don’t know if she struggled for months on end trying to make it work. You didn’t see her go to lactation consultants, eat lactation cookies. Spend money on lip ties and a pediatrician. You didn’t see her journey.”
She pleads for the same acceptance of breastfeeding moms. “Don’t judge the mother who breastfeeds in public. You don’t know if today was the day she finally got the confidence to do it. You don’t know how hard she’s worked to keep that breastfeeding going. Don’t belittle the act of a mother feeding her baby. ”
Mazza reminds us that you really can’t tell much about someone just from seeing a small moment in their lives. For the person who judges a mom that yells at her kids in public Mazza cautions, “You don’t know if she’s the most patient woman in the world. You don’t know that she is always gentle but today she lost her shit because she’s tired and worn out.” And that mom who’s on her phone? She could be making a call to NASA for all we know. “Working from her phone, looking up recipes that her kids will eat for dinner or talking to her mum that lives a million miles away.”
And as for people who have an opinion on moms who feed their kids fast food, they can have a seat too. “She could grow an organic vegetable farm for all you know,” writes Mazza.
It boils down to this — everyone just mind your own damn business and everything will be fine.
Mazza is mom to three-year-old Luca and sixteen-month-old Sofia. She tells Scary Mommy she decided to write down all the bullshit ways in which people make snap decisions about moms in order to help new moms feel more confident in their parenting choices. “I always wanted to help other mothers because I remember feeling so alone,” she explains. “This was a little message to them, and to anyone who’s judged me or other mothers without knowing the 24 hours in our day.”
Fighting snap judgments is hard, but she urges us to try. “It’s human nature to judge someone when we have met or spoken to them,” she admits. “But if you haven’t had a real life conversation with someone and you’ve taken a quick glance at them and think you know their story, you don’t at all.”
Rather than add more fuel to the fire, Mazza ends her post with a call for kindness, from one mom who’s trying her best all the others. “Rather than judging, lend a smile to her, cut up her food when she breastfeeds, warm up the kettle for her formula, reassure her in her struggles and praise her victories … and remember before you criticize, accuse or abuse, you have to walk a mile in her shoes.”