Mom Bloggers or Mom Shamers?
I feel the need to vent about two mom bloggers in my area I follow because I like to keep up with local writers. They seem like generally nice people (honestly) and I shouldn’t actually call them mom bloggers as they blog about a lot of things. But, they both exude this overly perfect aura of how Things are Done that is a little off putting and sometimes wavers into mom shaming territory.
They each occasionally post about scenarios that happened to them – a sick kid came up to their kid in a doctors waiting room, they saw a toddler without a jacket on when the parent had a jacket on – and they usually ask, “What would you have done? Should I have said something?”
No, unless you’re witnessing literal abuse happening in front of your eyes you should probably mind your own business. Maybe that mom wasn’t watching her sick kid for a second in the waiting room, yes, but you don’t know what’s going on on her end. Maybe she was up all night with her sick kid and got no sleep and was relishing sitting down for one second. News flash, your kid is going to be exposed to germs when they’re out and about in the world.
Last time I brought Theo to the pediatrician another toddler girl was in the waiting room and her mom saw her approaching Theo. She warned me she was going to touch him, and I was like, we’re fine, thank you though.
I rarely have a jacket on Theo because they’re not considered safe in car seats. I double up on hoodies/sweaters, keep a blanket in the car, and don’t bother with a jacket if we’re literally just going in and out of a store or daycare. Obviously if we’re going for a walk or will otherwise be outside for more than a minute or two at a time I put a jacket on him.
Can you tell how many layers of clothes that toddler has on under that hoodie? Do you know how long the parent and child duo is planning to be outside? Then maybe be quiet?
So many moms preach about not mom shaming but it’s one of those things that is easy enough to say but tough to do in practice.
Let Your Kid Cry it Out – Or Not! I’m Not Their Mom
My thing I get tempted to mom shame about is sleep training. Being obsessed with sleep training, I was able to get Theo sleeping through the night pretty early on. I feel educated on this topic and it frustrates me to see moms refusing to try crying it out – or any form of sleep training – and they go on not getting a full night’s sleep for up to two years. You’re hurting yourself for no reason.
I believe in notions like:
Your baby needs to learn how to fall asleep on their own and wake up on their own. If they only know how to fall asleep in your arms and you put them down and they wake up elsewhere, that’s scary.
Crying it out does not hurt them in any way – providing they’re fed, with a clean diaper, and are not sick (and are past a minimum of six weeks old – I probably wouldn’t try all night until closer to 12 weeks, obviously newborns still need to feed in the middle of the night).
Past the newborn stage, they don’t need to feed in the middle of the night, and doing so is the worst thing you can do.
One friend in particular was still doing night feedings way past when she should have been and I actually did refrain from saying anything because we weren’t super close friends, and I didn’t think it was my place. Later she told me her pediatrician told her to stop doing that, so she did.
I could keep going, but you get the gist. Depending on how close we are, and if I get a sense that she’s looking for advice or just looking to vent, I may gently point her in the direction of books and articles I’ve read that have been helpful (Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child!). But then I drop it and don’t push. Or I say nothing at all.
When it comes down to it, long-term, they and the baby are going to be fine whether they let them cry it out or not. It’s their decision how to handle their baby’s sleep patterns (or lack thereof), and while I’m fine with crying it out, I can certainly empathize with women for which that is a very difficult thing to do.
In other words, I have my mom stuff too that I feel strongly about – but I do everything in my power to avoid mom shaming.
Would other women be fine with me hiding from my kid to smoke weed? Heh.