Something happens to a woman, when she becomes a mother.
She gets mean.
She gets catty.
Before you decide to “unfollow” me due to my insensitivity, hear me out on this. It may take a while, but it’s going somewhere.
I’m going to ask a few questions:
“Do you think a mom should stay home with her kids, or should she work?”
“Did you breast feed, or did you formula feed?”
“Does your child forward face in the car, or rear face?”
Ask these questions to a mother with little ones. See what sort of response you get.
It can get downright nasty.
As a mother, you are so fiercely protective of your child, as you should be. No argument there. We all have these ideals as to the way our beautiful little ones should be raised. We hold firm and true to those ideals, and there’s NO ROOM for compromise.
Those three questions are the ones I’ve seen the most arguments arise from. It is so vicious! Just type it into Google, and find a million chat groups devoted to them. And you can see such contrasting answers, such polar opposed opinions. I’ve seen name calling. Tons of cuss words. Women getting picked on, a constant barrage of an evil dog pile, with claws outstretched and gnashing teeth. It can feel like a war zone!
And I am guilty of this behavior too, as much as I hate to admit it. I usually can walk a fine line between black and white, yet there are times my Mama Bear instincts take over, and I swing heavily from one side to the other, no longer seeing the gray. I see only red. And I hate that I see only red.
It’s a personal choice. I know, I know. We don’t want to hear that. But it is. And there’s nothing we can do about it.
Maybe she has to work, in order to make it. Maybe she wants to breastfeed past the age of 1. Maybe her child is large and long, and for whatever reason cannot be in a rear facing seat until the age of 2. Or maybe she chooses to be at home with her kids. Or it’s more convenient to bottle feed. Or she feels it’s safer to keep her child rear facing in a car over the age of 2.
The fact is, it’s hard, no matter what choice we make. Being a mother (a parent) is the hardest job out there. None of us will agree all the time, or see eye to eye consistently. Most of us are just trying to do the best we can through this roller coaster called Parenthood.
During moments like this, I think back to a conversation I had with a lovely mother in her early 50’s; her children grown and pursuing their own lives. She said to me, “These things you worry and obsess over now, won’t mean anything years from now. You focus so much on getting it right, doing the “right” thing- and when you get to my age, you realize what it’s really about is what is, now.”