Mom guilt should be in WebMD. It is real. It is painful. It is something we need a cure for.
This past week, I had quite the bout of mom guilt. It surrounded a conversation in one of my mom Facebook groups. The topic? Leashes for your kids.
I’m not talking leashes around the kids’ necks. I’m talking backpacks the kids wear with a leash attached to the backpack to keep them within a four-foot radius.
Apparently, hell hath no fury like moms talking about baby leashes. I nonchalantly mentioned that I would definitely invest in two for my twins once they are mobile because…twins. I was then called: lazy, stupid, embarrassing, and nothing short of Adolph Hitler herself.
Here’s my issues with this flagrant abuse of mom shaming.
- Are you a professional mother? when did it become okay to act like you are the mother of all mothers? Like, you personally invented mothering and know all there is to know and no one will ever convince you otherwise. Get real, girlfriend, because as soon as you need help with your heathens, no one will be around to give you a hand.
- Every kid is different. Do you have my kids? Apparently they came out of your loins because you know exactly how to take care of them. Some behave well in public, others act like jungle children. Sure, some of us could be tougher and some of us could have more patience. But, in the end, kids each have their own personalities and some are more difficult to manage than others.
- Every parenting style is different. A lot of the shamers thought leashes were unnecessary because “back in your day” if they didn’t follow in line behind their parents like a soldier to the Aryan Youth, they were “taken in the back of the van and beat.” Well, as fun as that sounds, Ellie Mae Clampett, I don’t whip my children for being children. Well, I don’t whip them at all. I get it. Some of you are spankers. I’m not a spanking mom but I get it.
- Until you have been in my shoes, STFU. One of the women in the group told me she babysat for four kids and took them places without leashes and did so amazing President Obama himself gave her a Congressional Medal of Honor. Great on you. But, being a babysitter and being a mom are NOT the same thing.
So, how about we get our noses out of other moms’ business for a hot second? If we are all doing our best, trying our hardest and looking out for our kids’ best interests, isn’t that enough? Just because you spank and I don’t doesn’t mean I’m a better mom. Just because I’m overly cautious and you aren’t, doesn’t mean you’re a bad parent.
We are all trying. Our parents tried. No one is right and no one is perfect. Let’s all reel it in a tickle before we light our pitchforks in the mommy groups. We are all too busy judging and calling names and not looking out for who matters most: the kids. If we really struggle as parents, who can we ask for help? Where can we turn if we are being called lazy pieces of shit by other moms?
Let’s take it down a notch.
Meanwhile, anyone have a baby leash recommendation?