I feel like I have been fighting an invisible war. My enemies are my peers, other mothers who know how difficult it is to be a parent to a young child. Ones who know what it’s like on the inside. The battlefield is social media and our words are our ammunition.
It’s a slow war; sometimes you don’t even know that you’re fighting it. Sometimes, it seems like your enemies are your allies, marching alongside you in the unseen fight for sanity and peace. Then, when you least expect it… Facebook.
The passive aggressive links to an article listing the ways you are failing as a mother. The condescending remarks about some object in your photo which contains an evil, plastic chemical, judging you for inadvertently poisoning your family while they sleep. Make no mistake, it is a slow, pervasive attack on your parenting that will ultimately make you feel like a failure as a parent and have you question every choice you make for your family.
What should be a band of sisters rallying together to support one another has instead imploded into a judgemental firefight of who can out-parent the rest. One post about using Tylenol while your kid is teething unleashes a fury of herbal remedies that don’t inject toxic chemicals into the fragile body of your vulnerable infant.
It seems no matter what you do, other mothers are going to condemn you for it.
The Crunchy Mom is going to say that you failed because you stopped breast feeding before they were 2 years old and that you’re distancing your child emotionally because you aren’t sharing your bed with them. They will judge your Costco bought snacks because they are not organic and locally grown from farmers that you have interviewed at length about their agricultural practices.
The Hands-On Mom are afraid to bring their children to your house because you don’t have the high tech baby proofing pads on every corner of every piece of furniture and wall. They want to see the itinerary for the afternoon 2 days in advance so Junior can emotionally prepare for his artistic activities. Then when you tell them that you were just going to let the kids run around, they find some excuse to cancel (Junior has a sniffle and they wouldn’t want to share the germs) and never reschedule.
The Cool Mom says you are putting too much time into activities with your child and that you are just placating their mood swings which will result in them growing up spoiled and self- involved. Your children should be your best dressed accessory and they will look down at your kid’s food spattered clothes that are perpetually stained no matter how many Tide To Go pens you buy, while their crisp kid looks like something out a J. Crew catalogue with a dull look in their eyes.
We all subscribe to our own brand of parenting. I happen to subscribe to all of the above and then some! There is no right way, only a million less-wrong ones. I don’t understand why we can’t just accept that we have all chosen to fight this war with different weapons and learn from one another’s mistakes and successes.
It’s easy to be judgemental, let’s try acceptance for a change and see how that goes, shall we?
PS- Have you been the victim of online Mom-Bullying? Tell me about it!