When will the judging stop?

Posted: October 7, 2013 by Rachel

It is not lost on me that there are millions of different ways to parent our children, and we all have our own reasoning or beliefs as to why we do what we do. We feed our children differently, encourage them to sleep differently, and our day-to-day lives entertaining and teaching our children most likely look quite diverse. And just as we have opinions on the best way to raise our own children, that quite likely means we have opinions on how not to raise them. I truly believe this is unavoidable, but what is completely within our control, is how we react to others with different beliefs.

Maybe it was the way I was raised, but I subscribe to the notion of saying nothing if I have nothing nice to say.

 

Over the weekend, a woman on Instagram who disagrees with my parenting style verbally attacked me. Some might say that my using the word attacked is exaggerating, but I disagree. This woman knows nothing about my child or my life, yet thought it was her duty to tell me that I am a terrible mother, and that what I am doing is child abuse and neglect. What is it that I am doing? I am attempting to sleep train my child so that we can all get a better nights’ sleep.

 

Some parents co-sleep with their baby, breastfeed on demand, and wear their children everywhere. Other parents’ feed their baby formula, and they sleep in a crib in their own room. One couple may be vehemently against crying it out, whereas others see it as necessary to growth and independence. I have my beliefs, and I stick to them, but what I don’t do is tear down others who don’t share these beliefs.

 

When will the judging stop?

 

Parenting is the hardest and most rewarding thing we will ever do. Our goals are all the same: to raise happy, healthy, well-adjusted children. Because my boy has been formula-fed since 8 weeks, that means I’m a worse mother than the one who breastfeeds her baby? Because he sleeps in his own crib, we’re bad parents? Because we have decided to sleep train our baby to sleep through the night, my “motherly instinct is failing me”?

 

When will the judging stop?

 

We should be praising one another for raising amazing children, lifting one another up for each difficult day that we get through, each smile that we are granted from our babies. Another mothers’ successes are my successes. We are all mothers and fathers. We know how difficult (and rewarding) parenting is. We need to stop tearing each other down if another couple doesn’t subscribe to our own beliefs.

 

But if you can’t do that, well, then just say nothing at all.