Real Parent

A couple of days ago I read a post on Scary Mommy, a blog that I really like. It was about having children and not being able to have nice things around. Now those of you who follow me know, that I have a different opinion and believe that you CAN have nice things in your house while your kids are still little. Which of course doesn’t mean that kids can’t be kids and that the house is sterile with crazy rules in order. Nope. I just have the opinion that if you teach your kids certain guidelines you will get around the refurnishing of your place. But I don’t want to go into details as I’ve already explained my point of view in the other post.

What I thought was interesting was the feedback I got after I posted a comment on the Scary Mommy post (on Facebook), which lead some of Scary Mommy’s readers to my blog and obviously motivated someone to comment on my post.

I’m all in for being able to share your opinion. What I found interesting while reading both, the comments on the original post and the comment left on my blog, was how judgmental mothers seem to be.

I’ve so far never heard of the word santimommy but I lost count while reading through the comments. Every time a mom had another opinion (which was similar to mine) she was labeled a sanctimommy. And the comments were actually really harsh.

Sanctimommy:
A mother who is sanctimonious about her parenting choices. Looks down at and/or judges parents who don’t make the same choices. A combination of the words “sanctimonious” and “mommy”

See, I do believe that we as parents tend to see more good in our own kids than bad and that’s supposed to be that way. I guess we all tend to maybe make our kids better than they actually might be and maybe every now and then we tend to make ourselves look a little bit better than what we actually are. Maybe we even claim to know things we do not know. But are we santimommys because of that? Who actually is sanctimonious, who does make a show of being morally superior to others?

I might put myself back on the chopping block but if I can’t speak my mind and express the way I’m feeling without being told off by other moms, then where will it end? Why would someone label somebody else as sanctimommy just because that person doesn’t agree with what was said in a certain post? I never felt superior in my life. I really don’t like the sound of the word and struggle with what it means. Yes, I watch other parents. Watch them to see how they deal with certain things. What their approach is and very often I learn. I learn new tricks that help getting “un-stuck”.

There’s the other side too, you know. When I watch parents give up. Giving up after saying no to their kids. You can tell that they just can’t be bothered anymore. In those moments I would love to approach them and tell them not to give up. To follow through. What I don’t like is when I hear that kids have to be kids in those moments. Yes, that’s true. Kids have to be kids and kids should be kids. But that doesn’t mean that they should be allowed to ignore all rules. It should not mean that they can be aggressive and rude and loud and… little assholes. Nope. Because it affects everyone around them. It that’s the point where it has to stop.

Surprise, surprise, I actually judge as well (as much as I hate it). Sometimes, when I see how certain kids behave and the way their parents ignore their behavior, I judge. It crosses my mind that the kids would not act like that if the parents would have followed through. I wonder when they have given up because I truly believe that if you stick to some simple rules from the very beginning you will not run into certain issues with your children. It’s in moments like this, when I decide that my kids will never behave like this. That I will never accept behavior like this and that I will do my best to stop my kids from ever getting close to misbehaving in such a way.

Now please hear me out: I totally understand that sometimes you are just exhausted and you can’t be bothered anymore. I’ve been there too. I understand as well that some kids challenge you more than others. Don’t give up though. Understand the importance to pick up again. To continue trying to make clear for your kids what you as a parent want them and what you don’t want them to do.

There is no such thing as a perfect parent! We all make mistakes and we all are in a situation we’ve never been in before. There is no such thing as a parenting manual that fits all children and all parents. How easy would that be? How boring would that be? What bothers me is how moms attack each other and I struggle to understand it. We’re all in the same boat. We’re mothers, parents, facing the same kind of issues and changes. And instead of cutting each other some slack and be supportive we attack, throw words at each other and tell each other off for sharing our opinion and our experience.

Nobody can be a perfect parent. Nobody is asking parents to be perfect. All we need to be is real. Don’t fake it. You fake it if you tell people what they want to hear instead of what you want to say. You fake it if you try to make someone believe that their experience is not true or not real. You fake it if you attack someone to the point where nobody with the same opinion is speaking up anymore. It doesn’t mean that something can’t work just because it seems impossible for one person. Everyone is different and maybe the approach that one mom has with her kids works in this circumstance but would never work in another constellation.

We are all human beings. We all have our issues. We all struggle, we all give in or up every now and then. We all succeed and we all fail from time to time. How can we grow if we don’t keep an open mind and consider other people’s experiences?

Just because you have a different opinion doesn’t mean that you put yourself above others. It’s just about sharing. And maybe there is a good thought behind it.

There is no such things as a perfect human being. Just be a real one!

48 thoughts on “Real Parent

  1. I can only agree with you. I like to see myself as not judgemental, but when I see or hear kids scream to get their will through or to get attention I become judgemental. Why don’t parents raise their kids to behave so others can stand being neighbors or feel like question those parents about, why did you get any kids? You don’t do your job in any good way. We are not perfect, but real.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Amen to that sista! I’ve driven myself crazy trying to be perfect,then I realsied I don’t have to fit the stereotyoe of perfect, I just need to be the ‘perfect for my kids’ perfect!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I once wrote a post about my personal experience with some people around me who parent with expediency and then complain about the consequences to me. And because I am childfree it was if I had no right to even speak to it in my post. I found it amusing since some believe that being a “mother” is all about giving birth. Everyone has a right to their opinion and to “counter” as long as they are respectful. No parent is perfect, you just have to do the best you can.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t think this is about raising “perfect” children. It is about parents raising children in an environment that hold them accountable for their actions, positive or negative.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I have gotten to where I don’t read the comments on those big blogs anymore because they are way too harsh! I was amazed at the bashing that I read one day and decided to not look again, it’s nuts how carried away people can get!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Backlash is normal when you put your thoughts out there. Your post was calm and positive which shows your good personality. And you’re not judging but mainly giving your opinions at what you see. If shown or explained otherwise, maybe your view change. Keep doing good job for your kids

    Liked by 1 person

    • I guess some of them just want to beat someone up. Too much time, too frustrated, I don’t know. As long as we don’t shut up and stay comfortable with who we are and the values we want to teach our kids everything will be fine. 😘

      Liked by 1 person

      • Don’t let them pull you down, Vaishali! Think of all the others that truly love your blog and enjoy reading. Focus on them, on the positive feedback. The moment we decided to start blogging we kind of knew that eventually we will have to deal with negative people, maybe even toxic people, who want nothing more than to make someone feel bad. I decided not to let them get to me and if it’s too bad I would simply delete the comment. My blog is a happy place an nobody is allowed to take this away from me. Your blog is a happy place too. You are doing such a great job. You inspire and motivate and educate. Those women are frustrated. It has nothing to do with you.

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  7. I think oftentimes parents aren’t confident in the choices that they make and instead of owning their decisions, they think anyone who makes a different choice must be judging them and get all defensive and start lashing out. It’s like if I go out for ice-cream, I might get the sorbet instead of ice cream because I like it, but someone who is eating next to me and having a triple fudge sundae will assume that I’m judging them for eating the less healthy choice and make defensive comments criticizing my sorbet. I don’t care what you eat, we’re all in the same ice cream parlor. You want the triple fudge, be proud of it. And don’t assume anybody around you cares, because really, we don’t.

    (I wanted to use an ice cream example, not a parenting example so nobody could accuse me of being a sanctimommy here)

    Liked by 2 people

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  9. OMG….you are so right!!! I try to say I am not judgmental but when I see kids acting out or I see parents just ignoring what their kids do in public I can’t help but say what if. I am not perfect and goodness knows my to try me to no end sometimes but my kids know when I say no it means no. There is no if, and, or but about it. I never changed my decorations in our home when my kids were old enough to keep there hands to themselves. I had and still have boundaries on my kids. They don’t always like them but guess what I’m their mom first and friend second. plain and simple.

    Liked by 1 person

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