I was once one of those AWFUL people who would secretly judge parents from afar on their parenting skills, yet – I wasn’t even a parent yet! I know, I know…GASP! I despise people like this (judgers who have never spent a day in your shoes) but I was one of them…right on up until AJ was born. Somehow, I thought I knew exactly what type of mom I was going to be and was certain of my list of things I would never do as a parent. At only eight months into this motherhood thing, I’m here to say I AM SO SORRY to all of the mothers of the world I secretly judged. You did what was best for your babies, and I’m doing what’s best for mine. We may not agree on everything, but we can agree that we love our children and are doing our best. Point blank.
For me, there is no right or wrong way to parent, there is only my “gut intuition way” and that’s what I follow…even if it’s not by-the-book parenting or what all of the other moms told me to do at my baby shower. I’ve been having an internal battle as of late on whether or not some of my parenting methods are “spoiling” AJ but I’ve decided to stop worrying about it. I am doing what my gut tells me is best for him. I am sure many parents and non-parents alike won’t agree with over half of my list, but the cool thing is, I don’t care! For once, I don’t care what other people think of me. I only care that I personally no longer judge other parents on their choices (even though I don’t always agree) and that I am doing my absolute very best to raise my son the best way that works for us. My goal is for him to grow up knowing he is loved and for him not to be afraid to express love. For him to be happy, disciplined, responsible, healthy, wise, educated, spiritual, well mannered and have a good sense of humor. For him to be a gentleman and open doors for ladies and the elderly. My list is endless of my wants and desires for him and my methods of reaching those goals may be different or take longer to achieve than yours, but I am working towards it all just the same.
Here is my list of my pre-motherhood parenting truths for myself, next to the reality. I just thought this was so interesting when I wrote it all out. You really cannot say what you would do in someone elses’ situation until you are in it yourself. Here is proof:
I am sure every parent out there has a completely different list than I do too! Some may have no list at all. That’s what makes us all unique and what makes the world go round. We all have different ideas for what is best for our children and that’s okay. At the end of the day we are just all doing the best we can trying to raise the next generation. I hope this post inspires other moms and moms-to-be not to judge your peers and to respect everyone and their choices (well, not child abusers and such but you know what I mean.) This has been so hard for me because I am VERY passionate and opinionated on a lot of controversial topics, but I’ve finally seen the light. Just because I believe something doesn’t make it right (see above) and just because other parents do things the opposite of how I would doesn’t make them bad parents. Stop the arguing, forcing of your opinions and the judging of other parents on their choices. Chances are you’re not going to be able to change their mind to believe whatever you believe, instead you’ll just start an argument that gets both parties upset. Let’s just raise our beautiful babies to be good human beings together and respect each other, different choices and all.