Some Thoughts On Motherhood

One thing that really took me by surprise soon after becoming a mama a little over three years ago was the abundance of "mommy wars" and mom judging. We as mama's are at times made to feel that if we don't have the approval of all mom-kind then we are somehow doing this mama-life all wrong, and those kinds of thoughts are harmful to all moms, but especially new mamas.

Awhile back on Instagram, I used to host a once weekly chat loop, and one of the questions I posed to ladies around Memorial Day a couple years ago was "what does freedom mean to you?". I was expecting more, well, you know, more Memorial Day themed answers... And I received one pretty unexpected answer that stuck with me over the years. Instead of everyone saying they were thankful for their country, family, friends, church, etc. I got a few answers on the freedoms of motherhood, or the lack there of that we sometimes experience, and it ended up sparking a small discussion amongst the mamas participating in the chat loop. One mama in particular caught my attention when she said "Freedom to me would mean I can do as I please and not be judged by other moms. I find I'm nervous in big groups because everyone is watching every movement I make with my kids. What I feed them, how I speak to them. It's really become annoying and stressful."

I'm sure we can all relate, I know I sure can. Being a mom isn't easy, from constantly worrying over our little ones to questioning ourselves and wondering if we are making the right decisions and doing the right thing, honestly we don't need extra stress from others questioning/judging us. So why are there so many arguments amongst mothers, especially online, but also in real life?

So many debates over breastfeeding vs. bottle-feeding, pro-vaccination vs. anti-vaccination (or selective vaccination), co-everything vs. "free-range" parenting, natural remedies vs. pharmaceuticals, young Mothers vs. waiting until you're older to start a family, stay at home moms vs. working moms, thinking that a mother with only one child knows any less or has any less experience than a mama with 2 or 10, Married Mothers vs. single mothers, food allergies vs. no food allergies, only organic non-gmo fair-trade foods vs. just trying to get your world's pickiest toddler to eat ANYTHING, baby-led weaning vs. purees or waiting longer to introduce solids, cloth diapering vs. disposable diapering, homeschooling vs. public schooling... the list of hot topics for the mommy war debates could go on and on, and I just don't understand... Why does everything have to be a battle? Why does everything turn into a competition? I think it's time we exchange the "vs." for "And".

I cant even begin to tell you how many times I've been judged and stereo-typed. Stereo-typed by my daughter's ex-pediatrician for being a young mother and being told by him that I shouldn't breastfeed my newborn because he didn't think I'd stick with it (I breastfed for 9 months before my milk dried up so I'm pretty sure I did okay), to being publicly judged, criticized and even bashed on Facebook because I don't give my daughter fluoride, because we eat organic when we can and I use God given natural remedies such as essential oils and herbs as much as possible... the list could go on all day. I've even had people judge me because I won't pierce my little girl's ears!

Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, and we all have talents  and abilities that the other might not. If you think about it, we're all in this together, so why not bring back the village, forgive a little, love a little and be there for each one another?

Is there a right way to parent? In my opinion, there is... The way YOU parent! That, my dear mama friends, is THE "perfect" and "right" way to parent!

Whatever works best for your little one(s) AND you! Not the way your friend parents, not the way the person judging you parents, not the way that "perfect" mom you follow on Instagram parents her children, not the way your own mother or mother-in-law parents... Only the way you parent your child will work for you and your child. There is no cookie cutter way to parent because there are no cookie cutter people. Every single mother and child is different in their own unique and beautiful way. :)

Is it alright for people to give advice? Absolutely! But if someone doesn't ask for advice, chances are they don't want it. If giving/receiving advice turns into an argument, the best way to fix it is to agree to disagree. Chances are you're not going to convince anyone to change their made up parenting minds and someone is not going to convince you to change yours either... And that's okay. Unfortunately there's always going to be some story in the news that annoys us or that one woman (or man) who leaves a comment beating down another. These are great examples of how mommy wars stay alive, the moment we leave a not so nice comment back to the person who left a rude comment, we only become part of the problem. One thing I've learned over the years is that people on the internet usually can't be reasoned with and I've also learned personally that the best rule of thumb is to think about what you say before you say it, and put yourself in the other persons shoes. Stay at home moms aren't stay at home moms because they're too dumb or lazy to work in the corporate world and working moms don't care less about their children or love them any less just because they don't spend every waking moment with them. Everyone does what is right for their family and what they have to do.

The one thing we all are is super moms, even if we don't always feel like it or we run across someone on the "mommy-war-path" who tells us otherwise and tries to make us feel "mom guilt" or  like we are a "mom fail".

Your house is spotless clean? Great! You're super mom. Your house is dirty? That's life sometimes, you're super mom. You homemade personalized treats for your every child in your little one's playgroup? Seriously, you're super mom. You bought stuff at the store instead of making it yourself? Or maybe you completely forgot? You're still a super mom. You spent every waking moment with your child? You're a super mom. You worked all day to make ends meet and your child was already asleep when you got home? Guess what?You're a super mom. You took a shower and bathed all your little ones today? You're super mom. You didn't change out of pajamas today? Well, You're a super mom too. You love your little one(s) more than anything in the world and would do anything for them? YOU ARE A SUPER MOM.

However you're doing it. If you're doing your best, then you are absolutely doing it right. That is the right, the perfect, the BEST way to parent and to be a mama. Hugs all around mamas!


  1. Love this April! Beautifully written girl!

  2. Oh my gosh, April, this is so true! Motherhood is hard enough as is, let alone with all the judgements!