When you become a parent, more specifically a mother two things invariably happen. One you become an invisible member of all parents groups in the world and two your life becomes an open book for everyone and anyone to judge and give advice.
In my last 4.5 years of being a mother, I have been judged, criticized and applauded for same practice innumerable times. Each day as a parent I encounter parenting specialists who have a ready-made solution for everything. These specialists include my neighbors, my maid, friend of a neighbor, relative of a neighbor, friends, Aunties from my building, Uncles from my building, Aunties on the road, Uncles on the road etc etc....
Parenting is a specialization that doesn’t require any professional knowledge. Infact you don’t even have to be a parent to judge and pass advice to other parents. As long as you have eyes and you know how to talk, you are eligible to advise, criticize and comment.
As a mother I am always trying my best like all mothers and as a mother I do not appreciate advice from people who are not parents or who have not brought up kids...young, old..I don’t care. If you have not experienced parenting in any form, you have no idea what is right for my kids. Do not stand from a distance and judge others, if you have guts jump in and then we will talk. I don’t mind experienced advice. But what I do mind is “Being forced to take the advice”.
I should have the freedom to decide whether I want to take the advice for my kid or not. All recommendations stemming from experience are welcome but still it doesn’t give a right to anyone to judge. And I shouldn’t be expected to follow all advice.
No mother is a bad mother because she decides differently from you or she does things which are not accepted norms.
Again what is accepted in one family/circle/society/religion is different from others. So in effect every mother will be a bad mother by some criteria or other.
Earlier I thought because I am an inexperienced mother that’s why may be I am a vulnerable target but second time around, no such reasons. Same advice, same recommendations and same judgements. It doesn’t help that I have a 4 year old very well behaved child who eats well, sleeps on time, is socially active and physically fit (Apologies for bragging).
I do try to not let this affect me too much but there is so much clutter of information that it does reach me, there is so much judgement about everything that it does make me question my decisions.
Parenting and motherhood is one of the most difficult jobs in the world and every child is different. With so many judging eyes any mother is bound falter, to make mistakes. I really urge everyone to please step back and give us a break. I truly believe in my heart that every mother has her kid’s best interest in her mind. Give her the benefit of doubt, Let her be.
"I am struggling, getting up, falling down, learning and unlearning each day as a mother. Don't cast a shadow, just help me grow"