While I was pregnant, quite a few mothers and quite a few people who aren’t parents at all decided it was necessary to voice their opinions on my plans to have a natural childbirth. To my surprise, most people were not supportive of my decision. Outside of J-D and myself, our families, and a very few friends, everyone else thought I was insane. People refused to look at it from my point of view. They didn’t understand why I would willingly accept and look forward to the pain that is childbirth. I didn’t understand why it mattered so much to anyone how I decided to have my child. I would be the one enduring the pain not them. They continued to harrass me about it though. Every chance someone saw to bring it up and criticize me they did. I found my support in the books I read, the classes we took, my midwife, and of course J-D. We took the Bradley Birth Method classes and loved them but had to drive 45 minutes just to get to them. Natural childbirth isn’t a very popular idea in Alabama apparently.
Since those early days of being attacked about that particular choice, I have been lucky enough to avoid much criticism by other mothers. We go about our way of raising our son without hearing that we’re doing something the wrong way. A lot of it probably has to do with the fact that I avoid the people who tend to push their opinions on others. I have very strong feelings about how we parent and I believe we’re doing a great job but I choose not to push my opinion on others. If a friend asks for advice about something I will gladly offer any knowledge I have. I will not go beyond that. I know how it feels to be looked down on for your decisions.
This morning I logged onto the momslikeme website to see if anyone had joined the group I started for playdates in our area. No one had and I’m beginning to think it might be harder than I originally thought to start a moms group. While looking around the site at the different discussions that were getting the most hits, I came across a particular conversation that both shocked and upset me. A mother asked for some advice on getting her baby to sleep and wow did people go nuts about this question. There were a ton of comments offering advice on how those parents get their children to sleep and even more attacking one another for their different approaches. The comments were hate filled and mean. I couldn’t believe what I was reading. I by no means agreed with the majority of the advice the moms were giving but no part of me thought to let them know that. It is their choice on how they get their child to sleep and every baby is different. I had no idea that the mom on mom crime was so mean or even so popular. I really hope that it changes and moms realize that it is so much easier and more healthy to support one another or just let one another be.