I’ve heard a lot recently about parent shaming. Not that this is a new concept or anything. It’s just made the rounds once again of being a talked about subject.
I try very hard not to participate in it. Although I have a found myself guilty of the condescending glance when our parent talks about their hospital birth, their disposable diapers, or not vaccinating their kids. I try not to say anything if it’s not necessary, and most of the time it isn’t.
We as parents have become so afraid of parent shaming that at times I think we put it above the well-being of ourselves and our own children. We are afraid to leave our children in a well ventilated locked car for five minutes so we can run into a gas station to pee. We are afraid to let our children play alone in our own front yard. We even allow parent shaming to affect the way that we discipline our children.
So why don we do this to each other. Are we so afraid that our child is going to be less perfect than another person’s child. So we have to create a scenario where we win. We have to have the police and CPS on speed dial just in case we see a child who may possibly under some crazy circumstances may be in danger. We no longer have conversations with each other as parents or have faith in each other we immediately jumped to crazy conclusions. Now yes I admit there are those instances when we would be right but in my experience the people who actually break the windows, call the police, call CPS do not wait to have the full story they don’t care about the repercussions of their actions will bring.
Now I would consider myself an attachment parent. I carry my kids on me, they follow me everywhere, that even sleep in the bed with me when they’re little. But I also want my children to have their own independence. I want them to get dirty. I want them to learn how to make the wrong decisions. I want them to make mistakes. I don’t want to have the perfect children. I understand that my child is probably going to get in trouble at school at some point and it will probably be their fault, not the teachers. I understand that my children probably get some bad grades. They will have to learn the hard way on some things. And that’s all OK. And it’s also OK that I parent differently than you do. I’m not better than you because of it. I’m not worse than you because of it. I’m just a parent trying to survive until my kids are all out of the house. So let’s stop trying to win the parenting game. The only people who lose are our kids.