I have been running facebook pages mostly for mums for over 3 years now and sadly the culture of judging, attacking, bullying and treating each other really poorly seems to be on the rise or at least has not improved.
Friends and family often say to me “I don’t know how you do it”. By that they mean, deal with the arguments that break out and even the judgement people have towards me and my parenting choices or the way I look.
Parenting is a tricky thing and I believe with all of my heart that there is no such thing as the perfect parent. We all get it wrong and all get it right in different areas so who are we to judge each other. I am the kind of person who really doesn’t care too much what people think about me as I know I am doing my best and that is all I can do. I live under grace towards myself not judgement.
My parents were not perfect. They were pretty good in the scheme of things but certainly far from perfect. My mum would yell at us and give us the wooden spoon, my parents would fight with eachother in front of us, I never remember my parents reading to me or forcing me to do my homework and I am sure I could list a whole heap of other “not ideal” things they did or didn’t do.
What I can tell you is that my parents loved me and my brother and sister, loved eachother (though there were periods where they struggled), and generally treated other people with respect. Guess what??? Me, my brother and sister turned out ok. We are all happily married, have good jobs and kids and great relationships with eachother.
My mum never tried to be the perfect mother (whatever that is) she just trusted her instinct and loved us and kept us alive and safe. There were ways my parents parented us that if mentioned on a facebook page would be torn to shreds but back then that is just what you did and again we survived and have a level of resilience because of it.
All I know is this obession I see mother’s have on the facebook pages I run about trying to be this “perfect parent” in literally every area of motherhood is insane. Not only is it insane but it is damaging our kids more than that packet of twisties is with MSG and colours and preservatives in it.
Somehow in this quest for perfection we have lost the ability to relate to people in loving, kind and non-judgemental ways. I know this is not the case for everyone as even I hope that I don’t behave like this but many mothers do. The reality is most of the time I feel sorry for a person who thinks it is acceptable to treat other people with such judgement and disrespect, what must have happened to them in their life to think this kind of behaviour is ok.
So I write to you today to say if you are doing your best you are doing ok 🙂 and don’t listen to the haters and the people who try and judge you and tell you you should be doing better. Mostly it is their issue and they are projecting that onto you. Also for those of you who often find yourself in conflict online maybe take a step back and ask why? It is not helping anyone nor does it ever change other people’s behaviour to conflict with them and tell they what they are doing wrong and judge them.
We all want the best for our kids and we will all make different decisions about what that means. THAT IS A REALLY GOOD THING!!! The last thing we need as society is for everybody to be exactly the same. We need diversity and difference and more than anything understanding and acceptance of each other’s choices.
Let’s be an example to our kids of how to love well. Love them, love our families and treat the people around us with respect. If this is the best we can do as a parent our kids will be just fine 🙂