This post is different than my usual. So please hang in there.
Although, this is not a funny, disturbing story of motherhood. It is a real, disturbing problem with motherhood.
Mom-shaming. We have all done it, myself included. We see a mom doing something that we wouldn’t do, or maybe in a situation we wouldn’t be in, and we instantly judge her. Sometimes we think judgmental thoughts to ourselves, sometimes we say something to the mom, or maybe we post on social media shaming her to the world.
Why? Why do we do this? Why, as women, do we not encourage each other and lift each other up? Why can’t we help a mom in need instead of shaming her?
We pretend to know everyone’s story. That mom at Target with a screaming three year old, having a full melt down in the middle of the store must not discipline her child. What if that three year old is autistic and is very overwhelmed by the amount of people in the store? What if his dad was just deployed overseas and he is having trouble coping with dad’s absence? Or maybe he is just being a three year old and simply having a meltdown! We don’t know.
So instead of rolling our eyes at this mom, or telling her you would never let your child act like that in public, why not offer her a helping hand? Why not offer her a compliment? Why not buy her a cup of coffee? Why can’t we lift her up? Why can’t we tell her she’s doing a great job, and we completely understand what she’s going through?
Does mom-shaming make us feel better about ourselves? In our own minds, do we think we are perfect parents? Do we put other moms down so we feel superior or so our friends think we are cool? Ask yourself, why do I do this? I bet you won’t like the answer. I know I didn’t.
This is my challenge to all moms, myself included. Let’s end mom-shaming. Let’s end it altogether. The moment that negative thought enters your mind, I challenge you to put a stop to it. Think to yourself, why am I thinking this? Why am I judging her? What if it were me? What would I want someone else to think or do for me? Then help her. Smile at her. Offer a helping hand. Offer to pray with her. Buy her a cup of coffee. (My way of solving all of the world’s problems is over a cup of coffee.) Talk to her. Try to understand what she is going through or why she is doing what she is doing.
My challenge to all of us is to spread love, not hate. Stop the dirty looks. Stop the mean comments. Stop whispering to your BFF about what you would do differently. Just stop. Then go beyond that and do something kind. No matter how big or how small a gesture, just do it.
I want to hear your stories. Will you accept the challenge? How will you end mom-shaming? How will you stop the hate?
Please comment below on a situation where you accepted the challenge, tell me how you stopped the hate. Brag about it. Inspire others to do the same.