Pages

Saturday, 23 January 2016

I'm Stepping Out Of The Mum Wars

Since I've been blogging I've written posts on honest parenting; I've expressed my thoughts on how it feels to be judged by mums who seem to have their shit together more than I do; I've made jokes about how it's ok to sometimes think your kid is an asshole; and I've reached out to mums to reassure them that you don't have to live up to amazing parenting expectations. 
But here's the thing. Whilst I was doing that, a million other mum bloggers were doing the exact same thing. And accidentally, armed with blog posts, memes and social media status' we appear to have waged a war on the mums who DON'T feel the same way as us. The mums who DO have their shit together. Whilst trying to raise awareness that parenting isn't a competition, we have in fact entered a competition. 
I can't speak for the other mum bloggers out there, but I'm sure most of them would agree that this was never our intention. 
We never intended to make anyone feel inferior. We never set out to make parents feel that if they were perfect parents, they weren't REAL parents, and we never expected the kind of retaliation that some of us have received.
What began as a confession that we weren't perfect parents and a plea to end judgment on us has resulted in US now being called the judgers.
And because of this I need to set something straight. I do not judge perfect parents. What is there to judge? If you have things worked out and you're 100% clued up, then that's amazing. If anything I look up to you. 
If you talk about your parenting however and then compare this to mine, I will laugh at you. I will laugh, because that's my defence mechanism. That's my way of covering the emotional bruises that your statements are inflicting upon me. I'm not judging you. I'm protecting myself. 
It appears that with this feeling that perfect parents are now being judged, a whole new host of problems have arisen.
TWICE this week I have observed people referring to imperfect parenting as fashionable. Apparently it's now fashionable to call your children names, talk about how annoying they are, have an unclean house, and not wash for days. 
Last week I was accused of 'normalising' imperfect parenting behaviour. Can you imagine how that made me feel? 
It made me feel great. 
Because I do want to normalise imperfect parenting. I do want people to know that it's ok not to be perfect. 
But I wouldn't call it fashionable.
I wouldn't say it's fashionable to be a struggling parent. I'd say it's now become more acceptable to BE HONEST that you struggle. It's now acceptable to reach out to other mums and admit that your child has totally pressed your buttons today.
That doesn't mean we hate our children, or we ACTUALLY think they're assholes. It means we used our sense of humour to get us through a difficult day. 
Our children aren't going to look at what we blogged or tweeted about them in 10 years time and think they were unloved. They are going to look at our blogs and see their mummy's. Their mummy's humour, thoughts and emotions. Their honesty. And they'll know where that honesty came from. 
It came from the need to be the best mums we could be. It came from the need to get things off our chest so we could then put them feelings aside and continue to be mothers. 
And alongside our "asshole" blogs, there will be blogs of our unconditional love. Because that's parenthood. The rough comes with the smooth.
I can't continue to justify why I blog what I do. I can't continue to become angry when I see someone making another parent feel like a failure. And I can't continue to commentate on mum wars and then accidentally become embroiled in them.
I will not be placed in a box and told what type of parent I am. 
I'm tired. I'm tired of seeing the same argument over and over again. 
And who really cares? 
Really. 
Just be who you are. 
There is no competition. 
And in the words of Baz Luhrmann
"Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind,
The race is long and in the end, it's only with yourself"


3 comments:

  1. Awesome post very thought provoking. I don't believe anyone 100% has it together anyway what would be the fun in that. Life is a journey and we ate meant to grow and learn if you knew everything there would be no point! :) I hope you keep doing your posts. Keep normalising imperfect parenting because there's no such thing as perfect! https://thecontentedfamilyprojectdotcom.wordpress.com/

    ReplyDelete
  2. Brilliant post, I love it! I do, however, dispute that there are any 100% perfect parents in this world at all. We all have the same struggles, and there may be some who are better at dealing with stuff that others. But 100% perfect? Hmmm...!
    http://and1moremakes3.weebly.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. We should all be boxless. Life isn't a competition and it's perfectly fine to hold your hands up and say, hey, today wasn't a good day. Does that mean you're judging, I think not. It reassuring to read that others out there have the normal struggles. It's not about being perfect it's about being good enough xx

    ReplyDelete