11 Times I've Judged Other Moms & Why It's Important I Admit It

Ad failed to load

I sometimes wonder if anyone has ever done a sociological study on the most judgmental groups of people in our society. Surely mothers would be somewhere near the top of the list. It isn't an inherent thing, of course, but there's something about the way society treats moms that encourages unhealthy competition. Sanctimony replaces understanding and, before you know it, you're writing an article about all the times you've judged other moms and why you should admit it.

In retrospect I must admit that my judgement of mothers started way before I ever became a mother myself. The first mom I judged was, of course, my own. Then I started looking around and judging my friends' moms. Eventually I started meeting moms close to my age and the judgements grew harsher. I wouldn't say anything about it to others, but I definitely had some fairly negative opinions of, and biased assumptions about, these folks who had chosen to keep the species going.

So why all the judgement? I can't honestly give any one specific answer, except that it must be something learned and reinforced by a culture that expects all mothers to be "perfect." So perhaps the best way to begin advocating for and supporting all mothers is by recognizing all the times I've judged them, so that I might better understand then instead.

Ad failed to load

When My Friend Told Me She Was Taking Her Newborn To The Movies

My first reaction was, “You're going to hurt your baby’s ear drums!” Followed by, “All the other people there will hate you!” Then I realized it's not my call where someone takes their baby. And you know what? My friend's baby never even woke up from his nap, and she gave him tiny ear plugs.

When A Mom Is Overprotective

Giphy

My mother was (and still is, really) an overprotective parent. If anyone could find a reason why an activity could be deemed dangerous or scary or inappropriate, it was her. I used to hate it. I still kind of do, but after losing my daughter and nearly losing my son, I totally get why you would want to protect your babies from all harm and at any cost. I still try to find a balance between overprotective and ultra hands off, though, for my son’s sake.

When I Met “The Cool Mom”

Giphy

This judgment reared its ugly head prior to me becoming a mom. I used to have this antiquated notion that you had to change your wardrobe and haircut (and everything else) once you became a mom. Moms didn't dye their hair purple or get tattoos or go dancing or wear knee-high boots, right?

Now I know this is all totally bogus. We can all be cool moms if we very well feel like it.

Ad failed to load

When A Mom Won't Get Off Her Phone

Giphy

I won't lie, this still upsets me at times. I go to story time and the playground pretty regularly, and will frequently find a mom (or dad) who is completely focused on their phone while their child runs rampant. Aren't they scared someone will steal their kid? What if their little one gets hurt? Then again, I check my own phone occasionally so who the hell am I to judge?

When A Mom Is First To Drop Off & Last To Pick Up At Daycare

Giphy

Also known as Moms Who Appear To Prefer Their Career Over Their Child, Part 1. I always just felt bad for these kids. Wouldn't they develop some abandonment issues? Yeah, I've been judgmental as heck.

Maybe they just need to work. Maybe they want to show their kids what it’s like to work hard and be financially independent. Whatever, who cares?

When A Mom Goes Back To Work Directly After She Has A Baby

Giphy

Also known as Moms Who Appear To Prefer Their Career Over Their Child, Part 2. Except I don't know people's finances. I do recognize that maternity leave here sucks and that many folks depend on two incomes to remain afloat. This could very well be less of a choice and more of a horrible necessity, that puts the mom in danger.

Either way and even if it is a decision the mom makes for herself, why should I judge someone for this?

Ad failed to load

When A Mom Can't Stop Talking About Her Kid

Giphy

I know we're all proud of our babies and we all love our babies. However, it can get tiresome to only ever hear about how cute and wonderful and smart your babies are. That said, I don't know what every parent has been through. Some struggled for years with infertility or child loss. For some, finally having a baby is a much bigger deal than you might think.

When A Mom Says She’s Not Planning On Vaccinating Her Kids

Giphy

When I was pregnant with my son, I got involved with a group of very crunchy moms and doulas, many of which were constantly talking about the negatives of vaccines. And with all my Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from my first loss fresh in my mind, I actually almost considered not vaccinating my son, too.

While I do agree that pharmaceutical companies have plenty to gain from the administering of medications in general (because all companies want to sell their products and that’s nothing new), I do not agree that vaccines are horrible, terrible things. I never thought they caused autism (still don’t, because they don't), and I much prefer having a child vaccinated against things like polio and mumps and measles instead of avoiding shots and gambling with their health.

All that said, I know what it’s like to be terrified of everything, to the pint that you're afraid things that should be good for your child might actually turn out to be bad. Simply belittling and berating an anti-vaccine parent is not the right way to go about spreading factual, necessary, and important information. Instead, start a productive conversation. Provide them with good resources on why vaccines are so important and why they can help protect their children. This is an extremely important and delicate situation. Treat it as such.

When I’ve Seen A Mom Totally Losing Her Sh*t On Her Kid

Giphy

I’m not talking about spanking or hitting (which I am vehemently against). I'm talking about when a kid is trying to get their mom’s attention and the mom is just visibly worn out and, as a result, maybe shouts a little too loudly at her kid. I used to tell myself I’d never do such a thing, but sometimes you’re exhausted and you've been through some sh*t and you just can't. Plus, as moms and human beings, we're not perfect.

So yeah, it happens, and I don’t judge quite as harshly anymore.

Ad failed to load

When A Mom Gives Her Kid Junk Food

Giphy

OK, sometimes I side-eye the moms I see giving their kids lollipops and gummy bears and cupcakes to their kid the entire time we’re hanging out. Then again, I think I’ve just lucked out to have a kid who doesn’t really enjoy sweet treats as much as he enjoys savory ones. Plus, I grew up eating Doritos and Little Debbie Cakes. Why the hell should I judge? I don’t know what their kid eats the rest of the time. Ain’t my business either anyway.

When A Mom Walks Away From Her Family

Giphy

This is tough, but it’s a real thing. Just like some dads don’t stick around, some moms also can’t stick around to raise their kids, too. Yes, it may appear entirely selfish (and hell, it could be to some extent). However, you don’t know what’s going on in that person’s mind, or how they even became a mother in the first place. Maybe they suffer from extreme mental health issues that prevent them from being a safe and loving parent. Maybe they’ve experienced abuse, or were forced into giving birth when they really did not want to. The most important thing is that children are raised by people who love and care for them. If a parent, even a mom, cannot provide a safe and loving home, it’s best for everyone that they are not present.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

8 Things That *Will* Go Wrong Every Time You Plan A Kid-Free Night

The last time my husband and I went out to dinner alone was… actually, I can’t remember. But I can count on one hand how many times I’ve seen a movie in a theater in the last year. Before we had children we used to go out all the time. But even with …
By Liza Wyles

These Photos Of North West Then & Now Will Take You On A Sweet Trip Down Memory Lane

When Kim Kardashian welcomed her first daughter, North West, with her husband, Kanye West, in 2013, her whole life was changed. The social media and reality TV star became a mom for the first time and her Instagram presence took a very adorable turn.…
By Casey Suglia

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

This Is What It Means If Your Pregnancy Test Changes Overnight

The time between when a woman suspects she might be pregnant and when it is confirmed for sure is the longest of her life. Regardless of whether you are hoping for a positive or a negative result, the odds are good that you are sweating bullets when …
By Shannon Evans

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

This Woman Thought She Had An Eyelash Stuck In Her Eye. Then It Moved.

I'm not a person who is easily icked out. As a kid, I collected bugs and thought I was going to be an entomologist and asked Santa Claus for ant farms and nets to catch bees. I'm still super curious about anything that flies and crawls, which might s…
By Karen Fratti

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

11 Ways Your Pregnancy Will Be Different If You Have A Boy Vs A Girl

If you've been pregnant before, you might start comparing your previous pregnancies to that of your current pregnancy. A lot of things can change from pregnancy to pregnancy, based on a whole host of different factors (including how well you remember…
By Lauren Schumacker

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

12 Moms Share How They Stay Healthy During Flu Season

Unfortunately, we're in the middle of the roughest flu seasons in recent memory. And we’re not totally out of the woods, either. People around the country are still getting the flu, and, sadly, some of them are having to be hospitalized due to flu-re…
By Priscilla Blossom

8 "Mistakes" I'm Glad I Made During My First Pregnancy

As an adult, I've learned you never really stop hating being told what to do. When I was pregnant I was getting instructions at every turn, from doctors, relatives, and complete strangers on the subway. I would nod and smile but then go about making …
By Liza Wyles

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack