Several weeks ago, new celebrity parents went out for supper without their one week old baby. A date, if you will. How lovely! But no, it was pretty much the Meal Heard Round The World. The backlash from the couple going out was intense. But the father wasn’t even mentioned in the negative barrage! The sole recipient of the shame was the mom, called a terrible and selfish mother for going out to eat while having a newborn at home.
Seriously, mommy’s got to eat. I would’ve given my left arm to go out for supper when my son was a week old!! A chance to feel like a normal person again after having given birth, even if only for an hour or two? Sign me up! Why was the mom subject to such vilification, and not the father?
Related: Stop Mom-on-Mom Bullying!
The mommy shaming epidemic is getting out of hand
I’ll tell you why: Mommy Shaming. It’s like the pack of cool kids just outside the high school entrance you had to walk past every morning. They leer and sneer and judge and talk about everyone else because they can. It’s mom versus mom and it’s a frigging minefield out there – and with all of us constantly connected with our phones, it’s getting worse!
From the moment a woman announces her pregnancy, the shaming begins: “She’s drinking coffee! She’s not exercising enough! She’s exercising too much! She dyed her hair!”. And on and on it goes. Really?
Once the baby is born, the shaming continues: “She’s formula feeding! She’s breastfeeding! She’s letting her baby cry it out! She’s sleep training! She’s co-sleeping! She’s using disposable diapers! She went out to eat at a restaurant without her newborn!”. etc., etc., etc. Again: Really? Call me a superstar for managing to both entertain my son and get a hot meal on the table! I managed to get both myself and my son dressed today, I deserve a medal! A really big shiny one!
So, instead of mothers putting each other down, let’s support one another, and befriend each other and strive towards a feeling of camaraderie. It will make the hardest job in the world a smidgen easier, I promise you. Let’s refuse to judge and bully and talk behind one another’s backs. Instead, let’s remember to be kind. It’s so basic, but it just might work. And unless you have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.
How do you think we can put an end to mommy shaming? Tell us your thoughts and ideas for supporting each other in the comments.