Remember the birth announcement for Blue Ivy? It’s such a throwback now, but I remember it like it was yesterday–probably because I found it to be so offensive. Beyonce and Jay-Z’s publicist said: “She was delivered naturally at a healthy 7 lbs.”
Okay–so what exactly is an unnatural birth? One via C-section? One that involves an epidural?
I’d like to think Beyonce didn’t choose this particular phrasing to assert some kind of superiority, but let’s be honest: moms are judgy. We’ve all experienced some sort of guilt trip because we didn’t do something the “right” way. But at the end of the day, if your kid is happy and healthy, does it really matter if you had an epidural or only dressed him/her in organic clothes? Probably not.
So before your next playdate with the judgy mom on the block, read these 10 reminders and commit them to memory. Just because you didn’t _____, doesn’t mean you’re a bad mom.
1. Breastfeed until your kid was 5. Or at all. Yes doctors agree that breastfeeding is the best option, but it’s not the only option. So if, for whatever reason, you didn’t breastfeed your kid, don’t get down on yourself. It’s not like you were starving your baby, after all. And countless formula babies have grown up to be perfectly healthy, smart, contributing members of society.
2. Have a “natural” birth. The idea of someone else’s birth being more natural than someone else’s has always irked me. Why does it matter if I had an epidural or a C-section? The baby came from my body and that’s what’s natural.
3. Let my baby cry it out. My daughter is 3 and she still sleeps with me, so yeah, I wasn’t into that whole crying it out business. And just because she isn’t sleeping in her own bed, doesn’t mean she’s maladjusted or developmentally delayed. She’ll make it to her own bed when we’re ready, hopefully minus all those nights of crying.
4. Obey the “No TV before 2” rule. My daughter doesn’t watch a lot of TV, but she definitely knew who Dora the Explorer was before her second birthday. But she can also count to 100, write all of her letters and numbers, spell her name and recite her telephone number. And hey, she knows a ton of Spanish too and Dora gets all the credit for that.
5. Dress your baby organics exclusively. Because before organic cotton and bamboo became all the rage, babies were perfectly fine wearing just plain ol’ cotton.
6. Sign your kid up for every class at the YMCA. The way I see it, my daughter has her whole life to learn ballet and play the piano. Heck, if she wants to get into college her teenage life will be consumed by these activities. So for now, while she’s still so young, it’s perfectly fine by me to enjoy simple fun at the playground or around the house with her.
7. Quit your job to be a SAHM. Although it is easy to sometimes envy moms who don’t have to deal with the guilt of leaving their kids every day, it’s also pretty nice to have a built in break even if it is in the form of work. And that doesn’t make you a bad mom. It’s actually probably beneficial for your kid to see that moms sometimes have to work, too.
8. Start feeding my kid only the healthiest, most organic, free-range food out there. You know what? Your kid won’t instantly develop a laundry list of medical issues from eating McDonald’s or non-organic fruits and vegetables every once in a while. Trust me–I asked my pediatrician.
9. Stay in a relationship that made you unhappy. Sure, two parents under the same roof is ideal, but not if 1 or both of those parents is miserable. Simple as that.
10. Move to the ‘burbs. There are endless reasons why raising kids in the suburbs is better, but staying in the city has its advantages. Culture, diversity, no need for a car? Those are just a few reason your kid will be better for growing up in the city.
Have any others to add? What have you been judged about? Share in the comments.
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