Here’s a pro tip – Stop Mothering My Child!
One would think that this would be fairly easy to understand. Not your kid, not your say. But you know what? The world is full of people who are better at parenting your child, than you! Who would’ve thought? But here’s a new flash – my kid’s mother, has a name, her name is ME! So unless we happen to share that name – I suggest you keep your comments to yourself.
I hear it more and more how mothers, mother-in-laws, grandparents, siblings, random strangers in public, all seem to know better than the child’s actual mother. Well sorry busybodies of the world – you’re WRONG!
We “millennial” mothers have it hard enough as it is today trying to fend off the stereotype of “lazy millennial”. Incase you were wondering – being a mother is NOT for the lazy.
We hear constant criticism that millennial moms do this and do that, and don’t do this and don’t do that. Yet, the two we hear the most is that we are ungrateful for what we have, and that we are lazy. Well my friend said it best, “You raised the kids you’re complaining about. Deal with it.”
Yes we do things differently, but you did things differently from your own mother. We have grown in our parenthood journey with knowledge you didn’t have available. No, we aren’t overly protective because we enforce car seat safety. Even if your kids, “survived just fine.”
Do you want a trophy now?
Last time I checked, your generation survived while mothers were drinking and smoking throughout pregnancy, doesn’t mean we should do that either.
Reality check – survival is not a metric for how well one did. But guess what, THAT’S OK! Why you may ask? Because you did the best you could do with the information you had. So please STOP judging us “millennial” mothers for using the information we have.
If we modern-day moms are a little less up our kids butt at the park, or anywhere else for that matter, it’s because we know their abilities, we know what they are capable of, and we know that they will benefit more from not having us hover over them. We allow them to explore the world they live in within safe boundaries.
We are not neglectful. We are not ignorant to legitimate dangers, and no it does not make us lazy! A child psychologist once told me, one of the greatest things we can do for our children is to allow them to grow through INDEPENDENT play. It allows them to make mistakes, see exactly what they can and can’t do, and problem solve when needed. If you rob a child of those experiences and always step in, guess what you’re encouraging? You’re encouraging a generation of ,”lazy, helpless adults, that can’t do anything for themselves.” Sound familiar?
I (let me repeat, I) as my child’s mother, know what my child can and cannot do. I know where the boundaries are for him or her and I enforce them when necessary. But I will not build them a bubble. I will not be their safety net. I will not intervene when they’re having a tougher time figuring out a problem, when I know if they just stop and think they will soon figure it out, and learn something. What I will do, is watch my child explore the world around them. I will watch the proud expression on their face when they conquer a new skill. I will cheer them on when they have a new victory, and I will kiss their booboo and wipe the tears from their face when they get hurt. I will be their mother!
It is my job, not yours.
If a mother is around her child, assume she’s paying attention as any good mother would be. Yes we get distracted, but somehow even in those moments our child survives. (Funny how that metric is suddenly applicable.)
It’s amazing that our kids can function without these extra “mothers” around to step in when they feel their real mothers are not adequate.
I don’t care if you’re, my mother, my mother-in-law, my best friend, or a random on the street, if I’m around, I got it. Thanks, but no thanks! Keep your comments to yourself. There is a time and place to voice possible concern and it is not while I am mothering.
So to recap for those that might need a refresher course.
1. My child has a mother, you are not her
2. Millennial mothers are not lazy – we are different – the same way you were different from your own mother
3. If a child’s mother is around, keep your comments and urge to mother, to. your.self.
You raised your child, so let us raise ours.
Edited to add: This is not in reference to the Good Samaritan who may stop a child from walking into the steeet, or any other truly dangerous situation. This is purely speaking to cases where the child’s mother is actively parenting, and another person feels it appropriate or necessary to mother along with them. As I said above, advice is appreciated at the right time, it isn’t in the middle of parenting.