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It’s Parenting, Not a Contest

mommywars-585Have you guys seen this video? I’ll say up front that it’s an advertising campaign for formula (more on that in a minute!), but I think it has a great message that no matter what your parenting choices are, we’re all doing what we think is best for our kids.

Can’t see the video? Click here to see the ridiculousness of the mommy wars.

First, I love how it brings the mommy wars to the playground. Showing women of all “decisions” — breastfeeding, formula-feeding, working and stay-at-home-moms and even dads — about to throw down on the playground shows you just how ridiculous it is to judge other parents and fight about these things. Second, I love that the runaway stroller brings the focus back to the kids. It puts a fine point on what really matters: that it’s not about wearing babies or how we feed babies or how much time we spend with and away from our babies, but that they are fundamentally loved and cared for.

The funny thing is, I’ve never seen these mommy wars in person. But online? These wars are rampant and vicious. I saw this video posted on a blog and the comments on the post were battling it out — some sticking up for formula, some demonizing it. Most of them judging other moms. It’s just ridiculous and bitchy and unnecessary and Mean Girls. I don’t know why we think it’s okay to demonize any style of parenting over another. If I had to guess, I’d say this judgment comes from our own insecurities about our own parenting decisions and wondering if we’re doing it right. Newsflash: We’re not. NONE OF US ARE.

Maybe my problem with The Wars is that it puts all parents and women in little boxes. But what about those who don’t fit? Sure, I breastfeed. But I’ve also used formula when I had to, and I’m not going to make any mom feel bad for using formula. If I talk about breastfeeding it’s because it’s what I know, not judgment for others’ choices. I stay at home with my kids most days. But I also send them to daycare so I can work. I wear my baby. But I also use a stroller. I celebrate when my baby sleeps 12 hours in her crib. But I bring her into bed with me when she wakes in the night and I’m tired. I certainly don’t fit into a specific mommy box, and I’m guessing that many, many other moms don’t either. My hope is that we’re all secure enough in our own parenting choices that we don’t have to pick on other parents for theirs.

Have you experienced the mommy wars and judgment for your choices as a parent? —Erin

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