To Every Mom in the World: I’m Sorry for Judging You

I started this blog six years ago.

I was 25, unmarried, making $10 an hour and spending most of my paycheck on a combination of beer, coffee and clothes from Target (ironically, in just over half a decade, only about 1/3 of that equation has changed). My life looked markedly different, as it should have, and I wrote about things like why Julian Asange was a creep long before Wikileaks and what it must be like to be the kind of girl who feels the need to get Botox in her 20’s.

I wrote about different things, because my life was made up of different things.

But as I look back at all of the tangible changes that have taken place over these last six years: marriage, babies, graduate school, adoption, career changes, etc., I’m struck by fact that although much has changed, much more has stayed the same.

Like, the exact same.

For example…

1. I still wholeheartedly believe that jean shorts are a perfectly appropriate and acceptable wardrobe staple. And no, I don’t mean like the distressed denim shorts you overpay for at Urban Outfitters (where, I’d like to point out, I should definitely not be shopping anymore.) I’m talking about straight up, blue jean shorts with intact seams and butt flaps with snaps to cover the rear pockets. As a card-carrying 32-year-old mother, I should not be flitting around the aisles of Trader Joe’s like this, but I just can’t help myself.

2. To-this-day, I still do not have the mental capacity to retain exactly how a bill becomes a law. I’m sure that if someone simply began to whisper how it all goes down, a light switch would off and the information would come flooding out of my hippocampus, but until then, I will just have to vacantly nod along with chatter about the broken system of lobbyists and filibusters. For whatever reason, my adult brain refuses to catalog this information as pertinent and therefore exiles it somewhere in the great beyond, along with multiplying fractions and state capitals. Even if I start playing the School House Rock song in my head.

3. I am such a judgey-judger when it comes to other women. It’s terrible, because if you asked me if that was something I do, I would reply with an emphatic “Who? What? Me? NEVER!” But we went on a family trip to the aquarium yesterday and I judged the crap out of some other moms and grandmas (I judged GRANDMAS, you guys!) To check myself, I decided to go back and make a list of my judgements:

  • I judged like 60 different moms/grandmas for letting their children play on electronics, while walking through the aquarium. Meanwhile, back in our car – I totally let my 6-year-old play on our iPad while we drove the TWO HOURS home.
  • I judged a mom and dad for excessive hand-holding with their two kiddos. I held my kids’ hands whenever they slowed down enough to let me.
  • I judged a mom for letting her kids run all over an exhibit. My kids were running all over the exhibit.
  • I judged moms in heels, moms in flip-flops, moms with strollers, moms there with field trips, moms by themselves, moms with one kid, moms with multiple kids…

And then it hit me: You’re spending a lot of time looking at all these other moms and missing all of the fish. I was so busy comparing myself to these other moms, trying to make sure I was on my phone less, enjoying my children more – that I was missing everything!

Missing the fact that we are all made up of different things and different circumstances that allow us to parent the way that we do. Missing the fact that I am far from perfect and we’re all doing the best that we can. Missing the fact that every single one of these women had taken a day off from life, to spend time with their children, to look at some fish.

So, while somethings may never change about me: like the jean shorts thing or understanding what the hell is going on in Washington D.C., I am no longer that naive girl who didn’t understand how a critical eye cast by another woman can feel. I’m drawing a line in the sand to say the judgement stops here. And it stops now.

_______________________

Um. That’s the line.

26 Comments

  1. So eye opening! I think we are all guilty of this for sure mama!

    • You’re totally right. But hopefully we can all start to make little, positive changes <3 Thanks for reading!!!

  2. Girl yes! I don’t know how many times I say “I’d never judge” “don’t judge” and yet find myself internally judging. #momfail but acknowledging it and growing is all we can do! Way to go mama!!

    • Oh yeah. I have that SAME internal dialogue. I give myself SO much credit that I definitely haven’t earned, but you’re right – acknowledging it is a big step in the right direction!

  3. Oh, so true! You never know until you are there. I love your images!

  4. Your writing style cracks me up! I totally get where you’re coming from on the bill-becoming-a-law thing… There are so many bits of information that I really, truly do want to retain, but they just seem to keep getting crowded out by song lyrics and to-do lists!

    • hahah yes! Why can I remember ALL the lyrics to “No Scrubs”, but not a super simple pancake recipe!?!?!

  5. Yes! It’s so easy to fall into this trap! Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts. 🙂

  6. This is such a great post! I love how you own being a judgey judged. Unfortunately, I am too and I sometimes don’t even realize it! I think we all are too quick to judge others before looking at what we’re doing as well. Thanks for such an honest and open post.

    • Thank you for reading! It’s tough because we are all doing the very best job that we can at this whole “mom-ing” thing, so if someone is doing it differently, surely their way can’t be right TOO!?!?! If there’s one thing I’ve learned from motherhood, is that there is no one “right” way – but sometimes I forget to remember that 😉

  7. This is such a great reminder! We spent a little less time judging others we can appreciate more of what’s right in front of us

    • 100% – You are so right! If we focus on the good, there’s so much less room for our judgmental nature to creep in!

  8. Now that you have recognized how you judge women all the time this is a perfect time to change. That is the problem with women we judge way to much.

  9. Ugh I’m totally guilty of this too- can I stand on the line with you? No more internal judging…maybe if I did less of that my kids wouldn’t be running around aquariums ??

    • Haha yes! Please come join me on the line! Are you a “Friends” fan? All I could think of the I wrote this was Joey shouting at Chandler, “The line is like a dot to you!”

  10. I love your honesty and you crack me up! We have all been there and had similar thoughts! Thank you for sharing this though!

    Xo,
    Kristie

    • You are awesome. Thank you so much for reading! I’ve been really encouraged that I’m not the only one that struggles with this! I knew that “Mommy Wars” were a real thing, but I didn’t realize how much we ALL hate that we do it!

  11. Such an honest post! Love it!

    • Thank you so much! I had a post all ready to go and decided to write this instead. Felt like it was time to make a change 🙂

  12. Love this! So easy to get caught up in little judgements of each other without even realizing. xo

    • I’m so bad about this! Trying to get better. Sometimes I even reverse judge myself when I’m in the presence of a cool mom. So many issues to work out over here 😉

  13. Loved this post! I think we’re all guilty of being Judgy McJudgerson but this is a good reminder that we’re not perfect either!

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