Thursday, December 15, 2011

judging you, judging me

This morning started with a fight.  Well, not really a fight -  more like a pissing contest.  On email.  Between a handful of moms I've never met.  Exposed to the 500+ other mothers who are part of a yahoo group about parenting in our town.

Some poor mom had posted a query about an accident that had happened which jeopardized the well-being of her infant but caused a minor injury to her brand-new uninsured care-giver.  She was looking for advice.  She got wrath, judgement - and apparently a threat or two - instead.

It carried on back and forth in my in-box and I found myself increasingly sucked in.  I know better than to engage the crazies - but they were polluting my otherwise very helpful little group and ganging up unfairly on this mom.  If online communities largely self-police, I felt I was being drafted.  In the end, I couldn't resist a short and carefully worded note on the importance of reserving judgement and creating a safe environment for us all to figure out how to raise our children the best way we can.  One of the pot-stirrers shot back a final snark.  I ignored it, the thread died, but the turkey got me down.

Then, I saw this, an opinion piece in the New York Times - yes, the New York Times, about moms who buy fancy cake pops for bake sales just to show off.  Really?  WHO CARES?  Who cares if she bakes, buys, or blows it off?  Who has time to analyze motives?   WHO CARES?

I suppose we all have a little sanctimommy in us.  One was definitely born in me with my first child - I probably spent half of my first maternity leave on urbanbaby telling everyone what was what.  And then I spent the next six years learning that parenthood is a humbling endeavour and a whole bunch of things I swore I'd never do/think/feel happened and taught me that judging too soon is a new mom's folly.

Or so I thought.  Perhaps I judged too soon.

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