I used to constantly worry about what other people say or think about me, especially other moms. It got so bad, that I started avoiding events or gatherings where I would need to interact with other mothers, or woman. And on the odd occasion where it couldn’t be avoided, I fretted and worried, wanting everything and everyone to be perfect … which made it stressful and unpleasant for all of us.
Until one day … one fateful, baby-hadn’t-slept-so-I-felt-like-crap-and-probably-looked-worse day; My son had a rugby match, which wasn’t going to wait for me or baby to get our s***t together, and I had to choose between missing the match because everything wasn’t perfect, or sucking it up, and being there for my son.
A lot of sucking was done … and I went.
And you know what, no one cared what I looked like … or at least, I didn’t care if they cared, and it was the best damn day ever!
And that’s when I realised that the amount of pressure we put on ourselves and families to be perfect, is ridiculous … and it just sucks the joy out of every occasion quote frankly. So, no more! Never again will I turn myself into a twitching, freak-out mode mom because I’m worried about what others might say about me or my kids … and here are 7 damn good reasons why you shouldn’t either.
1. They don’t know me!
I see you over there, looking all perfectly put together with your styled hair and flawless make-up, raising a brow in my direction … and you know what, I don’t care! Because you don’t know me! And you don’t know a damn thing about me or my life … or that I have sick one year old, who has been battling with a fever straight through the night. You don’t know that I probably haven’t slept in almost 4 days. And you definitely don’t know that the fact that I’m here, picking up my son, without any baby vomit on my clothes, and even wearing a bit of make-up, is a big win for me this week!
So, cast your raised brow somewhere else, judgy mom … I don’t care what you think anymore.
2. Other people (moms) have baggage and issues too
“Sometimes we’re just collateral damage in someone else’s war.”
We’ve all heard the saying, but the truth of it will only really hit you one day, when you’ve been deeply hurt by an attack, in a war that didn’t really have anything to do with you.
People are strange, fickle creatures, and we tend to project our own insecurities and fears onto other people; criticizing or judging them, mostly unfairly and without any real wrong doing from their side. It is a bad habit, a habit that is costing you ‘possible’ mom friends, instead of actually making yourself feel better.
3. My kids! My house! My life!
Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, as are you. But don’t let other mom’s opinions make you anxious or consider doing things differently.
At the end of the day, you are responsible for raising your kids, and no other mom’s opinion is going to change that fact. So why worry about what they think when it’s easy to judge from the outside.
Your morals and values are what define you, not other people’s opinion of you!
We all have ‘bad mom’ days, but they don’t make you a bad mom! Not by any means! They make you human. And your kids don’t need the perfect mom, they just need you, doing your best, and being their mom.
So, don’t let a few bad days, or a few shitty, warped, probably issue-loaded opinions of someone who doesn’t matter, let you doubt yourself or your worth as a mother.
Just keep on swimming Mommy. You’re awesome!
4. It’s exhausting!
You’re a mom! And I bet you have a list from here to Neverland of important things you need to get done and worry about. What other mothers might, or might not be saying about you, should be the least of those worries!
Aint’ nobody got time for that!
Constantly worrying about how others perceive you, will drain the last bit of energy you have to spare, faster than you can say home-cooked-meal. So why waste it?
I’d much rather spend that energy on something fun … like drinking wine … with other mom friends … a lot. Because you have kids … ?
5. It holds you back! No kidding!
It can be a heavy burden, carrying around the weight of other people’s thoughts. It can prevent you from being YOU! And living your life! Because everything you are, and everything you do, is controlled by what you think other people want to see. You become so afraid of other mothers talking about you, judging you, that you lose yourself, and you stop doing the things that make you unique. Or worse, you stop taking risks, or trying anything new, for fear of being socially ridiculed or, even worse, a social outcast. It could be a high price to pay at the end of the day … and for what? For a few mom’s approval? Bah! I say ‘chuck’ it!
What’s the worst that can happen? They don’t like you? Oh boohoo … Will knowing that make you change who you are? Your answer should be a strong, hard NO! You were not given this life to please or be pleased by everyone. Nothing is worth giving up what makes you special!
6. Woman change their minds! … All. The. Time.
My baby girl loved butternut last week … but refuses to eat it this week! My teenage son thought I was awesome a few years ago, now he just thinks I’m annoying. See where I’m going with this?
We constantly change our minds and opinions; from small everyday things, to huge, life-changing, the-earth-is-round and there-are-13-planets kind of things. Which means, that even if someone thinks badly of you right now, chances are they will change their mind at some point in the future, and vice versa.
So basically, thoughts and opinions don’t matter … because they change constantly.
So please stop caring so much about them.
7. The ugly truth : You will NEVER be liked by everyone!
You will never be able to please everyone, ever, in your entire life! … You are not red wine! ? kidding … sort of. But seriously, there are hundreds of moms around you, each one of them different. And no matter how hard you try, or how much you worry, there will always be some who do not like you. And that is FINE! Really it is! Because, if you were honest with yourself, you don’t like all of them! That is why we get to pick our friends and choose the people we want as part of our inner circle. And those people, the ones who know you, the ones who love and support you, they are ones who matter. Period.
You only have this one life, with these kids … LIVE IT!
And anyone who has a problem with the way you choose to do that, can kiss your I-don’t-care-I’m-not-here-to-please-you ass!
PS … the next time you find yourself being a judgy b…. mom … STOP! Not only does it say a lot more about you, and the type of person you are, then it ever will about the person you’re judging, it’s a little classless and childish.
You don’t know what battles that mom might be fighting, or losing … so smile. A smile from you might just be the life line she needs today, to give her the courage to try again tomorrow.