Do you ever feel like you are behind on topics other mommies know all about? Feel like the only frumpy mom at carpool? Do you feel like every time you get together with friends they are always telling you what you should be doing and what you shouldn’t? Is there such thing as a mommy bully?
Yep — it exists.
I had my daughter in my early twenties when most of my friends were spending all their hard earned money on clothes and going out to the latest club. I was determined to give my baby every opportunity I could. I started involving my daughter in every activity I heard about hoping to find new friends that were like-minded. Instead, I found that no one was my age, or even remotely close to it. I was the young, pretty mommy that had a baby at "Gasp! How old were you? Oh,how brave!"
Once the other mommies got over the initial shock of how young I was, they couldn’t get over how I was raising my baby as a single mom. They would tell me what I should do more of, less of, how to do it, when to do it; and most importantly, why it was better than how I was doing it. I absorbed it all and left the mommy play-dates feeling low and confused about motherhood.
I thought motherhood was a higher level of sisterhood. A sisterhood that was full of support, not criticism. And as I have matured and experienced "life" as a woman and a mother, I have learned plenty about the "mommy bullies." Here are some suggestions to keep in mind the next time you feel like you are under fire:
All of us mommies are trying to do the best that we can raising our babies to be amazing individuals.
There is always going to be a subject about parenting that we don’t know about. Stay humble and try not to feel so frazzled. Chances are when another mommy makes it seem like they know everything about mommyhood, they are really totally insecure about whether they’re doing a good enough job.
When you feel like you are getting ganged up on, walk away. Stay strong to what you believe in and trust that you know what is best for your family.
Do more research. I have learned the most by listening to what topics other mommies speak about and then going home and researching for myself. Come to find out what one mommy claims is the most amazing preschool, really might not be what you think is amazing!
You might have to go a little bit out of your way to stay in touch, but when you connect with another mommy don’t lose track of them. Be outgoing and schedule more playdates individually.
If you ever feel like a fellow mommy is going beyond a boundary you never want crossed… Speak Up! Stand up for yourself regardless of what they might look like, what kind of money they have, if they have more kids, if they are older than you.
Just like our kids, as time goes by we end up learning everything we need to know through experience. Trust your individual process and don’t focus on what may seem like your shortcomings. Someone else would view them as your strengths that they lack!
No mommy is the best mommy in the entire world. EVERY mommy is the best mommy that they could ever be to THEIR own kids.
Have you ever dealt with a mommy bully?