Jan 16

Judge not (especially not other breeders)

Comments (18) by Dusty Earth Mother January 16, 2013 - 7:01 AM

I work at being as non-judgmental as possible, particularly of other women who have pushed a Thanksgiving turkey-sized human out of a portal in their body only large enough for a parakeet. But when that kid in my son's kindergarten class walked in with the homemade project that looked as if it had been constructed by Martha Stewart on a particularly strong dose of steroids, I felt myself getting a little bit of a ‘tude.

In fact, I was so steamed, I was ready to run home and write a scathing article about parents who do their children's homework for them. Who was this mother who was trying to pass off the exquisitely decoupaged Lenape Indian village as her 6-year-old daughter's work? In the two minutes it took for the class to line up, I had already decided that the dame was probably also a pre-masticator, a butt-wiper and a socks put-er on-er.

I'm quite sure that none of this vitriol stemmed from my comparing her glorious creation to the lopsided and unrecognizable mass that my own offspring was lugging into class. Ahem.

Soon afterward, I invited the mom and her daughter over for a playdate in an attempt to get to know the real person as opposed to the one I had created and crucified in my head. And as you may have guessed, she didn't pre-chew her kid's Goldfish or accompany her to the toilet. In fact, she was lovely. A visual artist, which accounted for the hyper-fabulous diorama, she was also quite self-aware. At one point when talking about her relationship with her own mother, she said "I'm probably too involved in my kids' lives, but my mom was never around. She wasn't interested in our activities or our schoolwork. I was pretty much raised by our housekeeper. So I know I overcompensate."

Well, after that she could have put her daughter's socks on with her teeth and I still would have given her a hug.

This is not about right or wrong, or whether I think parents should be heating up their glue guns to do their kids' school projects. This is about me thinking that I know what's going on with that mom who wears her pajamas to school drop-off, or the one who looks like she would scratch my eyes out with her NailArt, or the super skinny one with the gray teeth, or even the mom with the giant tattoos of her twins on her back, one on each shoulder blade.

I don't.

So unless I'm willing to put in the time and care to find out what's really going on, I'm not going to put in the time for critical thoughts, sideways glances and judgment.

We breeders need to have each other's backs, regardless of whether that back is covered in a hand-knitted organic wool poncho, a moisture wicking tennis outfit, or a technicolor tatt.
by Dusty Earth Mother January 16, 2013 - 7:01 AM

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Comments (18)

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  • Report Sun Jan 20, 2013 - 9:04 pm
    Perfect. Really and truly. Moms needs each other and like cartons of eggs, sure, there are a few duds every once in a great while, but, for the most part, we make an amazing omelet. And, with this, I part. Hitting my quota for egg analogies.
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 1:08 am
  • Report Mon Jan 21, 2013 - 1:08 am
    @Bethany @ Bad Parenting Moments: There are never enough egg analogies, Bethany. xxoo
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  • Report Sun Jan 20, 2013 - 9:42 am
    How can I not love this? I used to be the mom that was late to school every single g.d. day. My kids had dirty nails and holes in their clothes. I looked like hell most of the time at drop off. I have an illness that severely affects my energy stores and how I can function. I choose to prioritize my kids feeling happy and loved and living in a calm house over stressing about getting out the door on time and looking "put together". As I come out of that dark hell, I know to not ever judge a mom and to always ask how I can help if that seems appropriate and to always compliment if that seems helpful (it always is). Thanks so much for writing this.
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Mon Jan 21, 2013 at 1:08 am
  • Report Mon Jan 21, 2013 - 1:08 am
    @MILF Runner: I love that you were able to prioritize the right thing. You sound like a very brave woman and I send you non-judgmental kisses and hugs :-)
    Reply Delete
  • Report Thu Jan 17, 2013 - 9:36 pm
    by  Lisa
    You are so right. We all have to make an effort every day not to judge others, especially moms, because we don't know their circumstances. I'm one that gets judged unfairly by others because I actually love to cook and bake from scratch - it's like stress relief for me. I brought home baked cookies into a school event and actually heard one mom say to another, "looks like SOMEONE has too much time on her hands." (When did baking from scratch had become a criminal activity?) So yeah, I get it. Sorry about the long comment.
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 10:20 pm
  • Report Thu Jan 17, 2013 - 10:20 pm
    @Lisa: Yes! I feel for you, Lisa. Once I was in the hospital with my son and he loved the alphabet, so I cut out the letters for him from paper towels. A nurse came in and literally said to me "Someone needs to get a life." Horrifying, right? And yet, I had to try not to judge HER. Who knows what she was going through at home to make such an acidic comment. And if she was just being mean... well... my feeling always is that people who just choose to be mean and petty are lying in the bed they've made and it's not a comfortable one, so I pity them. Oy, long comment myself :-)
    Reply Delete
  • Report Thu Jan 17, 2013 - 8:45 pm
    LOVE. THIS. POST. As women we always are so quick to judge others in this fashion(why is that, anyway?). *off to share*
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 9:26 pm
  • Report Thu Jan 17, 2013 - 9:26 pm
    @Jen Hollywood-Showell: Thanks, Jen Hollywood! Great name. But I'm not judging you or anything :-) xxoo
    Reply Delete
  • Report Thu Jan 17, 2013 - 10:30 am
    by  Amy
    I love this! Major kudos to you for taking the time to undo a prejudge. And good for her to be so self aware. I don't want everyone to be just like me (how boring), but I do want to be able to understand and appreciate the differences.
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Thu Jan 17, 2013 at 6:12 pm
  • Report Thu Jan 17, 2013 - 6:12 pm
    @Amy: Thanks, Amy. To be honest, I had to pray a lot and gird my loins so that I wouldn't be a jerk and keep thinking the way I that I was :-)
    Reply Delete
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 8:44 pm
    Excellent points. The mom community does need to be a little more chill.
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 9:11 pm
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 9:11 pm
    @One Funny Motha: Chill is the word. I really do make a daily decision to chill on my own damning thoughts. xo
    Reply Delete
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 8:34 pm
    by  lhewitt
    I love this and want to see the beautifully decoupaged village. (Total coke spit at paragraph two.)
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 9:09 pm
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 9:09 pm
    @lhewitt: I think I may have pictures. Oh, no, wait, only mental photographs. :-)
    Reply Delete
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 6:28 pm
    I remember the whispers about 'neglect' when my kids were very small, because they dressed in whatever they had and spent a lot of time in the fenced in back yard. This was when I was in the midst of a 2 year long mental breakdown, and I was doing the best I could to keep them fed and alive. No one bothered to ask, or help. They just pointed and made catty comments.
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 9:08 pm
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 9:08 pm
    @rootietoot: That just breaks my heart. I would have invited you over!
    Reply Delete
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 4:18 pm
    Beautiful messages in here and laugh out loud funny in places too! Thank you :)
    Reply Delete
  • 1 reply, Last reply by Dusty Earth Mother on Wed Jan 16, 2013 at 9:08 pm
  • Report Wed Jan 16, 2013 - 9:08 pm
    @Dee Kirkby: Thanks, Dee. xxoo
    Reply Delete

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