The Best Mothers Day Gift
This Mother’s Day, I want to be able to make decisions regarding my children without being judged. That’s all.
Recently I spoke to Sarah, a mom of 3 boys, and I wanted to find out more about how and why she uses a location monitor for her middle son. He is 10 years old with severe autism and, as a result of that, has a tendency to wander. She told me about how he had left their home on his bike without her knowing. Her story, which she retold in this video, is so emotional and heartbreaking. Unfortunately, people have questioned and judged her for not being vigilant or relying on technology instead of good parenting. My question is how is it anybody’s business how this mom (or any mom) chooses to raise their kids?
I’ve actually found that when I’m in parenting circles, I tend to either embellish or withhold information out of fear of being judged. I know I shouldn’t care what others think but well… I’m human. I’m a human who loves my kids more than anything in the world. And it’s a crazy love. It’s a, I-will-throat-punch-anyone-who-tries-to-hurt-them, kind of love. Everything I do, I do with their best interest in mind. But if I were to break it down, I’d say I spend 50% of my time thinking about my kids and what’s best for them; and then the other half questioning or feeling guilty about my decisions.
I know that has to do with the fact that I can jump on any social media or blog site and read about all the reasons why I should or shouldn’t do something. I’m all for advice (when I ask for it) or resources that help me make more informed decisions but I don’t want to be told that my kids are going to get listeriosis infection because I feed them cantaloupe. No parent does. So let’s throw it all on the table. There are at least 1,000 other decisions I make as a parent that I should be publicly shamed for. Here are some of my faves:
- I feed my kids white, gluten-filled bread. I think there are a ton of reasons why I shouldn’t do this - or feed them anything with gluten for that matter. I couldn’t really tell you what those reasons are and frankly, I don’t care. My kids are thriving, happy, and healthy. And they love bagels.
- I buy JIF peanut butter. Yes, the kind with added sugar. I’ve occasionally splurged on the all natural, sugar free, runny-oil-dumping-out-on-my-hand, peanut butter but my kids aren’t fans and again, I don’t care.
- My teenagers watch Game of Thrones. When I shared that we allow this I was met with, “ummm have you seen that show?” So shame on me for 1) not pre-watching what my kids watch and 2) giving them permission to watch extreme violence and softcore porn. Hey, it gives them an alternative to video games so I’m still looking at is as a win.
- I don’t insist that my kids wear coats in the winter. I’ve decided that I will no longer wrestle my kids into their winter coats and then wrestle them into their carseats - which apparently you shouldn’t do anymore anyway. Instead I bring the coats wherever we’re going. I love the looks I’ve gotten in parking lots as I hold two coats and my kids run from the car to the entrance. How dare I let them freeze to death. Funny thing is when my husband does this people look at him in the most endearing way like, “aww look at that dad doing the best he can trying to get 2 toddlers off to school.” Cue eye roll…
- I make empty threats. “Go to bed or I will sell your iPad!” Well that’s a lie because if there’s no iPad then getting anything done becomes impossible. I’m not saying that I never follow through with a consequence but, I admit that I throw out some doozies just to get what I want in the heat of the moment. I remember my mom threatening to call the orphanage and have them pick me up. I recall that working pretty well… I think I might try it.
That’s just to name a few. I’m sure I do much more that other parents would find horrifying. I also can’t stress enough how much I love my kids and how I’d do anything for them… except buy runny oily peanut butter.
This Mother’s Day, let’s support each other in the decisions we make for our kids. Let’s give ourselves permission to do what works best for our own families. We’d love to hear from other moms and dads about decisions you’ve made but feel judged for. I invite you to throw it out there and own it. What may not be acceptable for one family might be an absolute win for you.
To show how much we support you and your decisions, Jiobit is going to giveaway a free product to one of our followers. All you have to do is follow us, share our confessions or post your own, tag @jiobit and use the hashtag #realmomming. We’ll select a winner on Monday, May 13.