Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Judgement

I was reading another blog recently talking about the judgement of new mothers.  And I will readily admit that I was guilty of being a little too judge-y myself, and probably still am to an extent.  I've definitely found that the roughly 3 months of motherhood I've already experienced have quickly changed my judge-y-ness though.  I am a lot slower to judge than I was before, and for that, I am glad.

But our society is just rife with it.  If you ever wonder why a pregnant woman or a new-mom seems a little on edge, perhaps a little overly defensive, it's because she is dealing with constant judgement.  From everyone, most likely including herself.

I have experienced The Judgement as both a pregnant woman and a new mom far more times than I'd care to recall, but one particular instance really rankled and has stuck with me for about 2 months now.  I was having lunch with a friend, who I am sure really means well.  But it still rankled.

We met for lunch, and I brought Wiggles along.  He was about 2 months old at the time.  This friend does not yet have children, but is starting to think about it and consequently has often asked me questions about pregnancy and parenting.  I am more than happy to share my experiences with her, and so we often discuss those two topics.  At this particular lunch, she asked if I'd had my follow up 6-week appointment with my doctor yet - because she knew I had some questions for the doctor about Wiggles' birth.  I told her I had and what I'd found out (not much! lame...) and then,

The Judgement.

She then asked me if the doctor had told me what I did or could do differently in pregnancy so that my next baby doesn't have reflux.

This is exactly  what I'm talking about.  A well-meaning friend still assumes that something wrong, something shy of perfect, some slight issue with a baby, must be the result of something that baby's mother did.  And it still kind of stings.  I mean...what if it was something I did?  Did I DO this to poor little Wiggles?  I mean...I know I didn't, and I told her as much and that if anything, it was likely genetic and not something preventable or a response to something specifically I did...but...gosh.

And I'm sure it's just the beginning.  This won't be the last time I'm accused for something I have no control over.  The joys of Motherhood, huh? :)


  1. I know your friend is going to think back to her comment someday and really regret what she said. It takes awhile before new Moms realize just how individualized and heart-wrenching each and every decision made by a parent can be (plus, our ability to second guess them).

    I get "the judgement" a lot from my mother-in-law who loves to tell me what it was like with her two children. I always take it as a slight against my mothering. Perhaps she doesn't mean it that way, but it was difficult to be around her for a long time after my son was born.

    The fact that one comment can leave you feeling this way just shows that you are a great mom who is seriously thinking through everything! Good job. :)

  2. aww, thanks! :)

    Maybe your MIL is just trying to relate to you by recalling the time in her life she was at the same stage you're at now? Or she might be judging you...it's kind of in the MIL job description. ;-)


About this Blog

I have a journal. You know, the real kind...paper, bound in a book form...nice leather cover. And I do write in it...every few months. I like it, but somehow I find it hard to keep up regularly. I'm at a computer nearly all the time, so I find it easier to keep up on this blog. So, that's what this blog is for. To help me journal when I'm away from my journal. A place to collect my thoughts before I lose them to the chaos of my mind.

Or see my first post here. That's why I started this blog.