If ever the question of true selfless love in this world is raised, then the relationship between a mother and her child is the best answer to it. No doubt, every mother will go to any length to make sure she provides the best for her baby and ensure that her baby is happy and healthy.
There is ever rarely such a thing as a mean mother, mean father or ill meaning parents for that matter.
Yet, when we enter this beautiful world of being parents, just like in your corporate or social circle, we are not spared of criticism. People are quick to notice the dirty diaper on your two year old, but conveniently overlook the dark circles under your eyes. They are quick to notice the second chocolate your child eats, despite the fact that he/she had just been fed a full nutritious meal. Well, we all get chocolate cravings and children are no different.
And so, while in the real world we have the Moral Police, I call these well wishers our very own Mommy Police. The prime objective of the Mommy Police is to put you on this major guilt trip of how you could improve your parenting skills. In her frame of reference, you are never doing your best.
We are all familiar with this kind of Mommy Policing, but very rarely do we say anything against it. So here is a list of instances where the Mommy Police say all these mean things and what the voice in our head would like to say:
“Why are you giving her the bottle? Breast milk is best for her.”
“I don’t think there is any mother in this world who doesn’t know that. But thank you anyway. Now shall I continue feeding my baby the best way I know how?”
“You should not give her the pacifier, she will get crooked teeth.”
“Had you been in my place, trying to pacify my little one since the past 2 hours, you would have done the same. My baby is at peace, isn’t that more important?”
“Oh, she is 15 months old, and still not walking?”
“Aren’t you glad to see him in my arms a bit longer? Besides I have yet to come across a 2 year old not walking. And when he does start walking, I will be sure to send him to your place then.”
“Why is she so thin, don’t you feed her?”
“Actually I don’t feed my child. In fact, I eat her and my husband’s share of food too.”
“Aren’t you going to have another one? You must have another one”
“Of course I will have one more ice-cream. Oh sorry, you meant the baby? Why don’t YOU have another one, instead of me?”
“He is two now, you should get him off the diaper.”
“Ever notice the bags under my eyes? Okay, then you don’t have the right to notice the bags under his pants too.”
“Why are you feeding Maggi to her? I am a working mother yet I make fresh meals.”
“Can I send her to your place to eat then? Honestly, this one time in months that I give her Maggi and you happen to come visit me. Where were you when she was eating daal, sabzi, roti, chawal all these days?”
“You still feed her? She is old enough to eat on her own.”
“Again, can I send her to your place to eat then? I like feeding her sometimes, even though she is old enough to eat on her own. Got it?”
And you know the list can continue. But we need to realise that such comments don’t necessarily help. In fact they do just the opposite. In today’s world, it is increasingly challenging to raise children, especially with nuclear families, ever increasing influence of media and above all hypocrisy and bigotry.
So here is a humble request to all the Mommy Police out there, can we help each other in this journey rather than pulling each other down?
Can we stop passing mean rude comments about how we dress our children, what we feed them, whether we enrol them in extracurricular activities or not, whether we let them watch TV or not and so on?
And can we rather, appreciate each other for doing the best we can for our little ones and enjoy this journey of parenthood?