When I first had my son, I felt like I was apart of “the mom club.” It seemed like all mothers had a special bond. Suddenly, women I’d known for years spoke and treated to me differently, because I was now a mother. It’s like mothers have an instantaneous bond. It was awesome! I loved the mom club. We were all united in the great cause to raise our children to be the best children possible. We all loved our children and only wanted the best for them. But then I learned about a major divide in the mom club…
During my senior year of college I had to complete a major project for graduation. As a new mother I had become completely obsessed with the health benefits of breastfeeding. I decided to create a short twenty-minute documentary about breastfeeding in which I would discuss all benefits of nursing. I thought it sounded like a great idea. My advisor for the project liked the idea, but pointed out how one-sided I was. “It’s a great idea” he said, “but you have to show both sides of the story. If you don’t, it’s just propaganda. “
Well, I hadn’t thought of that. My plan had changed from interviewing only women who had breastfed, to women who didn’t, or maybe weren’t able to breastfeed their children.
One of the women I interviewed told me how she had felt judged for not nursing her son. It turns out she wanted to nurse him, but just wasn’t able to. Other mothers had made her feel guilty for not nursing her son. I felt an instant pang of guilt, as I realized I was guilty of this charge. A year after my son was born my sister confessed to me how bad I had made her feel for not nursing her daughter. How could I have done such a thing?
It was then that I realized the ‘mom club’ is pretty divided. There are hundreds of decisions to make when we become mothers for the first time, many of which we have never even thought about before. Breast or bottle? Crib or Co-sleep? Vaccinate or don’t vaccinate? Circumcise or intact? Organic food, crying it out, and attachment style parenting were all tough decisions we have to think about. These issues often pit mother against mother.
Would it be nice if we all just remembering that we are just trying our best, no matter what decisions we choose to make. All of us mothers should try to be more united and make it a point to remember we are all just mothers trying to do our best to raise happy, successful children…just another humbling lesson I have learned in this job called being a mommy.
Wed, August 1, 2012
by Salle Mickey