What I find the most peaceful when it comes to parenting is this – when parents stop judging other parents.
Do you circumcise?
Do you baby-wear?
Do you extend rear face?
Do you spank?
Do you eat organic food?
Do you make your own baby food?
Do you cloth diaper?
Do you cook dinner every night?
Do you force gender roles?
Do you use toxic cleaners?
Do you use Tylenol?
Do you let your kids watch TV?
Do you have plastic bottles in your house?
Is that baby loved by a parent doing their best?
That is the only question we should ever ask ourselves. All of the rest falls under the NONE’YA header.
If you ask me, I will tell you that I nursed all my babies. My oldest I managed for 5 weeks before I broke down and quit. My middle child was nursed exclusively for 3 months and then we supplemented for another 3. By 6 months she was on formula. My youngest was nursed almost exclusively for 6 months and then we switched to formula. My goal was one year. I didn’t make it. And if you need to know why, you need to search within and ask yourself why that matters to you.
If you ask me, I will tell you that my youngest isn’t circumcised. If you want to know why, I will tell you. If you need to know why, you need to ask yourself why that matters to you.
If you ask me if we spank, I will tell you that we have. That it hasn’t ever been easy for us. That we don’t think it’s the answer. But that we have, and probably will continue to. If you need to know why, again, ask why that matters to you.
If you ask me if I use Tylenol, I will say yes. That we are thankful for modern medicine and when home remedies won’t cut it, we gladly use what we have available to us. If you need to know why – ask yourself why it matters to you.
If you feel the NEED, a pulling deep inside of you, to change my views – ask yourself why it matters to you.
I am so glad that parents are advocating for children. But let me tell you – the children who need advocating for are the children being beaten, starved, and left for dead. The children who need advocating for are those who are unloved. The children who need advocating for are those who have no home.
If you want to have a conversation with me about why we do the things we do the way we do them, I will have that conversation. Gladly. But if that conversation is based on a need you have to know – I will have to end that conversation.
As parents, we need to stop the wars.
Now, I know that some people will say ‘But Hannah, spanking IS child abuse! I need to advocate for YOUR children!’ and so I will say to you – I have never ever harmed my children. And people will say ‘Breast is best!’ and so I will say to you – a child with a full belly is best.
I never want to be satisfied with the knowledge I already have. So I will not ever stop my research. I will continue to advocate for my own children by being an informed mother. A mother who wants the best for them. And one who loves them so deeply that it sometimes hurts. I will constantly evolve. I will not be shackled to my opinions. I will be open to new information.
But I WILL NOT be a part of the mommy wars. I will not judge you for your choices. I will only look to see if your child is well loved. Every other question that pops into my head is unimportant.
And here’s the thing. We would be lying if we said we didn’t care. We all make the decisions we make either because we think its best, or we think it’s at least okay. We have regrets. Areas we think maybe we didn’t do well enough. And so our hurts cause us to judge other parents. And sometimes, when we think something is right, we assume it is right. For everybody. And honestly? It’s okay to feel that way. But stop saying it. Let’s just see well-loved babies and be thankful for the parents who raised them. Lets see the sweet kisses and the smiles and know that our friends’ babies are happy. And lets leave it at that.
There are things I’m passionate about. Carseat safety for one. And if I’m ever asked for my opinion, I will gladly share it.
But I will always try my best to parent peacefully with the parents around me.
That’s peaceful parenting.