Judgemental people drive me crazy. Recently I've comforted a number of new mothers who have been made to feel like failures because they opted to receive pain killers during labor or they don't like breast feeding or don't resemble Heidi Klum who apparently can give birth and then model underwear the following week. I wonder how or why certain individuals believe they have the formula for how to behave. Also, don't mothers realize they are in it for the long run? Forget about your "warrior" labor or lack of n epidural. Wait a few years when you're lying in bed trying to stem the panic as your kid violates curfew. Wait a few years for the first time your kid looks at you with undisguised contempt and asks you to stop singing because it hurts their ears or tells you they don't want to open the little box thingies on the Advent calender or search for eggs or blow out their candles because they no longer want to be viewed as a child. Will you judge them, shame them, quote experts that inform them they are flawed because they want something different?
Judgmental people are narcissists which makes them bad parents and lousy friends. Instead of thinking of other people they constantly evaluate them based on their own beliefs. What will they do when their teenagers start to question them, try drugs and alcohol, make poor choices, reject their precious judgements? I have seen those kind of parents from years of teaching high school and what they do is one of two things, either they grow up and stop believing every idea they have is true or they alienate and stifle their teenagers until those kids either act out in retaliation or simply stop trusting their parents because of their narrow mindedness. It's easy to boss around a toddler and make statements about new mothers choices. This is a vulnerable population. But if you try and shame and judge a teenager that teenager will cut you off. When my son tells me things I consider completely ridiculous I try to pause before rushing in and ruining his attempts at self-definition. He has a right to his wild ideas. I want him to keep talking to me. I might learn something. Imagine that!

Comments

  1. I find this posting quite timely. What is it about this post-modern feminist era that has so many women being judged by their peers and elders? At this point, you'd think we all would have seen the light and be supporting each other. The great women's movement of the late 60' early 70's opened up so many avenues for women. True that we have a lot of great opportunities and it's important to know where we've come from - but I've seen/felt a lot of mothering/working competition. Being a new mom, I feel like I've defended my parenting decisions as they go against some unwritten social mores. I feel like screaming "NO my 7 month old doesn't sleep through the night and I REFUSE to make him by "just letting him cry". To me he's still a baby, so I'll hold as much as he wants!
    As for teenagers - no, you cannot shame and judge a teenager. As a teacher of teens, I feel compassion and patience are essential. I hear other teachers lament about the poor attitudes of the teens at school and their disrespectful manner. Again, I feel like screaming "They are only children!" Most of the kids just don't trust adults because they have shamed and judged them so much. And yes, then they do cut adults off and can be rude kids. But, they are still kids.

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  2. There's so much competition and too little real support. What women need to remember is that this equality is a recent event. I was fired from a number of jobs for refusing to have sex with a boss.

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  3. Nothing like the free exchange of ideas... No worries. It's your blog - do what you want. This is all now on my facebook page. Thanks for the fun!

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  4. Write your own blog, Steve. No one would understand your rant.

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  5. Whoa, I feel judged just reading this.

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