Some revelations will hit you so hard that they alter how you approach parenting entirely. I vividly remember coming to a certain realisation and have often reassured myself with it throughout my ‘mum’ journey.
For me, someone who is classically concerned way too much about what people think, the idea of making strong parenting and family decisions absolutely terrified me! I desperately wanted to do the right thing and make the best decisions, not only for me, my husband and new baby girl….. but also because I honestly cared ALOT about how people saw me as a parent. Totally not a great mindset to be in, but apparently I’m not alone!
So when one day I realised that no matter what decision I made, there will be someone out there disappointed in my choice… I felt a classic, wonderful ‘weight lifting off my shoulders’…
I came to the revelation that parenting is an incredible, extended version of ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’….
If your child is vaccinated you’re poisoning them, if they’re not you’re neglecting them
If you buy your daughter a doll you’re controlling her identity, a truck and you’re gender confusing her
If you buy the brand new Bugaboo you’re pretentious and snobby, a secondhand pram from Gumtree you’re a bogan
If you find out your baby’s gender you’re controlling, keep it a surprise then you’re unprepared
Honestly it does not matter which way you go on a myriad of parenting decisions, there will always be a large group of people who disagree completely with you. The sooner you realise and accept this, honestly the better! I know I ‘shouldn’t care what people think’ and really no one should…. but I do…. and I hate the fact that I’ve let it affect any of my decisions…..
But realising ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ has given me the ability to properly focus on what really matters to myself and my family, what WE personally value and believe, what we want to do more of our own research about, and also where we still have no bloody idea and really want to annoy our dearest’s with millions of questions about.
I’m not ‘cured’ by any means…. I still find myself hesitating when someone asks me even something as simple as ‘what nappies do you use?’…… do I be honest and tell them Aldi coz they’re fabulously cheap and at the end of the day they’re just poop catchers…. oh but I don’t want to offend them coz what if they’re ‘Huggies-Only-Fanatics’….. they might never speak to me again!!!!! Such solid logic!!
But here in my little family, we do things the way we do them because that’s the way we’ve decided to do them…. I’m happy to explain the logic behind our decisions if you care…. and I’m also happy to not explain if you really couldn’t care less 🙂
Parenting is such a tough gig and we’re all going to make rubbish decisions at times, but the less decisions I make based on how others will react the better!