Just because this is my first child doesn’t mean I’m inexperienced. I’ve been taking care of children and infants my entire life. On the personal and professional level. I’ve seen enough to know that experience doesn’t always mean competent. Considering that even a well known heroine addict who admits to shooting up while pregnant tried giving me advice.
The worst part of it is when you give me advice when I’m not asking for it. No, wait. The worst part comes after when you keep insisting that I just take your advice with a smile and nod. I’m not trying to speak for every first-time mother out there but I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who gets tried of hearing the same things over and over and over and over again from every mother we come across.
And yes, I’ve heard the line, “If what I’m saying ever bothers you or it’s too much, just let me know.” And that line bugs the shit out of me because as a mother, you should already know what is too far. In fact, you should already know how you would feel if someone did it to you.
With nice people like me, you leave me with only two choices on how to shut you down when you’ve leaped over the line; I can either just walk away and never speak to you again, or I can get very rude and snappy with you by telling you to shut the fuck up and mind your own business.
Quite frankly, if you experienced, pushy mothers could just accept my polite decline to your advice, those wouldn’t have to be my only choices.
Honestly, it hasn’t stopped happening since I had him. And each one of you thinks I’ve never heard this same thing before. It’s so frustrating that when I started this post, I was calm, but just thinking about it has gotten me more and more upset about it all over again. I know what I’m doing. Why is it, that CFS saw that my son was fine and that was enough for them, but these arrogant mothers can’t see that and just keep their opinions to themselves?
The pediatricians, nurses, and WIC workers have all seen that my son is healthy, happy and well taken care of and have nothing to say. So, why won’t you all just shut up and leave me alone?
I know my son better than anyone. Even better than his own father. And yet everyone treats me like I’m completely clueless. I get enough of this unwarranted advice and telling me what to do bullshit from my husband who thinks he knows something but keeps forgetting that even he himself has had practically no experience whatsoever with children under 5. Let alone straight up infants. Yet I have. I have had tons of it. So, why am I always getting answers to questions I’m not asking?
Honestly, I don’t know why I ask why when I really don’t care why. Just stop it. My child has been healthy and happy as long as I’ve been doing what I know to be the best thing for him. He’s only gotten sick or unhappy when I’ve listened to other know-it-all parents who insisted they knew better than me just because they pumped out of few of their own.
And the very worst time is when I say something I’m doing for my son and getting it put down as if I was completely stupid for even thinking it without giving me the chance to even finish the thought. Like the other day, I mentioned to a woman how I’d like to get one of those child-proof covers for the doorknob on the front door of our unit. And she just gave me this stern look and said, “No, you just teach him not to do it.”
This was in reference to the fact that my son is at the stage where he wants to open every door he can and he will keep trying until he’s satisfied. And my first thoughts when she said that were, “Really? Teach him? I’m so glad I talked to you first because I would’ve never thought of that. Oh and I’m sure he’ll learn that lesson the first time and I won’t ever have to repeat myself again, right? Man, thank you. You sure saved me a lot of time and money.”
If she wasn’t so busy judging me to be a clueless, lazy noob of motherhood, I would’ve had the chance to explain how sometimes I fall asleep with my son on the bed and I’m afraid I would sleep so deeply, that he could wake up without me and open the front door without me knowing and get himself badly hurt.
It’s the same principle, in my mind, as making sure I don’t leave anything within his reach, I won’t want him getting. Why? Because contrary to your judgmental belief, good parenting is NOT equivalent to omnipotence.
Don’t know what that means? Then maybe you’re not qualified to be telling me how to be a parent.
So, please just leave me the fuck alone.
An experienced first-time mother