Can we please stop perpetuating “m-mmy w-rs”?
Ok, so you know I mean “mommy wars.” I hate that phrase. It automatically sets us up to be combative, defensive and have an angle or opinion that might be “controversial.” I am so sick of seeing articles about this, and not just those that specifically target women/mommies but other articles like “12 things to NOT say to a new mom” or “75 ways to keep your kids entertained this summer” (helpful, but setting up stay at home moms as crafty and clever vs working moms who likely need continuous year-round care as they bring in income).
But let’s not even GO there. That’s a whole different can of worms. And it’s also comparing apples to oranges (sure, part of the reason we have these wars – already categorizing women differently!).
One side of me, because yes I do believe in equal rights, is like enough already! Isn’t it amazing that “most women” (again, comparing apples to apples here – same socioeconomic status, consistent partner in life, same-ish living situations, similar educational history, etc) marry – or not – who they want? Raise kids the way they choose to? Breastfeed? Buy formula? Send them to certain schools or maybe homeschool? Isn’t it great that as this TYPE of woman, we have the majority of these options open to us?! I think it’s pretty amazing.
The other side of me – wouldn’t know what to call it – is like, yeah, what about all the women who don’t? Mommy wars are a subject of suburbanite housewives and upper-middle-class working parents. I’m sure statistics somewhere could show that when a single mom is working two-three jobs just to feed her family, getting some government assistance (or not!), perhaps has no car of her own, perhaps lives in section 8 housing – I’m sure that woman is not online engaging in attacks (or defending herself) in these so-called wars. She’s surviving. She’s doing the best she can. Her kids won’t be perfect. But guess what?
Neither will yours. Neither will mine.
Because there is no such thing as perfection.
And yet those of us who are not in survival mode consistently find ourselves trying to be just that – perfect.
So I’ve been thinking about it – a lot more than I should – and I created my own LIST!
You want to stop the mommy wars? Then STOP.
S – shut up. Be quiet. Don’t type. Don’t read the article. Don’t comment. Ignore.
T – talk to real, live people. Sign off and call a trusted friend and activate a village of knowledgeable women to rely upon.
O – offer opinions only when asked. By a friend. Not online strangers. Not ignorant comments on a post somewhere. Listen. Respond only after you can say you’ve actually heard that person.
P – pray for peace. Pray for grace. Pray for moms. Pray for unborn babies, infants, kids and teens. Pray for dads. Pray for family.
* asterisk to my acronym – get involved. Serving others is a great way to get your head out of your own butt… and head.
So there’s a very easy solution moms. Disengage. Have fun. Support each other on the yay days and the cray days. Make new friends. Keep the old. Enjoy your time together. Enjoy being outside and not online. Get after it. Have fun. Oh, I already said that. Have more fun!
Jesus loves you. Isn’t that enough?
(I preach to myself, mostly, kids. Comparison is the thief of joy, remember that.)
Now let’s rejoice the end of a “war.” And celebrate peace. And take care of each other.
Ok love y’all. Bye!
(originally drafted long ago, posting in “hindsight” Feb 2016 ~ SJ)