Mom Shaming: How to Deal

From the beginning of time, people have had opinions — and more often than not, they have opinions on the way others lead their lives!  One of the areas of life most plagued by others’ opinions is motherhood — breastfed vs formula, working vs staying home with your baby, how you dress your children, the list goes on.  And while technology offers us so many advantages, it also brings about a lot of — yep, you guessed it — mom-shaming.  Every mama experiences it, and some mamas are even a little guilty of it!  However, we owe it to ourselves and our fellow mamas to avoid mom-shaming and all be a little kinder to each other.  We’re here today to discuss what exactly mom-shaming is, and how you can deal with it if it happens to you!

What is Mom-Shaming?

Mom-shaming is, simply put, the shaming of a mama for the way she’s chosen to raise her child(ren).  It begins as early as the pregnancy announcement, and can continue throughout the child’s life, and can really take a toll on a woman, leading to mom-guilt.  Mom-shaming comes from a feeling of superiority by another mother, starts with opinions, leads to loosely-founded facts, and a need to share those facts and that opinion with the world.  Mom-shaming covers a wide range of topics:

  • Breastfeeding
  • Vaccinations
  • Infant/toddler nutrition
  • Safety concerns
  • Working mothers vs stay at home mothers
  • Caffeine usage
  • Weight gain during pregnancy

The list goes on!  But the bottom line is that no matter what you believe, each mama is doing the best she can for her growing little one!  So what can you do if it happens to you?

How to deal with Mom-Shaming

While the quickest way to deal with mom-shaming is to turn the other way and ignore it, it’s certainly not the easiest thing to do!

Know your stance.  The most important way to deal with it is by simply having a strong conviction in the way you’re choosing to raise your child!  Every mother raises her child to the best of her abilities, and to the best of her knowledge! Knowing your facts and why you’ve chosen your opinion can go a long way in fending off shamers and mom-guilt.

Understand where they’re coming from.  We know, we know–it’s definitely not okay!  But keep in mind that most mom-shamers shame just to make themselves feel better about their own choices.  Understand that it typically comes from a place of insecurity, and that it’s not about you, Mama!
Know your people.  Try to only surround yourself with family and friends that know you and support your decisions.  These are your people, and they’ll help lift you up if you’re ever feeling down!

Keep in mind that the internet doesn’t show the whole story.  That mom-blogger with her beautiful photos, flawless photos, and adorable children isn’t showing off the realness of her life.  Off-screen often shows a very different story — she has problems just like yours!

Know your child.  Mom-shamers aren’t raising your child, you are!  And no one knows them quite like you!

Watch your own actions.  Keep in mind how that mom-guilt feels, and do your best to avoid mom-shaming of your own!  If all mamas made an effort to tone down the opinions, we’d find mom-shaming a lot less frequent!

Mom-shaming may be inevitable right now, but the way you respond doesn’t have to be!  Raise your child the best way you know how, Mama, you’ve got this!