i am a judge-y mom.
there, i said it. i have judged other moms. please tell me i'm not the only one.
however, i am really trying to stop. having a son who throws fits is helping me.
here's the thing. i used to think one of two things when i saw a kid throw a fit.
1. the mom was doing a lousy job at parenting in that moment. whether that was because she had her kid at walmart at 10pm and he was throwing a fit from being tired, or because she couldn't control her kid no matter the time of day, i assumed sometimes it was the mom's fault.
2. the kid was a terrible kid. spoiled, entitled, whatever you want to call it, i felt bad for the mom with the bad kid.
but, then, lawson started throwing fits. all. the. time.
lawson has a serious, for real, speech delay. by two years old most kids will say about 50 words and will start saying 2 to 4 word sentences, by two and a half most will have about 300! lawson says about five words. ni-night, hannah and banana which sound exactly the same when he says them, dada (only sometimes in the correct context) and love you (only j and i understand him). and that is after six months of speech therapy.
can you imagine not being able to communicate about your needs and wants? like if your kids were disobeying but you couldn't correct them? what if you wanted your morning starbucks but had no speech? parent teacher conferences where you couldn't say a word? how about trying to communicate with your coworkers or boss? doesn't sound pleasant does it? you'd probably resort to crying also? you might not throw a fit because you are an adult with problem solving skills and not a two year old, but i bet you'd be frustrated and crying. i would.
when i was being a judge-y mom, i never considered that the child had underlying issues i knew nothing about. i was just assuming something about a family i had never met, never talked to, never interacted with in the least. and i was incredibly wrong. and now, NOW i have much more compassion for the mom with the toddler throwing a fit.
does that kid have autism? a speech disorder? some other underlying reason for throwing a fit or acting like i think is out of line? i feel compassion for the mom or dad with that kiddo because i have no idea what their day to day life is like. maybe they are a terrible parent, but maybe not. but why not extend grace and compassion instead of judgement?
at least that is what i am trying to do. and i have a lot of making up to do! i encourage you to do the same! it might take practice but i think we can all agree that extending more understanding and support to fellow moms is a step in the right direction.