When you have kids you naturally assume that you are going to be dealing with grownups, right? I thought that when I became a mom I entered a very mature and supportive community…and yet I was shocked when the mama drama started early on. No matter how much you hear about the mommy wars or women not supporting each other, you will always be shocked the first time it happens.
We all know how it starts and that’s with the natural competition about milestones. Sure you think that your baby is doing great, crawling and babbling sweet little words—and then you see Jack. Wow this kid is only 9 months, how can that be? The mom proceeds to brag about how he was pulling himself up at 6 months and is uttering full words now at this tender age. While you smile on the outside, you kind of want to barf a little too.
Mama Drama Happens At All Ages and Stages
This is the earliest and perhaps the most innocent form of mama drama, but it continues on from there. The common areas for debate are usually the type that you find yourself avoiding. The breastfeeding vs. bottle feeding moms, the stay at home vs. the working moms, the attachment parenting vs. letting them cry it out moms—there seems no end to the platforms for which we all work against each other rather than respect and support each other.
As your child gets older the drama continues as you deal with some downright insecure and crazy moms. Sad but true the competition is alive and well with academics and activities. Are these moms trying to live out their life dream to be a ballet dancer? Did they do poorly in school and therefore they want their kid to be valedictorian? I personally have always helped to support my kids in doing well, but also placed realistic expectations on them too. Novel concept, huh?
So as I sit here and think about this with young children, I recognize that the mama drama will always be around. I find that being confident in who you are as a mother is the best anecdote. I also find that surrounding yourself with the normal ones and tuning out the super crazy ones works well. Sometimes you just have to recognize that you can’t keep up with the Joneses—and that maybe you don’t even want to!
Think About What Really Matters and Ignore The Rest
When you can say that your kids are healthy and happy, and that you are doing the best job that you can as mom then that’s a success. Forget the other stuff—there will always be something to worry about or some drama to get involved in if you seek it out. I have learned through trials and tribulations this to be true, and now I feel like I have grown as a mother because I can tune out the unnecessary drama. No time for it, and wow look how I’ve grown as a person!
I have such a wish that moms would unite and support each other. Rather than bashing each other for choices such as working or breastfeeding, that we would instead understand and appreciate each other’s differences. Moms are a very cool and unique niche and if we allowed ourselves we could be truly supportive. Don’t get me wrong—there are some truly amazing moms out there and they make for some of the best friends! You just have to know how to tune out the noise and never let yourself get sucked into the things that don’t matter in the end.
So why do I write this? For awareness, for new moms who can go in with their eyes wide open, and for those of us moms who are still trying to figure it out and hoping for a good support network. The next time that you feel judgmental about a mom who is sweating as she tries to wrangle her kids into the cart at Target, feel for her instead. Yes that may have happened to me, but that’s really not important here.
The next time you judge a working mom, consider that she may have to work. The point is that mama drama is so unnecessary and YOU can control how much of it you allow into your life. Be the exception to the rule and be the super cool mom that the other down to earth mamas can dig—your kids and you will be so much happier that you did!