Dear Judgmental Mom,
I am writing this letter to you because I have noticed the stares, whispers, and blatant comments you’ve giving me for a while now. I’ve noticed your stare when my daughter decides to yell out or when I’ve purchased a Gerber product that you feel my child is too old to use. The snide comments you make when you notice I am her mother and not some light skinned lady with straight hair, have not gone unnoticed. Oh yes, I am talking to you. I am talking to the lady who I thought would be a supporter of mine who in turned judged me quietly because I’ve decided to allow my daughter to keep her pacifier or her bottle for longer than you think is necessary. Yes ma’am, you over there looking at my daughter’s hair because it seems to be flying all over the place instead of being slicked down with a cute headband. I see you! I noticed the shocked face when you found out I did not breastfeed or that I had to have a c-section to deliver my daughter. Yes ma’am I see you. You have not gone unnoticed.
Although I don’t have to explain myself, I will. First of all, my daughter yelled out loud because she is tired and needs a nap, but I can’t lay her down just yet because I have errands that must get done today. Oh and the Gerber baby fruits you see me buying is because my daughter doesn’t like the taste of milk and will only drink it if its mixed with fruit. That’s my personal parenting hack I discovered and guess what? It works great for my baby and I. To you who are wondering why my daughter is lighter than me with straight hair, that’s because my high school sweetheart, who happens to be my Husband is biracial and she took after her father. Yes, I know how to do her hair and yes, I want her to wear cute little floral headbands, but my daughter does not. No matter how many times I try to put a headband on her, she pulls it off and throws it on the floor. So, I just brush it down and allow the wind to do the rest. My daughter still has her pacifier because that’s what makes her comfortable. You saw her for a brief 10 minutes and scrunched your nose when you saw the pacifier not knowing that I just gave it to her after she went most of the morning without it. Yes, I pulled out her bottle of milk for her to drink for a quick snack until we get home and she can eat a full lunch. Oh and I almost forgot. I did not have the pleasure of breastfeeding my daughter because after giving birth I was extremely swollen and had to take water pills for the swelling to go down which caused the little milk I had to dry up. So, it wasn’ that I did not want to breastfeed, It was because I couldn’t. Lastly, my delivery was via c-section because after being induced at 41 weeks, I labored for 2 days and only dilated 5cm. So, to avoid any risks to the baby, they opted for c-section delivery.
I say all of this to say, please don’t judge me without knowing my story. You don’t know what went I through to get to where I am. I am sorry that the 10-15 minutes you see my daughter and I does not fit into your ideal picture of parenting. I apologize if the way I am raising my daughter offends you. However, I will not change it. I wonder when you were a first time parent if you received the same judgment you are currently casting my way? How did it make you feel? Dif you think because you laughed at the end of your comment that makes it funny? “I was just joking” you say. No, I did not find your comment funny when you ask me if my daughter was really mine because she looks nothing like me. No, that’s not funny to me, sorry.
Next time you stare or make a comment to a mom, stop and think if your look or comment would be a nice thing to say to someone. Especially someone you don’t know.
A first time mom learning her parenting style one day at a time.