Battling the Mommy Wars: We Need Thick(er) Skin!

During one of my sleepless nights the other night I grabbed for my phone (see my post on Mommy Insomnia Insanity– reaching for the phone is a total no by the way) and started perusing CNN.com. I came across a video called “Mom: Hospital Staff Insulted my Baby.” Of course, I had to watch it because I was curious how a baby could be insulted (turns out it was the mom that was insulted.) The child in the clip was taken to the ER because he was sick and running a fever and the nurse on rotation wrote a note saying “Room 235, Need to check fever, No immunizations, [sad face] Loser!” Here is the note:

CNN Photo

The parents decided not to vaccinate their children and the nurse (using bad judgment) called them “Losers” on paper and got caught. The mom says she felt “judged.” I’m thinking, “Haven’t we all!?  Get in line and get some thicker skin!” Not that I wouldn’t be pissed and not that it wasn’t totally unprofessional of the nurse. I would definitely make that nurse feel bad about talking about me. But I understand that when you are a mom some people will applaud your choices and other people will make you feel like, well, a loser.

It’s just one of those things that come with the territory of being a mom. When you have a child, you become the decision maker. You get to make the decisions that are best for you and your family. So be confident in YOUR decisions and don’t worry what other people say and think. I didn’t breastfeed my kids for long, I had three c-sections and I spaced out all of their vaccines. I let my kids eat dessert sometimes for breakfast and if they get 2 baths in a week we are lucky! Oh… and I have spanked my kids and drank Diet Coke while pregnant **GASP**  You can judge, judge, judge all you want. I’m ok with it because I LOVE my kids and my kids LOVE me and we make decisions that are best for us, and I try really really hard not to care what other people think. I have developed THICK(er) skin when it comes to parenting.

It was not always easy. Especially as a first-time mom. I remember not knowing what to expect, and I listened to so much advice from the internet and friends that have babies. Do this, not that. And you hear a million different stories on why somebody’s choice in parenting is the best and the right one. It’s like a political campaign for parenting! The hard thing is, many of the choices you think are for you turn out not to be. And that’s ok too! Parenting is a journey and we live and we learn. But wouldn’t it be nice if we all started giving advice to moms to choose what works best for them!?

As far as I know, Lucy and her friends aren’t out on the playground in first grade discussing whether they came out their mom’s vagina unmedicated or whether they were surgically removed from the womb. No tears have been shed on the fact one of Lucas’ friends lived off of boob juice for 18 months when Lucas only got it for like a week. So BE CONFIDENT moms! We are all doing the best we can and we all have a reason for the decisions we make.

For every mom that judges us and our decisions, there is one that is in the same boat. We need thicker skin and don’t we want that for our kids too? I want to ask this woman in the video if she will call the news if one of her kids gets called a loser at school?! I doubt it. The best thing we can do is to instill confidence in our kids that allows mean words to roll off their back and to instill knowledge that when mean things are said, it usually comes from a place of insecurity and close-mindedness.

So the next time you are at the Ped’s office and your newborn is freaking the hell out and you reach in your bag for the bottle of formula and get a death stare from a woman across the waiting room nursing her twins simultaneously, just smile. You know what she is thinking. And it’s ok. You’re a thick-skinned mama and you and your kids are all the better for it!

Kacey Roache
Kacey Roache is a Jacksonville native who lives in Ponte Vedra with her husband, TJ, and her three kids, Lucy, Lucas and Lola. Kacey graduated from Florida State University (Go Noles!) with a degree in interior design. She currently is a Realtor with Team Young & Volen at Ponte Vedra Club Realty. She is passionate about the arts and arts education and serves on the board of Art with a Heart in Healthcare and the Ponte Vedra Public Education Foundation for the Arts as well as the PTO at her kids' school. In her spare time you might find her channeling her inner Serena Williams on the tennis court, performing in an occasional community play, or enjoying the beach with her friends and family.

6 COMMENTS

  1. Every time my wife reads something on the internet parenting-advice related, she comes away in tears or a fit of rage.

    That’s an exaggeration, but she does have a lot of motherhood anxiety, and it makes me want to smash the computer. When mothers disagree, a disagreement is never allowed to just be a disagreement. There are layers of insulting and evil nuances spoken in code language that apparently only women are able to understand.

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