Let me introduce you to my next lovely mom: Courtney! I have known Courtney since high school and she's as sweet as they come. She is a mom of three amazing boys and she has felt some judgment for practicing attachment parenting. Read on to see snippets from her full discussion (linked at the end) and to see images from the fun session I had with her and her boys!
“I would consider myself a person who practices attachment parenting with a bit of crunchy thrown in: I breastfed, babywore, did cloth diapers, didn’t allow my children to cry a lot, when they cried, I picked them up and never allowed them to cry too long, or at all! I have often felt judged for that last part.”
“I lost a baby before Max came along and it was very difficult for me to work through that. I had Max and then he had to be admitted into the hospital for severe jaundice. I couldn’t breastfeed him or hold him and he was under the lights 24 hours for a day and a half. It was a very stressful time for me and I thought I was going to lose this baby like I had lost my previous baby. After he got out of the hospital I wanted to be near him all the time and never wanted to leave him! But as soon as he was born, he was attached! The doc took him for some tests and they took him off of my chest and he cried! So he and I were attached to each other since birth!”
“When people would say things, it made me feel very alone and not like a good mom. I already have self-esteem issues as is, then to hear the hurtful things I did, it didn’t help. My response has always been the same: this is how I parent, you may do it differently and that’s ok. I tell them they have not been through what I have and this is just the way it is! There were times I wish some moms could have supported me, instead of saying, “well you made him that way, you deal with it!” It was a very lonely time for me because I couldn’t go anywhere because he cried so much, and he had to be by me 24 hours a day. So all in all, I have felt the most judged for my attachment parenting and how I nurtured them so much.”
“Moms need help and support not judgment! A lot of times moms are afraid to go out in public with their kids because of judgment. Myself included. What we need sometimes is someone to kneel down next to us while our kid is throwing a fit in the store and say, “Can I help you?” Or even just saying, hey, I have been there done that! Moms need understanding, no child is perfect, they WILL mess up and do dumb ass stuff, but that is why we are here, to guide them and teach them the right way!”
“My biggest joy is seeing them enjoy life and have new experiences! I also enjoy seeing them help others and put others first at times! Doesn’t happen all the time, but when it does, it makes me proud! They have taught me many things like to forgive easily and often and to just take time to laugh and play! And that is what I enjoy, seeing them laugh and enjoy life and raising good young men that will make good husbands, because I can’t take care of them the rest of my life, I’m tired!”
Thank you so much for sharing your story with us Courtney! To read her entire discussion on judgment, head on over to A Life From Scratch - and stay tuned for future mamas!