That’s me, only days-old in my journey being a mom.
New moms need a lot – support, rest, sustenance. I’d also argue reassurance.
I’m a pretty reasonable, accepting person, but as a new mom, I lose my shit a little inside when I hear well-meaning people ask or say certain things over and over. We all have those “buttons” people push. And they’re buttons because we care about our kids and being good parents and we’re all just doing the best we can. Here’s what they are for me.
- Certain uses of the phrase, “good baby.” “Was she a good baby?” Let’s be clear, there are no bad babies, people. Every baby has his or her own quirks just like adults. Some babies fuss and cry a lot and others are quiet as mice. My baby happened to be in the latter category, so it was particularly irritating to have people implying my daughter was “bad” for just being the way she was.
- Anything about “Baby #2.” For me, it may actually be more offensive to ask about “Baby #2” than about starting a family because now I actually know what I’m in for. I’m not referring to my privacy necessarily (although the topic of procreation is a very personal one) – what I’m referring to is the casual pressure people put on something that is such a major commitment. Like, huge. Can we just take a moment to acknowledge about how casually people talk about having kids? Like, it’s really convenient that every time I see you, you’re going to hound me about “giving my daughter” a sibling (another annoying statement) when you have zero skin in the game. If you aren’t going to be there on the late nights, helping to balance baby/toddler schedules and helping to fund the whole operation, you have no business pushing the issue.
- “How many do you want?” This is another obnoxiously casual question people ask. It’s easy to rattle off numbers – “I was one of three so that feels right,” “I love kids, so I’ll probably have, like, six,” “Four is my lucky number.” First of all, let’s be real: people expect you to say a number that is more than one. Second, they act like you should just know. Sure, there may be people who are dead set on their “number.” But I am not one of those people. I’m just trying to not screw up be a good parent to the kid that I have, thankyouverymuch.
- Anything about how we are sleeping. This is somewhat along the same lines as calling a baby good or bad – if they achieve the elusive “sleeping through the night” designation, then they are “good.” Some people genuinely care, but overall, I secretly think that people ask about this because they want to hear that you’re not sleeping to somehow make themselves feel better. Sadists.
Can I get a what-what from my parent friends over here? Can you relate? What are some other things people say that get under your skin?