The age of the internet is a blessing and a curse. On one hand we have endless access to information that otherwise would be hard to find and its possible to connect with people to support you through all sorts of things. This next generation can thrive with technology and are becoming the worlds next great problem solvers. However, it is also become a platform for women to bash women.
When I became pregnant I found myself connected to this world of vast instant information: tips to breastfeed, whats the best way to start solids, what to do when your toddler ???? and endless birth stories. This information was great for a new mother. I connected with a midwife, I loved watching inspirational birth videos, found help with my breastfeeding dilemmas, and found advice from women whose parenting styles I admired.
But there is a dark side to all this technology. Any time there is someone advocating for something, suggesting their way, mainstream or not, was offering success there are also those so angrily against it that their hatefullness fills up the comments. Motherhood has gotten this mother vs mother or good mom vs. bad mom syndrome. It has become vaccine vs non vaccinated, breastfed vs formula, natural birth vs interventions, attachment parenting vs traditional etc. Instead of supporting each other as women we are attacking each other with hateful words hiding behind a username.
Being a mom is the hardest job I have ever had. It is even harder if every decision I make is attacked or I feel I cannot share my stories without prosecution. Are we not all trying to do what is best for our children? I believe most mothers have educated themselves in these issues and their decisions are not based on anything but their research. So why are we not supporting this? We should be cheering, great job coming to that very educated decision! I am so happy it works so well for you!
All children are different. All people are different. We all have different learning styles, different tastes, different world views, different cultures, different religions, but being a mother is the same everywhere, it a crazy hard job that deserves support. What happens when we start pitting all of our differences against each other? Oh, yeah, we kind of do this already. This is where politics and prejudice take over. The world is bizarre, we should embrace differences and learn from them. Our children are going to grow up in a global society without borders due to all this technology, we should be striving to reduce the biases and prejudice not teaching how to intimidate those who do not think like us.
We need to remember even though comment sections are anonymous our beliefs are easily passed to our children, or worse can be crushing to a struggling mother doing her best. Do we want our children to hear how much we hate formula feeders or how much we think those who don’t vaccinate don’t care about their children’s health? All we are teaching is how to judge. We are teaching our children that those who do not belive as we belive do not hold as much value in this world. We need to teach our children to look at multiple perspectives on any issue and form their own opinions while still respecting the other side. We need to teach that community is so important that disagreements should not get in its way. We are mothering the next generation. Dont we want to produce children who think on a global scale, respect all perspectives and strive to develop a world-wide community of people who treat others as they want to be treated? This is not some impossible idealistic task. This is where my teacher brain come in….
As a education student they teach us the most important part of any school is community. Develop a place where ideas can be shared freely without fear of negativity and rejection. A place where all children feel valued and able to achieve. We are taught that the multicultural perspective should be a large focus for we do not live in monoculture. Children should look at primary sources and debate from different perspectives. We should build character. The kind of character that respects each other and wants to help hummankind. Do all this while integrating all content across the curriculum….Teachers should not be the only ones modeling this behavior. Parents, its our job to model the behavior we want to see from our children, from our world. Be the change we wish to see right?
This is my opinion. It has value and deserves respect even if you do not agree.
Have you ever been attacked for your beliefs? How does it make you feel?