There is a special bond between mothers that is unlike other friendships. There really is a “mom squad” mentality when it comes to women who are raising children. I am a firm supporter of having those friends and family members you can count on through thick and thin. Mom friends are so important to have because your non-mom friends just don’t (and can’t) understand how hard it is to raise tiny humans until they are doing it themselves. As awesome as mom friends are and how much I support having them, I also have heard some very absurd things that moms say about their own (and other people’s) children! And it just makes me realize, complaining moms are a turn off.
Complaining Moms are a Turn Off
Often, it feels like a competition between moms for whose child is the most difficult or worst behaved. Anytime I’m around groups of moms, they are constantly sharing war stories about how bad their day was and how bad their kids have been since birth. And trust me, I get it. Being a mom is hard! Raising kids is hard, and running a home smoothly often feels impossible. On those days when you need a hand to pull you from your mom mire, it is perfectly acceptable to reach out to other moms you trust who have been there and ask for encouragement. What is not okay is living in that place. It is acceptable and even expected to complain about your children constantly. This is not the right perspective to have while raising your most precious gifts.
Shift Perspective Towards the Good
I have heard moms go back and forth in their competition and I have to say that sometimes I just can’t stand it. We moms all have a difficult time with our kids, but has your child ever done anything good or praiseworthy in their entire lives? Why can’t we focus on how good, smart, and sweet our kids are instead of how horrible they can be?
To be completely honest with you, it’s annoying to other moms to hear about how bad your child is constantly. We all have scrubbed permanent marker out of our kitchen floors and fished Minnie Mouse out of the toilet, or released a spider/snake/tadpole back to their original habitat (which is not a bedroom, by the way), and I get it. It’s not fun, but it happens to everyone. And some of those debacles are simply humorous and fun to share with others, but when your child’s bad behavior is all you talk about, it gets old very quickly.
Perhaps next time you are at playgroup or having mom’s night out, you could bring up the fact that your child wakes perfectly every single morning with a smile and a kiss for you? Or that your son actually does love his little sister and reads to her every night while she’s falling asleep?
I wonder how different moms would be if they were sharing (and hearing about) how children are good and mostly innocent and love with no strings attached. I would love to be a part of the mom squad who didn’t need strong wine and gossip to raise their children. I’d love to hear about how your child aced their test in school and got all their chores done every day this week.
I feel it would make all the difference to our kids and our fellow complaining moms if we as mothers change our perspective and stop seeing only the bad things and the hardships of raising our kiddos. And instead, start seeing the beautiful, talented beings we created and bragging on them for all their wonderful accomplishments. Besides, it’s no fun being around a Debbie downer, especially when she’s a mom.