are you judging me? or am i?

My husband said to me, “I didn’t like your last post very much.” 

I looked at him in shock.  All along, I had been thinking he was my biggest fan.  “Why not?”

“Because you weren’t very nice to yourself.  I don’t like it when you talk bad about yourself.” 

Sigh.

I know, I know.  It was a harsh letter to my ta-tas.  I was feeling low, what else can I say?  Rhetorical question, guys.  You should know…I can say lots.

Don’t get me wrong… I am grateful that I have been able to pump and nurse Dexter for the past 8 months.  I really, really am.  It is such a frustrating situation for me and I wanted to vent about it.  I just didn’t want to mope and whine about it on here so I thought I’d be a smartie pants and put a mean, sarcastic spin on it.  Well, it was fun to read, anyway, wasn’t it?  I thought so.

The thing is, breastmilk or formula…the kids turn out the same as far as I can tell.  I know more kids that were formula babies than breastmilk babies and I don’t see them getting sick any more than my own kids or other booby babies I know. The whole health thing was my main reason for breastfeeding.  Then, of course, are the savings.  The fact that it’s natural.  It’s bonding time with baby.  Etc, etc, etc, right?

But now it has turned into my stubborness and feelings of guilt if I “give up” or don’t make it to a year.  I don’t know why I am beating myself up about this, but here’s the truth.  I feel like I am failing at motherhood.  I was bound and determined to make it to at least a year.  Every day I pump a little less than the day before.  And every day I go into more of a panicky tailspin about how I’m a worthless mother if I can’t make this work.  Because when it really comes down to it, I do love those quiet moments Dexter and I spend together while he is nursing.  And he’s {more than likely} my last baby, so that kind of puts me into a panic, too.

Do I think mothers that formula feed their babies are worthless? OF COURSE NOT.  I just wanted to say that, in case anyone thought I was insinuating otherwise.  Here’s some honesty – I don’t understand mothers that choose not to breastfeed.  I just can’t wrap my head around why they wouldn’t want that.  Regardless, I realized that it is a choice that some mothers make.  So because I don’t understand, I am probably a little judgy in that department.  But hey, whatever works for you.  What I do understand is mothers that try and can’t do it, for a variety of reasons.  Because it’s hard. Because they don’t make enough milk. Because they have post partum depression or other medical issues.  It happens and I get that.  I wonder if all those other mothers, formula feeding and breastfeeding alike, ever beat themselves up for their decisions and/or circumstances.  Surely I’m not the only one.

We’re all just moms, trying to make the best decisions we can for our kids.  And then others in society and the media and the crunchy mom movement make you feel like crap for doing that very thing. 

~I feel like I will be judged if I don’t make it to a year of breastfeeding.

~I feel like I’m being judged if I breastfeed in public.  Or if I don’t.

~I feel judged for having an unexpected pregnancy that landed me with kids who are only 14 months apart. 

~I feel judged for not being a Stay at Home Mom.  And also because honestly, I don’t really want to.

~I feel judged for not even considering an unmedicated birth.  I never, not for one second, thought about skipping the epidural.

~I feel judged because I don’t fix my hair and put on make up every day.

~I feel judged because my kids are in the 15th – 20th percentile for weight.  Even though the doctor says they are perfectly healthy.

~I feel judged because I’m not planning on throwing Theo and Dexter massive birthday parties every. single. year.

But why do I feel judged?  I don’t judge others for those things. Or do I?  No one I know or communicate with has EVER, in person or on this blog or facebook or anywhere at anytime, said anything to make me feel judged for these things.  I place this judgment on myself because I see what other moms are doing and what other babies are doing.  I feel like maybe I’m not always on par with all the wondermoms out there.  I think that other moms are going to think I’m lazy or ugly or inadequate or and idiot or just a CFM.  Complete. Freaking. Mess.  Why do I let what everyone else is doing feed my insecurities and make me feel small?

Here are some non-rhetorical questions.  I would love it if you responded in a comment.

Has anyone judged you (your parenting) to your face? 

Do you feel ever judged simply because of what other moms are doing (or not doing)? Or by what you see on the internet/in the media?  

How do you keep from letting your insecurities get you down? 

I don’t question that I’m a good mom.  I AM A GOOD MOM.  So why do I let this crap make me feel like I could do so much better sometimes?

ugh.
~C~

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