“Hi, I’m Johnna and I breastfed my child for 26 months. Now, where’s my medal?”
I’ve never said this. I usually only tell people when asked about it. I don’t really think about it all that much until people have a discussion about breastfeeding or formula feeding. For some reason though, when it is mentioned, I get some really weird responses from some people.
“I didn’t breastfeed because unicorns on tuesdays wear purple and I hate purple.”
“I didn’t breastfeed because my boobs like to sparkle and breastfeeding diminishes their shine”
OK great, I’m glad you didn’t breastfeed. I would have been happy with “We just decided formula was best for us”, as more than likely, I’m not going to question why you formula fed, because it’s not my business. I love to judge people, but not for things like that. If you like Justin Beiber, I’m probably going to judge you, because UGH.
People mistake me as crunchy. I babywear. I breastfeed. I cloth diapered. I like attachment parenting. I own an amber teething necklace. No, I don’t think amber teething necklaces work, but I thought it went with the bohemian chic I was going for with my daughters tie dye onsies.
So now, I’m crunchy, and now my decisions I chose for myself; that do not impact others is an affront to some of those who chose not to do those things. It’s kind of annoying, and I’m tired of the parenting wars, because everyone seems a bit crazy.
I learned early on to avoid parenting websites and message boards. Maybe I don’t like other parents, but I just don’t do well with sanctimonious bull, I don’t care what point of view you have.
“If you don’t use a Britax car seat, you don’t care about your child!!!”
“If you don’t breastfeed, your child will suffer!!!”
“If you don’t use this fancy brand bottle, your children will be exposed to cancer!!!”
Yeah that kind of stuff angers me. I don’t do well with it, and it runs rampant in the parenting world.
I want people to quit making assumptions about my beliefs based upon what they think I do with my kid. I want people to quit assuming I like horoscopes and listen to Phish and Bob Marley because my kid on occasion wore a tie dye onesie. Or that I somehow hate formula feeding moms because I breastfed. Or I judge you for owning a stroller. Or using disposable diapers. I am really into science. I’m really not into homeopathy. I don’t think breastmilk will cure all things that ail you. I don’t think that formula is made of poison, nor do I avoid vaccinations. The research I did for myself indicates this is what is great for my kids.
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. I’m SUPER LAZY and CHEAP. I’m also a little vain. So I babywear with wraps I think are cute, and I find it super easy to carry a baby in a wrap than I do to haul a heavy infant seat around. I cloth diapered because cloth diapers had really cute prints, I like the fact I never really run out of diapers, and I don’t like PAYING for diapers. The amber teething necklace was a gift. I purchased a nicely reviewed car seat on sale. Part of the reason I breastfed was I didn’t want to clean bottles or check the temperature of formula. I stay at home because I didn’t really like my job and I had the privilege of being able to afford to do so.
Guess what else? As long as you and your kid are happy, I want you to be happy too. I don’t care how you guys achieve that happiness because, as long as you’re not hurting others; you’re probably an awesome parent.
So can we please now stop with the Parent Wars and making a bunch of assumptions about strangers we don’t know simply because they have their kid walking around with an amber teething necklace on tie dye onesie day?