So today I saw this post on FB that was asking moms, honestly, what their children’s bedtime was… and I have never been more validated in my parental life. I always see where parents are super schedulers and have these perfect routines where the tiny humans are knocked before 8 o’clock. Meanwhile I’m over here with a late routine letting my baby get out all the wiggles at 10pm, feeling like I’m failing Mom-School (if you know this reference you’re a real one).
There were so many moms, like well over 300, that liked or commented on the post where the mom said that her two year old tiny human’s bedtime was around 11:30pm. A good chunk of us were stay at home moms, too. I cannot tell y’all how many times I’ve lied to friends and family about Dakota and I’s schedule, because I felt like I was doing something wrong. Shit, it’s my first kid half the time I have no fucking clue what I’m doing outside of winging it with my intuition and celebrating the wins when I get ‘em. Oftentimes, well-meaning friends and family will ask or say things like:
“How’s her schedule coming along?”
“Oh it’s (insert anytime past 7:30) and she’s still up?! When does she typically go down?”
My response is usually something like:
I know on the surface they're innocent questions, but it's hard not to feel judged when you know the answer they're expecting, isn't your answer. There was literally a mom who commented that she used to feel like a failure because, for whatever reason, her kids didn’t go down 'til 11:30 at night. She went on to say that with time and school they eventually moved up to an 8:30 bedtime, but for years she was feeling this deep closeted guilt about her household schedule.
Seeing that post and the conversations being had around the subject, made me want to cry thug tears. Why? Well, it’s because of the sheer number of parents who were so concerned that they were failing when their kids were still getting the recommended hours of sleep and thriving in their routine. However, because it didn’t fit some perfect ideal of a household schedule, all of us thought we were failing. Some of the women said they carried that guilt for years! Can you imagine what that feels like?! To be giving it your best everyday and still feel like a failure every night? Girl.
The stories on that post made me realize that we need to talk about the realities a lot more than we actually are. Most times our households are actually thriving, but because it doesn’t look like the trendy Montessori Mom perfection our generation has been sold, we think we’re all failing Mom-School. And we’re fucking not! I legit saw a post from Tik Tok where a psychologist shared a fact from a journal that said something like children don’t require your perfection, they need about 30% from their parents to have all their needs met and feel completely secure… Thirty-fucking-percent!
Now, I’ve scoured the internet trying to find the paper and couldn’t because, typical me, I forgot to save the clip with the shared sources. However, the overall point is that, whatever you’re doing, so long as your kids are thriving in all the ways that matter to make sure they’re healthy productive humans, do what works in your household without shame! Seriously fuck the noise! Our kids don't need perfect parents they just need present parents.
For instance, I prioritize sensory needs in the moment over sticking to a rigid schedule. I'm on the autism spectrum and can already see some of the signs in my tiny human, so I understand that allowing space for flexibility in our routine helps decrease the occurrence of meltdowns for the both of us. If we’re having a hard time regulating, we’re going to get them senses right together no matter how long it takes. I know that in doing this, I'm teaching her healthy coping skills and boundaries that’ll come in handy later, ‘cause I'm absolutely raising her to be a problem in the best possible way!
The more parenting experience I get, the more irritated I get with all this pressure placed on moms. Like, I’m not a fighter, but I’ll absolutely throw a shoe at a mom-shaming Susan in a heartbeat! And that doesn't just go for moms whose parental values align with mine, any mom shaming Karen can catch these crocs!
Anywho, well I've said enough things, let me know how you feel in the comments, have any of you parents out there had any run-ins that had you feeling serious mom-guilt. OH AND ANOTHER THING-- all you bitches out there glamorizing mom-guilt like it's some kind of badge of honor, like you can't be a good mom without feeling some kind of guilt, girl fuck you! I'm not about to walk around feeling guilt and shame on Brene Brown's internet. It's 2023, we throwing hands, shoes, and telling muhfuckas to mind the business that pays them. Amen? Amen!
Anyway, I missed y'all for real, and I absolutely want all my parents out there to feel empowered in your parenting. And if you aren't a parent and don’t plan on becoming one, go out there and live your BEST, 'cause I'm celebrating y'all, too!
Remember to stay hydrated, take deep breaths often, and shake a lil ass in honor of the ancestors. Have a great weekend!!! 🙃
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Also, make sure you’re up to date on my novella ‘Situationships & Sippy Cups’. It is available on Kindle Vella in the Amazon store, check it out!!!