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Never Compare Yourself to Another Mother

by Deborah Cruz
I am absolutely giddy that today one of my favorite Mamas in the blogisphere is gracing the page at The TRUTH about Motherhood in celebration of my 2nd Blogiversary. Peryl Manning, better known from her highly popular blog Parenting Ad Absurdum .

“An irreverent, humorous and honest look at what it is truly like to parent small children, the highs and lows, the thrilling parts and the not-so-thrilling-at-all parts.”

Peryl is the awesome Mommy to two spirited young boys. On any day you can read about a variety of topics ranging from little vampires ordering blood off the Starbucks menu to the correct protocol on how to name a Canadian baby. No matter the topic, Peryl will deliver it to you with grace and poise. She’s the lady who has the magic touch and can make any pill easier to swallow.Do yourself a favor, check her out. Peryl can also be found on Twitter. Thank You so much for sharing your sage advice with us, Peryl! XOXO
Parenting Ad Absurdum Gives advice, Peryl Manning, www.motherhoodthetruth.comThe Truth about Motherhood
My advice

So, my advice to other mothers, if you were to ask for it, which you probably didn’t (first off, really, my advice would be never give other mothers advice, because most of the time, you’re just going to tee them off – but I’m incapable of following this rule myself – I’m a writer, which means I find it impossible to keep my opinions to myself)….But anyway, if you happened to ask for my advice, it would be this: Never, but never compare yourself to another mother. If you compare yourself negatively, you’ll get depressed, and if you compare yourself favorably, it will only come back to bite you in the behind.
For me I learned this when I had my second boy. All of the euphemisms that I had privately used to describe other people’s children like “spirited” and “willful” and “pain-in-the-ass” came home to roost in my chicken coop. I now had the toddler who climbed the shelves in Safeway, who had a tantrum in Target when denied pop rocks, and who now, as a three-year old, is sassiness personified. And I am usually six feet behind him. alternately losing my cool and pretending I don’t know him.
And when I get the dirty looks from other shoppers as he slides under their cart, or knocks down a pyramid of wine bottles, I remember my own inner judgy-judgerson, and smack her upside the head. Because no matter what you see on the outside, every mother has a full, well-rounded story as interesting and complex as your own. If she appears to be losing her mind – she probably has good reason. And if she appears to be perfection personified, she’s probably so tired she just tried to to put the milk away in the dishwasher. So give her, and at the same time yourself, a little latitude, and a big, big break.

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Fabulosokids 2011/05/26 - 9:43 am

In every judgement we make, it is valuable to take what might be happening in the other person’s life into account. We almost never have insight into how other’s people’s days are going and when we do, we tend to be understanding and patient. If we just approach every situation with that understanding and then work backwards from there, the advice we do give will be better received, and we’ll find that we’re a lot less irritated most of the time!

Peryl has made a great point, and reminded me to be a nicer person. Thanks!

Truthful Mommy 2011/05/26 - 10:43 am

This is so true. I have been a lot better at trying to remember that since having children. This is fabulous advice and a wonderful reminder to be better people; for ourselves, for our children…for each other:)

Alison@Mama Wants This 2011/05/26 - 9:46 am

Amen to that. Thank you for writing this!

Truthful Mommy 2011/05/26 - 10:41 am

She is pretty amazing. She has great Mommy Yoda wisdom! The force is strong with her:)LOL

parentingadabsurdum 2011/05/26 - 10:14 am

Thanks Mama, and thanks so much for having me today, Debi!

Truthful Mommy 2011/05/26 - 10:40 am

Thanks for being here. Such a wonderful piece of advice to share with Mamas. You rock.

Michelle (Addicted2Shius) 2011/05/26 - 12:26 pm

Such great and needed advice!!

The Mommy Therapy 2011/05/26 - 4:03 pm

Such an amazingly true post!

I am always trying to tell new Moms or friends with new babies that the best thing they can do is to listen to their own heart about what to do or not to do with their kids. Becoming a Mom usually accompanied by a shocking assault of advice and judgement from just about everyone, which sucks.

But it also works the other way as you pointed out. If you judge or compare you are equally unhappy.

Thanks for the reminder!

NeeSay 2011/05/27 - 7:32 pm

Wow I so saw myself in the post! I thought had the mummy gig down pat until my second boy came along & shattered all my misconceptions about those ‘out of control’ kids!

I learnt pretty quickly I was living in a glass house so I no longer throw stones at other mums. We all do the best we can with what we’ve got.

Truthful Mommy 2011/05/27 - 10:09 pm

AMen! Our perspective always changes once we actually have the children out in the world.

Coolwhipmom 2011/06/01 - 10:21 am

YEs, yes, a million times YES!!!!! I was SO judgemental of moms before I had my own kids. And oh how those chickens come home to roost. I think I can hear them squaking aroudnd my kitchen right now. Brilliant post, Peryl. As always! xoxooxo


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