I've been planning to write this post for quite some time. It occurred to me when I was in the playground with my daughter. She was 10 months old already walking but wasn't able to walk steadily on her own. There was another mum with two boys. We talked and then she started wondering why our daughter Eli didn't walk on her own. Her conclusion was based on the fact that she was slim. I gasped and just said that she had plenty of time and we didn't push her.
I respect my daughter's development as it is. It suits her character and she is the decision maker in that area.
Since then I have seen mums compare their kids with others very often. It's really hard to resist when you see and hear everybody else does that. I admit that unfortunately I've done it too. But I honestly genuinely hate it.
It starts with innocent "Why aren't you drawing the same way as Peter? Look, what Peter is doing." OR "Oh, your kid is already walking?" Our kid is kind of slow. He doesn't walk yet. She doesn't speak yet. She cannot pronounce properly. Once you hear it all around. It's easy to slip and do the same...
When mums compare their kids with the others, it often happens in front of their own kids. I recommend trying to imagine how the kid must be feeling. I've tried it and I felt anger, humiliation and embarrassment:(. My husband cannot stand when adults talk about kids not being in the best shape or challenges - I don't want to use the word failure because it really depends on the angle that you are looking it from:). He remembers his parents did the same to him. As a result he simply shut down. He didn't want to share anything then. The truth is that he was much older than our daughter is now. Hence it could have been different for him than a toddler. However, I think all kids can sense pretty well if the thing you are doing is or is not in their best interests. I will focus on shutting down in a different article. It's a pretty hardcore stuff...
I used to speak to my mum about the situations when Eli and I didn't have best time. I've stopped doing that.
Now you might be thinking that I have nobody to share our problems with if we have them. I do. I have my husband. He sometimes offers me a different view:). This doesn't mean we argue all the time and that we must come to the conclusion. We sometimes don't and it's fine for that time being.
Hmm, I could write on and on:). Competitive mother always comes out in me when another mum starts commenting on my daughter's behaviour and I am not willing to get caught in that any more. I don't want to play that game. I wouldn' t like our Eli be telling someone "Oh, my mum is having such a hard time realising what she would like to do. She is anxious and makes me be as well." What do you say? Are you on the same page?:)