Mom Shaming: Part 3
Mom Shaming is an unnecessary aspect of being a mother/parents; when other mothers or just random/ordinary people judge and make comments about what you do/are doing as a parent. Not everyone may have experienced it, but those of you who have were not pleased after. For reference, where I'm from we call our mothers Mam and that's what'll be saying from now on, as saying mom is not the norm for me.
Traveling, especially for me; is not pleasant. I have a fear of flying, I think for most people having to travel is either exciting and a relief or a stressful process whether it's packing, boarding, flying or landing; for some it's not all sunshine and roses. Flying with children/babies can be a whole other ball game. Now I don't know about you but occasionally I will ask if there are babies/children sitting near me; just so I can prepare myself for the possibility that it could be an eventful journey. Being honest, sometimes children on planes can be so amazing; some stay calm, sleep, play and walk up and down the aisles or just stare at everything. While as others seem to think the aeroplane journey is the perfect chance to practice their screaming skills.
Now as a passenger, I won't deny sometimes I feel frustrated by the screaming of a child on board as it puts me even more on edge when flying, but I have never judged the parent for that. The children could be unwell, over tired, over stimulated or just having a bad day (like adults do). As for babies, teething and some of them may be suffering with "Aeroplane ear" (when your ears feel blocked/clogged due to the change in pressure). I can't believe how much Mam shaming occurs during flying, there is a major difference being being annoyed by the "noise," and blaming a mother/father for the disturbance.
You'd be surprised how many people make comments to parents like "do you think you could settle the baby? I'm trying to sleep" or "can't you just calm him/her down? She/he is getting loud." As a parent, I bet you're already stressed before flying anyway with so much to take care of and the thought of flying with a child/children can be daunting enough without all the extra comments. If the parent is ignoring/neglecting the child and letting them cause chaos then yes a word may be needed, but if that parent is stressed and trying hard to settle their child; and someone comes and comments about what they are not doing right; that is wrong and frankly, not useful at all. It is not the parents' fault that the baby is suffering Aeroplane ear, it's not the parents fault that the baby is over tired and it's not the parents fault that the baby is overwhelmed by being in a small space with random strangers and in an uncomfortably small area.
All the comments, dirty looks and assumptions are exactly what Mam shaming is. Instead of assuming that he/she can't take care of their children; we should open our minds and consider that they might need some encouragement/support instead of judgement and arrogance. Sometimes we forget that not everything is going to work how you want it to; a baby is not going to sit down and stay still when you want it to. I think instead of any irrelevant comments we should offer help at times when appropriate or just smile to remind them (the parents) that no, not everyone on this aircraft is hating on you and the 6 month old you're trying so hard to soothe.
*Disclaimer: I am not a medically trainer practitioner. This blog is based on personal thoughts and opinions and research and observations.
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