…until we had a child!
Admit it, you’re guilty of it too.
You’re about to get on a plane and you see those parents with a baby… “A baby on a plane? I hope they’re not sat near us. No holidays abroad for us when we have young kids. Why would you be so selfish?” you whisper to your significant other.
While eating in a restaurant a baby starts blubbing and you mutter (not so quietly) to your date… “Urgh my meal is ruined. Why would you bring a baby here?”
You even become critical of people you know and their parenting style… “They’re cosleeping! Can you imagine? She’s nearly three. And she has a dummy, she is constantly sucking on that damn dummy.”
Essentially, pre-baby we were the best damn parents that ever graced God’s good earth. We were going to raise a baby that would sleep through in his own bed from day one without even a dummy to comfort him, never use the TV as a babysitter, never leave the UK and suffer the wrath of irate mile high travellers, in fact never even leave our house – who needs nice meals or nights out? Yet despite all of this we’d still see our friends have time to be a couple and, you know, nail it all.
The only thing we forgot was to account for was the fact that – other than judging what (we thought) other people were doing wrong – we had no idea what it was like to be parents. And unless you’ve had a child, trust me, neither do you.
I know mummies who formula feed, breastfeed, combi feed, baby wear, pram push, co-sleep, cot sleep, puree wean, baby led wean, go out and party or stay in and cuddle and the list of different parenting choices goes on. But what one thing do all these mummies have in common? They’re doing what is best for them and for their babies. And do you know what? Their babies are all happier, healthier and thriving because of it. Despite all the differences they all have one thing in common. They are all mums who love their little ones.
So, to the babyless parents, next time you’re out and your meal is “rudely interrupted” by a crying baby lose the attitude and buy that mum a bloody BIG drink. Why? Because I guarantee she’s more stressed out (and embarrassed!) having people tut at her while she tries to enjoy the first hot meal she’s had in weeks than you are by having to listen to a baby whinge for a few short minutes.
Doesn’t cost much to be kind.