Parenting is hard enough without having our peers judge us on our parenting styles, especially when they obviously don’t know the whole story. In a perfect world, we would support each other in our efforts and offer advice when it is sought, not judge other parents for doing things differently than we do. Having said that, obvious abuse or neglect of a child warrants others stepping in. Thankfully, those situations are the exception and not the rule.
Nobody likes to be judged on their parenting styles. Period. Your situation is different than your sibling’s, your neighbor’s, your friend’s or a stranger’s. There are so many moving parts that go into how a child is parented that nobody has the right to judge another parent’s methods. Nobody else has enough information about your child and your situation to make a correct judgement anyway. The same goes for you when observing another parent with their child. What it appears to be, may not be the case at all. Appearances can be deceiving.
This blog is specifically designed to educate parents on different methods of parenting other than corporal punishment. I am very passionate about wanting to see this form of “discipline” eliminated from every home in the world. But I’m not going to judge you if you still choose to use that method. I don’t understand it, but I don’t judge. Parenting is such a personal thing and it’s not my place to judge how you choose to parent your child. However, I will never stop advocating for spanking to die a grisly death as a parenting method in today’s society.
Judgement of other parents should only occur when there is a real need for it. If I see you texting while driving down the road with your children in the back seat, I’m going to judge you for it. If I see you so engrossed in your phone that you are unaware of how close your child is getting to a dangerous situation, I’m going to judge you for it. If I see you abusing your child, I’m going to judge you for that too. While you may not consider spanking a form of abuse, I do, and I certainly do not want to witness it. Some things are best done in the privacy of one’s own home. If you punish your child in public, expect to be publicly judged for it.
An old African proverb says, “It takes a village to raise a child”. As parents we should help each other, support each other and encourage each other in our efforts. When I was growing up a half century ago, it was common for any adult in the general vicinity to reprimand a child when they saw them doing something wrong. Everyone looked out for all the children so in a sense, helped parent them. As kids, we knew that if our neighbor, parental friend, teacher, church member or any other adult caught us doing wrong we would have to answer to them at the time and then our parents later. It was common to be “parented” by every adult in our lives. Coincidentally, it was a safer time for kids back then.
Unfortunately, that practice seems to have disappeared with the 1900’s. It just doesn’t happen anymore for whatever reason. Judgement of each other probably plays a big role in its demise. If we stopped judging each other and started helping each other instead, parenting would be less stressful and more productive. Reserve your judgement for situations that truly call for it and let other parents be their child’s “my perfect parent”.