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Anderson Cooper, the Mommy Wars, and the Missing Book

It appears that I got short changed when I left the hospital with each of my babies.

I dug through the pile of things they sent me home with each time.

Diapers, check.

Ginormous pads, check.

Dermoplast, check.

I dug and dug and never found this book that so many other parents were given.

If you haven’t actually seen the book, you’ve likely heard of it.

You know…the one with all of the answers in it?

The one that offers up the one correct way to raise every single child ever born.

The one that provides each individual family with one, never-changing set of directions.

Yeah, that one.

And every time I start to accept the fact that I just didn’t get the book, I see someone out there showing off because they did.

Yesterday, I saw evidence that the book must certainly exist when I read some of the comments left for Jill Krause (of the blog Baby Rabies) on her Facebook page.

Apparently, there are women who know how Jill should be raising her children better than she does.

They pointed out that Jill, who had made what she believed to be an informed decision to allow her one-year-old daughter to cry it out a bit in the night, is most definitely a neglectful parent.

Jill explained her the reasoning behind her decision to let her daughter cry it out…

What it’s really boiled down to is that my children need and DESERVE a functioning mother during the day. I can NOT function without sleep. In fact, I’m confident the lack of sleep the last year has been a huge contributing factor to my postpartum anxiety, and the days following a few measly hours of sleep are awful, even with medication and a gallon of coffee.

She went on to add…

I truly feel that most parents are trying really hard not to screw up their kids, and I’m sure very few make the decision to let their baby cry in the middle of the night lightly. So can we please stop demonizing educated parents who feel like this is their only option?

I can only assume that the women who left Jill those one-size-fits-all opinions are in possession of this amazing parenting guide.

And the producers of the upcoming episode of Anderson Cooper’s show that will undoubtedly fuel the mommy wars? Well, apparently they’ve also seen this book.

My wise friend Katie Hurley, who writes over at Practical Parenting, blogged about this topic yesterday and when I asked her to share her thoughts on not only her post, but about the mommy wars on a larger scale, she replied…

“These ‘Mommy Wars’ that the media is intent on perpetuating right now are causing more harm than just a few snide comments daytime TV. Mothers everywhere are questioning their choices, their parenting skills, and their self-worth. The question should not be who is the better or happier parent, but how can we support each other along this parenting journey so that we can remove depression, anxiety, and isolation from the equation and, in doing so, model empathy, kindness, and understanding for our children to emulate? Moms divided leads to stress and anxiety, but moms united will lead to more self-confident moms and happier children everywhere. At the end of the day, it really does take a village.”

And I think she’s right.

Until every single parent is in possession of this magical book with all of the answers, perhaps we could quit it with all of the judging?

And for those of us who didn’t get the book? I’ll meet you over at the Mom Pledge community!

You can also find Nichole over at in these small moments and on Facebook and Twitter too!

 

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