Yes, things can get nasty in the blogosphere.
Why? Well, because bloggers (and readers) are people and people inevitably hurt one another. It is par for the course. (Have you ever made it through an afternoon play date without having to help your child “say sorry” to their friend?)
And when it comes to parenting subjects or parenting advice, well mothers can get a bit, shall we say, passionate…
So, when I received an email from Rachel who writes at Grasping for Objectivity about her “Mommies Coexist Pledge” I wrote a post at 5 Minutes for Mom about her positive and thoughtful response to the negativity she was seeing in the online mom community.
While Rachel recognizes that we are all guilty of judging and hurting one another, she has decided to try to stick to a personal pledge — what she calls her “Mommies Coexist Pledge.”
The basic premise is encouraging Mommies to Coexist – to not judge each other for not doing parenting the way they “think” it should be done.
Rachel made herself this pledge, to try to do the following things whenever talking to another mother:
1. Listen – Really listen. Hear what they’re saying and what they’re not saying. I won’t interrupt to talk over them. I will just listen.
2. Encourage – I will share with other mothers where I see them excelling, compliment their amazing strengths, and encourage them in their paths.
3. Discern – I will only offer advice if someone directly asks for it. Otherwise, I will go back to steps one and two.
4. Accept – I will appreciate the fact that other people’s lives and choices won’t – and shouldn’t – look just like mine. Choices are out there for a reason – we need them.
We are all going to mess up, especially with this parenting gig. (I say sorry to my children on a regular basis!) And we are definitely all going to hurt.
So, I love Rachel’s pledge — a quest to support, a quest to love, a quest to coexist.
Read more of Janice’s posts at 5 Minutes for Mom.
And don’t miss a post — follow @5MinutesforMom on Twitter!