How to Be a Dad

How to Be a Dad

Judgment Day Parenting

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Judgmental Strollers

When you become a parent, with it arrives your own personal judgment day. No, I don’t mean the End of Days or a Terminator melting into a chrome knifesicle and stabbing at you. I mean, it’s the day (and it’s not just one day) that all the uppity spectators in the land of parenthood direct their cross-eyed gaze at you and fart out opinions for the purpose of paving over their own insecurities with self-assuredness.

Don’t get me wrong. There are many helpful, compassionate fellow baby-zookeepers. I’ve gotten some of the best advice about being a dad from chance encounters with strangers on the street yelling at me.

This photo is for all the cuckoo-for-cocoa-puffs moms and dads who want to win the Gold Medal in the Parent Dictatorship Olympics. Do you see how ridiculous you look on the outside?

Facebook is great…
… for posting judgmental stuff about us! Go for it!

Learn some stuff.
It’s the antidote to know-everything-parenting-itis!
 

15 Comments

15 Responses to “Judgment Day Parenting”

  1. Without question it’s easier to judge than to be judged. Parenting experts trying to indoctrinate insecure parents to their templates of wisdom may well be the biggest running scam next to Get Rich schemes in Real Estate. Yet I feel sharing what we know from our own experience without pretense can be helpful. You take what works for your particular situation. And at some point you recognize, I know my kid best.

    -Vincent | @CuteMonsterDad | CuteMonster.com

  2. Steve says:

    Take lots of pictures of your happy kid–that 1st birthday party she won’t remember, the Disney World trip at age 3 he cannot recall. All this will serve as “proof” you were good parents when your kid is thirty-three and pouring his troubled little heart out to the therapist at $125 per hour.

  3. As a parent I understand that when a kid is acting up all the parent can think about is resolving the issue and moving on. I’m stressed out and the last thing I need is some stroller “offering” advice because it just adds to the anxiety and makes me want to tell them off, even if the advice is good. Bad timing.

  4. My favorite is being judged by non-parents. It’s preposterous. Or by parents of an infant who don’t yet have a four year old, and who once they do have a four year old might care to eat their judgement like a sour wad of snot. And then I remember that I once was an asshole who harbored critical thoughts and so maybe what goes around comes around. And maybe it’s a good lesson in not presuming to know before having walked a mile in somebody’s shoes.

    • Jessica says:

      What this guy said. Exactly right!

      • Mary says:

        YES!! And equally annoying is the parent of a single child who acts all superior because she only has one child when you have 2 or more!! Favorite line “Oh, that’s why we only had one child. There is just no way that I could do all I need to for my sweet perfect daughter if I had more children.” Slight exaggeration of the quote but the meaning is dead on.

  5. Terry says:

    The worst are the non parents and the ones of a single infant who is still just a couple months old. They’re still in their honeymoon phase I call it. Just wait I say your day will come when you have 3 all different ages from infant to 7yrs and all you need is 30 sec’s of quite.

  6. Gah!! Sometimes I can’t stop myself from giving out free information way beyond the scope of the original question/observation. There’s something cathartic about telling someone everything you learned about how to have a child eat, sleep, potty train and behave at Ikea. Consider it an awkward way of saying : I SURVIVED THAT. I’ve probably caused some to recoil in horror as I round it up with a cheery “but that’s just my experience…..”
    It’s the coffee.

  7. For the record, when I saw the pic I thought you were going write about judging other peoples’ stroller choices……

  8. Michelle Bird says:

    If i see another parent struggling i try to offer a smile off support. Sometimes i would feel so isolated when struggling with my 2 when they were small and just a friendly look would have helped. Sometimes thats enough, sometimes it helps the person struggling feel you are approachable. Many i time i’ve spent 10 minutes talking to a new frazzled parent. But something i always say before i offer ANY advice is…”well this is how I coped, both my kids needed different approaches so dont take it as gospel!!!” It could be the best advice in the world, but it may not work for your kid!

  9. Karen says:

    I have to say, I try to encourage other parents – this is a hard job. I have found that when I see a stressed parent, sometimes some levity helps. Even a “I have so been there myself!” I am judged a heck of a lot because I am an unconventional parent. My son is finally a teenager, very tall and I am sick of people asking if he plays sports. No, he is a nerd and I am proud of it! He will swim for hours, likes to bike but his student activities at school are all academically based by his choice and I get a lot of “Well you should make him play a sport!” He does, ever see the teamwork and cooperation needed to build a robot and battle another team? My daughter is herself. Zombie and nonsparkly vampire nut at age 8. Her new favorite movie is Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. I got a lot of odd looks bringing her into it but she loved it. She is also very well mannered and sweet. Both my children are.

    I have learned that those parents who are the most judgemental often have the most screwed up kids. The kids at school call me the cool mom, but then they also hear me encouraging manners, setting limits, etc. Then they realize you can have a fun parent who can still parent. My brother in law who is a psychiatrist I think is convinced I am raising a serial killer.

    I do get a lot of how do I do it? Honestly, I don’t know. I just flow with it and make it up as I go along.

  10. Aigul says:

    It’s no fun when you see misbehaving kids and a helpless parent around. I wouldn’t be surprised that people feel judgmental. They all want peace and quiet. But! If a guilty parent knows what to do then he won’t have misbehaving kids. So, this case of for parents who don’t know what to do, and the judgment doesn’t help either, but giving him/her additional reason to feel guilty. So, why bother! People, leave parents alone!

  11. Drew Fix says:

    Tucson is hot. A lot of times I forget my pants whilst strolling my baby at 5:40am. Don’t judge!
    It is an Eddie Bauer stroller, not sure what that means though.

  12. Carla says:

    What bothers me is people in positions of power/athority abusing that power/athority. My childs pediatrician made me cry as a first time parent. He told me that I could no longer breast feed, I had to bottle feed and if she didn’t gain weight he was going to put her in the hospital and she would have tubes sticking out of her. He then proceded to tell me he didn’t think I was taking it serious enough.

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