Thursday, June 23, 2011

MY Decisions, Not YOURS!

I am a very passionate person. I believe very strongly in parental rights. Meaning, I believe a parent has the right to choose any legal method to parent.

So, it makes no difference to me if you breast feed or formula feed. Just as long as your baby is being fed.

It makes no difference to me if you use cloth diapers or disposable diapers.

It makes no difference to me if you circumcise or don't.

It makes no difference to me if you send your child to public, private, Montessori school or home school them yourself. Just as long as you are involved in their education and make sure they are getting the best possible.

It makes no difference to me if you co-sleep or put your baby in their own bed right away.

And {one of the most controversial of all}, it is not my place to order you to vaccinate your child or not.

My first child was born when I was 19. I listened to the world around me. I mean, they were all mothers. They knew what was best, right? As the years went on, even after my second was born, I started questioning what I was told. It was then I started to investigate my options. I realized that I had choices and not everyone's was going to be the same. I realized that just because someone else did something a certain way, didn't mean I had to.

Every time I was faced with a decision, I was came to from all sides. "This way is best." "That way is wrong." "This is what you are SUPPOSED to do." I learned to smile and say "Thank you for your opinion. After I complete my research on {said topic}, my husband and I will make the best decision for OUR family." Many of our decisions weren't the popular ones, but hey. It was our right to make that choice.

Now, don't take me as one of those people who throws my hands up when you're giving me your opinion on something. Because I'm not. I will listen to your well thought out statements. Just don't get mad at me if I don't agree with you. And by the same token, I'm not going to belittle you or call you a bad parent if you do something different than me. But, if you ask for my opinion, I'm going to tell it to you. I don't expect you to follow my every word and do as I do. But, don't get upset if my opinion differs.

Just because I believe one way doesn't mean I'm some crazed person who is out to form every mother to be like me. I don't view circumcision as mutilation just because I didn't circumcise my son. I don't view all public education as inadequate just because I home school my children. You have to realize that you can't make every mother make the same decisions you did. That, you see, takes away parental right to choose.

So, just a little reminder -- How to parent MY child(ren) is MY decision, not YOURS!

And now, I will get off my soapbox.

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