I was recently having an email exchange with a reader who had left some critical comment here at the old blog. We were having what I consider to be a fairly interesting discussion about the scope of government and the relative merits of recent Presidents. Then she said this:
I feel that all citizens should practice personal responsbility [sic] regarding their finances, reproduction and progeny. Expecting the rich to pay for everything, the abortion doctors to solve our little mistakes and the daycare industry to raise our children is ludicrous and selfish.
Ok. If you want to talk small government, supply-side economics, or the morality of abortion with me, fine. I’m down. I can go all day. But that little crack about daycare? That snide dig at working mothers? That suggestion that mothers who go to a job aren’t good mothers? That stupid ignorant bullshit that mothers who utilize daycare aren’t truly raising their children? It’s on. I will not take that politely.
Here’s what I said to her:
Though I will take everything I just said back if you meant your comment about daycare in your email to me as a dig about me and my family. Say what you want about my politics but do not accuse me of not being a good mother because I work put a roof over our heads. That’s personal and intolerable. You are not in a position to criticize that.
Here what I wanted to say to her and every cow who’s ever used the phrase “I don’t need daycare to raise my children”:
Fuck you and the self-righteous horse you rode in on.
You. Don’t. Know. Not one of you out there is really privy to a family’s finances, emotional state, or personal needs. You don’t know and you should not presume to know. And you should not, should NEVER, judge.
Parents work for many reasons. All of them are valid. You hear that, snitchy cows who look down on the working mom who does it for personal fulfillment? I just said that that mother’s reasons for working as just as good as those of the mother who does it because without her paycheck her kids can’t eat. Yeah. JUST AS VALID. And also just as valid as reasons for not working outside the home. I’ll say it again: JUST AS VALID.
Nothing makes me angrier than the implication that I’m not a good mother because my child goes to daycare. Like maybe I stop loving him, thinking about him, worrying about him, planning for him, and having big dreams for him just because he and I aren’t in the same room? Like maybe I spend my hours with him filing my nails and chatting on the phone instead of talking to him, teaching him, reading to him, sharing experiences with him, and showing him in every way I can that his parents love him with every breath? Like I let his teachers do all the heavy lifting so I can ignore him to pursue financial gain? Is that what you judgey bitches who talk that kind of shit think? Is it? Has that thought crossed your mind? Has it? Nice. Well, keep it to yourself, you arrogant bully. In fact, keep yourself to yourself. I don’t want to know if you if that’s how you regard working parents.
I’ve stated before that, apart from abuse or putting you kids on reality tv, I don’t care how anyone else parents. I trust that everyone is doing their best with that they have and what they need. I would never cluck about a stay at home mom and say “It’s too bad she’s not good enough to hold a real job.” Saying that sort of thing, even thinking that sort of thing, would make me a cock-smoking asshat, wouldn’t you agree? And saying that a working mom is outsourcing raising her kids is just as bad.
We are all moms. We should have a duty to stand up for each other. We should never tear each other down. Never. Never ever. So examine your words and your thoughts and decide if they’re worthy of that spirit. If they’re not, if all they do is serve to make you feel superior at the cost of making another mother sad, angry, or needlessly ashamed, then you need to acknowledge that you might just be a bully and start working on yourself. Because it’s always the bully who sucks, not the mom who’s trying her best to get through the day.