Competitive Moms

Miranda - posted on 08/21/2009 ( 4 moms have responded )

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I'm a new mom. My daughter is 5 months old so I have lots to learn and experience. I ask my best friend for baby advice all the time (mommy of a 2 year old). I've been around babies, toddlers and young kids for ever and know a lot for just having my first baby. However, since my daughter was born i'm finding that there are a few parents (moms&dads) at work and who i consider "friends" who seem to be a bit competive in regards to our kids. Who's baby babbling first? Oh my kids weighs more thans yours? Well my baby is doing this already why isn't yours? I'm also finding that there are often people who volunteer their advice without my request and sometimes tell me "no that's not right" vs i feel blah blah blah...any one else experiencing this? Just curious. Is this something I just need to get use to?

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Jennifer - posted on 08/27/2009

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Sadly, I have found as a working mother that the high school mentality doesn't disappear. You will discover what works for you or your child. A lot of their advice depended upon the situation, the personailities involved, etc. I wish that people wouldn't compare - I was lucky to find a parents of toddlers support group that helped alleviate developmental concerns as ALL children don't follow the supposed mold when growing and learning.



There are times I broke the 'good parent' rule because I needed to - the only way my baby slept 3 hours is when she slept on her tummy. Or, when she was sick I would sleep with her because she takes comfort out of someone holding her hand and I would be too tired to go to bed.



I try to caveat what worked for me as ideas but not as the total solution.

Teresa - posted on 08/25/2009

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I went to visit a friend whose son is a few months younger than my son. I thought this commonality would bring us closer. This need to compete through her son hurt me
deeply. One incident in particular really concerned me. Her son playfully hit my son, causing him to cry. My friend gleefully responded "you beat him up!" And I thought "What?!" Could this be jealousy masked in competiveness? I need to mention that my son was progressing well, reaching his milestones at a rapid pace-- on his own. I simply provided support and supervision during this developmental growth spurt. I am fully aware that every child will learn and grow at their own pace, which needs to be respected. Are not all children precious? What is this need to see your child out perform the others? Or even worse, to feel better about your own when others do worse?

Needless to say, we don't hang anymore.

Elise - posted on 08/24/2009

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I was only wondering this the other day, too! I am a new mum to a bub, too! But then I remembered: when you're single - other single friends tend to turn things into a competition. When you're married: other married people turn things into a competition (my husband does EVERYTHING in the yard so I get a rest). When you have a baby: other people with babies turn things into a competition!!



It's hard, when someone tells you that their friend's baby was walking at 5months old (and she must be REAL intelligent and clever to do that) while your baby is still happily rolling around on the floor and chewing on everything in site.



Who cares if you teethe late? I did! Who cares if you didn't sleep through the night? (I didn't until I was 2, and my Mum constantly reminds me of that...)



When people become competitive I just ignore it and cuddle my little girl. :)

Jennifer - posted on 08/21/2009

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Sadly you just have to let it roll off your back (most of the time) if you can. There are people that are simply competitive by nature and that extends to their children once they have them. Eventually you may hit a point where you've had enough of it though and then simply make it clear that you don't need the advice and that just because you aren't doing it THEIR way doesn't mean you are doing it wrong either. There are as many ways to raise children as there are families out there. No one does things exactly the same way as anyone else and you have to do what works best for you and your baby.



If it gets to it you may have to be very firm with some people too. I had a woman at work that was constantly trying to tell me how to do things (she thought she was helping since her kids are grown and I am a single mom) and I let it slide for awhile but when she got adamant that I had to start sleep training my daughter and that she HAD to sleep in her own crib instead of with me so often I put my foot down. My daughter LIKES sleeping with me and I like cuddling her, I am not willing to give up that little bit of extra time that we get together for anyone! I told her I appreciated her advise but that I was going to raise MY daughter MY way.



Oddly she doesn't give unsolicited advise anymore. :)

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