Stop It. Just Stop It.

The other day, I was going about my business and a friend of mine sent me this picture⇩ because she just knew that this would push all my ‘For fuck’s sake’ buttons. And she was right. So very, very right.

Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 11.03.07

Just in case you’re not sure exactly what you’re looking at: this is a bespoke, personalised cloth nappy designed by the kind of mother that I want to shake, kick in the shins, pinch her bingo wings and then top it all off with a Chinese burn.

If this woman had a blog she would call it I BECAME A MUM AND GOT SUPER SMUG BECAUSE NOW I KNOW EVERYTHING AND I’M THE MOST PERFECT MUM IN THE WORLD AND JUST IN CASE YOU WEREN’T SURE I THOUGHT I’D GET IT PRINTED ON A FUCKING CLOTH NAPPY SO YOU COULD ALL KNOW HOW FUCKING AWESOME I AM AS A MUM AND A HUMAN AND YOU CAN TRY EVERY DAY OF YOUR SORRY LITTLE LIVES TO BE HALF AS GOOD A MUM AS I AM BUT YOU WILL FAIL.com

Imagine if Angelina Jolie had a t-shirt made up that said:

‘No fat on my bum.
Millions of dollars in my bank.
Sleep with Brad Pitt.’

The whole world, without exception, including her husband and every single one of her many, many children would want to stab her in the eyeballs with white hot needles. It’s not nice to boast, it’s not nice to be obnoxious. Quite simply, people don’t like smug dickheads.

What is this woman expecting us to say to this message that is, quite literally, full of shit? Does she want us to say, “Well done! I wish I could spend an inordinate amount of money on bespoke cloth nappies that tell everyone just how awesome I think I am.” Or perhaps she’s hoping we’ll all throw down our formula, our disposable nappies and exclaim her as the prophet of all things baby? Perhaps she’s expecting us to get on our humbled hands and knees and say, “Thank you oh wise one for showing us the way.”

And before the haters hate, let me be CLEAR: I am not against cloth nappies; I’m not against breastfeeding; I’m not against co-sleeping. Those are all wonderful things to do and if they work for you then amazing. What I am against is smug momma types self-declaring their ways as the best way, and I’m REALLY against smug momma types paying for advertising space on their Small’s stinky bum-bum to make sure that we all know how fabulous fucked up they are.

If, for a second, I side-step my anger and allow myself a few seconds to try and empathise with this woman and perhaps try to imagine a world in which this is a thing to be celebrated then…

….

Nope. Nothing. I’ve got nothing.

So, little Miss Smug Socks, stop it. Just stop it.

11 thoughts on “Stop It. Just Stop It.

  1. Adrienne says:

    You crack me up!!
    FYI I recently met a woman that was pregnant and also still breastfeeding her 3 year old daughter & 1 year old daughter. How is this possible ?!! A human woman! That is her choice & she seemed very happy so that’s cool, but every mother has to do what works for them. Free from guilt and shame print cloth nappies!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Melinda Frowde says:

    Hang on….Cat I have to be honest and say I’m disappointed. I thought the purpose of your blog and endeavors was about the sisterhood of motherhood!!!! That’s out the door on this post. We should all be able to joyfully rejoice our choice and you’ve just slammed someone in the face for their choice of raising their child.?!?!?!

    Like

    • catsims says:

      Hey Min…nope! It very clearly says that I am NOT slamming them for their choices when it comes to raising their child. It clearly says I think that cloth nappies, breastfeeding and co-sleeping are all wonderful things. What I’m slamming is the clear ways SHE is undermining the sisterhood with the passive aggressive message that if you’re not using cloth nappies or breastfeeding or co-sleeping then you are ‘less than’. This kind of attitude is EXACTLY the reason that there is no sisterhood and goes right to the heart of why I started the blog in the first place. So yes while I am slamming this person for her decision to have this embroidered on a cloth for us all to marvel at I am NOT slamming her parenting choices at (there’s a whole paragraph dedicated to exactly that!) This is not nice behaviour, this does not support the sisterhood and we wouldn’t accept this passive aggressive judgemental bullshit in any other walk of life. I’m not slamming her as a mother; I’m slamming her as a person because, quite simply, it’s not very nice.

      (Ps.love you!)

      Like

  3. Snap says:

    I love this blog and constantly share it, but I didn’t enjoy the attitude in this post. If you take a step back and for one second try to interpret things a bit from the other side – perhaps she isn’t boasting. Perhaps she’s done it to make herself feel better and to give her a sense of pride – not in a boastful way, slamming others, but for herself. Maybe she’s had a hard time too and she’s feeling proud of achieving those things, as they are often not easy. Having pride about something isn’t always about making others feel bad or less good than you. Sometimes it’s not about others – sometimes it’s just about you. Perhaps it was a gift from someone else, witnessing how hard a time this mother had had and trying to make her see that she’s done some wonderful things for her baby. Things aren’t always black and white and people don’t always do things to deliberately upset others. Like you’ve said – mothers are all motherfucking sorcerers! Don’t be a hater, whether you think it’s justified or not – keep kindness in your soul. x

    Liked by 1 person

    • catsims says:

      Snap…that’s a totally fair comment & I appreciate what you’re saying. I still feel that, in the context of motherhood & the guilt that exists and the competition that is constant, this is an uncomfortable thing to see. But maybe you’re right…the real problem is WHY this momma felt the need to do this. Why do we all feel the need to be so defensive or to justify all our choices? There is something else here…you’re right. Thanks for getting in touch x

      Like

      • katinda81 says:

        Cat, I agree with you totally. I think the issue is that this mother *may* only be doing this because she’s so proud of what she’s achieved …But. This plays into nearly every one of the Internet Rage Debates about how to bring up baby and it’s just NOT possible to disassociate these words from the context in which they’re used in our society. It’s very generous and nice (and, sorry, naive) to imagine that this somehow found its way to being posted online because the original mother was feeling proud of her achievements. Because someone, at some point, has shared this online because they think this is how to raise babies and anyone who doesn’t is Wrong. Maybe that means that it’s been hijacked but srsly anyone who thinks that sort of message won’t be hijacked has clearly never been on the internet. I guess the point is that it’s not about suggesting that the original mother who made this is being a meanie (I still TOTALLY think she was – call me cynical) but just pointing out that the message, in context, can be interpreted as mean. Like it or not, we live in a society where people that do breastfeed/co-sleep hate a LOT on people that don’t breastfeed/co-sleep, so yeah, it’s mean.

        Like

  4. Yvette @ BigTrouble says:

    Just found your blog via the #BiBs – we’re shortlisted together – big congratulations! Love this post and bloody hate smug parenting. I am working on a post about it at the moment but I’m struggling to stop it from sounding totes bitter!

    Like

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