Wednesday, January 15, 2014 • Varese, Lombardy
I learned a new phrase the other day. And no, my daughter did not learn it at school. (Thank God I'm not THERE yet!). It's was "mom shaming". Have you heard about this? It's the act upon which other mothers or women put down another mom or woman because the don't agree with her actions, behavior, choices, decisions or appearance. I heard about it when a fellow blog writer and personal trainer posted a picture of herself and her three young children. http://hollywoodlife.com/2013/10/16/fit-mom-whats-your-excuse-defends-controversial-pic-maria-kang/ Boy were some of the comments she received downright mean! It made me ask, why? I made the decision long ago that pictures of myself or other women showing "skin" would not grace my website or Facebook page. I seek out quotes or pictures that show healthy images, but not necessarily six pack abs, bulging muscles or overly shown anything. Why? Because that's not motivating to everyone. While I found this woman's blog and picture motivating, I could also see how others would not. For me, it was a "hell ya! What IS my excuse? Better push for those extra reps and say no to that glass if wine tonight." But that's me! I thought she was brave and inspirational. I could also see how other might be intimidated by that image. I never looked like that before being a mom, there's no way I'd get there now. I have all these stretch marks. I can't even get done what I currently have on my plate, let alone exercise or eat healthy. They can't see how to get from here to there, so her challenge of "What's your excuse?", seems more like a kid on the playground saying "na, na, nanana!". And that's just not nice. I believe in the image of strong, sexy, athletic, healthy, kind, loving, supportive, uplifting women and mothers. I try to do my best to thoughtfully provide information, motivation and support that adheres to those sentiments. Which is why you won't see those images on my sites or pages. Because your excuses are real to you. I think "mom bashing" is sad. Society, television, magazines, the Internet are all telling women and mothers, you're not good enough. We hear it enough in our own heads. Feeling like we don't measure up. We don't need other women and moms telling us our fears are real. That we're not fit enough, thin enough, a good enough cook, wearing the right clothes, parenting the right way, etc. Those fears live in our own heads and when we lash out at other moms or women, it's really because we're not sure we're measuring up, so we want to knock them down. What if we were to lift them up instead? To celebrate what they've achieved and the steps they're taking to do better? What more could we achieve? I'll continue to celebrate strong, sexy, healthy, athletic women and mothers. Let them be examples of what is possible for each of us. And let "mom bashing" be a word that is extinquished from our vocabulary because it is no longer being done. Let us acknowledge our own fears and choose to take a chance toward change anyway. And let us celebrate the women that are already doing just that!