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A Writer's Den: Support a Mom’s Right to Choose

Friday, October 15, 2010

Support a Mom’s Right to Choose

Because Walking in Another Mom's Shoes Ain't Easy

You never really notice all the bickering that goes on between moms until you actually become a mom. From breastfeeding to childcare, everyone has an opinion. I know I definitely have an opinion. But isn’t there a way we can have an opinion and still support a mom’s right to choose? Here’s a shortlist of a few issues we should start standing together on regardless of the personal decisions we have made for own families.

  1. Right to Be a Stay At Home Mom: No one wants to get interrogated for choosing their children over working for the man. Choosing to leave the workforce is not a bad thing. However, it is a choice that we should all respect. So don’t start the “you’ve worked to hard for that position or that degree” speech. Raising children is a 24/7 job, it just happens to be inside the home.

  1. Right to Work Outside the Home: It’s none of our business why a mother chooses to go back into the workforce after having children. It could be she loves her career, or maybe her  family needs the money. Whatever the reasons are, we should all have the choice to work outside the home if we chose to. So don’t try to make moms feel guilty for juggling motherhood and a career.

  1. Right to Choose Quality Childcare: Some of us have childcare-a-phobia, which means we ain’t trusting anyone to take care of our children. But what about the mother’s who have to use childcare? It may be hard to believe, but there are high quality daycares out there. So stop bashing moms who use childcare facilities.

  1. Right to Breastfeed in Public Places: Mother’s have a right to breastfeed, and they should be able to do it anywhere they choose to. Likening breastfeeding in public places to sexual activity is disgusting. If seeing a mom breastfeeding in a restaurant or coffee shop is a problem for you, you need help!

  1. Right to Formula Feed: For some breastfeeding moms, it may be hard for you to stomach this, but no mother should be forced to nurse their child. If you don’t want to breastfeed or didn’t have the opportunity to breastfeed, that’s okay. And no, the recent recall on formula is no reason to force every mother into breastfeeding.

  1. Right to use disposable diapers: Moms that use disposable diapers are not lazy. They may not be 100% tree huggers but it doesn’t mean they don’t care about the environment.

  1. Right to use Cloth diapers: Cloth diapering moms aren’t old fashioned, and no they’re not cheap either. It’s simply the path they have chosen to take.  

  1. Right to Have More Children: Far too often, I hear moms question why someone would want 5 or more children. Questions like “how can you give each one the attention they deserve” are ridiculous.  

  1. Right to Choose Public School: Lately everyone is looking for an alternative to public school. Every mom can’t afford private school, every child cannot attend charter school, and every public school isn’t bad. However, the right to choose a public school should always be an option. 

  1. Right to Homeschool: Educating your own children does not make them weird or unsocialized. Moms that homeschool their children are no different than moms who choose to send their children to school.

  1. Right to Spank: Yep, I said it. For all you non spankers, good for you. Spanking is not child abuse, nor is it illegal. In fact many of you were spanked, and although you may have taken a different path of disciplining your own children, you’re not aggressive and you haven’t killed anyone. Right?

  1. Right to Choose a Natural Birth: If you don’t want meds, and you don’t want to deliver in a hospital, this is a personal decision. I say if you can handle it, more power to you.

  1. Right to a Cesarean: Again, many of you will not agree. And yes, I’ve seen the rising number of cesarean sections that may not be necessary. My concern is that cesareans remain a viable option for those moms that need them.

I purposely didn’t include any statistics or studies in this list. This simply comes down to moms respecting other moms' decisions. Can you handle that? 

Credit: kemalbas © istockphoto.com/kemalbas

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