Moms are crazy. Moms can be judgey, insecure and mean towards other moms. Recently Jessica Alba was quoted that even though she runs a $1 billion business, the Honest Company, and is one of Hollywood’s most recognizable actresses — when it comes to parenting, she’s the first to admit that even she’s felt judged for her parenting skills.“Doesn’t it feel like the mean girl thing from high school sort of just transforms into adulthood through motherhood?” Alba said.
Back to school is around the corner and after the initial newness buzz dies down what we are really left with is seeing all of the other school moms every single flipping day. We all get to "connect" twice a day during school drop-off and pick-up, isn't that just wonderful?!
At the beginning of the school year we are all on our best behavior, smiling and complimenting each other's children when the reality is we are trying to break each other down, figure out the other's demons and form alliances, gossip about other's weird parenting habits, financial status, and emotional well-being. Why? What the heck is wrong with us ladies? This is such a colossal waste of energy and time!
As a mom to three boys under 11 this is not my first rodeo and I've figured out how to get along with many a school mom over the years.
#1 I Am Switzerland
I keep my head low, possibly even stuffed into my phone while I'm waiting for my children to fly out of the school doors at me. Some may call my behavior aloof, I am just fine with that, I like to keep them guessing.
#2 Choose Your Words Wisely
When I do engage in mindless banter with other moms I smile, keep it light and positive and I especially keep my snarky comments to myself. There is zero reason to give any one I don't know well fuel to feed their fire.
#3 Trust No One
I am careful who I say what to. I learned my lesson during a field trip when I spouted off my real feelings about a school event to the other mom and the next thing I know she is rudely texting another mom who then texts me to stop speaking to her! Talk about catty behavior.
#4 Protect Secrets and Confidences
Moms trust me, why, you ask? Because I am calm and truly want the best for my fellow moms. So, if another mom leans in and whispers a juicy tidbit or privately shares a personal moment do not send that around the school gossip chain. Keep it to yourself please!
#5 Respect Fellow Moms
Every mom is different and runs her family differently. Don't be a judgey Judy. Instead of rushing to make judgements stop and listen because you may just learn something or maybe what you're told is so far out there you'll be entertained during your drive home. Stop worrying about everyone else and focus on your gang of little creatures.
#6 Stay Professional
So what do you do if a conversation gets heated with a school mom? Stay professional! Bite your tongue and hold your breath. You can simply say, "I feel this situation is personal and I don't want to argue about this with a friend I respect." Do not try to win because you can't and really, who cares?
#7 Find Your People
You have to surround yourself with like minded mom friends who build you up. If a mean girl weasels her way into your life then you must break up with her. Goodbye.
#8 Don't Get Mommed Out
This is my all time favorite advice I give as well as take! When moms recognize our own needs and take time away from the kids or as I call it getting off of "Mommy Island" we have the reserves and calm perspective to handle any mom peer pressure. But, when worn out that's when we get into it with other moms and our own families. You deserve a break today.
The moral of the story is you cannot please everyone. Heck, we can barely get our kids to school on time as it is. I guarantee if you stop playing in the emotional mom war zone you will be a much happier, zen woman and the true bonus is you'll have the mental capacity for your children's endless needs, "Mom, mom, mom...."