The Dangers of Mom Shaming: Why Nigerian Women Need to Stop !

A few days ago I shared a post on instagram about Nigerian women and their relationships with their house helps/domestic staff/nannies (I recently authored an e-book called The Domestic Staff Guide, which you can download by clicking HERE. This e-book helps to address the common issues Nigerian women face with hiring help, maintaining positive relationships with their domestic staff, so that everyone can flourish). The post garnered a lot of comments, and even though it was a light hearted post, it soon became a battle of Nigerian Women in Nigeria vs Nigerian Women in Diaspora - and to my horror insults began flying left, right and centre, some people got blocked, there was name calling and ultimately mom shaming which I DO NOT SUPPORT! You can view the post HERE

What is mom shaming?
Mom shaming is an unfortunately all-too-common phenomenon where a mother is judged, criticized or belittled for her parenting decisions or the way she chooses to raise her children. Examples of mom shaming include criticizing a mother for the way she dresses her children, belittling a mother for the way she disciplines her children, or insinuating that a mother isn't a good parent because she chooses not to breastfeed her child. Mom shaming is never acceptable and can have a very negative impact on a mother's mental health and wellbeing.

How mom shaming affects women

Mom shaming is a form of public shaming or humiliation that targets mothers, often for choices that are seen as socially unacceptable. It has been found to have a negative effect on women's mental and physical health, as well as their self-confidence. Women who are shamed often experience feelings of guilt, shame, anxiety, and depression. It can also have a lasting impact on a woman's relationships with her peers, family, and children. Furthermore, mom shaming can lead to feelings of isolation and alienation from other mothers, as well as an increased stigma associated with motherhood. Ultimately, mom shaming is a serious issue that can have a detrimental impact on women's mental and physical wellbeing.

How to stop mom shaming (if you find yourself doing it)
Mom shaming can be a difficult issue to tackle, but there are some steps you can take to help reduce it.
  • First, try to be mindful of your own words and actions. Modeling kind and understanding behavior towards other moms can help set the tone for how others interact with each other. 
  • Second, be an advocate for other moms and stand up for them when you see someone else mom shaming. 
  • Lastly, work to create a supportive and understanding community of moms who can encourage and uplift each other. 
  • Having a positive and understanding environment can go a long way in helping to stop mom shaming.

How to fight mom shaming (if it's directed at you)
Mom shaming is a difficult situation to navigate. The best way to fight it is to focus on yourself and your parenting style, rather than trying to please or appease those who may be shaming you. 
  • Start by educating yourself about the different aspects of parenting and develop your own unique style. 
  • Be confident and comfortable in your choices, even if they are different from those of other parents. 
  • Speak out against mom shaming when you see it, whether it be in person or online. 
  • Encourage other parents to do the same and support each other. 
  • Lastly, remember that you're doing the best you can and that's what matters most.
Mom shaming is an unfortunately common issue in our society. It is important to remember that each mother’s journey is unique and that no one should be judged or criticized for their parenting decisions. It is also important to remember that parenting is hard and that we should be supportive of each other and build each other up, rather than tear each other down. If you are in a conversation where mom shaming is taking place, it’s important to speak up and remind everyone that being a parent is difficult and that we should be supportive of each other.

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