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Why Judging Moms Is More Harmful Than You Think


Your judgment hurts moms more than you know.

You’ve seen them, those kids throwing tantrums in the store or restaurant and the tired looking mother trying to defuse the situation. You probably even gave the whole situation  a head shake or an eye roll.

Or, maybe you’re the in-laws or the friend who can’t understand why a mom never has makeup on and why she’s always late.

Perhaps you’re the spouse who can’t understand why your wife never has time to clean the house or … look sexy anymore.


Even if you don’t say it, moms feel every bit of your judgmental sigh, eye roll, tsk and thought that happens. And, it’s way more harmful to us than you think.

ALSO ON PRIME PARENTS CLUB : Body Image Battles, Eating Disorders Plague Women Later in Life, Too

Why Judging Moms Is So Hurtful

If you’re not a mom–or, if you’re a mom whose kids are grown and may have forgotten–it may be difficult to understand. But, I need you to try for  a moment.

When you’re a mother, you feel guilt non-stop. I’m not talking about that fleeting, “Gee, was that the best thing?” thought. No, I’m talking about something that reaches in and clutches you in the gut, twists your insides and doesn’t let go. This happens about 3,722 times each and every day. (Ok, who knows how often, but it feels like that much.)

You see, we don’t need judgment from others because we are programmed to feel that we need to be perfect.  We beat ourselves up enough for all of you combined. We spend our day feeling sub par on everything–how we look, how we’re never enough for our spouse or partner, how we suck at work, and, worst of all, how we are the worst mom in the world. Every single day, we stack up our inadequacies like tiny sugar cubes placed one on top of each other–the taller that stack gets, the more it starts to sway. Your judgment may just be the one that makes it completely topple.

You may think this is grossly exaggerated, but I assure you it’s not. (You’ll see from the moms that comment on this post when it’s published.) The majority of moms battle this all day, every day–the feeling that we’re not enough for anyone. Ever. Ask any mom and, if she’s being honest with you, she’ll tell you that she probably hides and cries about it a few times a month, or regularly spends time feeling significantly inadequate in all that she juggles.

So, the next time you want to give an eye roll, or a passive-aggressive snide comment about how the dishes aren’t done AGAIN, you may want to reconsider. We already know we much we suck. We truly don’t need others to validate that for us. Trust us.


Image:David Castillo Dominici

Along with being a contributor to, Jacqueline Wilson is: Appalachia Advocate~Supporter of Women~Writer~Accidental Pit Bull Advocate.


  1. Lisa

    May 8, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    I remember all too well the challenges of taking small kids to the store, so I offer up support when I see a mom struggling in public.

    Guilt is part of the package when we become mothers. Lol

  2. Shannon G

    January 23, 2013 at 12:10 pm

    I’m in the middle of battling Mom Guilt vs. Work Guilt and neither side is winning (and I’m getting no where fast!) Thank you for articulating this – I’m 4 months into being a Mom and it’s sooooo much harder than I realized! (The actual care & feeding is fine…the emotional stuff is a struggle!) :)

  3. Angela D.

    January 21, 2013 at 9:54 pm

    Are you inside my head? This is so exactly how I feel. I was a perfectionist before I was a mom so I already constantly felt like I was failing somehow so adding the mom guilt on top of it has so not helped.

  4. Tamara

    January 21, 2013 at 3:18 pm

    I use to when the boys were little then when they started to grow and had their own issues that sometimes took all day to solve, or had a melt down in the store. I learned that many times it isn’t even their fault you don’t know what is going in with the child, or in their home for things to not be going as the parent has planned.

    Now I nod smile and ask if there is anything I can do to help. I know first hand even if its nothing that little gesture means everything and I know that even tho I am alone I really am not someone somewhat understands I am not a terrible person/mom.

  5. Christin

    January 21, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    I think one way to overcome the battle of mom guilt is to be involved with positive, uplifting groups of women who are in the same season of life as you. Having the support of other women who are experiencing the same ups and downs of motherhood as you can be a life saver. I am so thankful for the MOPS group that I was invited to when my girls were little. I know it helped me shake off a lot of that mommy guilt and know that I am the best mom for MY children because God chose ME to be their mother…not someone else. Now that my girls are getting older I try to make a conscience effort to offer a helping hand or uplifting comment to a mom who looks like she is having a rough day in public. That’s what it is all about, lending a hand and supporting each other instead of tearing each other down.

  6. brandy

    January 21, 2013 at 12:06 pm

    I think you hit the nail on the head writing this. I feel like this at least 22/24 hours a day..that i didn’t do enough around the house…did i do that right…or if I’m out i always think some is thinking badly of me if i tell my kids no you can’t have that.

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