Parenthood is a gift. Parenthood is something that should not be taken for granted. The “Mother Hood” video by Similac describes many different “types” of parents, including working mothers, stay-at-home mothers, stay-at-home dads, bottle-feeding mothers, breast-feeding mothers, and same sex couple mothers.
I believe no matter your parenting beliefs or style, you should not look down on how another parent is parenting or the techniques he or she chooses. The same goes to how you become a parent–whether that is through biology, surrogacy, adoption, or marriage. There are people out there that believe the only “real” way to become a parent is biologically. But I believe that is not true; a parent is a parent and should be treated as such. John Shedd said it best: “Simply having children does not make mothers.”
The video goes on to end with a “fight” starting and a stroller starting to roll down a hill. Everyone stops and runs to try and help the baby in the stroller. They catch the stroller, and the baby is fine. It ends by saying, “No matter our beliefs, we are parents first.”
What the underlying message? To me, it means that no matter how you became a parent, you are a parent. No matter your parenting style, deep down we are just a parent wanting the best for all children.
This view that we are all just trying to be the best parents we can be also relates to a family’s open adoption decision. Open adoption is when there is communication between the birth parents, adoptive parents, and children. In most cases, open adoption has been shown to be beneficial for everyone involved, which is against our society’s views because of the stereotypes about it.
“We all want the best for our children and try to be the best parents we can. Leave the judging aside and unite as parents–parents who are doing their best to love and nurture their children. We have different methods of raising our children, but that doesn’t mean any of those methods are wrong. There are many ways to responsibly raise kids. We all simply try to do our best.” (www.familyshare.com)
I hope that you will view this video and use it as a starting point of communication. If you know someone who has adopted, ask them about their experience. If you know someone using a parenting technique you don’t agree with, simply don’t judge the individual, but ask about it. We all can learn from each other and become more educated in the process.