Have you felt judged for being health conscious? I know I have. It makes me even more conscious NOT to judge anyone, for any reason. We are all just doing the best we can after all…
by Sydney Miller | guest writer for The Snap Mom
I guess I would consider myself a scrunchy mama. My family’s lifestyle falls somewhere midway between crunchy and silky. I always knew I wanted to be a mom, and my husband and I decided to start trying to have a baby about two years ago. Once we had decided “it was time,” I did just about all the research I could possibly do to prepare to live a healthier life. I had never realized that there could be toxic chemicals in just about every type of food or product that there is to buy.
I was hit with a very harsh reality check and knew we had some decisions to make about our lifestyle. Hoping my husband wouldn’t think I was crazy, I shared with him everything I had learned. Bless his heart, he was on board, and we completely changed our way of living. I am pretty much the only one among my family and friends who has taken on this lifestyle.
My husband and I eat organic and pay close attention to what is in our food (no artificial yuck). We use nontoxic cleaning and skin care products and only allow our son to play with nontoxic wooden toys, and the list goes on and on. Living the crunchy life has its challenges. I constantly have to look into every ingredient in the food, skin care and cleaning products that I buy.
Because I live in a smaller town, I don’t always have access to certain foods and products that meet the “crunchy” criteria. When a holiday or birthday approaches, I worry about the possibility of someone lovingly giving our baby a plastic toy. Do I risk offending the gift giver, or allow my son to play with a toy that is potentially toxic? Even going out of town and needing a quick bite to eat can pose problems. When we are visiting a friend or family member who doesn’t eat or live the way we do, we don’t have any healthy options. I usually have to over prepare and make sure to pack healthy snacks and foods that I can give my one year old, so that he doesn’t eat the unhealthy foods that mommy and daddy are eating.
These are just some of the struggles I deal with. I often find myself feeling ashamed of our choices or feel the need to defend myself to friends and family. I wonder if they are going to think I am crazy because I am not allowing my child to do some of the things they allow their child to do. I have become extremely passionate about healthy/nontoxic living and find myself in situations that don’t always make me feel good. Loving and well-meaning family and friends question me about my parenting. I have heard things such as, “You are not feeding Landon the way you should,” or “You are giving your child a very strict life,” or “Your child is going to feel deprived.”
We natural mamas can often feel like outcasts or feel judged for our lifestyle choices. I worry that I come off as a snob, as if I think that what other people are doing isn’t good enough for me. Every life has a different flavor. There is no “right” way of living, just a way that is right for you and your family. At the end of the day, we are all just mamas and papas who want what is best for our families. So rather than judge, why don’t we support one another and learn what we can?