Is It Okay To Say It’s None Of Your Business?
After two years of defending my son’s issues to people, I’m kind of done.
People don’t know this. But for a long time now, parents on the playground that I meet often make conversations with me out of the blue. I felt the need to defend my parenting decision at every turn because I was a single mother.
I wrote a blog post after blog post about issues that I encountered in parenthood. I wrote about how I handled every issue. This is all because people noticed us.
People noticed us from the beginning when we moved into a giant suburban town next to a city. I don’t know why we stuck out.
But, somehow we did.
So, People asked. People questioned.
In the beginning, I felt scrutinized. After a while, I felt stalked. Then, it progressed into a bit of paranoia. Finally, it was triggering because of recovery from my previous PTSD.
Now, I just don’t care. I’m pretty open about it all. I explain it all as much I can to whoever that ask me.
After so many blog posts, I finally feel like I’m a good parent. I’m a good parent because I finally see that my child turned out to be a well-adjusted child despite his issues.
The other day, a grandmother stopped us at the duck pond and out of the blue struck up a conversation with me about my son’s condition. She ended the conversation by saying that I was a good mother. I was grateful that she said that.
But, at the same time, why did it take two years for me to get this kind of acknowledgment?.
Why was I scrutinized in this way?
I will never know the answer to either.
In any case, being scrutinized left me feeling like I was not a good parent. It gave me so much anxiety about parenting decisions that I always second-guessed myself. It contributed to the depression that I experienced when things were not going well.
Nevertheless, I pulled through, thankfully.
The truth is that just because I disowned my narcissistic family system and didn’t have “family support”, it doesn’t mean that I can not provide my son with all his needs.
The truth is that just because I’m a single mother, it doesn’t mean that I can not deal with a special needs son without having a husband.
The truth is that just because I was a career woman who knew nothing about being a mother couldn’t learn and find out how to be a good mother to my son.
Yes, I didn’t have good role models to look up.
Yes, I didn’t have family support to show me how.
Yes, I didn’t have a close group of mom friends to talk about issues.
But, I learned anyway.
I learned through online research.
I learned through talking to whoever, whenever I had an issue.
I learned through blogging and receiving comments.
I learned through participating in online parenting communities.
I learned through following my intuitions and placing my son’s needs before my own.
I learned through trial and error.
Through these two years, I also lost my financial stability. Not only did I lose my family and support system, I also lost a career path that I was actively working to achieve. Due to my son’s issues, I also had to give up my dog who I cared for like a daughter.
Amid all of these losses, what did I do?
I was depressed but I spent a year working on my mental health.
Then, I spent another year creating blogs, publications, and a freelance writing business.
I was never resting. I was never still. I dealt with every single hurdle.
I dealt with it all because I love my son. My son only has me. I have to do the best for the both of us.
I’m writing this not because I want to discount community support for my parenting successes and my life’s successes. Because I didn’t do it alone. I’m grateful for all the help I received from the people who I knew supported me and also from all the karma from people who supported me without me knowing.
I’m writing this because I want you to stop for a second next time you place judgments on that single mother who seems fat, unkempt, and chasing after a toddler.
When you ask her if she has people in her life to support her and her answer is no, don’t judge her.
There are always circumstances you don’t know what caused her to be in that predicament. It may be her “dream” to be the best mother possible.
You just don’t know. So, stop.
Don’t say anything if you can’t say anything nice to support her.
What she needs is some nurturing, some support.
She also has every right to say, “It’s none of your business.”
Thanks for listening.
About the Author
Jun Wu is a Content Writer for Technology, AI, Data Science, Psychology, and Parenting. She has a background in programming and statistics. On her spare time, she writes poetry and blogs on her website.