As if working mothers don't have enough guilt that we lug with us back and forth to work along with our breast pump, some believe that there is no way a mom who works can also practice the philosophy of Attachment Parenting.
And because I believe that attachment parenting is just the natural way I parent, and how working is the way I put food on my table and a roof over my kids' heads, I know I can work and still be AP. Am I superwoman? Sometimes I feel like I am, but I'm not. Working moms can be AP -- it's not just for stay-at-home moms. And yet, there are women who say that a working mom doesn't spend as much time with her kids as she should, therefore she cannot possibly have that bond or be AP.
Those moms ... they have it wrong.
I spoke to my stay-at-home and working mom friends about their thoughts on the matter and I think we all learned a little something.
Some moms hear of kids getting dropped off at day care begging the caretaker to make sure the child naps so the mom can pick up her kid when she gets home from work and put her straight to bed. In other words, it seems like the mom doesn't want to spend any time with their child. If this is what you do, that's your choice, I just wouldn't think this mom is AP. But I also wouldn't make assumptions.
Seeing one mom doing that and coming to the conclusion that all working moms do this isn't fair. There are working moms who juggle their schedules just so they can get home in time to read their child a bedtime story. And there are also the working moms who have no choice but to work late, who aren't happy that they have to miss the kisses goodnight, but who are still AP.
Another example is how some feel that moms work just so they can afford a $300 purse and fancy manicures, and that those moms can't be AP. But that's one mom looking at another mom's life and making more assumptions. Work isn't just about a paycheck to buy luxury items. It's about Social Security, insurance benefits, making extra cash to put away for a child's future. And besides, maybe that mom isn't AP. But she could be.
This isn't about Working Moms versus SAHMs, and sadly it always goes to that. This is about moms who are AP. Work or no work. Expensive purse or no purse.
Attachment Parenting isn't about being physically attached to your child 24/7. It is about nurturing your child, creating and maintaining a bond, being emotionally invested, being in touch with your child's emotional needs, fostering independence through confidence, listening to your natural instinct as a parent, listening to your child, not practicing CIO, babywearing, breastfeeding, co-sleeping, and it also isn't the same measure of these things for all attachment parents.
Working moms have enough guilt of having to work. No one can say that moms who work are doing so just so they can get away from their kids. No one can assume that all working moms wish they weren't moms and think their kids are a burden. They simply are moms who work. Loving moms who work. Amazing moms who work. AP moms who work.
I am a working mom and an attachment parent who lugs my guilt along with my breast pump to work every day. And working moms who are AP don't deserve to feel more guilt.
Do you believe a working mom can be AP?
Image via Michele Zipp