When you become a mom, you set out to do everything exactly right. You read all the books, do all your research and get the ‘must have’ items in preparation for a new life that you will be responsible for. The incredibly awesome (yet completely daunting) role of mother is one you continuously strive to perfect. Some days you score a hat trick and other days…not so much. While I think each of us is our own biggest critic, moms do feel like they are judged by other moms.
According to new data from The Research Moms, 64% of moms feel that their parenting decisions are judged at least sometimes by other moms. Breaking it down one step further, 24% feel their decisions are always judged by other moms.
Moms already feel the pressure to perform at their best all day, every day, but social media has taken that to new heights. For moms on social media, they feel scrutiny even a bit more. About 68% of moms who use Facebook, Pinterest or Instagram feel their parenting decisions are judged at least sometimes by other moms.
In a world now where life is captured and shared immediately, acceptance or rejection is often measured in followers, likes and posts. The open forum of social media makes passing judgment easy and provides a certain level of anonymity. The role of social media is double edged for moms, since the openness that makes it authentic and real is the same pathway that allows for unwanted mom vs. mom critique.
Looking at moms in different stages of the parenting cycle, new moms live under a perceived microscope the most. For first time moms, almost three quarters (72%) feel their parenting decisions are judged at least sometimes by other moms. New residents to the motherhood, these women are still figuring out how to adapt to their new parenting role and they don’t want to fail, especially in the eyes of others.
With experience comes comfort. Moms of children who are age 18+ don’t feel as criticized. The number drops to 58% for those who feel their parenting decisions are judged at least some of the time. Moms of young adult children have already been there and done that, they don’t feel the pressure from other moms to have a perfect score.
How the study was conducted:
The Research Moms conducted a national online survey of 540 mothers with children age 21 and under in February 2015.