Opinions and Judgement: The Hard Lessons

8 Mar

Okay.  So, I write a blog.  I’m also an addict a regular user of Facebook.  So yes, I do expose my life to a large degree, opening it up to comments and opinions.

I guess there are friends – real and virtual – who take up the invitation to drop by and leave their thoughts.  Cool.  That’s the beauty of social networking.

As a SAHM, these are the tools that keep me sane.  They stop me from biting Hubby’s head off after a full-on day with very demanding and active twinlets (Well, most of the time…).

But let’s take that environment away from the cyber world and switch it into the every day.

It is here I am left wondering:

What classifies a random stranger – walking by on the street, in the coffee shop, at the hairdresser’s – to drop their unwarranted opinion ?

Here are some of the examples of someone, barely an acquaintance, that I have crossed paths with who – despite no invitation from me – felt that they just had to let me know what they thought:

  • The tactless ex-colleague who firstly broke etiquette by inappropriately asking me how old I was.  Then in line with his oblivious nature, proceeded to tell me that: “I better get cracking if I want to have babies soon…”
  • The opinionated mother of fraternal twins who after 30 seconds of meeting, was quick to state that she didn’t think that the boys looked identical.  Despite me telling her so.  (Lady, I would show you the single placenta that I had keeping them both alive for 35 weeks.  Alas, I don’t have the evidence with me here at Mothers’ Group…)
  • The grumpy old man at the coffee shop who was in a hurry to get his coffee but was hindered by my twin stroller, blocking the entrance.  Asking me if I had twins and after I confirmed that I did, he rushed straight past me but still had the cheek to mumble under his breath: “Poor woman…” (Grumpy for a reason, much ?)
  • The self-important midwife at our local pharmacy who picked at me for giving and using nicknames for my own sons: “You’ve given him a proper name for a reason, dear.  No need to start shortening them and making them cutesy.”  Then, as if she hadn’t waved her authoritative wand around enough, proceeded to tell me that I was feeding the twinlets too much “orange” food.  Yes, it’s true.  Apparently, you can have too much healthy organic pumpkin, carrot and sweet potato.
  • The know-it-all lady at the coffee shop who is sure to let me know that I’m looking tired (Yes, tell me something I don’t know. Hence that’s why I’m here to get some coffeeeeeeee).  Ignoring the fact that she doesn’t have a clue in the challenges of rearing twins, she persistently instructs me to sleep when the babies sleep during the day.  (Um, yes okay, and I’ll make sure that I have an apple martini as well, because of course, having twins means that I have all the time in the world to have a nap during the day).

The list actually goes on.  I haven’t included times when by-passers who – once establishing that we have twinlets – suddenly feel that they are our best friends.  As such, know me well enough to ask me if my boys were conceived “naturally” (Well, no we got them mass produced at an Ikea Factory in China…).

Categorically speaking, I guess that’s more a question, albeit a highly-personal one, and not an opinion.

There is a *ahem* chance that I may be just a tad sensitive, these days.  But still.  I will stand to argue that I know my situation isn’t unusual.  I have many friends, who for other circumstances also find themselves unfairly targeted to uncalled- for comments.

There is: the single 30-something year old career woman; the childless married couple; the full-time working mother.

That’s just the tip of society’s surface.

It’s a sad fact.  No one is left without judgement.  And if we look hard at ourselves, we would probably realise that we too, are quick to make sharp-tongued remarks.

So, here’s my resolution.  The next time I’m about to let something fly out of my loose cannon, I will bite my tongue.  I will sit on my hands.

I will remember how it hurts when –  I, myself – am being judged.

Our "mass-produced" identical (yes, they are) twinlets...

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One Response to “Opinions and Judgement: The Hard Lessons”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. A Million Dollars - With Some Grace - September 5, 2013

    […] I wrote a post about the unsolicited opinions and quick judgements I’ve encountered from random strangers […]

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