Not necessary, but I’m doing it anyway

My rebuttals:

1. I did not write any part of this looking to garner attention. I have blogged for years, and a few friends read it. I had never had more than a handful of comments on any previous post. I am just as shocked as you are that this went viral. If I could have predicted this would go viral, I would also have advertising on my blog and possibly a high paying job at an ad agency.

2. I did not write any part of it for ‘shock value,’ ‘tweetability,’ or any other reason. I wrote it from my heart. In about 10 minutes. With my shorties running around. There was no preconceived thought as far as publicity.

3. I have a sense of humor. I did not lose it when I gave birth. I hope to never lose it. If you go back and read previous posts, please keep in mind that I am sarcastic. And can make fun of myself. Oh, and to be clear, all names are pseudonyms. I find it a little strange that is an issue, but ok. Glad we cleared that up.

4. I did not ‘out’ my son. Read the post please before accusing me of things.

5. I did not ‘exploit’ my son. I have a feeling if he’d been in a ninja costume, I wouldn’t have been accused of exploitation. If you see shame in that photo, that is in your perception. Not mine. Nor millions of others. And thousands of parents, maybe millions have pics of their children posted online. It is not exploitation.

6. I did not ruin Boo’s life. This is now woven into my family’s history. This will not be hidden or kept secret. I am proud of him. Just as I am proud of all my children and the Detective. He will hear this story for the rest of his life. And be totally bored with it by the time he’s 8. And if someone brings it up 10 years from now, it will be because a mean parent held onto it for a decade. And that’s a problem in and of itself.

7. I did not stop parenting that day. Boo will be raised to not bully, to be who he is, to be kind, to be able to handle himself in all kinds of situations. He is a strong child. He will be a strong adult.

8. The Detective is alive and kicking. And in the picture. And completely supportive of Boo, his other children, and me. He is a kickass father. And if he’s not working overtime, he’s here at home parenting along with me. And what sort of preconceived notions are out there about single mothers? That freaks me out a bit too.

9. I did not ‘force’ Boo to go into the preschool when he had reservations. I knelt in front of him, asked him if this was what he wanted to do, and when he answered yes, I told him we’d walk in together. And we walked in, hands held, heads high. There was no coercion. I didn’t diminish his worries. I also didn’t blow them out of proportion. When a child gets worried on the way to the doctor’s office, you don’t turn around and go home. You talk about it. You work through it. You parent.

10. I did not ‘use’ my son to push an agenda. I have no agenda. Ok, that is not entirely true, but it looks more like a cluttered family calendar with meetings and book clubs and practices.

11. I do not hate Moms ABC. I do not harbor ill will on them. Those moments should not define their lives, just as their words shouldn’t define Boo’s.

12. I do not hate Christians or Christian schools. My Boo’s teachers are some of the most amazing women I have known. His school director is incredible.

13. I didn’t edit  comments, including negative. At first, I was having to moderate comments which took a while. Then I switched to letting them all go through. WordPress uses a spam filter called Akismet. It weeded out ones that may have been spam. I went through and approved all that weren’t obviously spam.  So if it was typed, it should be up there somewhere.

14. I haven’t read all the comments. Or the emails. I’m working on it, but it may take a while. Ya’ll had a lot to say. But I’m still, you know, parenting, so I have other things to be doing.

15. I do not accept the analogy of letting Boo wear a costume on Halloween with not having any rules/boundaries. My friend, Clean Freak, has commented to me that I am stricter than a lot of other moms she knows. We use manners. We have schedules. We have timeouts. The Detective and I have rules and boundaries for our family. But we don’t dictate personality. That is not our job.

16. I am disheartened by some of the comments that are calling my son names. That is very small.

17. I am intolerant of bullying and the cycle of bullying. And children learn at home and at school. I don’t want me children to be bullied or to be bullies. I will do what I can in my small corner of the world to stop that cycle when I can.

18. I am not naive. Nor am I stupid, a bad mother, a child abuser, media whore, man-hater, etc. I am a mom. And I am doing the best I can for those I can. You may choose to disagree, but I promise you my children know they are loved and supported. And they know I will stand up for them or stand by them. Whatever they need.

19. As far as I can tell, a lot of the negative has been based on assumptions. People assume I made Boo walk in there. People assume I planned on this going viral. People assume the Detective isn’t around or is embarrassed. People assume a lot of things. And you know what they say about that… However, I haven’t been able to find any emails asking me for clarification. Or to expand upon anything. So please, if you have a question, ask me before you answer for me.

20. And lastly,  I am awed and amazed and touched and verklempt that this has all happened. I am almost at a loss for words. ;) Really though I cannot ever express in any sort of eloquent way how much the support has meant to me. It really kept me going these last couple of weeks.

Thank you again.

296 Responses to Not necessary, but I’m doing it anyway

  1. Jeannette November 16, 2010 at 2:53 pm #

    It makes me sad anyone has given you a hard time over that – so many moms in my community (myself included!) shared it on Facebook and even sang your praises later that week over a glass of wine at our MNO :) You rock!!

  2. Angie (also a Detective's Wife) November 16, 2010 at 2:53 pm #

    There are always going to be people who want to put their nose
    in your business…….and to them I say……BACK OFF !!
    I am adding this situation that you just went thru as my reason #2 why I
    will not get a conceal carry permit. (even though my husband is a CC
    My heart overrides my head when I am passionate about something, and I don’t need to go to prison for shooting ignorant people…LOL….What Mom’s ABC are teaching their kids is that it’s not OK to do something outside the norm…..Boo was having fun, and I say hooray for him !! There’s lots of time when he
    becomes an adult when he will have to be serious and have enough to worry about…for now….I am glad he has a Mom like you to be by his side and encourage him to have fun !! YOU ROCK MOMA !!

  3. Denisen November 16, 2010 at 2:53 pm #

    NAB – Just finished reading your post, and gotta say, my heart goes out to you. Mom-ing is a hard (albeit joy-filled) job already, without having to suffer anonymous attacks from people who mistakenly assume they understand you and your life based on one 200-word blog post. Try to remember that the Internet is chock-a-block full of nutbars emboldened by their faceless computer screens, and note that the proof of your actual parenting skills is in the fact that you (seem to) have happy, well-adjusted children. Pat yourself on the back for me and the many other moms impressed by your bravery on both the preschool and internet fronts, and pls keep the posts coming!

  4. Jen November 16, 2010 at 2:51 pm #

    You know, I thought your original post was just fine. I’m a parent, too, and understood where you were coming from. It’s too bad so many people had such negative things say. I’m sure there will be some here who continue their argument. But I don’t think you need to defend yourself. (You didn’t even need to post this, but thanks for pointing out that, while we do manage to squeeze very large babies out of inconcievable spaces, we don’t also squeeze out our senses of humor.) Feel free to move on, and let the wackos think what they may. If you’re tired of hearing the rants of strangers, you could always lock comments to that post…. Just a thought. Or leave it open so they can continue to discuss it amongst themselves.

  5. Tameika November 16, 2010 at 2:51 pm #

    Keep on rockin’ mama! Anyone who does anything but praise you and your son for being true to yourself is an idiot and not worth another thought. I’m a new fan and hope that you guys are able to retain the life you had before the spotlight was flung in your direction. I just think you’re very wise and strong. I know you may not see it that way, but for many “future” mamas like myself, I’m inspired by you. So as I said before, Keep Rockin’! :-)

  6. Bernadette Smith November 16, 2010 at 2:51 pm #

    You are just plain awesome. I loved the original post. You spoke from the heart and that is what matters. What other people think of what you did or did not do is just bullshit. You are a fantastic mother and I admire the hell out of you and your wonderful son.

    Wouldn’t it be a wonderful, happy world if all children could be that fearless?

  7. Tershbango November 16, 2010 at 2:50 pm #

    Don’t worry about the haters, girl – your post was fantastic. You’re clearly a good mama!!

  8. Rebel♦Regan November 16, 2010 at 2:49 pm #

    Number 15 sums it all up! Best line of this entry; “But we don’t dictate personality. That is not our job.”

  9. Ceci November 16, 2010 at 2:46 pm #

    Keep it up. :)

  10. James Chartrand - Men with Pens November 16, 2010 at 2:46 pm #

    *applause* Well said. Good for you, and for your family. Keep rockin’.

  11. vermontjo November 16, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    You are still Mom of the Year : )

  12. Peter November 16, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    I am so sorry for the haters out there. You go, girl!

  13. amanda jo November 16, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    You wholeheartly love your family and stand for what you believe. I am touched by your story and its pure honesty in letting your kid be a kid. To those who judge you i feel sorry.

  14. Vicky November 16, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    don’t need to say anything other then just give you a *hug* :-)

  15. Sue November 16, 2010 at 2:45 pm #

    Your attitude towards being a mom is beyond impressive. As someone whose mom was not there for her, I applaud what you and The Detective must be doing to make your son that comfortable with just being himself. The world needs more parents like you – stat.

  16. Cori November 16, 2010 at 2:43 pm #

    I love your posts. While the negative Nellies will be surfing the ‘net for other people to flame and won’t read your rebuttals. The Mom’s (and Dad’s) out there who realize what it takes to be a good parent appreciate that you took the time and thought to try and reach them.

  17. Melina November 16, 2010 at 2:43 pm #

    I think you are awesome, and it’s very clear how much you love and support your kids. It’s amazing to me how many different ‘opinion’s’ there are out there, and a lot are based on being uninformed or not having the full story. Or just not accepting the full story and only seeing what they want to see. It really never ceases to amaze. But you are awesome, and a good mom. Don’t forget that.

  18. knitmanyarn November 16, 2010 at 2:42 pm #

    I am so sorry that the moronic and mean spirited created an atmosphere in which you felt you had to defend yourself. You don’t at all. THEY do! Meaning I’d like them to justify there position. I was of the opinion that you were a good parent when I read, and I mean I read, not skim and make assumptions, that post and my opinion has not changed. It is vital that any child be given a foundation of self-acceptance and you are clearly doing that. Something we ought all be grateful for because those children who not get given this turn into adults that harm-themselves or others or both.

  19. Nanci November 16, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    My only assumption was that you were a mom who would back her child to the end of the world. Sounds like you’re doing a great job. Keep it up!

  20. Mikki Griffin November 16, 2010 at 2:41 pm #

    You rock, lady :) Keep on hanging in there and being a good Mom.
    Another Tough and Mean Mom ;)
    PS mine were never “main-stream” normal as small kids an now at 12 and 17, I still couldn’t be prouder. There’s hope there :)

  21. twinks75 November 16, 2010 at 2:40 pm #

    I just wanted to say I saw your post about Boo and his halloween costume, It was a great post… a friend had shared it on my facebook feed. I think you sound like a cool mum, and your kids are lucky to have you. Your blog even inspired me to give blogging a go… not that much happens in my life at the moment, but maybe one day there might be a few interesting things to write about. I’m also following you on twitter too, though still dont really get the whole twitter thing.

  22. Danielle November 16, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    You are awesome! You express yourself wonderfully! Just remember there will always be the haters. Folks that are so miserable within that they want to spread the ugliness the grief they feel outward,spreading it around. We don’t have to be haters,or bullys,or small minded,or unkind. I’m glad you see that and your another mama out there raising her children to practice the golden rule. YOU ROCK!

  23. Jill November 16, 2010 at 2:38 pm #

    keep on going! I have really enjoyed reading your blog since it went viral. I have gone back and read your previous posts. Some made me laugh, some made me grimace but all made me think. I look foward to reading more.

  24. Frances November 16, 2010 at 2:38 pm #


  25. barefoot721 November 16, 2010 at 2:36 pm #

    It’s easy to get caught up in the opinions of others, and I have no doubt you’re hearing your fair share… stay in your moment, in your reality… ignore the people who have chosen to reflect on others, without taking a good look at their own lives.

    Your posting on your son was beautifully done… and it shows nothing more than a great parent who loves her son, and sets the example for others who fear what other people think far too much.

    Keep it up… there are far more who support your actions…


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