Sanctimummies are the fun police of parenting: they have an opinion on everything related to the raising of children and will not hesitate to make you painfully aware of your bone-headed inferiority if you happen to disagree with them. Everything is up for judgement: car seats, weaning, birthing, sleeping, filling your car up with petrol and feeding your children squeezie yoghurt pouches. Oh, the horror!
I mean, we’re all guilty of being a little bit precious when it comes to certain aspects of parenting – and that’s totally normal. For me, it’s monitoring the content of my kids’ favourite TV shows and making sure they’re in bed at a reasonable hour. On the other hand, I don’t care if they eat the occasional Happy Meal or dress in highly-flammable synthetic clothing (I do keep them clear of open flames though – I’m not completely reckless).
Priotising the wellbeing of our kids is part and parcel of parenting, but sanctimummies take this to a whole new level: to really qualify you need to meet just about all of the following selection criteria, with additional bonus points for every parent who has reduced other mums to tears at playgroup. Or mother’s group. Or the supermarket. A sanctimummy’s work is never done.
Are YOU a sanctimummy?
1. Your social media is full of humblebrags about the minor accomplishments of your offspring, photos of healthy lunchboxes hashtagged with #ilovemykidsmorethanyou and smug rants about fast food, epidurals and screen time.
2. You honour your placenta by: a) eating it b) burying it under a rose bush with its own ceremonial plaque c) shaping the umbilicus into a motivational quote or d) hand sewing it into a whimsical children’s toy (if you don’t believe me, google “placenta teddy bear”).
3. You believe that drug-free labours are the purest expression of the ecstatic rite of birth, and that pain relief is for weak people who don’t really care if their babies are born with an addiction to opiate-based narcotics.
4. Food is always prepared from scratch, modern cloth nappies are the way to go and all clothing must be made from organic cotton. You’ve been known to throw a strop if someone gifts your child a polyester blend t-shirt with a Superman logo on it.
5. The only toys your children are allowed to play with are Free Trade-certified and hand-carved from sustainable timber. They must also be educational – unlike those gaudy plastic toys that have no redeemable value outside of actual fun.
6. You believe that digital technology rewires the neural circuitry of children, turning them into useless lumps of easily-distractible biomatter. TV, computers, gaming consoles: these are almost as evil as iPhone-addicted parents who ignore their kids at the park.
7. You would never posion your children by feeding them hot dogs, chocolate cake, chicken nuggets or reconstituted fruit juice. Your hand-blended kale and organic quinoa purees are served with a sanctimonious smile and a side order of smug.
8. You believe that children should be under the constant care of a stay-at-home parent. Occasionally – after one too many organic green smoothies – you will go on a judgemental rant about working parents who let daycare “raise their kids”.
9. If a mother leaves her infant child with another loving carer you react with a level of horror directly proportional to someone who has just abandoned their newborn baby on the front steps of a church at midnight in the middle of winter.
10. You regularly pepper your discussions with phrases like “Being a mummy is the best job in the world!” and “You will love every minute of it!” Which – at the risk of editorialising – is complete and utter garbage. Sometimes it kind of sucks.
And, if you are still unsure: You are a bit of a jerk to people who don’t share your parenting philosophies. Like, really a jerk. You need to chill. We’re all just muddling through this the best way we can – and sometimes that involves squeezie yoghurt pouches, several episodes of Peppa Pig and a nice cold glass of semillion sav blanc.
Have you ever been smugged by a fellow mum?
More on parenting styles:
- Why I Refuse To Be the Perfect Mum
- Why I’m An Attachment Parent
- Gender-Neutral Parenting – What’s It All About?