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What tells you that another mom you see is on "our team"?

post #1 of 72
Thread Starter 
When you see/meet another mom, what clues do you look for to see if she practices a similar parenting style?
post #2 of 72
hmmmmm, i used to think using a sling and nursing were good indicators, but i have since met a woman who nurses and slings and thinks it's fine to slap an infants hands!

it's hard to tell at first glance you know? i'd look for someone who is interacting a lot with their baby, talking to them, sitting on the floor with them, etc. instead of parking their carrier or stroller and doing their own thing. with toddlers and older kids, you can kind of tell by the way the parent acts if the kid gets upset in public.
post #3 of 72
Its hard at times but a sling is a sign to me. Not many people use them here. Also if I see a baby in natural clothing or cloth diapers a little flag pops up.
post #4 of 72
Hmmm.... I think it's less about the products, more about the parenting style. The most detached mom I know uses a sling and does EC!

Edited to add that slings are becoming very common here. They even sell them in major department stores (e.g., The Bay).
post #5 of 72
when her toddler is grabbing her boobs yelling boo boo. That usually is a good sign.
post #6 of 72
There are so very few AP moms here that I take anything I can get. I know a few who cosleep, organic foods, cloth diaper, bf, and use gentle parenting. I try to be around those moms the most.
Very rarely do I see slings (I think I've only seen someone use one once, besides those whom I sold them to) in use here but I get asked about them a lot. I see moms bf occasionally but bottles are much more common.
Its kind of sad, I think
post #7 of 72
Usually if I see a woman breastfeed in public thats a sign - I got into a whole conversation with a girl at the mall one day because we were both breastfeeding our babes. A sling is a good sign. A bottle of formula is not. But mostly I think its an attitude. I try not to be too quick to judge because I often use a stroller, sometimes a binky too & it occurs to me that I might look the same as all those mainstream moms when I'm cruising at the mall. I believe the difference is that when my baby cries I don't stand there ignoring him or still strolling - I stop and pick him up.
post #8 of 72
I too will take anything I can get and go from there (so yeah superficial first, go deeper later on) if I saw another momma with a sling I think I'd faint from shock!
If I saw a cloth diaper, or lots of organic in the fridge, different kinds of tea on the shelf, or maybe spot a few "good" books on the bookshelf -it would be a good sign here.
post #9 of 72
I look for a sling, nursing in public (esp. not covered up ), the way they talk to their baby/children, if they have older kids out in the middle of the day I figure they're homeschooling, carrying cloth bags, wood toys, it's just an overall feeling that I get from the person. It's rare for me but I love when it happens!
post #10 of 72
Can't we all, as women and mother's be on the same "team"?
post #11 of 72
I look for a couple of different things, but mostly how the mama interacts with her child. Is she treating baby as a real little person and being gentle? Eye contact and eye level with toddlers? Not trying to micromanage the child to death? Those are all good signs to me.

Slings are a hard find in my area, but when I do see a mama using one I usually smile and ask her whay brand it is and how it is working for her - yk nice but not intrusive. I also always try to support mamas who b/f in public too.
post #12 of 72
Good question, khrisday.
post #13 of 72
Well, as far as the question of can we be on the same team goes, I guess we can to a point. I personally choose not to be close friends with someone that spanks their children and talks to them in a disrespectful manner. I just find it difficult to be around and expose my kids to things like that.
post #14 of 72
Excellent question.

There's an analogy in the Deaf community about crabs -- something about when a crab tries to climb out of the bucket, all the other crabs grab him and drag him back. I did research on oppressed minorities of various types, and how that oppression manifests itself, and that is one way among many different groups -- in-fighting, categorizing, variations of internalizing oppression.

I see that with women, too, especially moms, and that kinda sucks. I totally totally understand what you mean about "on the same team", in terms of a kindred spirit, and also rejoice when I've found someone like that. But I really agree with khrisday.
post #15 of 72
Thread Starter 
khrisday, I wish we could be on the same team, but even on these boards it is often one side pitted against the other. I remember a sahm vs. wohm thread that got really nasty, kwim?

The reason I started this is that I met a really nice woman who told me she didn't bf any of her kids, but she was so loving and gentle with them. It got me to wonder what other people look for to seek out friends. I saw her as being my kind of mom even though she didn't do many of the "ap things" I normally look for(bfing, babywearing, etc.).
post #16 of 72
Thread Starter 
When you see/meet another mom, what clues do you look for to see if she practices a similar parenting style?
Despite the title, which was meant to be lighthearted, I don't see anything wrong with my initial question.

Warning, rant: Maybe I am touchy, but I resent the implication that because I posted the above question, that I don't see all moms as being on the same team. If you read my post history, you'll see that I am one of the most accepting moms here. I constantly defend ffers, device users (pacies, strollers, slings, etc.), wohms, etc. against posters who put them down.
post #17 of 72

What tells you that another mom you see is on "our team"?

the original poster did not ask "can't we all be on the same team?" i don't think lara meant anything negative w/ her thread title, it would make sense for us as moms to search out other moms w/ similar interests & values. why respond to a post if you aren't even going to answer the question?!

lara asked:
What tells you that another mom you see is on "our team"?
i would look for a mom who looked like she was actually having FUN w/her kids. i would pay no attention to accoutrements, bottles or slings or diapers.

post #18 of 72
It's hard to tell if a mom's doing AP by looking at her. Really the only AP moms I've met around are through LLL or on the Finding Your Tribe Board here on MDC. I think it's a good indication if someone goes to LLL meetings that they might be AP (although not a sure thing).

A sling can be a clue, but I never got the hang of my sling, so I just carried my little one everywhere. I do love when I see a mommy breastfeeding in public. I always smile & give a nod of encouragement.

As far as the natural living question, sometimes that can be a little easier to "spot". Cloth diapers, kind of a 'granola' look to the mommy, natural baby clothes, that sort of thing.

I get very high marks for AP, and lower marks for natural living, so I'm not sure you could spot me as easily, since AP is harder to "see" visually (unless I'm breastfeeding my 21 month old in public, which I often do). I think I "look" pretty mainstream, really, although I'm quite left of center.
post #19 of 72
I agree that it's really hard to tell unless you get to talking to someone. For me, it would probably be cloth diapers or a sling. If I see someone walking through the mall carrying their baby (sling or in-arms) instead of in a stroller or bucket, it puts a smile on my face and I start assuming things. But of course, never assume. I know alot of nursing mothers, and 95% of them are not AP. If you were to see me on the street or in the store, you might write me off because I'd be feeding my baby a bottle. You would have no idea that he's adopted and I spent 6 months trying to induce lactation. Finding out that someone co-sleeps is a huge indicator for me. Yet a good number of my adoptive parents friends sleep with their babies, and many are not what I'd consider AP.

I think like someone said, alot of it has to do with how the other parent interacts with their child. Spanking, CIO, ignoring--all those things say alot to me. Or gentle discipline, responding quickly to a crying baby, and paying attention/getting into their world--those things would tell me that this parent thinks like me. There are obviously blatent things, like a parent yelling at their children, humiliating them, treating them disrespectfully, etc. that would tell me that we wouldn't see eye-to-eye.

But again, there are just so many variables. I just think that because all moms are so unique and individual, and all are operating under their own extenuating circumstances, that there's really no way to tell just by looking or by casual conversation. There is no single model of an "AP" mother, or even more so, there is no single model of a "good mother".
post #20 of 72
My kids have gotten older, so it sometimes gets a little tough to find moms who are positive, gentle, or attachment parenting. I usually take notice if the mom gets down to the child's level and takes the time to really listen and communicate with them. Also, seeing how the mom reacts to their child's behavior(both positive and neg behavior) is a good indicator, for me.

Making friends does not come easy to me, and when I really click with someone, it still takes a lot of energy to get that friendship started and to keep it going. Getting to know other parents who have similar lifestyles and parenting practices is very important to me, esp if our children spend a lot of time together.
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