Because moms are shamed for just about anything these days
Abbie Fox, the mom behind the lens at Foxy Photography, has three kids. Over her eight years as a parent, she’s encountered the awfulness that is mom shaming, and that’s why she decided to use her talents as a photographer to document some of the choices parents make that result in criticism.
She shared a photo album on Facebook full of pictures of kids holding up signs that list choices their parents made for them that resulted in shaming. It’s garnered thousands of shares and comments in the days since.
“In this technology world where we spend tons of time on Facebook and in Mommy groups we find one major thing every day… Mommy Shaming. People roll their eyes and say it doesn’t happen anymore but it is alive and well, and it can be brutal,” she writes.
Fox decided to gather several past photography clients to try to represent some of the parenting topics that often come under fire. “No, not all subjects are covered,” she explains. “This was a volunteer project and I could not find someone to cover each subject I wanted.”
Fox says, “When I was a first time mom I would cry for things people said to me, and the main culprit were other moms. Why we can’t just get along is a question I ask all of the time. If our kids are healthy, happy, and thriving, who cares if our parenting styles are different?”
“Yes, there are things I would never personally be able to do because of my beliefs, but I know there are things I do with my kids my friends are appalled at too,” she shares. “We are all doing our best to keep these little humans alive all while keeping our sanity. We all have our differences in parenting and need to realize that everyone is raised differently and have different values and things that are important to us.”
Of course, talking about the more controversial parenting topics means that Fox has been shamed for pointing out mommy shaming. “There is a group of women trying to convince the world that I perpetuate child abuse by these pictures which is the farthest from the truth,” Fox tells Scary Mommy. “But it’s just proving why I did the photo shoot in the first place and that mommy shaming is really a thing.”
Fox tells us that some comments have noted that it’s not “shaming” if it’s true. She agrees, but feels it’s the meanness behind them that makes the shame-y comments wrong. “When it turns into name calling and saying awful things about the children and the mom that’s when we cross the line,” she says.
Fox is now a more seasoned mom as her two older kids are school aged, but her youngest is still a baby. “I wanted to do this in the first place because I’ve been shamed in the past with my first two children but luckily, by my third child, I had grown some super thick skin and not much bothers me anymore.”
Fox says that although some commenters are attacking her, she’s being polite in her replies. “I’m trying to stay neutral because a lot of these subjects I may or may not believe in, but it doesn’t matter because in this aspect I’m the photographer. I’m the artist I’m telling a story, I’m not advocating for anybody in this series except for my three kids.”
“I’m confident in my decisions and the research I’ve done over the last eight years and feel pretty comfortable in the way that I’m raising all three of my kids. Of course they’re going to be things that come up that I will regret, but all moms do. We all make mistakes.”
Amen to that.