An Apology And A Plea To Fellow Parents

by Christine Organ
Tracey Shaw / PEXELS

Fellow Parents,

I owe you an apology.

For every time I said, “Little kids, little problems; big kids, big problems.”

For every time I said to the parent who’s patiently waiting for their baby to start crawling, and then walking, “It’s harder when they are mobile.”

For every time I said to a parent waiting for their child to start talking, “I wish I didn’t have to hear Mom-Mom-Mom-Mom fifteen-hundred times a day.”

For every time I said to a parent dealing with a baby who doesn’t sleep, “Just wait until the child can climb out of their toddler bed.”

For every time I ever said to the potty-training parent, “I wish we could go back to diapers.”

For every time I said to a kindergarten parent with a clingy child, “I wish my problems were as simple as a nap.”

For every time someone shared a challenge or struggle and I responded by (unintentionally) diminishing what they were going through, I’m sorry.

Because that is not what support looks like.

Christine Organ

This picture was taken when my son Jackson was only 1 month old. He was so very little. In fact, they don’t get much littler than that. But I assure you that the challenges of those days felt big — very big. And every time someone told me that things would only get harder — you know “little kid, little problems” and all that — a little piece of me crumbled.

Because that is not what support looks like.

The other day I was in a conversation with some other women, and someone shared a struggle they were dealing with. Some people nodded in agreement. Some people said they were dealing with the same thing. Some people offered advice. Some people assured her that it would get easier. Some people offered to help.

Because that is what support looks like.

And with that in mind, I also have a plea.

Let’s stop with the “little kids, little problems; big kid, big problems” mentality. Let’s stop diminishing each other’s parenting struggles just because we have survived them and ours now seem so much harder and bigger by comparison. Let’s not one-up each other with our hard and sad stories. And for the love of god, let’s not tell the person going through hard shit that they’re doing it wrong — because, quite frankly, just putting one foot in front of another when trudging through shit is hard enough as it is.

Look, being a parent is freaking hard. Amazingly good, yes, but also hard as hell. Some days it feels like a shitstorm. Other days it might even be a literal shitstorm. So let’s help each deal with the shit and weather the storms. Let’s listen, cheer, help, and support each other — like really support each other.

Because I’ve had little kids (teeny-tiny little, like this picture), and now I have bigger-little kids, and pretty soon they’ll be full-fledged big kids, and before long they’ll be teens and then adults. And while I have no idea what those years will bring, I do know that some little kid problems were big and some big-kid problems were little. Because hard is hard, and good is good. It’s all relative.

So whether you have big kids or little kids, my hope for you is the same: May your day be big on the good stuff, and little on the hard.