Bully Parents

This is not a post about parents bullying kids, although there are certainly some who do.

This is about parents bullying each other, specifically online.

This is about replying to someone's comment, tweet, post, blog, whatever and being a absolute ass. 

Actual statements to me online in the past few days. 

"You must be a terrible parent if you feel that way."

"Only a horrible person would say that about their child."

"Using XYZ therapy is child abuse."

"I have seen XYZ therapy and it was cruel."

"You must hate your children if you don't like the Holland poem."

Usually from people who have no idea who the hell I am.

It is very intimidating to put myself out there, even in the limited way that I have, because:

   1.  I don't like conflict in any form.
   2.  I don't like to be criticized.
   3.  I already have tons of self-doubts.
   4.  I already criticize myself enough, tyvm.
   5.  Criticism only emphasizes what I already tell myself.

 It is valid to disagree with people.  It is valid to hold strong opinions.  It is valid to state your opinion.

But unless someone is saying that they beat, berate, or withhold food/clothing/shelter from their child it is not okay to say they are abusing their child.  Especially when you are basing that statement on a single comment.

To state your opinion and then include the idea that they are don't love their child, or worse are committing a crime, is not okay.

It is reducing your argument to its lowest form.  You are no longer making an argument, just criticizing.  You are skipping the step of actually justifying your argument and simply attacking the commenter. 

You are bullying.

Remember those memes on how to argue or disagree?  Using 'I' statements instead of 'you' statements.  Ask for more information.

"I know life with autism is sometimes hard.  Tell me what you mean when you say...."

"When my child had ABA therapy it seemed the way our providers did it was cruel.  Tell me how you did it.  Perhaps it was our providers and not the therapy itself."

"I really liked the Holland poem because it reminded me that there is beauty in our lives, it was just a different beauty."  (Which is true, I totally agree.  What I didn't agree with is the tone that suddenly your life was coming up tulips, instead of roses.  That you should have no quibbles, simply because your life was cheese instead of pasta.  It seemed the poem reduces life with a disability to a least common denominator, which is not possible.  Life is complicated.)

Commenting often involves reacting instead of thinking.  But when you feel strongly, you need to think first.  Because there is a person on the other side of that comment who has a feelings just like you do.

Comments

  1. That is the trouble with being online and not actually seeing the person that you are talking to. It isn't possible to have a decent conversation without seeing facial expression, body language and hearing the tone of voice being used! The Holland poem has been way over used!! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Excellent points. Those are some of the reasons I almost gave up blogging. It is tough when you don't really "know" the commentator. Hugs. You are not alone! (Even though you may feel that way many times!!)

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