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Connecting with moms outside the immediate social circle is now easy with the many parenting forums on social media, and this has changed the way we parent.
Social networking is creating ripples all over. Everybody, from a little child to our oldies, have become a part of this growing trend. Each one spends time browsing stuff relevant to their age, especially us mothers as we have a whole lot to do and much more to deal with when it comes to our kids.
Usually, we stick to these parenting forums and parenting websites more than fathers do as this helps us get emotional support from other networks on concerned parenting issues and at the same time they help us in connecting with moms all over the world in a click’s moment.
Connecting with moms builds us a neighbourhood where we love and lean on each other through this beautiful and hard journey of raising humans.
Each mother reaches out through networking for fulfilling her own purpose and needs, depending on the stage of motherhood she is in. If a mom wants to know about kid friendly restaurants to visit with her family or her web friends, she would just tweet her question or post on her wall to get quick answers. Or if a mother is in early stages of labor, she may post updates every few minutes either looking for advice or just to keep everyone in her circles informed on how far she is with her sweet ordeal.
Some of the new mothers tune into these parenting forums to seek advice regarding their newborn’s growth issues, sleep patterns and the like, while some are on a look out for buying maternity and baby stuff and want to connect with the brands they trust. Whereas there is a set of few who won’t mind getting hands on used material as long as they are all good and well maintained.
Certain moms, on the contrary, are out to share their own experiences of handling the regular baby issues, photos of their kids in different moods, etc. Some crazy ones like me even record their kids in the midst of their major meltdowns.
I don’t believe that parenting forums can in any way replace the face to face girl time but posting, sharing or tweeting their experiences can give mothers a sense of satisfaction that they are not the only ones going through the daily ups and downs, and it is pretty much the story of every mother.
Nearly all women crave community support especially around the challenges of motherhood. Not all of them are driven to build extensive communities to fall on in time of need. The boom of blogging and the birth of social networking, which began as something to do, gradually became a must do for the women all over to keep their sanity intact when life seems to go in the opposite direction.
“One reason that social networking is important to today’s moms is because the real-life support systems that previous generations of moms had have eroded. In the past, mothers lived with family and extended family and had lots of help raising their children. Today, many moms live in more isolated households so being able to go online to get advice or just have another person to talk to is a both a huge help and a sanity saver. We all need a shoulder to lean on and online communities offer that shoulder any time you need it.”
There is a set of mothers who wouldn’t mind going with the ho-hum of views and experiences of moms all over the world, as long as it keeps them connected with the ones on the same boat as theirs. On the other side, there are mothers who believe too much of social networking or connecting with moms in all possible forums is more bad than good when it comes to parenting.
Unintentionally, we end up investing more of our precious time on sharing and posting of our experiences and our child’s developmental milestones on parenting forums which seem pointless beyond that moment.
I definitely fall to this category. To me connecting with moms on parenting websites or parenting forums, whatever we call it, is no doubt useful as it helps us know about certain things which otherwise would have been difficult. But it also curtails our time that should actually be reserved for our little ones. Say, when our child comes up with a new expression or new development we, instead of living that moment and making it memorable, run to grab our smartphones for capturing it and posting it just to keep the page up to date for the people following.
This urge of posting or sharing in a way leaves us obsessed. We keep checking for reactions and the number of likes received every minute when we know nobody would have responded in that less time.
In that brief moment of pause, we are missing out on something special. The natural flow of parent and child interaction where there is nobody else but just you and your child. I prefer to tune out from Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and all that I am into when I am with my kids and try enjoying the their novelty which never fails to surprise me.
Social networking in all forms steals our time more than we think. The time which we actually could have spent on our kids or used it as a me-time indulgence for the much needed recharge. By saying this I am in no way stating that we should give up connecting with moms on parenting forums or social networking altogether. This is very much needed in our nuclear setup of society. It’s just that we need to set limits to it so that we can have that unplugged time enjoying our exclusive moments together.
Technology is here to stay with us as are our digital families. So go ahead and communicate.
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