We spend a lot of time as parents (and an awful lot of time on parenting websites) exploring what kind of parents we want to be. The tendency to name "schools" of parenting is new to this generation. Our mothers were just mothers, not Attachment Mothers, or Free-Range Mothers, and, as we discussed yesterday, the name-your-parenting-after-an-animal trend is only about a year old (and, I would politely suggest, has run its course…)
I have been alternately amused and frustrated by this need we seem to have to give our philosophy a label — or even to have a distinct philosophy at all. The closest I come to a belief system of my own is borrowed from a friend, Donnica Moore, who sums up parenting as: It All Depends On Everything.
Two essays on Huffington Parents today throw out the idea of "one way" or even a "semi-consistent way" and offer up — actually CELEBRATE — a view of parenting that is closest to Moore's.
Devon Corneal describes it here as "Sure of Nothing Parenting." She nails it (as usual).
And Patty Onderko calls it "Relativist Parenting." Her essay is below.
Whatever you call it (because, after all, names can change, and everything is relative…) these two women sum up the on-the-fly, never-the-same-river-twice, doing-the-best-you-can feeling of this thing we do — whatever it is called — that differs from child to child, day to day, and moment to moment. — Lisa Belkin, Parentlode