Being a mom is hard. It’s amazing, wonderful, and every other descriptive word you can imagine for “the best thing in the enter world.” But, it’s really, really hard too! After I became a first-time mom in 2013, I joined a few online moms groups to have a resource of other moms to reach out to for those moments when being a mom was just too hard. Of course, I had real-life mom friends including my own mom and older sister, but it was nice to have a community online that I could talk to at any time during the day and maybe to talk about some things I didn’t want to share with my real-life people.
My favorite group was this group I found on Facebook that had a funny name and a large following. Moms would post all kinds of questions and opinions. Some questions were general and popular in nature (breastfeeding, labor, etc.), but some were not the normal type of questions asked in other groups I was in. I remember one mom asked for advice on a situation with her baby daddy cheating on her while she was pregnant with their second child. She got a lot of great answers and suggestions from the group on the situation! Another mom griped about how cheap her daycare provider was in regards to not including meals in the cost of sending her child there. It was kind of funny because unbeknownst to her, her daycare provider was actually in the group and saw the post. I’m not sure how that situation panned out.
The group was fun, light-hearted, and nothing was taken too seriously. It felt like the kind of community where you could get on and bitch about your daily life. We all just need to let it all out sometimes after all.
So, one afternoon after my son and I had gone on a particularly awful play date with some fellow moms I know at the park, I had to get on the group and complain for a minute. This one mom that I used to meetup with at the parks (with other moms there too), was not my favorite person. There was just something about her that I couldn’t put my finger on. She was nice enough, but she always had a snarky (not in a fun way) attitude to her I guess. Anyways, that morning at the park I had brought my son cheese doodles for his snack. It’s what he wanted. Does he eat them every day? No.
This mom was watching my son eat his cheese doodles and out of her mouth came hellfire, “I only feed my kids organic food. I don’t even buy anything processed or that doesn’t serve a nutritional purpose.”
I just looked at her and smiled and pretended I didn’t hear what she had said. One of the other moms that I liked in our group caught my eye and shook her head. She knew what I was thinking but was hinting at me to bite my tongue. I did. I don’t normally, but I did.
When I got back home I typed up a funny post about how it’s nice that this mom can afford to buy everything organic, but some of us can’t. I also mentioned that it is kind of strange that her kids don’t ever drink juice or know what a cheese doodle tastes like (they’d never had one apparently). That was basically it – a gripe. I never mentioned this mom by name nor shamed moms that only feed their kids organic food. I was bitching about my experience.
Right away, I got like after like and comment after comment. Most agreeing with me in that my “friend” was being very judgmental and not very understanding. There were a few people that said they only feed their kids organic, but that’s about as far as they went. I hadn’t posted it for a debate on the topic, it was more to let it out. I thought it was a healthy way to channel the anger I had at the situation rather than blow up at the mom at the park.
I went on with my night after replying to some of the comments, and went to bed.
When I got up, my post was gone! It had been taken down apparently. In my Facebook inbox was a message from the group admin, “Hey Britt. I’m sorry but we had a few complaints from some of the other moms that your post was offensive to them. So, I hope you understand but we had to take it down. Thank you.”
I thought it was a joke. How was my post offensive? Because I said I don’t only feed my kid organic? I didn’t get it. So, I hit the reply button on the message and inquired as to how it was offensive? I also mentioned how I’d seen far more inappropriate topics discussed on the page, from vagina problems to people that admitted to cheating on their husbands. I told her that the group was supposed to be a sanctuary for moms to go and have an ear from other moms about our daily lives.
She replied right away. She told me that even she had been offended by my post because she fed her kids organic. She then told me that she could not put my post back up.
So, basically it was her that was offended. I had posted something the admin didn’t like, and instead of being an impartial leader, she chose to take sides based on how she saw fit. It didn’t take me long to figure out that this group that I thought I loved so much, was a joke. The description had said that it was a judgement free zone, and to post whatever you needed to talk about. I guess that was true unless you posted something that offended the admin.
I had seen a few other moms previously post short-lived rants about how the admin team was unfair and they were leaving the group because of it. I hadn’t believed them until now! They were totally right!
I couldn’t hold it in anymore after that! So, I got back on the group page and wrote what had happened to me. I even reposted my original post so that others could see how non-offensive it really was. My post lasted about two hours before it was taken down. Not long after that I could no longer find the group in the search bar on Facebook.
I’d gotten the boot.
I had also received a Facebook message from the admin saying that my second post was uncalled for. She told me, “Nice job now you are out. I hope you are happy with yourself.” With her snotty tone, and “I’m the boss” attitude, I was happy to have been kicked out! I told her that her group was a joke and that it was run based on her whims and not a real community for moms.
Then, she blocked me.
I was kicked out of an online moms group. I find the entire thing pretty funny. Although, I do miss the community sometimes, I have since found other groups where moms can really complain, reach out, and raise up one another. They are real, honest, and caring. The moms in my new groups are not fake. They get that this mom gig can be hard. They get that sometimes you just need someone to listen and that life is not always perfect. We all need others to vent to and to listen when life gets hard.
It’s just too bad the admin of that group doesn’t understand this.
Britt is a married mom of two young children from New York. She is a stay at home parent, freelance writer and human services specialist. When she’s not chasing her kids around or writing, she enjoys Netflix, traveling and vampire slaying. You can find her at www.thebombsahm.com.