Being proud is natural but bragging is tacky.
KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE
Where is the line? It’s a fine one no doubt but know your audience and you should be in the clear. If your child gets straight A’s, tell your mom or sister and let them share in your legitimate joy. It may even be okay to tell your close friends or cousins, provided your relationship is in tact. Don’t find yourself slipping it in when you’re in the middle of small talk with your neighbor.
BE SENSITIVE TO OTHERS
A Mother Truth reader suggested I include the following scenario in one of my posts. Her little man is up every hour when he should be sleeping far better by now. She is running low on patience when certain fresh-faced and energized moms brag about having to wake up their babies in the morning because they sleep ultra soundly. This new mom is exhausted and her new accessories are the bags that hang down to her ankles. She more than likely doesn’t give a rat’s ass if your overachiever is sleeping through the night.
DON’T BUTT IN
My personal favorite! Let’s say you’re on the phone with a friend and she says: “Guess what?, my Jessica crawled today!” She is so proud and stoked to share this news with you! This would be a bad time to say: “Amanda tied her shoes for the first time!” Let her have her moment, don’t rip it off.
IT EMBARRASSES YOUR KIDS
There is no one that can make you more proud than your baby! It’s partly because their achievements are a reflection on our performance as mothers and all we want is to succeed for them. It’s also in part because we want to see them experience jubilation! Felicity! Elation! – because of something they have done. That they may know the greatest feelings and be committed to chasing them throughout their lives. It is not our job to impose on them these emotions because only they can feel them for themselves. Support them, absolutely. Provide for them, surely. But brag about them no more. They may begin to believe our nonsense and as a result become overconfident, making the inevitable fall much harder.
And, it’s tacky.