Why Bad-Mouthing Dads Online Is a Bad Idea
If you ever read single mom blogs, you might have noticed an occasional bad-mouthing of fathers. We all know that kids get hurt when one parent bad-mouths the other. We also know that, someday, our kids will go online and read our blog entries about our exes—as well as any nasty comments we might leave. If bad-mouthing fathers in a public forum is not healthy, why do we keep doing it?
You might know that both Dr. Leah and I had quite traumatic experiences with the fathers of our children. We have plenty we could say in public about them. But we don’t. So, why do other parents just as loving and responsible as we try to be continue to bad-mouth their kids’ dads?
We understand the need to have a place to vent. Many of us are caught in a “perfect storm” of broken relationships, legal system snafus and catch-22’s, and economic woes.
So, here you are, sitting at the computer screen while the kids are asleep or pleasantly occupied, clicking away. You might feel like you’re chatting with trusted friends.
Blogging—and commenting—often feels like chatting behind closed doors.
Dr. Leah, aka The Sanity Fairy, says that bad-mouthing your kid’s father is destructive to your child.
All of it: the name-calling, the derisive nicknames, and the endless recitations of his inadequacies. Kids quickly learn that no matter how involved Dad is—or isn’t—they are still “half that person.”
If Mom persists in bad-mouthing Dad, kids must cope with thinking of themselves as “half liars” or “half irresponsible jerks” or “half lazy dead beats.” Coping with the “bad half” dilemma is an enormous developmental challenge for kids.
On top of social pressures, academic demands, and all the rest, kids will be haunted by doubts about their self worth based on what they hear Mom say.
Even if you leave a negative comment on a blog about your ex, your kids can find it and read it. Sure, you might be anonymous, but your babies will one day be tech-savvy and literate. And they’ll have friends with those same skills.
Indeed, anonymous blogging is an oxymoron, don’t you think?
I’d like to know your thoughts:
Do you rely on blogs—writing a blog, or commenting on them—to face what the world throws at you, so that you’re better able to take care of your kids?
We admit that maybe we’re way off here.
Originally published on SingleMomSeeking