Stop Comparing

Melissa Schlemmer by Melissa Schlemmer Additional Needs

Melissa Schlemmer

Melissa Schlemmer

Currently I am trying to juggle life with an infant, 7 year old, and a nearly 5 year old with special needs. Life is all kinds of crazy, but we are...

Parenting a child with special needs isn’t a competition.

None of us will be preparing an acceptance speech to receive our trophy for any of this.

None of us will be handed an oversized check written in our names any time soon.

I cannot tell you how many times I have witnessed the “one upping” on special needs pages on social media or in group conversations with other moms.

I know I’m not alone in this, which really is so sad.

I have had conversations with other parents who have told me that they have been made to feel as though they aren’t doing enough because another mother is doing more.

Or the stresses they are feeling aren’t big enough because someone else has it worse.

What exactly is worse?

What is enough?

It’s all relative and individual so please stop comparing.

These social media pages are meant to be supportive. These mom groups are supposed to be a safe space for parents to get advice or share experiences.

As a group of moms who are living lives that are different than parents of typical kids we need to stick together. We shouldn’t be divided.

Aren’t we supposed to lift each other up instead of tear one another down?

We should be fist pumping and giving one another high fives any chance we get.

Can we stop comparing and competing? No one wins.

This life is hard enough.

A good friend once said “hard is hard.” Isn’t that the truth?

One person’s hard is their hard. One person’s busy is their busy.

More doesn’t mean you win.

More appointments. More diagnoses. More surgeries. More sleepless nights. More fights with the county, school, or medical professionals. More specialists.

I don’t care if your child has one specialist or ten; it’s all hard.

Having a child who struggles with health issues or developmental issues is hard.

Having a child who you are constantly worried about is hard.

Fighting for your child to have the best life possible is hard.

Sometimes just getting out of bed is hard.

As moms we shouldn’t have to feel that we can’t share our experiences with other moms because they may seem “less” to another. No one should ever feel like their child’s struggles are not as bad as others.

I know that you lay awake at night worrying.

I know you have shed tears wondering what your child's life will be like.

I know you wonder if you really are doing enough. The very last thing you need is someone else saying they have more.

We are all dealing with MORE.

It’s not a competition.

No trophy.

No ribbon.

The only more we should be doing is showing more love and support. We all deserve more of that.


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