Apparently there is a mom calling the police on other mothers who leave other children in the car during preschool drop off and pick up. In the interest of full disclosure, I have on occasion left the younger two in the car when I pick up Jack at school. Usually it’s because someone is asleep or it’s only 20 degrees outside. But my motivations are irrelevant because I’m technically breaking the law- although, the way the law is written in Maryland, you are breaking the law when you return your shopping cart, if your kids are safely buckled in the car. And, yes, I have heard stories of mothers who have been reported to the police for this. As if the parking lot is safer than belted in carseats in the car.

This disgusts me.

I’m not going to spend time on excuses, because some days are just harder than others and sometimes I cut corners and do what’s easy.

Nothing, and I mean nothing, makes me angrier than moms turning on other moms. This is not to say there aren’t real situations of child abuse, neglect, or drug use that should, by all means be reported. But I fail to see the value in tearing each other down by criticizing, reporting or judging fellow moms. All the moms at preschool seem to love their children very much, they seem to be clean and healthy and well fed and enrolled in all the latest enriching activities. So the idea that one among us is lumping moms who leave kids in a warm car in the dead of winter for 5 minutes with moms who abuse their children makes me want to spit fire.

It leaves a bad taste in my mouth to know that moms I say hello to and smile at every day feel more comfortable dialing 911 if my child is in the warm car sleeping- instead of waiting by my car and saying “It makes me nervous to see your kids alone in the car. Can you bring them with you?” Or this ‘concerned citizen’ could offer to sign my preschooler into or out of his class.

Im lucky that I haven’t personally been a victim of Petunia Dursley.

It’s obvious that I will need to follow the letter of the law at pre school drop off from here on out, and that’s fine because it will allow me to chat with my friends without needing to hurry back to my kids who are warm and safe in the car, I’ll have them with me. If its not raining or blistering cold I will have a minute to catch up with my fellow moms, and this is a good thing.

I’m not trying to make this about the actual car, or the amount of time, or why I do it. What really grinds my gears is how childish it is to tattle on a mom instead of walking over and saying “I don’t think you can do that.”

In other situations I would take a deep breath and push this away reminding myself “That is not mine”. But I believe this belongs to all of us.

Apparently this week is the week of manifestos because here is another one.

The Mommunist Manifesto: it takes a village, so act like it. Have each others backs, help each other out, smile at each other. Let go of the backstabbing and the judgment. We will all be better for it.

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