Most of us can likely agree that Cersei Lannister is not a very good person. Shame, shame, shame. Joffrey doesn’t have too many redeeming qualities either. Something about apples and falling and trees. At the same time, we can also recognize that Cersei was fiercely protective of her children. To a fault, even. “Though this be madness,” as Polonius famously proclaimed, “yet there is method in it.”

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about how you really don’t know anything until you’re in the thick in the things. I remember I used to shake my head when I saw a child have a meltdown in the middle of a store or restaurant. Or I’d get annoyed by the crying baby on the plane. Couldn’t mom or dad do something about it? These days, I look at other parents differently. It’s more of a knowing look.

“Yup, I’ve been there,” I think to myself.

But that got me thinking whether other people go through a similar shift in perspective when they have their first child. How do they view other parents (and the behavior of their children)? Do they cut other parents more or less slack when they see young children chomping away at McDonald’s while staring at their iPads, all before running hysterically around the place and harassing the other patrons?

So, just as I did in regards to getting enough sleep and tackling the childcare problem, I turned to my buddies in the dad bloggers Facebook group for some insight. I wanted to know how they felt about other parents and their actions since becoming fathers themselves.

Since becoming a dad, have you become more or less judgmental of other parents?

  • 57% said they’re less judgmental
  • 23% said they’re more judgmental
  • 20% said they’re about the same

Again, I know that this cohort of dad bloggers isn’t necessarily representative of the general population at large. Even so, it at least demonstrates that most of my fellow dad bloggers generally feel the same way as I do. That said, I probably still judge other parents; I just have a far greater understanding of their plight. Kids can be little monsters and you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.

And I’m sure other parents judge me too.

Truth be told, no matter what decision you make as a parent, some other parents will say you’re doing it wrong. Breast is best and fed is best, but we all need rest, so be my guest and do whatever works best for you and your family. We’re all just figuring it out as we go along, right?

“Nobody is better than you, but you’re better than nobody.”