Does anyone ever read something or hear something new about parenting and then say in a later conversation “well THEY say that you should do it this way” or “THEY say you should wait until 6 months to do that.”
Do you ever ask yourself WHO THE F ARE “THEY”? And why are “THEY” so special and why do we listen to them and do everything “THEY” say?
Sure, some of them may be doctors but even doctors all have different opinions on things and when you really step back for a second and look in from the outside, you realize that it seems like no one actually knows why we have to do certain things a certain way nowadays and it has gotten out of control.
Do you ever wonder how our parents all got by without Google and mom forums? I can tell you the answer because I am basically a genius… INSTINCT!
They used solely their instinct and a couple random books and for the most part, we all turned out just fine.
Most of our parents fed us food at 3 months, had us in a crib from day one or else in their rooms in a crib for a couple weeks before transferring to our own rooms. Yes, I do understand there were many more cases of things such as SIDS but I am just doing a simple comparison.
None of them had the baby gear we all have now. The fancy swings, electric breast pumps, special baby chairs and seats, snot suckers or $30 swaddle blankets. God forbid, they bathed us in a bath tub that didn’t have a plastic whale attachment covering the spout just incase the baby slipped and smashed its head on that metal spout. They were monsters back in the day!!!
Or how bad was it that they didn’t use organic, vegan, extra sensitive, made of silk and angel tears shampoo and body wash for us? How did they possibly get by and better yet, how did we all survive with that $2 Johnsons & Johnsons shampoo in our hair?
INSTINCT AND NOT OVER THINKING EVERY DAMN THING.
Whenever I doubt myself on any parenting situation, I ask myself “what did my parents do?” or “are they doing this in other countries?” “are we just over thinking it and way more over protective and crazy in North America?”
As a first time mom, I remember feeling like I was doing everything wrong because I didn’t follow the “rules”. I fed my daughter a bottle once a day right from the beginning, I gave her a soother from day one, I put her in her own crib in her own room at 3 months, I started pablum/food at 4 months and she was eating chunks of all types of food from chicken to broccoli to pasta by 6 months of age. I followed a similar path to what my parents did with my brothers and me and somehow felt like it was all wrong because it wasn’t what people did nowadays and it didn’t follow the “rules”.
It took me a while to realize that what I did wasn’t wrong and that she is doing just fine. My daughter has slept through the night since we moved her into that crib at 3 months, she eats everything we feed her, she got rid of the soother at 15 months, she was never “nipple confused” (because I really don’t think that is a real thing but will touch more on that later), and she is a pretty darn happy kid. I feel like all those things I did “wrong” were actually part of the reason why she is the way she is today.
Sure, most people just tell me that we got lucky with her and that she has been so easy, which is true but I often wonder if most of that “easiness” came from the way we decided to do things so early on. Again, I am not an expert on this stuff at all but do know that our parents never talked about sleep regressions and sleep training and know that most of them didn’t wait until 6 months before giving us real food.
Think of it this way… we are all having to now train our kids out of something we have been doing for a while or that they have become used to in their short life. Our parents generation did things earlier while we were all just infant blobs who didn’t notice the changes. I get it for the most part, we are all in survival mode and do things just to get by and whatever make our lives easier at the time. A few solid examples would be co-sleeping or waiting a while to introduce a bottle or just feeding our kids bananas and yogurt or purees for every meal because that’s all they will eat and we just want them to get food in their tummy and we are too afraid to see them choke. These then become habits that we have built and have to eventually change. Shocker right?
So why not do things that will make our lives easier in the long run instead of the short run where we have to constantly retrain our kids?
Sure, there are days where Sawyer will refuse to eat certain foods and I will give up for the day because I don’t have the patience but I definitely try again at the next meal because I know she will eventually eat it if I don’t give her a choice. She hated avocado (like a psychopath, who hates avocado?!) for a long time and we just kept putting it on her plate until one day, she ate it and decided she now likes it. We basically locked our kid in a highchair for 45 minutes at times just to get lunch down her. It was such a painful experience as I am a very time oriented person and felt stressed having to sit with her for that long but it did start to get easier.
I’m not saying that co sleeping and not feeding your kid until later is bad by any means, we all gotta do what we gotta do! I’m just saying to think about it in a different light. Why does our generation have to hire sleep trainers and deal with super fussy eaters when our parents never seemed to have the same issues? Probably because the “rules” changed and now we are told to do things completely differently than when we were raised. Growing up, we never had a choice of what we wanted for dinner. My parents made one meal and that was the only option. If we didn’t eat it, we didn’t eat. Most of our parents moved us to the crib pretty much as soon as we exited the womb and none of us realized what was going on. Imagine your 9 or 12-month-old kid when you’re trying to move them away from sleeping in your bed and into their own. “Wait a second, you want me to sleep alone in this hard crib and not on the soft, cozy pillow top mattress between my mom and dad? Oh hell no, that’s not happening.” And then we enter a painful “sleep training” experience. To be honest, I don’t blame the kid, I’d be pissed too!
Or what about the kid who has been on purees and bottles for his first year of life. When he suddenly tries a chunk of chicken or cheese for the first time, he makes a disgusted face and spits it out because he’s wondering what the hell that weird ass texture was in his mouth and doesn’t know how to chew because he has only ever swallowed or drank his food. This becomes another thing you need to then “retrain” when your kid is somewhat old enough to understand what is happening and have an opinion. You are now fighting with a one year old on what they will eat every day because he “doesn’t like it” but do you ever wonder if he would like it if he had tried that food and already been eating it for 6 months? One year olds and opinions should not be in the same sentence.
(I will now sit here waiting for hate mail about how babies will choke if you feed them chunks of food at 6 months)