There are so many different opinions circling around about what the right way is concerning looking after children. No two mothers do the exact same thing for everything. For example, one mother may choose to introduce solids to her child at 4 months, and another may choose to introduce it at 6 months. Or one mother may choose to use organic water wipes for nappy changing and the other may choose to use Johnsons wipes. We all have our own way of doing things and there is nothing that erks me more than mothers who assume their way should be everybody elses’. I’ve met a fair few mums like this and also heard stories from other parents. Whilst opinions and advice from those in similar situations are valuable (I love hearing different perspectives on everything related to being a mum), to attempt to make your own opinions a universal fact is both wrong and presumptuous. In this post I will be outlining a few short examples (mixture of my own personal ones and other people’s examples) of when this occurs. To be honest, I would regard this more as something I just want to get off my chest as opposed to a long-winded informative post: sometimes things just aren’t rosey and funny and as my tag line states, ‘we all like to have a little rant sometimes…’ So this is what I intend to do: RANT.
- ‘I bathe my child everyday, it’s part of his bedtime routine and I find it really helps him sleep better’. Another mother said, “you shouldn’t, you know. It dries up their skin. I bathe my child 3 times a week and that’s a much better thing to do”. Says who? All babies have different skin types, some are dry and therefore should not be bathed everyday (I’m starting to think my SS falls into this category), whilst other babies are fine to be bathed even twice a day if needs be (as is the case with my DD).
- “I switched from cotton to baby wipes to wipe my baby’s bum when she was a week old”. Another mum said “why?! That’s way too early! I continued using cotton until my baby was a few months old. Their skin is too delicate for wipes. You shouldn’t have switched so early.”. Well actually, maybe some babies require cotton for a longer time period due to their skin type, but others are perfectly fine using wipes from an early age. I used cotton wool for my DD until she was 4 months old (looking back, I was a first-time mother who was just being extra), whilst my DD used waterwipes a week after birth (the amazing water wipes can be found in this link: a bit pricey but so worth it).
- “I opted for controlled crying to put my 7 month old into a routine”. Another mother said, “controlled crying is so wrong. It causes stress for babies and I would never do that to my child!”. No one is asking you to. Using controlled crying for sleep training is definitely a controversial method, however many mothers who have used this technique (me being one of them) have found it to be beneficial to their child. My daughter slept through the night after I adopted this method so she was no longer sleep deprived and definitely much happier as a result. It was a difficult process but I do not regret it. Maybe when thinking of their own childrens’ characters, mothers may believe it is wrong and, for them, maybe it is. But for other parents, they have a right to make a choice of how they want to do things without opinions being brought to them, posing as facts.
- “If my 2 week old baby hasn’t been burped and falls asleep whilst feeding, I put him down on his side rather than on his back just in case he vomits”. Another mother said “babies don’t HAVE to be burped, you know”. What?! This particular example irritates me because on one occasion, I put my SS on his back to sleep without burping him, and he vomited and almost choked. Had I not been in the room, things could have potentially gone very badly. So for another mother to sprout this opinion, based on her own experience with her child, is both wrong and reckless. Be careful mummies when giving an opinion about something regarding a child’s safety.
- “My baby is exclusively breastfed and my milk is sufficient for him. He’s never been able to take the bottle anyway”. Another mother said, “breastmilk is NOT enough! Your baby is still hungry. What do you mean ‘he won’t take the bottle’? Of course he will, you just don’t know how to do it. He will take it if you’re persistant.” This is a statement made more so by the older generations of mothers. Completely untrue of course; a mother’s milk supply is generally dependant on their baby’s demand for it. Sometimes, it may not be enough due to underlying issues, but if a mum feels like her baby is content then who are any of us to tell her otherwise? Also, there is no special way to give a baby a bottle; they either want it or they don’t.
So, I’ll end it here. I think it’s important that we all recognise that our own children are unique in their skin types, eating, sleeping and behavioural habits; we should never assume that our own way of doing things works for everyone else. A mother knows best about her child.
I hope that you have enjoyed this post/I hope you have been able to relate to my moany rant. I am considering doing shorter, more frequent posts in the future (let’s be honest, my monologues are very loooong reads) and would love to hear your thoughts on this.
Share if you like and comments would be fanastic.