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post #81 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by BelgianSheepDog View Post
NYCVeg, that's why I prefer to go with the idea of something being evidence based.
One of the problems there though is that the "evidence" changes. I would venture a guess that in 1975 you probably could have found plenty saying that formula feeding was at least just as good as breast feeding.

-Angela
post #82 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by bczmama View Post
Rather than keeping up with the Jones, she's keeping up with the Raynbow Arwen Starrs.



I think that it is the nature of the beast for a message board to tend to an extreme, whether it's NFL or AP, or who can make their child cnform to a more rigid schedule than the next person.

Yes, you get the discussions of whether having your husband present make it a real UC, or whether it's negligent to not change wet nappies every two hours all night long, but that's neither the opinion or the aspiration of the majority. And you get some very prolific, very opinionated posters who just go all over the place putting one line judgements on everything.

It is better for everyone to eat as much whole food as possible, minimise our impact on the earth, etc, etc. And I don't think that's incompatible with feminism. Why would it have to be the female who cooked the food, or hung the nappies on the line? Of course she's the only one who can breastfeed, but you can still share the total tasks equally between the sexes. So while you're feeding the baby he's doing the dishes or washing the floor.

But I maybe have a non-traditional view of feminism - I see it as the freedom for all humans to choose the roles they want to play. So if I was told my choice to stay at home with my child for a couple of years was derided as not feminist, then isn't feminism just the opposite sort of restriction? Surely it's not meant to make working out of the home compulsory? If it was, does that make my husabnd a feminist, and if he was at home, would it make him an anti-feminist?

Quote:
One of the problems there though is that the "evidence" changes. I would venture a guess that in 1975 you probably could have found plenty saying that formula feeding was at least just as good as breast feeding.
Actually, Angela, no, there were never any large randomised controlled trials to show that formula feeding was anywhere near as good as breastfeeding. That's why evidence based parenting is the way I go.
post #83 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by wannabe View Post
Actually, Angela, no, there were never any large randomised controlled trials to show that formula feeding was anywhere near as good as breastfeeding. That's why evidence based parenting is the way I go.
Right, no full-on trials, but plenty of "experts" For so many things, there ISN'T any real evidence yet. (after all, who pays for those studies?) So I think there are many things worth taking a stand for that can't be demonstrated *yet* with randomised controlled trials.

-Angela
post #84 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rivka5 View Post
Or, for GD:

Parents should not use physical punishment or humiliation.
Parents should not use time-out.
Parents should not use ANY form of punishment.
Parents should not criticize.
Parents should not use rewards.
Parents should not praise.
Parents should rescue their children from natural consequences.
Parents should not use distraction or playful techniques which are manipulative.
Parents should be careful not to indicate approval or disapproval of their children's behavior.
Excellent example. GD is an area I have the hardest time with in this regard.

I'm a totally gentle mom. I know in my heart that I am. GD works great in our house. And yet, the other day, when leaving a play area with DD, she had a minor melt down. We had to go, she didn't want to. I worked with her for as long as I could. There were a few minutes where she wasn't really happy. She's 2. This is normal. But I felt like the biggest loser on the face of the earth, and I beat myself up all the way to our next appointment (while, I might add, DD was singing happily).

Why? Because I could feel the invisible eyes of the GD Righteous glaring down on me. It didn't matter that I spent the entire day doing gentle things with my daughter. It didn't matter that my personal philosophy is that it IS okay to draw a line and say after appropriate preparation, we're going NOW, I'm sorry if you don't like it but we have an appointment we cannot miss. It didn't matter that we *couldn't* stay if we'd wanted to, because the space was being used for something else. It didn't matter that our next destination was one that my daughter had been looking forward to and that she enjoyed very much. Oh, no. All I could think of was how I wasn't GD enough, because I *made* my daughter put on her coat and boots when she wanted to play some more, instead of coming up with a better solution. And my inability to find that solution made me feel LIKE CRAP. You'd think I'd swatted her in the face, the way I felt.

It took me several hours to talk myself down from the fact that I was applying a standard that was unattainable to my parenting. A minor blip - three minutes - in the course of my ENTIRE DAY with DD where things didn't go smoothly. Did I mention she's 2?

I was thinking about posting that situation in the GD forum, but I didn't, because I knew I would have been told by multiple posters that if I had been just resourceful enough, I could have come up with a mutually agreeable solution and DD wouldn't have been unhappy.

It's enough to make me reconsider all the research and time I put into parenting by reading these boards. Because they just make me feel inferior sometimes.
post #85 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by wannabe View Post
Actually, Angela, no, there were never any large randomised controlled trials to show that formula feeding was anywhere near as good as breastfeeding. That's why evidence based parenting is the way I go.
True...but doctors, magazines, books, and other mothers consistently reinforced the idea that formula was scientific and easier than and superior to bm. In the 50s, all the doctors and experts would have told you that spanking and CIO were necessary if you wanted your child to delvelop properly. There was no internet to search for alternative information. Many of the studies on bfing hadn't been done at that point either, even if you were a mom with the time and resources to go to the library to pore through medical journals looking for "evidence".

I think Angela's point is a good one. "Evidence" is ideal, but there are serious limitations. There will always be an absence of studies on certain issues (erm, vaccination anyone?), as well as a disparity among experts (how else to account for the fact that some people on this board think that the scientific evidence overwhelmingly suggests that a "nourishing traditions" type diet is best, while others think the evidence overwhelmingly suggests that a vegan diet is healthiest?). The other problem with "evidence" is that relying too muc on studies and experts can seriously deaden one's parenting instincts--which is what happens often with CIO, I think.
post #86 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by NYCVeg View Post
There was no internet to search for alternative information. Many of the studies on bfing hadn't been done at that point either, even if you were a mom with the time and resources to go to the library to pore through medical journals looking for "evidence".

IThe other problem with "evidence" is that relying too muc on studies and experts can seriously deaden one's parenting instincts.
I wholeheartedly agree on those two points. First off, we can get so caught up in certain ideas, traditions and studies that we forget to listen to our own instincts. We all have them because each child is different, and who better to know that child and understand what s/he needs than their mother/caretaker, etc.? Not every child is going to respond to a certain technique or parenting style the same way.

And about the formula....my DP's mother was told not to breastfeed with all three of her children (and my DP's the youngest, born in '69) because it formula was more nutritious...for who knows better than science? (meaning the science of making formula) I actually had to use one of their bedrooms to breastfeed when we visited because it made them so uncomfortable. I could have pushed the issue, but it wasn't worth it to me.
post #87 of 327
I think we should all stop caring about what other people on a message board think of us and what we do

Really, something to take into an account is that I think there is always an "arc" of development among our beliefs and who we are. I came to this board just because of cloth diapering... being here has changed what I believe about parenting and we now do many of the "ap/gd" things... but there was definately a point after really subscribing to this ideal that I was fanatic about it. I wasn't trying to mean or better than thou... it was just my sheer excitement about finding something that really resonated with me and that I really believed in. Over time I still have those same beliefs and probably have developed them to further extreme thanks to this board BUT I am not so adamant or voiceful over them anymore. Part of growing older and wiser has helped me realize that there isnt a set solution for ANYTHING and all things must be considered and sometimes you have to set your ideals aside. I think everyone who comes to this board and is young and new to it probably goes through a similar process and journey.


chinakat - I try very hard to be a non coercive/non punishing child, but sometimes things just dont go as well as i planned. You sometimes just have to let go because you can't change what has already happened. Take note, think about what you could do differently (if anything) and move on. No one in the GD forum wants anyone to feel bad all day because of for 3 minutes out of the day you weren't your best. The GD forum is a lot of things tho.. besides just a forum for practical advice it hosts a lot of philosphy based discussions and that has to be taken into account
post #88 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by chinaKat View Post
Excellent example. GD is an area I have the hardest time with in this regard.

I'm a totally gentle mom. I know in my heart that I am. GD works great in our house. And yet, the other day, when leaving a play area with DD, she had a minor melt down. We had to go, she didn't want to. I worked with her for as long as I could. There were a few minutes where she wasn't really happy. She's 2. This is normal. But I felt like the biggest loser on the face of the earth, and I beat myself up all the way to our next appointment (while, I might add, DD was singing happily).

Why? Because I could feel the invisible eyes of the GD Righteous glaring down on me. It didn't matter that I spent the entire day doing gentle things with my daughter. It didn't matter that my personal philosophy is that it IS okay to draw a line and say after appropriate preparation, we're going NOW, I'm sorry if you don't like it but we have an appointment we cannot miss. It didn't matter that we *couldn't* stay if we'd wanted to, because the space was being used for something else. It didn't matter that our next destination was one that my daughter had been looking forward to and that she enjoyed very much. Oh, no. All I could think of was how I wasn't GD enough, because I *made* my daughter put on her coat and boots when she wanted to play some more, instead of coming up with a better solution. And my inability to find that solution made me feel LIKE CRAP. You'd think I'd swatted her in the face, the way I felt.

It took me several hours to talk myself down from the fact that I was applying a standard that was unattainable to my parenting. A minor blip - three minutes - in the course of my ENTIRE DAY with DD where things didn't go smoothly. Did I mention she's 2?

I was thinking about posting that situation in the GD forum, but I didn't, because I knew I would have been told by multiple posters that if I had been just resourceful enough, I could have come up with a mutually agreeable solution and DD wouldn't have been unhappy.

It's enough to make me reconsider all the research and time I put into parenting by reading these boards. Because they just make me feel inferior sometimes.
Well, that certainly does not sound like it was very pleasant, eh?

But I guess what I have been getting at during my posts on this thread is what exactly do you want people to do about that? There are some people in the world that may have done something different than you did. Should they not because it makes you feel bad? Should they do what they want but never talk about it because it makes you feel bad?

Suppose you had posted that on the GD forum. Those posts are always there. The "this happened and I did not like how it went, what could I do differently?" threads. I tend to not reply to those. It is almost always going to be a trainwreck because the OP is usually not actually looking for suggestions. They want everyone to say "you are right, there is absolutely no alternatives to that situation except exactly what you did". When someone posts asking for suggestions, by mind starts brainstorming and I might pass along ideas or my own experiences. Or at least I did, until I discovered that indeed, they are looking for validation rather than suggestions. I think it is perfectly fine to ask for validation. But to ask for "suggestions" and then start calling posters "holier than thou" for making suggestions that unbeknownst to them are unacceptable to the OP is not really productive for anyone.

So my point? Guilt is not good. It is either a manifestation of deeper feelings about a situation or it is useless baggage caused by knowing people do it different even if you think what you did is perfectly fine. The first case should be examined and the second should be discarded. It sounds like your case was in the second catagory. You like the way you discipline. You are not interested in changing it as you feel it works fine for your family. Then you do not need to worry what anyone else thinks. To do so is damaging for you.
post #89 of 327
But NYCveg, it was not ever evidence based (formula over BFing). It was popular, but not evidence based, just as, for example, routine epidurals are popular but not evidence based these days.

Evidence based parenting is not about choosing what's popular or unpopular, or making decisions based on hearsay or anecdotes but about what has good quality evidence to back it up.

Quote:
we can get so caught up in certain ideas, traditions and studies that we forget to listen to our own instincts. We all have them because each child is different, and who better to know that child and understand what s/he needs than their mother/caretaker, etc.?
But what about the mother whose first instinct is to put her crying newborn down alone to sleep, or whack her whinging two year old across the face? Instincts can be bad as well as good.

Quote:
"Evidence" is ideal, but there are serious limitations.
I would agree with that excpet in the context of your post, which is that I'll go alomg with it until I disagree and then I'll ignore it. How would you feel if your midwife ignored the evidence that epsiotomies are mostly harmful and cut one anyway because she had a gut feeling that heads couldn't fit through vaginas? Or if she didn't tell you your child was a footlng breech stargazer because she had a feeling you'd be fine at home? It cuts both ways. You can't cite the WHO BFing recommendations as applicable to first and third world countries unless you also cite their vaccination ones, for example.

Quote:
OTOH, I have RARELY seen mainstream mamas do that[gang up]. Is that inherently part of ap/nfl?
You just don't read the right boards. Mainstream parents are just as willing to annihilate a woman they saw feed their child coke in a bottle as anyone here is.

Quote:
I think, though, that by asking "is this CIO?" and responding to that question, we're already getting things backwards. It's turning it into an ideological discussion, not advice on practicalities. And while such discussions are fine, they aren't really relevant to the needs of children--they're more about the needs of adults to fit in with other adults.
yes, exactly, belgiansheepdog, exactly!
post #90 of 327
I've been following this discussion and I'm really enjoying reading the posts. I think the biggest thing that worries me about this "extreme" is the illusion of control. What I mean by that is that we can become so consumed by making the best choices for our dc that we think that end up feeling completely overwhelmed.

As most of us know you can do everything right per say, but still be surprised by the result. Life has many curve balls, of course it isn't easy- but trying to control everything in terms of parenting can lead to disappointment and confusion. I am all for doing the best for our dc and making the most sound decisions we can as parents, but when I start to think that I can control everything- I'm only fooling myself.
post #91 of 327
:
post #92 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by wannabe View Post
But NYCveg, it was not ever evidence based (formula over BFing). It was popular, but not evidence based, just as, for example, routine epidurals are popular but not evidence based these days.

Evidence based parenting is not about choosing what's popular or unpopular, or making decisions based on hearsay or anecdotes but about what has good quality evidence to back it up.
Yes...but I think we need to be realistic about AVAILABLE evidence. Not everyone has access to all the evidence. Not everyone agrees on what the quality evidence is. In many cases, quality evidence simply doesn't exist to address an issue (the safety of ultrasound for fetuses, for example).

And there are issues on which the "quality" evidence might point one way, but parental instinct or other evidence points another--for instance, vaccines, where the status quo is so engrained, that truly useful clinical trials are not performed (that is, trials on vaccines generally compare groups getting one vaccine with groups getting another, not large populations of vaccinated and unvaccinated children). I don't think we should totally dismiss anecdote or instinct. A mom whose child exhibited serious behavioral changes and was diagnosed with autism shortly after his MMR shots, might quite understandably stop vaccinating that child--even though the peer-reviewed medical journals say that there is no link between the two.

I believe this is true of bfing as well. I may be wrong, but my understanding is that, in the 50s and 60s, there WERE no (or at least not many) studies demonstrating all the risks of formula feeding. So, if your doctor and parenting books and your friends and family were your only sources, how could you possibly know all the risks?

Which leads me to another point: people seem to be equating "quality" evidence with studies published in medical journals. But, if you study the background of these journals and of the scientific community in general, you'll find that much of this evidence is ust as biased, pre-determined, and politically influenced as everything else. Which is not to say it should just be disregarded...but that there is no one true source that any of us can depend on, so many sources, even--gasp!--anecdotal evidence and instinct can and should be taken into account.
post #93 of 327
There's a big difference between evidence and experts on the practitioner level. I love my doctor to pieces, but she has shown me evidence that her grip of statistics isn't that great...and if I can tell, having gotten through two terms of stats for psych majors by the skin of my teeth, it's BAD. I don't consider the opinions and sayings of practitioners to be "evidence." Studies are evidence. Replicable studies. That's a good start. And yeah, you have to be educated to interpret that kind of data. So it would be nice if practitioners were reliable interpreters. But since they aren't, good data from good studies is the best I, personally can do right now. Knowing I may be proved incorrect on a point years later doesn't bother me. That's how science works. It's nothing personal.
post #94 of 327
On babywearing - I think it's obvious, IME, that babywearing is a good thing. My kiddo never wanted to stay in the stroller for a whole outing, she loved to ride high up on my hip or back and look at the world.

But then around here it seems like strollers are demonized, and you are supposed to wear your baby *all* the time, without factoring in or providing disclaimers for those for whom it doesn't work. And then mamas start feeling guilty for putting babes in strollers, even if babywearing doesn't work for them and babe is happy in the stroller. And they get judged as not AP enough.

That seems really ridiculous to me. Provide info and encouragement for babywearing, and let mamas ourselves figure out the balance in our own lives between carrying them or pushing the stroller. Kwim?

I always did both with my kiddo, and I didn't feel guilty at all. If she is happy why should I try to live up to some internet standard of perfecton?

How do you CD and babywear anyway? That was always an enigma to me. I could fit a sposie in the Mayawrap pocket, or I could take the stroller and CD's. But not both.
post #95 of 327
It IS easier now that I've gotten older- it's easier not to give a flip, & , & do my own thing. (Reading Mothering mag helped too, but unfortunately not enough for things like my mil giving my dd formula when I had perfectly good milk to leave with her- now I would say, "Here's her milk, you old bag, & if you don't like it don't keep her for the day.")

I think the mainstream bullying is so intense it's hard not to get a little pushy in backlash, for sheer earnestness & gratitude that we've found something better.
post #96 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
On babywearing - I think it's obvious, IME, that babywearing is a good thing. My kiddo never wanted to stay in the stroller for a whole outing, she loved to ride high up on my hip or back and look at the world.

But then around here it seems like strollers are demonized, and you are supposed to wear your baby *all* the time, without factoring in or providing disclaimers for those for whom it doesn't work. And then mamas start feeling guilty for putting babes in strollers, even if babywearing doesn't work for them and babe is happy in the stroller. And they get judged as not AP enough.

That seems really ridiculous to me. Provide info and encouragement for babywearing, and let mamas ourselves figure out the balance in our own lives between carrying them or pushing the stroller. Kwim?

I always did both with my kiddo, and I didn't feel guilty at all. If she is happy why should I try to live up to some internet standard of perfecton?

How do you CD and babywear anyway? That was always an enigma to me. I could fit a sposie in the Mayawrap pocket, or I could take the stroller and CD's. But not both.
I always used a messenger bag as my diaper bag, one big enough to fit my cloth diapers.... I Actually made mine own with a quick release clip so I could take the bag off while I had the baby in the sling if I needed to! but anyway I would wear a sling on one shoulder and the messenger bag off the other shoulder.

But I used a stroller too, I just found the stroller more annoying and inconvenient for me most times
post #97 of 327
I was never the prepared diaper bag person, but I would put a diaper and cover of some sort in a purse or bag, or leave diapers in the car, or just go on outings where I wasn't going to change the diaper while I was gone. Or sometimes I'd tuck stuff in the sling. Or if I felt like disposables were more convenient for longer outings, I'd take those.

Rivka, interesting post about the progression of things.

Yeah, I have some instincts and urges I have to tamp down. Don't mess with the silverback, as my husband says. And definitely mainstream boards are just as judgmental if not more so.
post #98 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikki98 View Post
I think the biggest thing that worries me about this "extreme" is the illusion of control. ... As most of us know you can do everything right per say, but still be surprised by the result.
nice post!

I think that some parents (regardless of style) parent like they are following a recipe. They seem to believe that if they do everything just right, their child will turn out a certain way. I find it sort of creepy. I had children because I wanted to watch them become who they are, not because I wanted to make them into what I thought they should be.

I parent the way that I do because I feel it is the most respectful of them of human beings.

Part of that is being aware of evidence, part of that is listening to my own heart, and part is just watching my kids because they often let me know what they need.

BTW, most of the crunchy parents I've met IRL are super nice people. I think that kind, emotionally healthy people are drawn to this style of parenting.
post #99 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by thismama View Post
If she is happy why should I try to live up to some internet standard of perfecton?


And that's pretty much it right there.

That said, it still ticks me off when anyone implies that I am messing up my sweet, beautiful, spirited, brilliant, amazing daughter who my husband and I created and who I grew inside my body and who I continue to grow outside my body with milk that I make and who I care about more than anything else in the world by doing or not doing [insert random AP/NFL/GD tenet here]. : I know I shouldn't take snarky people online too seriously, but it is really hard for me not to take stuff concerning my daughter personally because it it is such a personal issue.
post #100 of 327
Quote:
Originally Posted by riverscout View Post
...it is really hard for me not to take stuff concerning my daughter personally because it it is such a personal issue.
Yeah, I guess that't the crux of the matter, isn't it? Because these are our kids we're talking about.

I think some of the criticism comes from fear, like if you don't acknowledge that I'm right to make enormous sacrifices for XYZ, then how will I justify those choices?

I've really enjoyed this thread (though I'm showing up late to the party). I teach babywearing/AP classes at a birth center, and it's astonishing to me how many of the women show up pale, drawn, and exhausted because they believe that to do right by their babies, they have to basically lay down their personhood. I spend most of my time, when teaching those classes, talking about balance and urging the moms (and the occasional dad) to care for themselves, to find a way to sleep that gets everybody gets the rest they need. They KNOW how to do attachment; they have to re-learn self-care. I wish I had a dollar for every woman who burst into tears when I looked her in the face and said, "You are still a person; you deserve to have your needs met, too!" Strollers, playpens, babysitters, cribs, and bottles are like c-sections: way over used, but still valuable and useful when used appropriately.
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