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#1 of 21 Old 07-18-2013, 02:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ladies I need some help !

 

I've had a great pregnancy so far, birth should go smoothly and I thought that the next step would be to enjoy my baby.

 

I want to babywear, BF and be as gentle as possible with DD but now I'm really confused.

 

DP is really not supporting babywearing.

He said that he wouldn't stop me from trying but that it looks like a bad idea to him. He thinks that's how you create needy and demanding kids. He's not into what he calls "hippy education fades" and for him it's just that.

NB: DP is an amazing man, please don't criticize him namaste.gif.

 

Now, his best friend is visiting for a few days with her 10 months old and I'm freaking out.

The baby is very clingy, she cries when you put her down, screams when the mom leaves the room, she hates to eat...

 

DP told me today that he really really was not in favour of babywearing because he thinks that it will turn our baby into a spoiled demanding manipulative brat.

For him CIO is the way to go because that's the way we were brought up. Since we're not screwed, our kids should do just fine, right ?

 

I disagree but I have no experience to back up what I think. He has a toddler already so he's been there before.

 

His friend is not helping either.

She said that she's weaning her baby because their relationship is too symbiotic.She also stopped babywearing for that reason.

One of her friends even skipped BF altogether just to avoid the symbiotic thing. It doesn't make sense to me.

Her baby is still needy and clingy, and she blames the AP stuff she did at the beginning.

 

DP doesn't want a demanding child. Neither do I ! But for me an infant is not manipulative.

 

I'm just questioning everything I thought I knew.

If I BF on demand, wear the baby, don't CIO etc and DD is demanding, fussy, needy or whatever, I fear DP would say it's my fault and ask me to just stop and start CIO and sleep training.

 

I know this post is a bit messy but I'm so confused.... i almost dread the arrival of my first child now.

 

Any input, advice or thought would be really appreciated.

 

A freaked out future mama confused.gif

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#2 of 21 Old 07-18-2013, 04:26 PM
 
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First baby, right? :)

FWIW, my dh would have said a lot of those things...I did what I thought right (or what felt right to me), and with time, I realized, I really didn't need him to be backup Mom.  I am the Mom, I carried the baby for 9 months, my maternal line going back to pre-human ancestors carried and cared for their babies...meaning we evolved to do so.  If at some point, the whatever hominid ancestor mama had decided to put down her baby so he wouldn't be so clingy, then that baby most likely wouldn't have survived.  Over time, our society has become about the family consisting of couples ... where there is little dependence on the extended family and Dad more often plays the role of backup Mom, but if you look at other societies, inexperienced Moms don't ask their hubbies what they should do, they ask their Moms or Aunts or other experienced females that they trust...instead of re-inventing child rearing for every family.  Meaning in that regard, you have the disadvantage of asking a man's opinion, instead of another experienced Mom who you trust. Men didn't evolve to necessarily carry those clingy babies around...they evolved to worry about the big picture of hunting and protecting their families....they want to raise strong  kids...  My dh likes to say that the father is more interested in the child's character and the mother is more interested in the physical wellbeing.  I like to tell dh that the child needs to survive to have a character.  

So, in a nutshell, don't worry about whatever theory your dh espouses.  You will do what you think is right, and your dh will do what he thinks is right...and you don't both have to do the same thing.  I ended up carrying the kids a lot more than my dh.  That's maybe not true for all Moms/Dads, but I bet it's true for most.  And you may feel differently about things too ... you may carry the baby more OR less than you would've thought.  And by the way,  most babies are clingy when they're 10 months old, that's the height of stranger anxiety.  And once you have 2 kids, you realize that what you do as a parent has little to do with the kid's characters...some are more fussy, some are less...some are more independent, some are less.  

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#3 of 21 Old 07-18-2013, 05:22 PM
 
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yes to everything lmkl said.

 

I have two sons who were raised in exactly the same way. They were both extended breast fed, co-slept, and worn....except the second didn't need to be worn unless we were going somewhere because he was not into all that sweaty cuddling. lol as babies ds1 was very "clingy" and ds2 was very independent (these days they are both independent emotionally healthy young men and about the most honest, straight forward, and self confident little humans you'd ever like to meet)..

 

and yeah their dad was also worried i'd spoil or ruin them. I always said, babies can't be manipulative, they can only cry to get what they need, they lack the ability to have meaningless wants, they lack the ability  to deceive, that comes later....and seems to be mostly a learned trait. what i am doing is teaching my son that communication and trust are worthwhile by paying attention to his communication attempts and being somebody he can trust.

 

I wasn't willing to follow a parenting model that if it had been practiced on me would have probably left me severely emotionally damaged so i just ignored him. though he did worry that i'd make his son's effeminate, whiney, or manipulative...when it came right down to it he came from a culture that saw mom work as woman's work so he didn't actually get involved in newborn care enough for it to be a concern...and by the time the baby was there he was less able to push cio with a real baby when his wife was quoting health statistics etc to him. everything turned out fine and by the end of our marriage he because a real supporter of attatchment parenting. he's even thanked me for being such a good mom many times since we divorced

 

obviously this isn't always how it's going to work out, but in my experience, at least here in the midwest it is often true. men will verbalize but they don't tend to actually interfere to hard with what they see as mother/woman work

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#4 of 21 Old 07-18-2013, 07:33 PM
 
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Maybe his friend's baby is crying and clingy because she's weaning it.

Honestly, I've pondered whether some of the attachment parenting techniques would lead to a clingy, dependent baby.  But in El Salvador where I live (moved here from the US 5 years ago), a lot of AP techniques are normal and what everyone does.  Strollers are very uncommon.  Not many people use slings and wraps, but they do carry their babies and have them in physical contact with them all the time.  Extended breastfeeding is very common, too.  And bedsharing is also the norm.  And for as long as I've lived here I have been amazed at how independent children are compared with in the US.  And the babies seem to cry less than babies I've known in the States.  And I'm not the only one who notices this.  It's something I regularly hear people visiting from the US comment on.

 


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#5 of 21 Old 07-18-2013, 09:02 PM
 
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AP doesnt necessarily make kids too dependent. Its people who don't understand the emotional nurturance side of it who believe that. The fact that it is symbiotic allows the baby constant emotional comfort and support, which then gives them a solid platform to grow from. How can a child grow properly if they don't have a stable foundation? More often than not, children that are raised with an AP foundation are calmer, more mature, and feel more emotionally secure, thus they actually become more independent at a younger age. Its the difference between someone tossing a kid into a pool, forcing them to figure out how to swim on their own versus holding them while you both enter the pool, gradually and gently teaching them to get acclimated to the water and the dynamics of swimming. The first method fosters insecurity and fear while the second creates a sense of safety and enjoyment.

While plenty of people "turn out okay" with mainstream parenting, i've seen a lot of people not turn out okay, at least emotionally. I think we all would thrive more if our needs had been treated gently and with the utmost care. Also, almost every baby has periods of fussiness, especially in the evenings during the first few months. This has nothing to do with AP or any other type of parenting. To expect your child to never cry just because of your parenting style is ridiculous and your partner should be told that. Please dont feel like you have to make your partner happy with how you mother your baby. As long as your baby is loved and cared for that is all that matters.
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#6 of 21 Old 07-19-2013, 12:51 AM
 
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Welcome to being a mom! Everyone has an opinion on how to do things and they will not hesitate in sharing it.  It'll get to you at first and you'll question yourself but after a while you'll learn to tune out people because honestly no one has the energy to listen to everyone's opinion.

 

I could blame baby-wearing on DD being too clingy the first few months but honestly, the day after she was born, she refused to sleep alone and would scream to be held while all the other babies around me slept peacefully in their bassinets. There is no way anything I did made her that way in her second day of life!

 

I breastfed on demand in the beginning and then put her on a semi schedule after 6 months for both our sanity. We also baby-wore exclusively until 6 months and then I bought a stroller. Follow your gut. I was becoming unhappy and stressed out with both around the same time. So I tried alternatives and she ended up being happier. Having her breastfed on schedule actually calmed her down and improved her attention span (she stopped being distracted all the time by the fact that my boob was there).  I'm not saying everyone should be doing this, it's just evaluate the situation and then make a decision. Not make a decision because you are subscribing to a method.

 

I feel it is best to educate yourself on a few methods and then pick and choose the ideas that appeal to your character, to your baby's character and most of all, that feel right to you. Because if you're not convinced to your core, there will eventually be someone who disagrees and makes you doubt yourself.

 

For me I used a combination of AP and RIE. From AP, I learned about babywearing, breastfeeding, co-sleeping, not letting baby cry his heart out and did variations of those. From RIE, I learned about giving baby space from the very beginning to play on their own, not entertain them, give them undivided focus and for me most important of all not solve their problems for them. Even though some say the methods oppose in theory, I did not see that and I felt everything meshed beautifully when I was calm and not stressed out.

 

BTW babies cry. It is not necessarily a bad thing. It is their only way of communicating with you. It took me a LONG time to understand that my job is not to stop the crying at any price but to understand why she is crying and try to respond to it. The hardest part is accepting that sometimes, she just needs to let off some steam and cry a bit. Just like us. I just held DD and told her I'm there. There is not much more that one can do.

 

woah, this is turning into a long-winded post but as I said, people love to give their opinions winky.gif. The one thing I'd do different this time is not offer the breast every single time baby's upset/crying - at least after 4 months. I noticed a clear shift when I stopped doing that: DD started recovering from upsets better on her own with needed my boob to calm her down.


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#7 of 21 Old 07-19-2013, 11:21 AM
 
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I'm not sure if this will help or not, but prior to becoming pregnant and actually having a baby I had a lot of ideas around what I was willing to do and not do. DH did as well. Many of our ideas were in sync, but not all. Once the baby was here we were able to stick to our core values but we had to do what would work for us and our family. We were more on the side of AP (bf until DD was 20 months and I was preg again, babywearing) but we never co-slept and haven't to this day. DD will be 2 next week and she is incredibly independent, strong-willed, and absolutely hilarious. She can be clingy at times, but she's a kid. Kids want their moms (and dads).

 

I'm am the most AP of all my friends and many of them thought I was nuts that I wouldn't let DD CIO. My friend with the newest baby is now feeling major guilt from family because they are cosleeping - but it is what works for them and she is being very strong and letting them know that they need to continue to do what is best and what works for their family.

 

I guess I'm just trying to say that as long as you and your partner have your core values aligned and they are not trying to stop you from doing things like bf'ing or babywearing at all then I would just let what happens happens. As you can see from many of the posts on this site there is not one method that works for everyone and every family and baby are different.

 

Please know that no matter what ends up working for your family you will be an amazing mom and your baby is lucky to have parents who care so much about their well-being.

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#8 of 21 Old 07-19-2013, 11:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you so much for your answers !

I feel a bit better now.

 

Another question though:

 

How do you handle different opinions on discipline and slapping/spanking ?

 

If your DH thinks slapping is appropriate for such and such behaviour but you don't agree, how do you handle it ?

 

On a side note: If a baby kicks you, do you slap his foot ?
 

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#9 of 21 Old 07-19-2013, 09:26 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your answers !

I feel a bit better now.

 

Another question though:

 

How do you handle different opinions on discipline and slapping/spanking ?

 

If your DH thinks slapping is appropriate for such and such behaviour but you don't agree, how do you handle it ?

 

On a side note: If a baby kicks you, do you slap his foot ?
 

My husband is also against it, but we had similar experiences growing up. By that, I mean I don't believe our parents used spanking properly. For example, I was spanked until I was 12 (other methods would have been more appropriate considering a 12 year old's ability to communicate effectively), I was spanked for things I did when I didn't understand they were wrong or what would happen (pulled all drawers out of my dresser at once, it fell over, I was 5 and didn't know that would happen), and what upsets me most was being spanked when I was 7 and I said I wanted to die. I think someone needed to talk to me about that instead.

 

From research I've seen, parents who use spanking seem to think it is acceptable to spank when the child has done something that could cause them harm (running into street, hot stove...). Parents also think it shouldn't be used after a certain age. It would also be considered wise to take some deep breaths before spanking, rather than taking anger out on child. *I'm not trying to get into a debate, I don't plan to spank period, this is just some of what I've come across from people who spank.

 

But anyway, I would give specific examples and try to figure out when he thinks spanking should be used. And you can voice how you would handle those situations without spanking. Maybe even discuss how both your parents used spanking, that may reveal a lot.

 

And if a baby kicks me, no I would not slap their foot. Babies kick, they just do, but I'm the grown up. I can't say what I would do yet, I'm figuring it's one of those things I will know how to deal with when it happens. Perhaps telling them something like "we don't kick because kicking hurts" idk if that would be sufficient, but we will see when my child kicks me.

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#10 of 21 Old 07-19-2013, 11:51 PM
 
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Its best to be on the same page about discipline. Kids learn best from consistency. Decide together on an approach you can both agree on. I personally don't know of a single mainstream child development expert, physician or psychiatrist that advocates spanking or slapping your child. Does it happen anyway? Sure and most kids handle it ok as long as they overall relationship is loving and its not the main focus of discipline. But I think its best to have lots of other "tools" in your parenting belt. Distraction, re-direction, fun games that encourage the child to comply are SO much more effective not to mention less guilt-inducing!  I think slight differences in discipline styles isn't a big deal, but if you have wide difference, that can be really confusing to the child. 

 

If a baby kicks you intentionally, stop the foot by holding it firmly and say no kick, that hurts. If they do it again, say it again (calmly) and move out of the way. They are exploring cause and effect (ie "What happens when I do this?") so though its important to show them what is and is not ok, don't take it too personally. BTW I am talking about a "baby" who is a toddler, like over the age of 1. A younger baby probably has no inkling their foot is bothering you. An older baby is probably just playing their version of a game and when they learn mom and dad won't play that way, they'll move on to other ways of interacting. One of the worst things you can do is yell and over-react. That is almost guaranteed to get a repeat performance. Young kids thrive on attention, positive or negative. So try to ignore the little things and keep your reactions calm. Not always easy to do, but its a good goal to set at any rate!


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#11 of 21 Old 07-20-2013, 08:41 PM
 
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I breastfed and wore my baby (not all the time) and coslept until he was 12 months old, and he is absolutely wonderful as a toddler. In fact I wish he was MORE clingy; he is rather independent.  I think clingy babies tend to have clingy moms, to be honest, and that this behavior has nothing to do with attachment parenting. 

 

I really think that you should allow your instincts to nurture and bond with your baby take the lead and not allow a man to interfere; husband or not.  Your instincts to do these things will be the best guide to how to be a mom; I promise you. This is what we are about and crying it out is not something I was ready to consider until DS reached about 16 months, but he has been so easy I have never really had to practice it.  Give attachment parenting a shot and you won't regret it.

 

 

Pick up a book by Dr Sears and read when you have time.

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#12 of 21 Old 07-21-2013, 10:04 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your answers !

I feel a bit better now.

 

Another question though:

 

How do you handle different opinions on discipline and slapping/spanking ?

 

If your DH thinks slapping is appropriate for such and such behaviour but you don't agree, how do you handle it ?

 

On a side note: If a baby kicks you, do you slap his foot ?
 

As long as the discipline is within certain range, we've learned to let the other parent say/do whatever they feel is necessary.  But, up front I always said there will be no hitting of my children.  I don't think dh ever had a strong opinion about it, anyway.  There are times when kids really drive you crazy you, and sometimes we have to remind each other to not speak too harshly.  

Do you mean if a baby kicks you or a toddler?  Babies have all kinds of uncontrollable movements...I can't imagine doing any kind of discipline with a baby really...with toddlers, you can distract and redirect and depending on the age, let them know that "no hitting" "no kicking" or whatever and redirect them to something else.  I think a lot of boys probably feared their Dad whether physical punishment was used or not in the near past, but I think that's a terrible thing to feel for your father.  The Sears book that other people have mentioned is really good.  And just keep in mind that there's no one thing that you can do that will make a kid grow up and mature faster than they can.  Parenting is a long process and kids do things that drive you crazy and then move on to something else as they move through various developmental stages.  Just keep in mind that kids will learn much more from what you model for them than what you tell them.  Do you want your 5 year old slapping a baby's foot because the baby kicked him?  Or do you want him to say "oh it's a baby/little kid" and just find a way to distract the baby or move out of range?  What kind of kid would you be more proud of - the one who can empathize with another human that may be in a different developmental stage or the one that feels like they have to teach everyone a lesson.  Kids very quickly copy however you treat them and treat their peers and other people like that when they are able to.  

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#13 of 21 Old 07-21-2013, 11:16 PM
 
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I've found that as time has gone on, the gaps between me and my husband's child-rearing philosophy has lessened the more concrete my pregnancy has become, the closer he feels to the baby, and the more he's read on his own about parenting methods.

I don't know if this is the same with someone who's already been a father and who's already been through a lot of this stuff.

If he is at all willing, I think sending him a few links to different perspectives on childrearing, including those he already has and reading things that promote his perspective should be helpful. I found it really useful to read from dad-centered sources about the other side of the debate, particularly regarding co-sleeping.

I think it helped both of us understand the whole thing better.

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#14 of 21 Old 07-22-2013, 02:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone.

 

The thing is, DP doesn't buy into parenting styles, theory or whatever. He has some strong ideas based on his experience and on what his mother did with his siblings.

I've tried to talk children psychology and all with him but it's just not working.

We did talk however and he assured me that he would never prevent me from holding my baby or spend as much time as I want with her.

I guess that if he sees me happy doing something he'll just let me do it, even though it might make no sense to him.

 

Thank you ladies, you're a great help.
 

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#15 of 21 Old 07-22-2013, 10:20 AM
 
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Honestly, your kid will either be clingy or not. It has little to do with your parenting choices. All you can do is what works for you as a mother.

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#16 of 21 Old 07-22-2013, 02:38 PM
 
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You just never know what kind of child you're going to have, like everyone else said. Letting yourself be "non-AP" sometimes by, for example, using a stroller (OH!) or baby entertainment/entrapment devices (hello, exersaucer!) might save your sanity, especially if keeping up a parenting style your DP doesn't "agree" with actually becomes somewhat taxing, maybe because he won't help out with it by holding the baby as much as you. That said, you also never know what kind of daddy your baby's going to have. He may surprise you once he starts to feel something for this baby (which usually starts when the baby has arrived).

 

I think a good way to approach a conversation about slapping/spanking is noticing (and you might want to do some research or talk to others who have tried it and stopped) that these sometimes escalate a child's aggressive behaviors and create more problems and that if you really are going to spank/slap your child, you had better do it for a really darn good reason (e.g. holding a really strong child back from running in front of a truck . . . I don't know, I don't plan on hitting my children) or else it seems arbitrary to the child and loses its "power."
 

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#17 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 12:13 AM
 
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How do you handle different opinions on discipline and slapping/spanking ?

 

If your DH thinks slapping is appropriate for such and such behaviour but you don't agree, how do you handle it ?

 

 

I think there are some issues that if one parents feels very strongly about, the other one should respect them. For me slapping/spanking is an absolute dead NO and even though DP is also against it, I personally would've made a huge deal out of it if he were to spank.

 

If your DH does not want to discuss parenting styles, I'd approach him with the logic "do you think your parent did every 100% perfect? Obviously not, so let's try to learn how we can build on what our parents did right and improve from there."  And approach him when he's relaxed and just had something to eat, works wonders with DP's attitude orngbiggrin.gif.  BTW, it is best to prepare your reaction to certain behavior in advance because when they happen, you'll be occasionally really mad/upset and won't have the calm and patience to think what's the appropriate reaction!

 

 

Quote:

 

On a side note: If a baby kicks you, do you slap his foot ?

 

It's not a question of "if" but "when". smile.gif  They all kick, and you'll be surprised how early it is with intention. I personally don't slap or hit back. I just hold her foot/hand and say "NO", sometimes just shake my head. If she continues, I keep holding it firmly back (and try my very best not get angry - does not always work) and say "I'm not going to let you hit me.". If she still continues, "If you can't stop yourself right now, I'll leave you here alone for a bit to calm down, I'll be in the other room when you want to play without kicking". The biggest problem is not to get angry yourself - I find it hard - and remain sort of calm but still firm/strong.


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#18 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 06:35 AM
 
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Explain it to him as what works, not about what's popular. Babywear or cosleep when it adds to conveniance. Also check out continuum concept and what they've done forever in many non modern societies as far as keeping young babies close then letting them help you or just run free with minimal interference when they're older. We only punish when kids disobey on purpose, otherwise it's verbal corrections and redirections.

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#19 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 02:28 PM
 
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I think there are some issues that if one parents feels very strongly about, the other one should respect them. 

 

I agree with this.  I am not OK with television, especially violence, being around our son on a regular basis.  He knows how storngly I feel about this and generally tries to respect it even if he feels differently.  

 

On the other hand DH likes to spoon feed our son and really enjoys it even though our son is not learning to feed himself very well; IT means a lot to DH to spoon feed him so I let it go.

 

I started getting slappy when my son was kicking me just before he turned two and I was pregnant and going through a very hard time. He would go after me when I changed his diapers and once or twice I smacked him hard enough that he cried a little bit. It only took a few reactions to get him to stop, but I will never ever feel that it was right or OK, especially when I smacked out of reflex/anger and he was not trying to hurt me just play.  I feel awful about it and no baby should ever be slapped in my opinion.  I hope he forgives me:-(

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#20 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 10:06 PM
 
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It sounds like you could use support from other natural parenting minded folks. When my oldest was a baby, I met moms at the local La Leche League. I would highly recommend finding a meeting/group in your area.

 

http://lalecheleague.org/

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Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
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#21 of 21 Old 07-23-2013, 11:12 PM
 
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I read the Continuum Concept  a million years ago and didn't even realize that there is a whole parenting style around that until quite recently.  But I always liked the idea of being in-tune with my children and being able to meet their needs so that they could grow and meet their own needs (with no emotional attachment in that, you know, just the being alive part of being).  I couldn't quite figure out what I needed to be a mama (other than a baby, some diapers, some clothes, and a car seat) so I didn't really go out and buy any baby gear.  I figured that in our modern world anything that I could want could be on my doorstep in a day or two with the click of a mouse, or I could venture out into the world of baby boutiques and/or Target if need be.  It wasn't hard to convince DP that we didn't need to spend a ton of money on baby gear!  Then, as my due date got closer, and even more so after DS was born, mamas came out of the woodwork to give me wraps, ring slings, packs, bouncy chairs, swings, etc.  Every mama had a story to go with their gift!  Either the sling was baby's very favorite thing in the whole world, or she never used it b/c baby wouldn't even get in.  The bouncy chair was thread bare b/c of how much it was used, or baby cried every time he was put in.  Like some of the PPs have said, nothing works for every baby, for every mama, or for every family.  It worked great for us to carry DS, because we would rather pop 10-30lbs of baby into a pack than haul around a heavy and awkward car seat/stroller combo.  We finally did get a stroller when he was 2yo so that we could go for longer/faster walks and not have to carry him the last mile home because that is what worked for us then.  I guess my rambling point is to be flexible with yourself and do what works, even when that changes.  Oh, and if you want to play that card (so to speak), baby wearing, breast feeding, and such can be a lot cheaper than the alternatives!  winky.gif

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