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#1 of 34 Old 11-10-2011, 11:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I was planning to ignore them, but I am getting really tired of them. Does anyone have good responses, for both...people liked and people not so liked and just plainly annoying?

 

My son is almost 3 mths and has been more fussy, probably because of growth spurts, learning new things, and maybe teething (he shows signs). He was always more "fussy", or how I like to say..."more in touch with his needs". His cues never get ignored, not even for a second, but relatives think it is wise to wait until he actually cries, or even to let him cry a bit because he "needs to learn", "it is good for his lungs"... :/

 

They will advice anything that "shuts the baby up", rather than trying to find other ways to comfort him...When my baby fusses, most of the time he just wants to be held (and rocked) or fed...that easy. I don't want to put him in a swing, rocking chair or some other device, use a paci, or swaddle him and then lay him somewhere.

 

I keep getting asked if he is a "good baby", and if he sleeps through the night. When I say he wakes every 2-4 hrs, they tell me to put rice cereal in his bottle. I say "what bottle, he never had one", and they say "OMG are you 'still' breastfeeding?!!

 

I'm not a parenting expert, but I base it on my instincts and that is not giving him what he wants.

They make it seem like he is only fussy because we don't do this, or don't do that, and some say he is already spoiled (at 3mths, yeah right...<_<) and that he will always be a brat.

Some feel almost offended if he does not want them, they will still get in his face, yelling stupid baby talk at him when he is sleepy and I am rocking him to sleep, try to take him out of my arms unasked. Saying how he is "such a grouch" when he screams.

 

Even my side of the family, who is usually more open and trusts my choices is thinking he will soon be old enough to sleep in his own bed (he can tell me when he wants to stop when he is older..so not very soon), and my mom keeps mentioning how it is not necessary to nurse longer than 3 months (I hope to go past a year, and then we will see). My mom stopped nursing after 4 months because she lost too much weight and a doctor advised her to stop, and since I am also struggling to keep my weight up she is worried ( I am doing 'okay' by eating a high fat and high calorie diet though, pretty stable atm)

 

Anyhow, long story short - these things can get me pretty mad...when he is a bad baby in their eyes, and they criticize my parenting.

How do you handle situations like that? I'm not very good at this, I would probably sound rude, and I can't be like that with my husbands relatives.

 

 

 


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#2 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 12:13 AM
 
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You will need to step up and make sure that both your family and your husband's family knows where the boundaries are, even moreso as your babe gets older.  What'll it be like once your son is old enough to hear the criticism himself, or for them to interact with him directly in a negative way?  If you feel like you can't do it, then DH needs to step up--but really, I advise finding your voice soon and assertively!

 

You might just be following intuition, but there's a wealth of knowledge and research that backs you up in what you're doing.  Weight issues are no reason to stop breastfeeding, especially before the first year is up--your local La Leche League can tell you that much and a lot more.  As for cereal in the bottle, oh c'mon...what decade are we in now??  Any pedi would say that was bad, esp. at 3 months old!  As for ppl snatching him out of your arms--especially when he's fussy--I'd tell them in no uncertain terms that this is your child and you are parenting him, and basically to step off. 

 

Your family needs to realize that YOU have your own family now, that this isnt' their baby, and that they don't get to tell you how to raise him, not even a little bit.  New parents need space, and their families often try to interfere instead of letting them learn on their own.  Follow your instincts, and stand your ground, mama.  No need to even justify your choices--you know what you're doing and it's your baby.  GL!

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#3 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 06:38 AM
 
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The PP is right on, my only addition is: lies of omission are your friend.  Especially when it comes to sleep.  "Is he sleeping through the night?" "He's doing really well!"  (Which is true; for a 3 month old waking every 2 to 4 hours is very well indeed.)  It took me probably the whole first year to really learn this well.  Keep your answers short, to the point, and don't volunteer any more information than you have to - you don't have to justify your parenting choices to anyone.  "Are you STILL breastfeeding?!" "Yes." "When are you going to stop?" "I don't know yet." If they persist after that, change the subject.

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#4 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 10:17 AM
 
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Some great advice so far!

 

I think that I try to tailor my responses depending on the audience - some people it's sarcasm "Oh yeah, you're right, I should put him down more often, he should be going off to find a job by now ..."

 

Or incredulity; "Why would I want to stop breastfeeding when it is so good for my health and my baby's?"

 

(I also love the Ann Landers staple: Why do you ask? They say; Are you still breastfeeding? Why do you ask?

 

Or just simply "Oh we don't do cry it out techniques." end of story, no explanation.

 

When my LO's were/are fussy I'd find myself talking to the baby in a way that is soothing to the wee and sends a message to the other jackhole adults around me too, saying things like "I know, sweet little one, it's so hard to be a baby, you're growing like crazy and you're tired  ..."

 

I do find it incredibly annoying this "good baby" "bad baby" thing. My first response when I saw your subject heading was to say "Tell them to go F*ck themselves." The idea that anyone would try to take your crying baby out of your arms is totally out of line.

 

And for the record, you sound like an awesome mom who is responding to her baby in the best, most amazing way.

 

 

 


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#5 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 10:30 AM
 
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I finally learned to make it about *me*, instead of about the baby. 

 

Yes, I hold her all the time...she'll be little for only a short while.

 

Yes, I am still nursing...haven't you read the stuff about anti-cancer benefits?

 

Yes, she sleeps with us...I just can't take the crying, and I get so tired.

 

No, you can't hold him...I just really need to right now.

 

My favorite line is, "Im uncomfortable with that.  Let's talk about it again in a few months and see how I feel then.  This new mom stuff is tough, and I'd like to take it slow."

 

People thought I was a sniveling whimp and baby hogger, but it got the projection off my baby, and to an adult (myself) who could stick up for my own needs.  And, people usually are just desperately wanting to help a new mama with the baby.  So, give them things they can help with (your emotional state and needs...which requires backing off). :)

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#6 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 10:37 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Just1More View Post

I finally learned to make it about *me*, instead of about the baby. 

 

Yes, I hold her all the time...she'll be little for only a short while.

 



Agree!

 

I was (probably still am) accused of spoiling/babying DS by carrying him too much. My typical response is "yup, he's my only one and he won't be a baby for long, I am going to hold him as much as I can now".


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#7 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 11:13 AM
 
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these are all really great responses! i would really advise you to do a little back research on your choices, just so you have some basic info on hand if people question you further.  for me it gets harder as LO gets older, and having solid reasons behind my parenting choices (even though "because i said so" should be enough!). 

 

i didn't want my LO to learn that he had to cry to get my attention in the first place was my reasoning for being really attentive. 

 

the other thing to consider though, is that they may be giving you what they believe is good advice.  my mom tries to tell me things because she thinks that i need to hear it so that i can give myself "permission to fail".  a lot of the "let them cry, it's good for their lungs!" advice i think is so that parents didn't feel guilty if they needed a break. (think of how much parents of past generations used to hear their LO's cry just in terms of scheduling a four hour feeding schedule!).   

 

in terms of people asking if DS sleeps through the night, i go back and forth between lies of omission and saying "of course not!" depending on who the audience is...sometimes people want to comiserate and are too embarrassed to be the first to admit that their kids don't sleep.  at first i was really defensive about my DS being a so called "bad baby", but I realized that a lot of people are lying about most things and are looking to find someone else in the same position.  i know this won't really work with older relatives, but just something to keep in mind.

 

you are doing a great job mamma!!! congrats!


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#8 of 34 Old 11-11-2011, 12:15 PM
 
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Originally Posted by BabySmurf View Post

in terms of people asking if DS sleeps through the night ... saying "of course not!"



I love this response. LOL


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#9 of 34 Old 11-12-2011, 09:32 AM
 
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Originally Posted by LittleBirdy View Post

The PP is right on, my only addition is: lies of omission are your friend.  Especially when it comes to sleep.  "Is he sleeping through the night?" "He's doing really well!"  (Which is true; for a 3 month old waking every 2 to 4 hours is very well indeed.)  It took me probably the whole first year to really learn this well.  Keep your answers short, to the point, and don't volunteer any more information than you have to - you don't have to justify your parenting choices to anyone.  "Are you STILL breastfeeding?!" "Yes." "When are you going to stop?" "I don't know yet." If they persist after that, change the subject.

yeahthat.gif

 

And sometimes turn their question into a question:  "Oh, yes, vaccinations.  What an interesting subject!  What did you decide to do?"  Often, people want to be the ones talking (that is why they may try to entrap you with a sensitive parenting question), so let them! 

 

My first is five years old and I have another one due any time now.  I totally agree with the above poster.  It is exhausting to try to explain everything and defend parenting choices -- not to mention off-putting to some people who feel guilty, criticized, whatever *their* issue may be.  Just not worth it sometimes.  Pick your battles, try to be compassionate toward those who are "critical" (they often feel really guilty about the parenting decisions they made), and reserve your energy for what is most important:  raising your baby with love.  Have confidence in yourself, and then it will not bother you if people make comments or question you. 
 

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#10 of 34 Old 11-12-2011, 10:26 AM
 
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I'm with the "oh, yeah, he's doing fine" camp. "Is he sleeping well?" "Oh, yeah, he's doing great." No need to elicit their definition of "great" and explain yours. Or the "when we're ready" response to when you're going to quit breastfeeding/put him in his own bed/whatever.


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#11 of 34 Old 11-12-2011, 01:28 PM
 
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I'm with the " "Tell them to go F*ck themselves." camp, but only with my immediate family. Not with anyone else. But that is because they tell me "you never listen to anyone!!" when I have simply stated I already have a plan in place for X, Y, or Z. 

 

Ex: My mom asks with concern, "Where are her socks?"

 

Me, "She doesn't need socks. They just fall off and get lost. Let's go."

 

My mom, "But she should have socks." And next to her, my sister asks,"Yeah, where ARE her SOCKS?"

 

Me, "Oh, it's okay. I've got something else to keep her warm."

 

My grandma is standing next to both of them, and has heard the entire conversation. "Where are her socks!!?"

 

Me, "We've lived in freezing temps back home. I think I can keep my baby warm in San Diego!! Thanks!!"

 

Now I'm pissed. I just walk out the door. When it gets cold later at the event, I whip out her super warm zip up with enclosed feet, hands, and hood. And mind you, I wasn't just pissed about the socks. It was the spoons, the way I strapped her into a high chair with my sling since they didn't have a belt for it. "That's not going to work! She's going to slip out and fall! It doesn't have the thingy there to hold her in." Of course, by the time I was done, she was marvelously secure and they clammed up. It was how at 6 mos I wasn't allowing her brain to develop by feeding her APPLESAUCE. It was pure insanity. The things people say when they are so out of line, they can't go back. Ridiculous.

 

But that's just me. My mom said, "You never listen!!" I said, "No, it's YOU who never listens. I offer a suggestion to YOU, and you say you're not interested, and I leave it alone. YOU OFFER INSANE ADVICE, and I decline it politely two or three times before I get irritated and ask you to back off." She replied "Well, when you say 'back off' it sounds like you mean..." "F*** OFF!!" "Yes!" "THAT'S BECAUSE THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I'M TRYING TO SAY!!! DING DING DING!! See how polite I am? If I really didn't listen, you wouldn't be able to tell me that."

 

ETA: asterisks tea6.gifSorry. I get carried away when I remember the insanity of the moment. 


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#12 of 34 Old 11-12-2011, 06:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you!

 

Those are some good responses. I will remember some of the phrases and try to use them. 

 

 

 

Quote:
You will need to step up and make sure that both your family and your husband's family knows where the boundaries are, even moreso as your babe gets older.  What'll it be like once your son is old enough to hear the criticism himself, or for them to interact with him directly in a negative way?  If you feel like you can't do it, then DH needs to step up--but really, I advise finding your voice soon and assertively!

@krystal323

Stepping up is easier said than done. I am usually not the kind of person to be quiet and just back down, however...we have been living with my inlaws because we will move overseas in December, and my husband has warned me they will take it as very rude.

His family has this mentality, they are very stubborn and get offended easily...like they are allowed to say anything they want, but if you talk back you're through.

 

My family on the other hand is open to discussions, and that's how we usually solve things. With reasoning. I feel with my inlawsI have to be a bit more tricky.

 

 

 

 


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#13 of 34 Old 11-12-2011, 08:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by whozeyermamma View Post

Some great advice so far!

 

I think that I try to tailor my responses depending on the audience - some people it's sarcasm "Oh yeah, you're right, I should put him down more often, he should be going off to find a job by now ..."

 

Or incredulity; "Why would I want to stop breastfeeding when it is so good for my health and my baby's?"

 

(I also love the Ann Landers staple: Why do you ask? They say; Are you still breastfeeding? Why do you ask?

 

Or just simply "Oh we don't do cry it out techniques." end of story, no explanation.

 

When my LO's were/are fussy I'd find myself talking to the baby in a way that is soothing to the wee and sends a message to the other jackhole adults around me too, saying things like "I know, sweet little one, it's so hard to be a baby, you're growing like crazy and you're tired  ..."

 

I do find it incredibly annoying this "good baby" "bad baby" thing. My first response when I saw your subject heading was to say "Tell them to go F*ck themselves." The idea that anyone would try to take your crying baby out of your arms is totally out of line.

 

And for the record, you sound like an awesome mom who is responding to her baby in the best, most amazing way.

 

 

 

Thank you!

I love your ideas! Will try that for sure. The first one made me laugh. 

When they try to take him from me he is usually calm because I am holding him but sleepy or grouchy and I am working on comforting him or rocking him to sleep. I don't know why people don't let sleepy babies sleep...like 'oh well he can sleep later'....but he is on a schedule and gets grouchy if he misses his nap and has a hard time napping later.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Just1More View Post

I finally learned to make it about *me*, instead of about the baby. 

 

Yes, I hold her all the time...she'll be little for only a short while.

 

Yes, I am still nursing...haven't you read the stuff about anti-cancer benefits?

 

Yes, she sleeps with us...I just can't take the crying, and I get so tired.

 

No, you can't hold him...I just really need to right now.

 

My favorite line is, "Im uncomfortable with that.  Let's talk about it again in a few months and see how I feel then.  This new mom stuff is tough, and I'd like to take it slow."

 

People thought I was a sniveling whimp and baby hogger, but it got the projection off my baby, and to an adult (myself) who could stick up for my own needs.  And, people usually are just desperately wanting to help a new mama with the baby.  So, give them things they can help with (your emotional state and needs...which requires backing off). :)


Responding like this I am afraid of hearing a lot of "I told you so.." or "being a mom is tough, get over it", "we all had to do it"...we have already gotten reactions like this before. Especially when I was pregnant and has MS 24/7....everyone thought I was just being weak, which is stupid because I still walked hours to get groceries at 42 weeks without a problem, but people focus on weak moments.greensad.gif

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by BabySmurf View Post

these are all really great responses! i would really advise you to do a little back research on your choices, just so you have some basic info on hand if people question you further.  for me it gets harder as LO gets older, and having solid reasons behind my parenting choices (even though "because i said so" should be enough!). 

 

i didn't want my LO to learn that he had to cry to get my attention in the first place was my reasoning for being really attentive. 

 

the other thing to consider though, is that they may be giving you what they believe is good advice.  my mom tries to tell me things because she thinks that i need to hear it so that i can give myself "permission to fail".  a lot of the "let them cry, it's good for their lungs!" advice i think is so that parents didn't feel guilty if they needed a break. (think of how much parents of past generations used to hear their LO's cry just in terms of scheduling a four hour feeding schedule!).   

 

in terms of people asking if DS sleeps through the night, i go back and forth between lies of omission and saying "of course not!" depending on who the audience is...sometimes people want to comiserate and are too embarrassed to be the first to admit that their kids don't sleep.  at first i was really defensive about my DS being a so called "bad baby", but I realized that a lot of people are lying about most things and are looking to find someone else in the same position.  i know this won't really work with older relatives, but just something to keep in mind.

 

you are doing a great job mamma!!! congrats!

Oh, by now most things I have researched. We did a lot of research on things like cloth diapers, vaccines and circumcision, but other things like bed sharing and the way we respond we just did naturally and later found out the whole thing is called attachment parenting. :)    

 

When I held my newborn son in the hospital I thought " I can't put him in this cold plastic bassinet all by himself, he was just in my stomach, he will feel awful. When he cries, there is no way I could just let him cry, I don't want him to be unhappy ever, the methods of the old days seem so cruel, and I feel many parents have lost touch with their parenting instincts and have just been following mainstream advice for decades...     

 

 


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#14 of 34 Old 11-12-2011, 08:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by ZippyGirl View Post

yeahthat.gif

 

And sometimes turn their question into a question:  "Oh, yes, vaccinations.  What an interesting subject!  What did you decide to do?"  Often, people want to be the ones talking (that is why they may try to entrap you with a sensitive parenting question), so let them! 

 

My first is five years old and I have another one due any time now.  I totally agree with the above poster.  It is exhausting to try to explain everything and defend parenting choices -- not to mention off-putting to some people who feel guilty, criticized, whatever *their* issue may be.  Just not worth it sometimes.  Pick your battles, try to be compassionate toward those who are "critical" (they often feel really guilty about the parenting decisions they made), and reserve your energy for what is most important:  raising your baby with love.  Have confidence in yourself, and then it will not bother you if people make comments or question you. 
 


Yeah, that's good, I will ask more questions. We decided not to vaccinate, some family took it well, but some think it is just plain crazy.

And true, a lot of the time I just don't feel like explaining it or even arguing and I just try to brush them off.



Quote:
Originally Posted by erigeron View Post

I'm with the "oh, yeah, he's doing fine" camp. "Is he sleeping well?" "Oh, yeah, he's doing great." No need to elicit their definition of "great" and explain yours. Or the "when we're ready" response to when you're going to quit breastfeeding/put him in his own bed/whatever.

That's true, and I have said things like this. But a few times I added "yes he sleeps great, wakes every 2-4hrs to nurse just like a little clock and goes right back to sleep" ;) Or I casually tell people how happy he woke up next to me this morning, as if every parent sleeps with their child, and then act surprised if they find it unusual.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by bananabee View Post

I'm with the " "Tell them to go F*ck themselves." camp, but only with my immediate family. Not with anyone else. But that is because they tell me "you never listen to anyone!!" when I have simply stated I already have a plan in place for X, Y, or Z. 

 

Ex: My mom asks with concern, "Where are her socks?"

 

Me, "She doesn't need socks. They just fall off and get lost. Let's go."

 

My mom, "But she should have socks." And next to her, my sister asks,"Yeah, where ARE her SOCKS?"

 

Me, "Oh, it's okay. I've got something else to keep her warm."

 

My grandma is standing next to both of them, and has heard the entire conversation. "Where are her socks!!?"

 

Me, "We've lived in freezing temps back home. I think I can keep my baby warm in San Diego!! Thanks!!"

 

Now I'm pissed. I just walk out the door. When it gets cold later at the event, I whip out her super warm zip up with enclosed feet, hands, and hood. And mind you, I wasn't just pissed about the socks. It was the spoons, the way I strapped her into a high chair with my sling since they didn't have a belt for it. "That's not going to work! She's going to slip out and fall! It doesn't have the thingy there to hold her in." Of course, by the time I was done, she was marvelously secure and they clammed up. It was how at 6 mos I wasn't allowing her brain to develop by feeding her APPLESAUCE. It was pure insanity. The things people say when they are so out of line, they can't go back. Ridiculous.

 

But that's just me. My mom said, "You never listen!!" I said, "No, it's YOU who never listens. I offer a suggestion to YOU, and you say you're not interested, and I leave it alone. YOU OFFER INSANE ADVICE, and I decline it politely two or three times before I get irritated and ask you to back off." She replied "Well, when you say 'back off' it sounds like you mean..." "F*** OFF!!" "Yes!" "THAT'S BECAUSE THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I'M TRYING TO SAY!!! DING DING DING!! See how polite I am? If I really didn't listen, you wouldn't be able to tell me that."

 

ETA: asterisks tea6.gifSorry. I get carried away when I remember the insanity of the moment. 


Sounds a bit like my inlaws hahaha, or rather my MIL, but I can hardly tell her anything. One time she decided to just go ahead and clip my sons nails without telling us, and in the end he had 2 red swollen fingers because she cut it too short. She then tried to bash us for "letting his nails get ingrown"...baby nails don't grow in...too soft. So I explained to her, told her she cut it too short, and said next time WE will do in with good light.

 


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#15 of 34 Old 11-13-2011, 05:04 AM
 
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Oh, by now most things I have researched. We did a lot of research on things like cloth diapers, vaccines and circumcision, but other things like bed sharing and the way we respond we just did naturally and later found out the whole thing is called attachment parenting. :)    

 

that's what it was like for us too - i just know it helped me lot to have something to talk about other than what "I" thought vs "them".  winky.gif

 

When I held my newborn son in the hospital I thought " I can't put him in this cold plastic bassinet all by himself, he was just in my stomach, he will feel awful. When he cries, there is no way I could just let him cry, I don't want him to be unhappy ever, the methods of the old days seem so cruel, and I feel many parents have lost touch with their parenting instincts and have just been following mainstream advice for decades...     

 

I agree completely with the fact that people forget what it's really like caring for a tiny baby - i think my memory is even foggy about how hard it really was when DS was a few months old, and he's only a year just now! And a lot of people really did raise their children differently...it's hard to tell them that you don't want their advice without insulting their methods - especially when "their kids all turned out great". many times i just thank them for their input and then continue to do things my way.  the hardest thing will be when they want to watch LO and you need to decide what terms you feel comfortable with, and judge whether or not you feel comfortable with their methods enough to leave LO....and how will you defend your choice if you decide that you don't want to leave LO with them.  Being a parent is hard! And navigating the territory and the personalities that go along with it can be next to impossible.  I think the best thing to do is pick your battles - you can't control everything they do, and it's okay for LO to experience different people, but you need to draw the line on issues that are really important.  (i'm writing that out just as much for me as i am for you, lol). 

 

I hope things get easier!!

 


 

 


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#16 of 34 Old 11-13-2011, 01:00 PM
 
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You sound like a excellent mother. I've read some interesting books lately and you may feel that your child rearing practices are in the minority, but most of the world parents the way you do. They do not wait until a baby cries to feed it (even the AAP says that's a late feeding cue). Most of the world sleeps with thier babies and carries them also, babies spend much more time in close proximity to mom. You are very much parenting the way humans have for most of existence and even today, in the way most of the world does. Where as modern Western culture style parenting tends to value early independance, even at the expense of the child's needs being met.

 

The first year of motherhood was shocking to me. I was ready for the demands of motherhood, not the flood of comments, some silly, others rude or insulting.

 

I realize that you have very little time to read but if you ever do, reading any of these books will help explain the origin of many of these comments.

 

Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent

Meredith Small
 
Mother's Milk: Breastfeeding Controversies in American Culture 
Bernice L. Hausman
 
Breastfeeding: Biocultural Perspectives 
Katherine Dettwyler, Patricia Stuart-Macadam
 
The Vital Touch: How Intimate Contact With Your Baby Leads To Happier, Healthier Development
Sharon Heller

 

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#17 of 34 Old 11-13-2011, 03:06 PM
 
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When DS was littler, I mostly went with some variation of "This is what works for us," and eventually people started realizing that I'm pretty set in how I want to raise my kids and backed off. Standing firm and being consistent went a long way. My social circle is pretty small these days, and everyone is pretty well accustomed to how I do things. When I do get comments now from people who know me, lately I've been going with "I see your point, but I'm a dirty hippie bent on raising up mini hippies. If I did things your way, they might end up as republicans and my master plan would be foiled." That usually results in a chuckle, a shaking head, and a change of subject.

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#18 of 34 Old 11-13-2011, 07:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by E m i c h i e e View Post

 

Stepping up is easier said than done. I am usually not the kind of person to be quiet and just back down, however...we have been living with my inlaws because we will move overseas in December, and my husband has warned me they will take it as very rude.

His family has this mentality, they are very stubborn and get offended easily...like they are allowed to say anything they want, but if you talk back you're through.

 

My family on the other hand is open to discussions, and that's how we usually solve things. With reasoning. I feel with my inlawsI have to be a bit more tricky.

 

 

 

 

Oh, yes, it is more tricky when you're living in their house and you feel indebted to them--but still, you've got to stand your ground as politely and firmly as possible, IMO.  Just cause they're helping you guys out doesn't mean they get to undermine your parenting, yk?  I've been there before too--but I still think it's essential to assert your independence as a parent.  You might be on hard times right now, but you're not less of a human being because of it, and you shouldn't defer to them when they're treating you and your child badly.  

 

I know someone who lives with her family, and she allows them to treat both her and her child as children.  They'll treat her kiddo badly, the child asks why, and she actually tells him that it doesn't matter--he has to be nice to them because they're so nice to let them live there.  I will never allow myself to become that dis-empowered, regardless of circumstances.  

 

You're only there til December, which is great--but why set a precedent allowing them to bulldoze your parenting whenever they see you?  You said "If you talk back, you're through"--what does that even mean?  They might have a temper tantrum, but what would they really do?  Kick you out?  I surely hope they're not that petty--in which case, I hope December comes really fast for you guys!  =(  So sorry that you're dealing with this right now =(
 

 


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#19 of 34 Old 11-13-2011, 10:39 PM
 
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I really struggled with this with my first, but I gave up caring with DD2.  Now I just smile and say "yup, she's awful, guess you don't want to hold her" with a huge grin while I snuggle her.


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#20 of 34 Old 11-14-2011, 02:31 AM
 
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i think the only thing i can do is resort to sarcasm.

i moved in with my mother right before i delivered my DS (first and last) thinking my mother would have some good insight into parenting.  I couldnt have been more wrong!  besides crying it out, she tries to tell me i hold him too much, i dont give him a chance to get used to his bed by letting him scream and sob in it, he should have formula because my milk is somehow inferior,etc.  Finally around my DS's 4th week i snapped at my mother. her feelings were so hurt! and although i think she's completely wrong and batshit crazy and controlling, I don't want to hurt her feelings so now i just make jokes about it when she tries to control my parenting.  ex: "you hold him too much." me:"oh but i love him so so so so much, I want to keep him with me forever!"  usually if i can be silly and make her laugh she'll forget that I'm ignoring her suggestions.  but it's SO FRUSTRATING!!

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#21 of 34 Old 11-14-2011, 10:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by bananabee View Post

I'm with the " "Tell them to go F*ck themselves." camp, but only with my immediate family. Not with anyone else. But that is because they tell me "you never listen to anyone!!" when I have simply stated I already have a plan in place for X, Y, or Z. 

 

Ex: My mom asks with concern, "Where are her socks?"

 

Me, "She doesn't need socks. They just fall off and get lost. Let's go."

 

My mom, "But she should have socks." And next to her, my sister asks,"Yeah, where ARE her SOCKS?"

 

Me, "Oh, it's okay. I've got something else to keep her warm."

 

My grandma is standing next to both of them, and has heard the entire conversation. "Where are her socks!!?"

 

Me, "We've lived in freezing temps back home. I think I can keep my baby warm in San Diego!! Thanks!!"

 

Now I'm pissed. I just walk out the door. When it gets cold later at the event, I whip out her super warm zip up with enclosed feet, hands, and hood. And mind you, I wasn't just pissed about the socks. It was the spoons, the way I strapped her into a high chair with my sling since they didn't have a belt for it. "That's not going to work! She's going to slip out and fall! It doesn't have the thingy there to hold her in." Of course, by the time I was done, she was marvelously secure and they clammed up. It was how at 6 mos I wasn't allowing her brain to develop by feeding her APPLESAUCE. It was pure insanity. The things people say when they are so out of line, they can't go back. Ridiculous.

 

But that's just me. My mom said, "You never listen!!" I said, "No, it's YOU who never listens. I offer a suggestion to YOU, and you say you're not interested, and I leave it alone. YOU OFFER INSANE ADVICE, and I decline it politely two or three times before I get irritated and ask you to back off." She replied "Well, when you say 'back off' it sounds like you mean..." "F*** OFF!!" "Yes!" "THAT'S BECAUSE THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT I'M TRYING TO SAY!!! DING DING DING!! See how polite I am? If I really didn't listen, you wouldn't be able to tell me that."

 

ETA: asterisks tea6.gifSorry. I get carried away when I remember the insanity of the moment. 



OMG this sounds EXACTLY like my family, on both sides. lol.

 

I agree with PP about making it about your needs instead of baby. I did that with MIL on co-sleeping. I explained that I was an inherently lazy person. I wanted the best result (i.e. more sleep) with the least effort possible. I was just too lazy and tired to get up to feed her. this way she was right there and didn't even have time to fuss and wake DH before I could pop a boob in her mouth and we could all go back to sleep. She kept insisting that if we let her sleep with us she was going to be in our bed at 6yrs. lol. I just asked why that was a bad thing? Was I supposed to say I wouldn't share with her? Like, no this is MY bed, how dare YOU touch MY bed?! lol. She was like "oh...uh...well...." and that was pretty much the end of that.

 

You're doing a great job, momma! Keep up the good work and don't let anyone tell you you're not! *hugs*

 

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#22 of 34 Old 11-14-2011, 10:16 AM
 
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We live with DH's parents, so I know those sorts of issues!

 

sleeping through the night: I say - I don't want her too! the  couple 5-6 hour stretches we've had are bad enough for me - we wake up in a puddle of milk and I have rock hard boobs to boot!

 

other things: this is what works for us - is my go-to line. DD is much more a mama's girl than DS was a mama's boy. If she's absolutely asleep, she doesn't care much who holds her. otherwise she wants me. My mom and DH, and FIL are the best after that. MIL - not so much. I feel we are going to get a lot of the spoiled comments, but oh well. I just tell them that I'm the food and she likes being near it. I breastfed DS for 15 months and when asked about that while we were still nursing, I just said that it's good for him, it's good for me. He eats other food too. (for some reason when people think about extended breastfeeding, they seem to think that ALL they are getting is breastmilk. While it might be most of their food, it usually isn't, no more than a FF baby is only getting formula after 6 months or so)

 

Also I put it in a cost thing - I said I hoped to never have to buy formula. Nearly everyone can sympathize with that!

 

the rest of it . . . I like the "why do ask?" - because some people are honestly interested and intrigued by our choices, and some people are offended or think we are doing something "wrong", and it's nice to know the difference - it helps me gear my response.


Katrina - Mama to Gabriel  sleepytime.gif 11/20/2009 and Norah vbac.gif 10/11/2011- married to Wayne - geek.gif novaxnocirc.gifbfinfant.giffamilybed1.gifcd.gif&nbspand now new baby Theodore born 3/11/13 vbac.gif

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#23 of 34 Old 11-14-2011, 07:03 PM
 
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Emichiee

 

The other posters have given great advice.  I just wanted to chime in and say you are doing a wondeful job by being so in tune with your baby's needs.  Follow your own intuition when it comes to being the Mommy you want to be.  As one of the other poster said, there is tons of research to backup that what you are doing is not only good for baby, but very common in most other parts of the world.

 

One thing I'll say is that if you stand up to your in-laws, you might THINK you are coming across as rude, but to them it might come off that you are standing firm. 

 

You have a right to set your own boundaries and express yourself assertively.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


40 y/o married Mama, 3 y/o DS, Angel Baby lost in Sep 2013, Angel Baby lost March 2014.
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#24 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 03:06 AM
 
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The best little sound bite to tell people was one I got from my MIL. She said to worry about whether to respond to his cues or not when "his wants and his needs are two different things." As long as his wants and his needs are the same (and at three months, they sure are) then responding to his cues is the right thing to do. And you will know when his wants and needs are different because he will WANT to stick his finger in his electrical socket, or hit the cat, or whatever. Food, sleep, comfort. Those are needs.

 

Alternatively, a friend of mine gave me this one as a parenting catch-all. Tell them "that's not for me" when they suggest something (like moving to a crib or bottle feeding). It works especially well on strangers.

 

Finally, I found it really helpful to have a brief but open conversation with my own mother when her anxiety was making me more anxious. I told her that more than her criticism I needed her support. She was perfectly willing to take that direction when I laid it out.

 

Good luck. If you figure out a secret about how to not get annoyed at parenting advice, let me know. No, write a book. It will be a best seller.

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#25 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 06:33 AM
 
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Those are all such delightful ideas! I loved them so much I am saving them for my LLL group to talk about. :)

 

Just wanted to add this website:

 

http://www.kellymom.com/bf/criticism.html

 

:)

 

Jen

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#26 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 06:46 AM
 
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We have a family bed, no vaccines, we don't "cry it out", and I am nursing both my 6 week old and my 26 month old.  I didn't leave my son for more than an hour until he was over a year old.I have run into some pretty judgemental people. I have started telling people that I like to do everything the hardest possible way because I am insane! Usually, they agree so it shuts them up pretty fast. My all time favorite response to "when are you going to stop nursing?" is "when his wife complains!"

Some people just don't get it, because they don't want to get it. Love your baby however you like, and to heck with them!

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#27 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 06:48 AM
 
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First, I'm doing this from my phone, so I'm sorry if things turn weird after I post it. Second, I don't have much time to read thru all the other responses but want to share what worked for me.

Most importantly, I wholeheartedly support what you are doing and do the same.

I stuck to my guns about every parenting choice I made and got loads of grief in early months, but it didn't take long for family to see that I wasn't listening to them or going to change. Once DS hit ages of crawling and walking, it gave them something else to focus on rather than my *bad* parenting. So it will likely get better.

In the meantime, sarcasm/joking are a great aid if you have it in you, as others have said. "He's still in your bed? When are you going to move him?" reply "Oh, it just depends if the beds at his college are double or single!" When people tried to insist on taking him from me to comfort him, I would quickly say "thank you, but let me get him calmed down first, then I'll pass him off." When my mom offered advice on cereal in bottle or carrying instead of riding in cart, etc., I would simply say "I appreciate that you're wanting to help, but current research actually backs me up and they've found those practices aren't best anymore and this is just the way we've chosen to parent him--I know it may seem wrong or strange to you, but its working for us." Always with a smile and sometimes a wink if it will lighten the moment.

Last major thing I found uber helpful, which I read in "The No-Cry Nap Solution", if there is ever a time you feel pressured to change something, before doing so ask yourself this: Am I doing this because it isn't working for me and/or my baby or family, or am I doing it bc (insert name or title here) is telling me I should?

Keep following your instincts and here's a happy welcome to you for your new membership in our wonderful criticized ap moms club! wink1.gif

Christian guitar-playing singer, crunchy granola SAHM, wife to husband J, Mama to toddler little man O, cat-loving owner of Bounce, Mix, and Hinode. I love my life.
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#28 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 07:26 AM
 
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My favorite response to "Are you still breastfeeding" is "Oh, I stopped a long time ago...but my son still loves it."

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#29 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 08:17 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bananabee View PostEx: My mom asks with concern, "Where are her socks?"

 

Me, "She doesn't need socks. They just fall off and get lost. Let's go."

 

My mom, "But she should have socks." And next to her, my sister asks,"Yeah, where ARE her SOCKS?"

 

Me, "Oh, it's okay. I've got something else to keep her warm."

 

My grandma is standing next to both of them, and has heard the entire conversation. "Where are her socks!!?"

 

Me, "We've lived in freezing temps back home. I think I can keep my baby warm in San Diego!! Thanks!!"

This whole convo is still justifying your parenting, though-- not necessary! I would have just answered the question asked. Where are the socks? In the sock drawer! Where else? lol.gif



Quote:
Originally Posted by KateDavies45 View PostShe kept insisting that if we let her sleep with us she was going to be in our bed at 6yrs. lol. I just asked why that was a bad thing?

 

Right? My ds is nearly 11yo. We coslept exclusively, as in, he didn't even have a bed of his own, till he was 7. No, wait-- at 4 he did have a bed of his own, but he never slept in it.

 

He still occasionally sleeps with me. Not much though, because he's WAY too squirmy.

 

Kathryn Dettweiler is a *wonderful* resource, btw.


 

Quote:
Originally Posted by hfitzheather View PostMy favorite response to "Are you still breastfeeding" is "Oh, I stopped a long time ago...but my son still loves it."


ROTFLMAO.gif

 

We nursed for YEARS and years. Nothing wrong with it. Kathryn Dettwieler has a bell curve and most kids wean themselves around 4-1/2-ish, but the high end of her curve is, I think, 10yo!

 

I only have the one child. It took me a long time to NOT justify everything I did or said. I had all this research to back up my choices, but none of it would shut people up. I was just painting myself into corners. Of all people, my own mother was the worst. I did NOT expect that. Finally I just had to say "Mom, I know I parent differently than you did. It is not a statement on how you parented me. I think you did a wonderful job. But now it's my turn and we do it different. It's not a reflection on you at all." And also mostly "This is what works for our family, please pass the bean dip" mostly turned the conversation, no matter who it was with winky.gif

 


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#30 of 34 Old 11-15-2011, 08:57 AM
 
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One of the great pieces of advice I received somewhere along my parenting journey was to wear the baby, femalesling.GIF

all the time, but especially around people who might ask to touch or hold the baby and you don't want them to.  When my baby is in a carrier, it seems to send the non-verbal message 'hands off' quite well, without me having to verbalize it, which is quite nice.  Plus, baby rarely cries or fusses in the carrier so people can say all the silly stuff they want, like "Oh what a 'good' baby!" wink1.gif

My favorite carrier for a 3+ month old is the Ergo - baby faces in, toward you and therefore is less tempting for others to interact with, plus it's quite comfortable, the way the hip belt distributes to baby's weight AND it snaps on and off easily.  

 

But wow - I can totally relate.  We just had our 6th baby, at home, (a first for us) with a doula and midwife.  Happily, a lot of people NOW assume I probably 'know' what I'm doing (or at least think that I am set in my ways by now and so they don't often offer unasked for advice) but I did get lots of family and friends questioning my choices from the politely skeptical; "Oh, congratulations! I don't know how you do it - two was my limit, I could never have handled six!", to the politely fearful; "Boy are you BRAVE, not going to the hospital!" to the outright rude "Wow, you two are like rabbits." (Thanks Mom.) Oh well.  

(BTW, in my experience, it was braver to go to the hospital, because you have to really fight for what you want there, and I told her so).

 

I think speaking up for yourself is important.  It might not be a quick one-liner response, maybe it's a whole conversation -  and maybe you even need to get mad and explain your choices.  But it's worth it cause that'll teach them to question you!ROTFLMAO.gif

 

Aside from my experiences in having 6 kids, I have read tons on these subjects of birth and breastfeeding, co-sleeping and baby wearing, so I feel pretty feel well-informed, and I have been known to lecture ad infinitum whoever is questioning my choices(!) - and by now, most of my family and friends accept me as a 'militant' breastfeeding, co-sleeping mom (and so maybe they even fear me a little! Well, good. So far it's working for me! :)  

 

I have a shelf of books, plus a collection of back-issues of mothering magazines too, and readily offer up articles for them to read as well (works really well to have sources for backing-up my 'opinions', plus, no-one else really wants to do "research", but even just offering the material lends credibilty to my claims. 

 

My kids all breastfeed till they self-wean, which for us is about 2 1/2 yrs.  We co-sleep till they spin like compasses and kick their dad and me in their sleep and then we move them into a small crib (a porta crib with an organic latex mattress) that is still in our room - generally for us this 'needs' to happen at about 16-18 months (still breastfeeding, still having their needs met, we still respond right away to cries, etc).  And each child has totally shocked me by sleeping 'better', sleeping through the night, and no longer so restlessly.  Based on everything I've read and experienced, these things (extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, responsiveness, etc) all make sense instinctually and do NOT spoil the baby at all, but give the baby/child security and faith in it's parents.

 

These things may be the opposite of what our own parents did, and their parents before them - and maybe they feel a lot of guilt and jealousy, seeing you breastfeed and hold your baby.  I know many parents were afraid of 'spoiling' their kids and were well warned of the dangers of holding the baby 'too much' and so they fought against their own instincts to obey their pediatrician and now, looks like maybe that was a mistake and they missed out?! 

 

My mom was a La Leche mom, but she still started me on rice cereal at 3 months because her Ped told her to.  She has great faith in doctors.  So, for her, I might claim the 'pediatrician said so'.  As in "Oh. Our pediatrician says never feed them applesauce till they are 6 months old or older." even if I've never discussed it even once with him because actually he is an early-weaning-advocate and cans-of-formula-pushing old-timer.  (He's great with sick kids, and he's quite experienced, but he is also set in his ways. Oh well.  I'm the mom-who-Googles, and reads Mothering Mag et all and I'm going to do what I think is best).  

And YOU're the mom!  You need to do what YOU think is best with your baby and go ahead and defend yourself and your decisions(!).  I think doing so will empower you, and maybe even inspire others to re-think what they think.  But also try to remember, you may also be innocently 'attacking' how other mothers fed/took care of their babies, and their choices were based on their best knowledge at the time, so be gentle.  

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