Being told your parenting choices are selfish? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-04-2011, 04:58 PM
 
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I was wearing DD all morning to help her stay calm because we were at this 4 hour doctors appt for DH.  I swayed back and forth a lot to help her sleep and took her outside briefly when she cried.  At the end of it, the receptionist called me over and said "You have been standing all day since 7:30!" She said this stuff in a teasing way, but it wasn't exactly... I just smiled and said "Yep! It is great for helping me lose weight." She said "Why don't you just sit down?"  Me: "She will cry and it keeps her happy when she is moving." Her: "Gee, I wouldn't think she'd even know the difference if you were standing or not" Me: "Oh, she knows." My DH came out and agreed with me on this. Her: "Oh, that baby's like- I'm the boss of this family!" DH sat down with DD and a few seconds later she did start getting fussy.

 

 

 This would bug me, too... but the reason it would bug me is that if you let her scream and fuss all morning long, you'd be getting stares and comments about not keeping your baby happy.  I really just think that people want to have something to say about it... take it with a grain of salt as much as possible


Exactly what I was going to say -- you really can't win, someone will complain or tease or whatever, no matter what you do. That's why you just need to let it all roll off you. I've had some sad moments & tough comments (my best friend's mom asking me not to nurse on her couch, the lady at a store saying my DS looked horribly uncomfortable in the wrap, etc.) and both my inlaws & my parents think I'm nuts for making the parenting choices I've made. But what we are doing is really working for us, and my now-2yo DS is just becoming such an amazing person -- maybe because of me, maybe in spite of me! I'm doing the best I can, making well-informed & carefully-researched, instinct-driven decisions, and I can't be bothered with the little comments everyone seems to make. You will gain more confidence as your baby grows... in the beginning, I think the comments bothered me because I wasn't yet confident enough in my ability to parent. I had a high-needs kiddo & often questioned whether I was doing something wrong to 'make' him that way. But like I said, as time goes on, you gain confidence, you see how well things are working (or not working, and then you change them!) and you realize how incredibly resilient & adaptable kids can be, but most of all, you see the person your kid is starting to become, and you realize you can do this, you ARE doing this, and what anyone else thinks no longer matters.

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Old 02-05-2011, 11:48 AM
 
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Other mamas said what I would have:

 

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All mothers are judged, regardless of what they do.  If you made more mainstream choices, you'd still get judged.  I'm afraid the only thing to do is to ignore it, because it wont stop.  Sadly.  I don't know why we mothers (not anyone specifically but as a whole) do this to each other.

 

As a new mom, I have noticed this. EVERYONE has an opinion on what I should be doing. Sometimes I smile and nod, other times I am super annoyed and it shows. Do what you think is best, at all times. Don't let others dissuade you from your instincts.

 

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I think most of the criticisms you mentioned are about justifications for the personal choices of others. Your choices threaten their choices.

I do think that it is a little different from the grandma who wants to be needed, ie let me have the baby overnight at three weeks/ why are you always holding them/ and my favorite " if she must be breastfeed it us selfish or you to not ump lots of bottles so I can feed her. "


YES, THIS!!! You are not so much "selfish" as making choices that make others questions theirs. They are free to feel however they are feeling, but that does not mean their criticisms of you and your actions are valid.

 

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I totally admit to being a selfish parent.  Extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, baby wearing, child-led weaning, home schooling, etc. were all chosen in part because it made my life as a mom easier.  And anything that made my life easier was preferred.  But I mean easier in the long run.  Giving into temper tantrums or wants that are not in the child's (or the family's) best interests did not make my life as a mother easier.  On the contrary, it made my life harder in the long run.  So I always kept the long term goal in mind.

 

Really? I think many of these things make my life so much harder and complicated- not because they are that way in and of themselves- but because we live in a country that is decidedly anti-family and does not support these positive choices.
 

 



 


 



 

Not sure where you live.  I am fortunate to live in San Diego, CA.  However, I wouldn't have cared what the neighbors thought about any of that.  We did/do what is best for our family.  I co-slept for 4 years with Dylan (over 2 in our bed and the rest on his own mattress in our room; a combination of his needs and the number of bedrooms we had at the time).  Erica was in a bassinet in our room until she out grew it around 4 months; went to a crib in Joy's room at that point.  That is what she wanted/needed.  She hated co--sleeping. It was easier for me to "give in" to Erica on her need to sleep alone and easier to "give in" to Dylan to not sleep alone.   As far as the older generation's advice goes, remember that parenting/child raising advice has dramaticlly changed in the last 30 + years.  Car seats weren't even manditory until Angela was 4 in CA and we were one of the first states to make it legal.  I'm not sure I would have been so accepting of Joy's and Erica's parenting decisions if I hadn't had Dylan when Joy was 20.  I wouldn't have known about all the new developments and studies.  And if they hadn't been gentle in explaining them to me, I wouldn't have been so understanding about their decisions.  Communication goes both ways.  "A gentle answer turns away wrath".
 


Chris--extended breastfeeding, cloth diapering, babywearing, co-sleeping, APing, CLW, homeschooling before any of this was a trend mom to Joy (1/78), Erica (8/80), Angela (9/84), Dylan (2/98)
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Old 02-05-2011, 04:03 PM
 
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It really sounds like you just need to feel good about what you are doing and not sweat peoples' comments.  It is harder to do with family, but the receptionist really is one of those people you just have to hope the best of intentions from her comments and smile to yourself and say in your own head - she doesn't know what she's talking about!

 

For family - well, I think you don't feel supported by what they are saying and you could express this.  Also, perhaps you need to learn a new way of speaking more assertively.  I had to turn down offers for overnight babysitting a number of times in the beginning, and then I just made it clear that we would not be doing that for a while and we would let them know when we were interested.  Sometimes they offer because THEY would have liked the break and think you'd like it.  Or maybe they had more than one child - it IS different when you have more and you may feel more ready for a break when they are younger.  They probably didn't have longer term BFing relationships, so they don't KNOW how it works and they just don't get that it isn't that hard to have a little baby with (they picture the bottles and stuff they had to lug around). 

 

Be confident and happy with your choices and you will be surprised how little fighting you get about them.

 

Tjej

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Old 02-05-2011, 08:12 PM
 
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To me to call someone "selfish" is a judgment call.

 

I am working very hard at becoming a better woman every day then I was the day before. One of the goals I have set for myself is to be less judgmental of other peoples choices. I am also working on not allowing other peoples judgments to affect me. We each need the freedom to make the choices that are right for our families without judgment. Live and let live. I hope to teach my daughter to do the same.

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Old 02-05-2011, 10:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This is just too much.

My mother asked me if we have mental health coverage today because she thought I'd been acting "weird" since I gave birth and my sister agrees!!!

I guess I am acting weird. My life has been forever changed by this amazing little person ;) I am being very assertive about my choices and I am not giving in to things that don't line up with how I want to parent. They apparently think these choices are weird so there must be something wrong with me...lol

 

Ahh.

 

Well, I love all the replies to this. I didn't mention that at the same place the receptionist said that I also breastfed. I was trying to cover us up a bit, but the baby was sweating and I was sweating so I just said screw it. I had my boob pulled out the top of my shirt and the baby was latched on. This was the first time I didn't feel awkward about breastfeeding in public. In fact, I was carrying on a conversation the whole time with an older woman who was telling me how she also breastfed. This was in a waiting room full of people.

 

I never see anyone breastfeeding around here, but I am proud that I breastfeed and I know it is a normal, healthy thing to be doing with my baby. I also feel like if I breastfeed in public maybe it will normalize it a bit or give another mama the idea that she can do it easily, too. So... yes... feeling confident and comfortable breastfeeding in public is a great new thing for me. ;)

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Old 02-06-2011, 04:57 AM
 
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I would tell mom her mental health comment was extremely rude. I would tell her and sis if it bothers them so much you will be happy to have less contact with them,because THEIR behavior is starting to concern you. I bfed my kids till they were 3.I used slings and did the family bed. They are now 12 and 8 and quite normal lol despite my AP ways!

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Old 02-06-2011, 08:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I would tell mom her mental health comment was extremely rude. I would tell her and sis if it bothers them so much you will be happy to have less contact with them,because THEIR behavior is starting to concern you. I bfed my kids till they were 3.I used slings and did the family bed. They are now 12 and 8 and quite normal lol despite my AP ways!


It is weird... the more extreme comments I get about AP style parenting, the more extreme I feel. When someone makes a comment that anyone who breastfeeds past 12 months is just doing it for herself, it makes me want to breastfeed for 3 years. There are so many people out there who apparently believe in the "detached" method of parenting and have issues with things that have been natural for humans for thousands of years... I want to practice attachment parenting with gusto and show other people a different model for parenting that maybe they hadn't though of.

 

I don't think I care any more what people say. My baby seems to feel really loved and she went from crying all the time to starting out with little noises to let me know she is ready to be moved / fed/ picked up / whatever. She trusts me to come take care of her and it means a lot to me that she continues to know I am someone that loves her and that she can count on. People act like children are just little things they own instead of actual little people who deserve to be treated well and their needs taken seriously. I feel honored to be able to help my child get used to being here in the world and hopefully I can help her navigate her way as she grows.
 

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Old 02-06-2011, 02:21 PM
 
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This is just too much.

My mother asked me if we have mental health coverage today because she thought I'd been acting "weird" since I gave birth and my sister agrees!!!

I guess I am acting weird. My life has been forever changed by this amazing little person ;) I am being very assertive about my choices and I am not giving in to things that don't line up with how I want to parent. They apparently think these choices are weird so there must be something wrong with me...lol

 

Ahh.

 



Your family sounds very toxic to me. If I were in your case I hope I would have the strength to put as much distance between myself their negativity. I know this can be very hard to do. My family was initially negative about my parenting choices but they have come around over the years for for the most part. I have also learnt how to be more assertive and have told them to butt out of my parenting several times 

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Old 02-06-2011, 03:49 PM
 
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I know it's hard, but don't let it get to you.  Your family is happy, healthy and it's no one elses decision but yours about how you raise your family!  Keep up the god work...and try to ignore them!


Full time WOH Social Worker momma (28) to DD(8), DS (2) and DS (6 months), Wife to Ben (30), the love of my life! Thyroid cancer survivor!  Running the house while Hubby works on the road!    caffix.gif
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Old 02-06-2011, 04:15 PM
 
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That is not my experience. My oldest is 16. I get slack for everything still..from how I educate them to if they should be dating (certain people feel that my children NEED girlfriends and boyfriends and the only reason they don't have them is because of me, and they have been saying this since my oldest reached 13) to that they should each have their own car when they turn 16. Oh, and apparently, they don't like how my daughter dresses. They feel she should wear more "trendy" (boob and bottom showing) clothes. My daughter has no desire to show off her parts. I apparently am raising them in the wrong religion and they are considering the wrong colleges.

 

At this point, while it has not stopped, it just has become humorous. Irritating, but humorous at times.

 

 

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All mothers are judged, regardless of what they do.  If you made more mainstream choices, you'd still get judged.  I'm afraid the only thing to do is to ignore it, because it wont stop.  Sadly.  I don't know why we mothers (not anyone specifically but as a whole) do this to each other. 



This... but it gets much better over time. In my experience: When they are 3yo there is no more discussions about cloth diapers, co-sleeping, bf.... either your child is no longer in that place, or if he/she is, the people around you have gotten tired of trying to change you and give up - and often even see how wonderful your DS/DD is and gently come around to a different p.o.v. It also gets better after the second child, I think because you just don't give a hoot anymore what others think. You are confident in your decisions, so the b.s. just rolls off your back. The people close to you have accepted that that is how you do things, or have at least accepted that you have different views. And the random acquaintances and strangers you don't give diddly-squat about their opinion anyway!



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Old 02-06-2011, 04:18 PM
 
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I got the mental health comment lately because my son tried to plan his own 16th birthday party and a relative decided to hold one for him, so some relatives told me they would go to the relatives house for his party and not our house for the one my son planned. I told them over and over again that the one at the relative's house is not my son's party, but they kept saying it was. Then they got all angry and questioned my sanity when I stood my ground and still let my son have his party. Only my sister and her kids came from my side of the family. The rest went to that other relatives house. Who is nuts there?
 

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This is just too much.

My mother asked me if we have mental health coverage today because she thought I'd been acting "weird" since I gave birth and my sister agrees!!!

I guess I am acting weird. My life has been forever changed by this amazing little person ;) I am being very assertive about my choices and I am not giving in to things that don't line up with how I want to parent. They apparently think these choices are weird so there must be something wrong with me...lol

 

Ahh.

 

Well, I love all the replies to this. I didn't mention that at the same place the receptionist said that I also breastfed. I was trying to cover us up a bit, but the baby was sweating and I was sweating so I just said screw it. I had my boob pulled out the top of my shirt and the baby was latched on. This was the first time I didn't feel awkward about breastfeeding in public. In fact, I was carrying on a conversation the whole time with an older woman who was telling me how she also breastfed. This was in a waiting room full of people.

 

I never see anyone breastfeeding around here, but I am proud that I breastfeed and I know it is a normal, healthy thing to be doing with my baby. I also feel like if I breastfeed in public maybe it will normalize it a bit or give another mama the idea that she can do it easily, too. So... yes... feeling confident and comfortable breastfeeding in public is a great new thing for me. ;)



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Old 02-06-2011, 05:40 PM
 
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I am with sewchris. Selfishness is a big reason that I parent the way that I do. I have heard some of the AP-is-selfish comments, but I have also heard, probably more often, the AP-is-being-a-martyr line of thought. I can see both sides.

But a lot of the things I've chosen to do are for selfish reasons - mostly what makes my life easier. Breastfeeding - sure it's good for the baby, so there's that. But it also (at least for me) was much more convenient, easier, and cheaper than using formula and bottles. I started cosleeping with DS because neither he or I were getting any sleep unless he was next to me. It was way easier than trying to get him to sleep in a crib in another room. And we did mostly baby-led weaning because it was easier to give him food off our plates than preparing purees. Just a few examples.

I may get flamed for this, but I do NOT make all my decisions based only on what is best for my kid/kids. That is a consideration of course, but so are my feelings about the matter and what is best for me. As well as the needs of other members of the family and the family as a whole, what is easier, what comes naturally, and what seems to be working. I happen to think that what is "best for the baby" happens to coincide a lot of the time with what is easiest for the mom, but even if others disagree, "best for the baby" is not the only criterion we have to take into account, and nobody should be judged for using other criteria.

Not that I think it sounds like you are being selfish, OP, or that I think it's ok for people to call you selfish, not at all. I think that's pretty rude, and it doesn't sound like you are making your decisions for selfish reasons at all. In your situation, I think as time goes on and everyone gets adjusted, it will become easier. Just keep parenting in the way you want to, and don't let the criticisms bother you. In regards to the mental health comment, if they are saying it in a spiteful way, or if they are saying it only because they don't agree with your parenting choices, that's pretty toxic. But otherwise, I would say they are only trying to be helpful and I hope you can give them the benefit of the doubt.

Take care!

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Old 02-06-2011, 08:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am with sewchris. Selfishness is a big reason that I parent the way that I do. I have heard some of the AP-is-selfish comments, but I have also heard, probably more often, the AP-is-being-a-martyr line of thought. I can see both sides.

But a lot of the things I've chosen to do are for selfish reasons - mostly what makes my life easier. Breastfeeding - sure it's good for the baby, so there's that. But it also (at least for me) was much more convenient, easier, and cheaper than using formula and bottles. I started cosleeping with DS because neither he or I were getting any sleep unless he was next to me. It was way easier than trying to get him to sleep in a crib in another room. And we did mostly baby-led weaning because it was easier to give him food off our plates than preparing purees. Just a few examples.

I may get flamed for this, but I do NOT make all my decisions based only on what is best for my kid/kids. That is a consideration of course, but so are my feelings about the matter and what is best for me. As well as the needs of other members of the family and the family as a whole, what is easier, what comes naturally, and what seems to be working. I happen to think that what is "best for the baby" happens to coincide a lot of the time with what is easiest for the mom, but even if others disagree, "best for the baby" is not the only criterion we have to take into account, and nobody should be judged for using other criteria.

Not that I think it sounds like you are being selfish, OP, or that I think it's ok for people to call you selfish, not at all. I think that's pretty rude, and it doesn't sound like you are making your decisions for selfish reasons at all. In your situation, I think as time goes on and everyone gets adjusted, it will become easier. Just keep parenting in the way you want to, and don't let the criticisms bother you. In regards to the mental health comment, if they are saying it in a spiteful way, or if they are saying it only because they don't agree with your parenting choices, that's pretty toxic. But otherwise, I would say they are only trying to be helpful and I hope you can give them the benefit of the doubt.

Take care!



No my family can definitely be pretty toxic / negative at times. I even doubted if I should live by them, but in the end I decided it would be OK and I did want family around.

 

I actually agree with you... I mean I do do these things because I believe they are good for DD, but I also do them for me as well. When I spend time with her and wear her *I* get a big boost of mommying hormones that make me happy and keep me going. I am shocked I haven't come down with ppd yet. I actually thought for sure I would, but being around the baby seems to boost my spirits, even if she is screaming half the day. I feel really good when I breastfeed,too. I think AP style parenting works with this spirited baby and it would really be awful if we did just leave her crying at different points throughout the day. A crib wouldn't work with her right now. She really isn't a kid that I think would respond to CIO, anyway.

 

I will draw the line if it starts to affect my marriage, though. Our relationship needs to be strong and well taken care of. Kids need happy, in love parents. For example, I told my husband that if co-sleeping ever resulted in him moving to the couch or something, it was time to end it.  I regularly check in with him and see how he feels about how we are doing things.  DH has a hard time with DD's crying, but I know the few times I have gotten overwhelmed and stopped trying to calm DD when she was really really crying, DH has stepped in and calmed her. He doesn't want her crying alone, either. I try to model a positive attitude when it comes to how "spirited" DD is, and I think it is helping how DH views her, too.

So... as long as it is working for us and we are happy and not resenting how things are going, we will continue as we have been.

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Old 02-07-2011, 04:23 AM
 
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Just wait another ten years, then they'll be urging you to take actions to reduce her level of independence! orngtongue.gif



LOL. Good point.

 

I agree that it is hard and intense when everyone close to you seems to disagree. But try to let it roll off. Its okay to disagree as long as everyone disagrees respectfully. Just repeat that you are glad they were happy with their method but your way works great for your family.

 

And i agree with pp. Somethings that are best for your baby are also good for you and therefore "selfish" is you look at it from that point of view.  I co-slept because it was easier for me. It happened to also be great for my kids. After awhile though it started being less good for me and dh so it was time to gently transitions the babe to their own space.


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Old 02-07-2011, 01:08 PM
 
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For example, I told my husband that if co-sleeping ever resulted in him moving to the couch or something, it was time to end it. 
 

 

I had to chuckle when I read this. It makes me realize how much dh's and my marriage has changed over time -- though dh has hardly ever slept on the couch. Currently, he sometimes sleeps in our 10yo's bed so that she can sleep in our king-sized bed with me and her little sister whenever she feels the need. She generally likes sleeping on her own now, but occasionally wants to sleep with us.

 

Up until about a year ago, we had the twin bed pushed next to our king-sized bed so we could all sleep comfortably together. It was great, but when dd1 started wanting to sleep independently, we knew it was time to move the twin into her room (we couldn't afford to buy another bed right then). Sometimes I think maybe we should buy another twin to keep in our room so dh wouldn't ever have to move out, but of course we'd need to get rid of the dresser that we now have in our room.

 

I'm not sure which selfish need is more important -- keeping dh in our room all the time or having more room to store our clothes. :) Dh honestly doesn't mind going to the other room, and sometimes he actually sleeps better in there.
 

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Maybe instead of perceiving the word "selfish" as a negative thing, you can twist it into a positive response.  Something like:  "Yeah, I guess you could say I'm selfish...I do have my family's best interest in mind...so ultimately there is something inherently selfish in that." 


 

I'm totally with you on this! Why shouldn't we do what works best for everyone?! I think misogyny is a big part of the problem here. Women, and especially mothers, are not seen as "real women" if they care about their own needs. I love cosleeping and it really frees us from the traditional "bedtime battle." And keeping my little ones with me all the time, with constant access to the breast, was tremendously easier than having to learn how to pump or trying to keep up my supply while supplementing with formula.

 

I've heard that the hardest thing is trying to combine at-the-breast feeding with pumping or formula feeding -- that it's easier to either do it all at the breast or totally formula feed. Now that it's become necessary for me to work part time, I have gone ahead and made the "selfish" decision not to try for any more babies.

 

That's right -- because I'm selfish. There's a certain way that I like to do parenting for the first few years of life. I like to give my children constant access to the breast and skin-to-skin contact whenever they want it. I don't ever want to go to work with a child crying for me.

 

It works really well for me, working part time from home with two girls about to turn 6 and 11. It would not work really well for me to do this with a baby or small child.

 

Of course, if I had another baby right now at age 46, people would doubtless be calling me selfish for doing that. :) We women can't win for losing.
 


Susan -- married unschoolin' WAHMomma to two lovely girls (born 2000 and 2005).
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post

Honestly, you just need to find a way to filter it all out. Everyone is going to criticize your parenting choices, but as long as you are doing what you feel is best for your child, you need to just ignore them. I also don't understand how it's selfish to parent this way, except that I think maybe some people have different priorities for their children. I read in Our Babies, Ourselves, that most Americans 'dream' for their kid is for them to become independent etc. (I don't remember the exact wording) which I have to admit really does not align with my 'dreams' for my own DS. I guess if you are looking at it from that standpoint -- of making your kids independent being the most important thing of parenting -- then it would seem selfish to cosleep etc., no matter what the studies say -- it just sounds counterintuitive to them.



Yep, you need to learn the "Pass the bean dip" or "How 'bout them Packers?" line. "Do you have mental health coverage? I'm worried because you've changed so much since you gave birth." "Oh, you think so, interesting. So, did you watch the Superbowl? How about those Packers?" Repeat ad nauseum. If they can't get a response, eventually they'll give up. OK, it may take 3 years, but they will.
 

Quote:

 "A gentle answer turns away wrath".


Yes. The less you engage and the more gentle you are, the less they'll be able to get under your skin. It sounds to me, reading between the lines, that you're justifying what you're doing. Stop. You know that you're doing the best for your child. Be confident in that knowledge and enjoy your daughter.

 

It's only selfish if your parenting choices don't fit well with the child. Ds was the "anti-AP" baby. He hated to be worn. He wasn't all that thrilled about breastfeeding (we did nurse for 16 months, but he weaned when I night weaned him then). At 4 months, he'd SCREAM when he tried to nurse to sleep. He'd suckle happily when he was tired, but as soon as my milk let down, he'd scream. He did not want to have to deal with the milk. So, this child ended up in his own crib, with a pacifier. Not because that was my ideal of how to parent, but because that met his needs. I know now that he had some pretty major sensory issues, but we were respectful of those. Even now, 9 years later, his idea of cuddling is lying about 2 feet away from me on the bed! He's a loving, attached child. But he's not very touchy-feely. (And then we had #2, who still sleeps best plastered to my side, and who nursed until 4 (and probably would have nursed later, but I'd had it.))

 

So, be calm, confident and happy. Smile sweetly and say "Pass the bean dip" when they raise issues with you.


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Old 02-07-2011, 01:43 PM
 
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This made me laugh because my DH has trained himself to only fall asleep watching a movie and sleeps on our sofa by his choice. I bitched about it 7 years ago, now I'm happy to  have my queen sized bed.

Oddly enough, my dad also sleeps on the sofa at least half the time. My step-mom loves having a big bed to herself. haha.

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Originally Posted by Calliope84 View Post



For example, I told my husband that if co-sleeping ever resulted in him moving to the couch or something, it was time to end it. 
 
Quote:

 

I had to chuckle when I read this. It makes me realize how much dh's and my marriage has changed over time -- though dh has hardly ever slept on the couch. Currently, he sometimes sleeps in our 10yo's bed so that she can sleep in our king-sized bed with me and her little sister whenever she feels the need. She generally likes sleeping on her own now, but occasionally wants to sleep with us.

 


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Old 02-07-2011, 02:39 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post

Quote:

Originally Posted by crunchy_mommy View Post

Honestly, you just need to find a way to filter it all out. Everyone is going to criticize your parenting choices, but as long as you are doing what you feel is best for your child, you need to just ignore them. I also don't understand how it's selfish to parent this way, except that I think maybe some people have different priorities for their children. I read in Our Babies, Ourselves, that most Americans 'dream' for their kid is for them to become independent etc. (I don't remember the exact wording) which I have to admit really does not align with my 'dreams' for my own DS. I guess if you are looking at it from that standpoint -- of making your kids independent being the most important thing of parenting -- then it would seem selfish to cosleep etc., no matter what the studies say -- it just sounds counterintuitive to them.



Yep, you need to learn the "Pass the bean dip" or "How 'bout them Packers?" line. "Do you have mental health coverage? I'm worried because you've changed so much since you gave birth." "Oh, you think so, interesting. So, did you watch the Superbowl? How about those Packers?" Repeat ad nauseum. If they can't get a response, eventually they'll give up. OK, it may take 3 years, but they will.
 

Quote:

 "A gentle answer turns away wrath".


Yes. The less you engage and the more gentle you are, the less they'll be able to get under your skin. It sounds to me, reading between the lines, that you're justifying what you're doing. Stop. You know that you're doing the best for your child. Be confident in that knowledge and enjoy your daughter.

 

It's only selfish if your parenting choices don't fit well with the child. Ds was the "anti-AP" baby. He hated to be worn. He wasn't all that thrilled about breastfeeding (we did nurse for 16 months, but he weaned when I night weaned him then). At 4 months, he'd SCREAM when he tried to nurse to sleep. He'd suckle happily when he was tired, but as soon as my milk let down, he'd scream. He did not want to have to deal with the milk. So, this child ended up in his own crib, with a pacifier. Not because that was my ideal of how to parent, but because that met his needs. I know now that he had some pretty major sensory issues, but we were respectful of those. Even now, 9 years later, his idea of cuddling is lying about 2 feet away from me on the bed! He's a loving, attached child. But he's not very touchy-feely. (And then we had #2, who still sleeps best plastered to my side, and who nursed until 4 (and probably would have nursed later, but I'd had it.))

 

So, be calm, confident and happy. Smile sweetly and say "Pass the bean dip" when they raise issues with you.


 

Well, ignoring my mom doesn't seem to work. There is never an end to it because my mom thinks she has a right to say the nastiest stuff to other people.


You are right. I am justifying it and I am completely wasting my breath. I get so excited when I do research about things and I want to share my knowledge when it comes up. I will just keep it to my blog so someone searching for info can find what I've learned.

 

I am glad you found what worked for you and your kids. I hope I can parent each child the way they need to be parented, too. One thing we want to do is homeschool, but I have to make sure it is the right thing for each child. If we have a really extroverted kid who loves school, we might just have to send them even though I don't agree with how the schooling is done.

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Old 02-07-2011, 02:43 PM
 
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Sometimes talking to people about these things gives people the impression that it is open for discussion.  I have a mom like that and I would recommend having one answer you give for everything, and not changing a single word, and just saying that and nothing else when she says something.  "I've already made up my mind and I won't discuss it."  Or whatever, the specifics of what you say aren't as important as saying the same thing consistently and not getting into discussions.  At some point she'll understand it isn't open for discussion.

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Old 02-07-2011, 08:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamazee View Post

Sometimes talking to people about these things gives people the impression that it is open for discussion.  I have a mom like that and I would recommend having one answer you give for everything, and not changing a single word, and just saying that and nothing else when she says something.  "I've already made up my mind and I won't discuss it."  Or whatever, the specifics of what you say aren't as important as saying the same thing consistently and not getting into discussions.  At some point she'll understand it isn't open for discussion.



I am going to say that!  I hung up today on her when she was calling my sister names to me and then she called back to leave a message and said "I haven't even gotten to YOU yet" and one thing she told me was that I was skanky / trashy for breastfeeding in public (among other things.) I wrote her a very clear and assertive e-mail and told her I will breastfeed in public and that is the end of it. She backed off in her next e-mail and played nice. I am not putting up with her crap anymore. She is too toxic.

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