Anyone else feel like a wierdo? - Mothering Forums

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Anyone else ever feel like a weirdo?

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Member posted 07-10-2001 07:57 PM
Sigh... I'm so tired of meeting new people, and after a few seconds of chat, feeling like someone from another planet. Growl. Okay, so I'm tandem nursing a 2 yo and a 2.5 mo (weird enough for most people out there), and then there's the fact that we all (3 children and dh and I) sleep in one bed (oh my), we live in an apartment and don't have pots of money like everyone else in our neighborhood (I'm working on my jealousy issues and sometimes succeed in feeling as lucky as I really know that I am), I stay home with my children and am still sort of sane, and hold on everyone, here's the kicker - we're homeschooling.
I guess I need some support from those of you out there that are doing something similar... Sob sob. I feel so *alone* sometimes.

Member posted 07-10-2001 08:04 PM
You are so not alone. I live in a very upper class neighborhood. Hardly anyone breastfeeds. Forget co sleeping, the other Mom's are too busy letting their babies CIO. I live in an apartment (in a house my Mom owns) but I pay regular rent. And I am a SAHM. I envy you're being able to home school. I have thought about it but I always feel like I'm not smart enough.
Be strong and hold your head up high, you are doing the very best for your babies.

Member posted 07-10-2001 09:58 PM
I AM a weirdo- but the things I do (that you mentioned) are NOT at all weird. You are an AWESOME mother and your babes are lucky to have you. There! You're not only not alone but you're loved too! THEY should be jealous of YOU!!!! Go hug your kids!

Member posted 07-11-2001 04:35 AM
I'm not a weirdo, you're not a weirdo, but boy are we surrounded by them!
Three kids. but youngest is almost 5 and weaned and we hardly ever cosleep anymore (but if I tried to claim that I was now normal I would be shouted down!)

We're homeschooling too. There are a lot of good threads about how to "need" less money. (Hey, I just tripled $25 in the conversation thread )

We are lucky that dh has a good paying job that he likes. Sometimes I think it was easier when he was in school though. Then
I could say "McDonald's isn't in the budget today" and people felt bad for me and changed the subject or said "well, we could all grab food and meet at the park" Now I have to admit that I just really don't want to take my kids there and I get "Well, we could go to Burger King instead..." - No, No, you don't understand the problem...

jasnjakesmom, listen very carefully -
You ARE smart enough to homeschool. You know more about your kids than any other teacher ever will. You are a caring, involved mother, and as an added bonus you can read! I'm not saying you have to homeschool if your heart isn't in it, but don't sell yourself short!

My dd informed me at age 6 that I would be unable to be her English teacher because I didn't know all the words in the English language. (I think she'd been listening to all the people saying "but how will you teach...") I handed her Webster and said "Knock yourself out kid." My kids are probably smarter than I am, but I have a library card and internet access.

Where are you zazamama? I'm in Ohio.

Member posted 07-11-2001 05:12 AM
For my son's first year, I sure did feel like a weirdo, except when I was with my LLL friends. I went to tons of LLL meetings during my son's first 2-3 years - and made some good friends there. I was especially put off by people who were amazed that I was still nursing my son at 5-6 months saying that I was sacrificing too much for my baby. Sacrifice? No way, I was doing what felt right and I saw it as an investment in my son's future.
Then just before my son's first birthday, my sister had her baby. I lived a few hours away from her, but we were in her area (our original home) for the birth and I was a huge influence on her getting started breastfeeding. She has also embraced a few AP practices (extended nursing, co-sleeping) so we have lots in common. At least I'm not the only weirdo in the family.

I couldn't stand living far away anymore, so we just moved back home this spring and now I'm closer to my sis (also my best friend). Our kids are turning 4 & 5 now.

A good friend of mine (an LLL leader) told me that she found people she connected with at LLL and created playgroups that worked for her. Surround yourself with like-minded people if possible and you'll feel a lot less like a weirdo.

Ginger in the woods
Member posted 07-11-2001 06:23 AM
You are SO not a wierdo! Do you live near a city? Take a quick walk! See the wierdos? Know that you are NOT a wierdo! Man. What is this world coming to? We live in the kind of world that is Making the women who are self sacrificing, SAHMs feel like They're "Wierd?" Now, I am a wierdo! (to the general pop.) I have HUGE tattoos all over, I'm in a band, and most of the planet probably thinks I experiment with drugs, sex & alcohol, and I look like I might just kill you for smiling at me, but I have such tenderness and love for my ds, and I am sober, intelliegent, loving, I dont look like the person I am inside. Cant do anything about the tattoos, I got them in my "biker" phase. I do love 2 of them still... And I cant afford all the gucci & YSL clothes I admire, I joined the PTA and got stared down for the first 6 months, until they saw the love I have for the children, and how the children ask for ME to read to them on "guest reader" day. So, even if you seem like a wierdo, to others, or even yourself, you probably arent. I think the wierdos of the world are people that outwardly act like & think that they're the best little mommies on the planet, just to turn around & backhand their kid for asking a question of a sexual nature. Thats a wierdo. You're awesome! Hey, if I dont think I'm a wierdo, (well, not ALL the time, anyway...) Please, dont you! ~Ginger

Member posted 07-11-2001 08:45 AM
I am treated like a "weirdo" at work. People think I am nuts for using cloth diapers, (wait til they find out about my cloth menstral pads) anyway, I just laugh when they say I am NUTS. I told them about 2 months ago that I was switching to cloth for both kids in diapers and they were looking at me like I had 3 heads. I must say that since I have switched and had some of my coworkers over for lunch they saw how easy it is and 2 of them with babies have since asked me for advice on cloth diapering and are thinking of switching as well. I feel like maybe I am considered a "weirdo" but on the other hand it must not seem too "weird" if some are considering joining my world.
For the same reason I breastfeed in public as often as possible, I change my baby's cloth diapers in public as often as I can so people can see that it really isn't hard.

Us "weirdos" have to provide an example to get the awareness out there so that someday we may be the norm.



Member posted 07-11-2001 08:48 AM
I was just telling dh that sometimes i wish we were more normal so i'g have vsomething in common with other moms. Thhere was a baby shower for me at church. A mom was tslking to me (sorry about the typos-holding a sleepy baby)"Do you have your crib set up?""No,he'll be in our bed" "for how long" "as long as he wants" "but you have your swing and everything set up" AI realized she wouldn't be at my house, so i lied just to keep up conversation.
We have a monster list of ways we aren't mainstream: we ap, we are very poor and therefore very frugal, dh is a restaurant server bc he loves it, we cloth diaper, I won't do any synthetic fibers if i can avoid it, we are trying to go veg/organic, we are homeschooling/unschooling, we don't do tv and try to avoid characters, we selectively vax, homebirth, breastfeed, and we are conservative christians. Its a lonely existence.

Member posted 07-11-2001 10:00 AM
Boy do I feel like a weirdo lately. My home is a suburb of the only major east coast city that didn't register on Mothering's readership radar. And I guess there are just a lot of things about my lifestyle that often bring me in contact with more mainstream parenting.
Plus I'm pregnant and it's starting to show. I'm still nursing my 3yo (in secret, more or less.) I've just stopped telling people about my plans for a home birth. At first I didn't think anything about it because I've seen a lot of good press about home birth in mainstream media lately. But I guess it hasn't sunk in.

I don't like lying to people. It's work, it's disrespectful, and it doesn't make me feel good. But I'm tired of defending myself. I like my life. This is my home, I'm not going to move just because people don't like my parenting practices. Why can't people be more accepting?

Sorry to rant. I felt the same way when my first pregnancy started to show. It's like I'm wearing a neon sign that says "please pry into my most personal decisions about birth and parenting." After spending time on these board I had forgotten what a minority my POV is. I can't even keep up with all the discussions here anymore they're so many, but I guess it's still a tiny fraction of what's out there, especially in my area.

Oh, and I don't beleive any of us are weirdos. We are trail blazers. No one said it would be easy. But obviously we are not alone. Thanks for the support.

Member posted 07-11-2001 02:08 PM
This is so great to read. Even those of us that know we're doing the right thing can be made to feel so shot down sometimes. I, too, get tired of constantly defending my decision to use cloth diapers (most people don't know I use cloth pads), extended breastfeed (who decided past two was extended anyway?), have a home birth (what?! are you nuts?!), homeschool (your kids are going to be social outcasts, you know that don't you?) and the list goes on and on. I have found a few friends, and thankfully a few places like here online, where I am reminded that there are probably a lot more people out there like me than I know about, they're just not shouting about their parenting practices from the rooftops like many ms parents do.
You're definitely not alone!


Member posted 07-13-2001 04:04 AM
Oh please tell me your close by! I bet I'm as wierd as you!
I was just venting to a friend from HS, who doesn't have kids how horrible the mothers in your communtiy can be if you are different.
Basically we deduced that they felt insecure and defensive when I told them my lifestyle. They of course did not want to be my friend but instead wanted to make me feel as defensive!

People have no tolerance for alternatives. No one does it like anyone else, so let's just share and grow together. Why do some women enjoy my choices and admire them while others try to condemn me, is due to their own development as person.

Member posted 07-13-2001 04:14 AM
When my 2nd ds was a tiny baby, I felt like the outcast too. We bf (though not tandem) and used cloth diapers. Now I too use cloth pads and wouldn't even THINK about switching back. People would FLIP if they knew. But since I don't work and I have a very small circle of people I hang out with (2 of them are my sister and mom), I feel comfortable telling them of my choices.
The best thing for you to do is surround yourself with likeminded people. That's what I had to do in the beginning. I was on a loop for moms who had babies in March 2000. I was getting into with them over CIO, cribs, disposable diapers, formula, etc. I couldn't sleep at night because I was so worked up. I realized that life is to short to fool with people who just don't get it, ya know??

Member posted 07-13-2001 04:28 AM
I feel totally the same way. It's like there are two strikes against us. 1) We make way too little money. 2) We have these crazy nutcase parenting behaviors. Sometimes it can turn your head around and make you feel like you're the crazy one! When I feel like that, I try to go through all the "normal" parenting ideas and look and them in a natural perspective. I mean, can you picture any other animals feeling the need to put their children in a little cage and let them "cry it out" at night? And why would mother nature create us so that our own milk is insufficient and must be replaced with that of a cow? It also helps to come to the boards, read Mothering, etc. It reminds you that you're not alone.

Member posted 07-13-2001 05:39 AM
Not to outdo you with personal pathos, but sometimes I think it is more lonely to be like me - an "inbetweener" with AP and, I guess, mainstream parenting. You have wholeheartedly commited to all the major maxims of AP: cosleeping, tandum-nursing, stay-at-home, home-schooling (and I am guessing mostly organic food and no vaccines?).
I am sort of in between, which means that NO ONE AGREES WITH ME I cosleep and am planning on bf my dd for at least 2 years, and we don't ever spank or even say "no" very often. I feed dd mostly real food, not baby food. BUT, I work and am in law school, and am planning on sending dd to school (albeit probably Montessori), and I do most of the vaccines and I eat plenty of real sugar stuff and non-organics.

So I kind of feel like an outsider to everyone, except for one friend I have in law school who is alot like me. But I like you full-blooded APers alot more than the total mainstreamers, so you have a friend in me

Member posted 07-13-2001 05:43 AM
Not to outdo you with personal pathos, but sometimes I think it is more lonely to be like me - an "inbetweener" with AP and, I guess, mainstream parenting. You have wholeheartedly commited to all the major maxims of AP: cosleeping, tandum-nursing, stay-at-home, home-schooling (and I am guessing mostly organic food and no vaccines?).
I am sort of in between, which means that NO ONE AGREES WITH ME I cosleep and am planning on bf my dd for at least 2 years, and we don't ever spank or even say "no" very often. I feed dd mostly real food, not baby food. BUT, I work and am in law school, and am planning on sending dd to school (albeit probably Montessori), and I do most of the vaccines and I eat plenty of real sugar stuff and non-organics.

So I kind of feel like an outsider to everyone, except for one friend I have in law school who is alot like me. But I like you full-blooded APers alot more than the total mainstreamers, so you have a friend in me

Member posted 07-13-2001 06:19 AM
I'm quite the weirdo where I live -- homebirthing, vegan, very health-conscious, completely AP, fully cloth diapering, cloth pad wearing (when I actually bleed), non-TV-watching, homeschooling, breastfeeding everywhere... and to top it off I'm traditionally Jewish. Just about everyday I'm with others, I'm explaining how or why we live the way we do. Although I enjoy telling people how we live and why, it sure would be nice to be around people who I have a little more in common with. I know no one even moderately like this where I live which is why I'm here on the boards. You girls make me feel like maybe I could belong somewhere.

Member posted 07-13-2001 06:35 PM
Yes - weirdo is exactly the word I would use to describe how I feel a lot of the time when I'm with non-AP sensitive people (most of the time, as you might guess!). The "weird" thing is that I know that two years ago (pre-ds) I would have considered myself a weirdo too! I just didn't get it, and now that I do, I try not to get too caught up in feeling like an outsider -- it's other people's problem, not mine. Anyway, I do dream longingly of living in a place where openly discussing my parenting practices wouldn't necessitate tensing up for an attack on whatever it is that I'm discussing! It would be so nice . . . Of course that's why I am on these boards - this forum represents the closest I can get to my dream life in terms of being surrounded by like-minded moms for a change!

unregistered posted 07-13-2001 07:03 PM
You are not alone! Do you ever notice that when you are doing your thing (for me ebf, trying to eat better - organic, no refined sugar, limit tv, etc. etc.) that you KNOW is the best for you and your family, you feel pretty good about it, even normal, until you encounter people who are not even aware of co-spleeping, AP, etc. And those people are considered the norm! (what is it 4 hours of TV per day is average? kids drinking soda? don't get me started on disney, and mcd) That's when I start feeling like the weirdo. But I know, and you all know that you are the best mother in the world to your kids and your kids will be so smart from the breast milk, and so confident from the connection they have with you, and you can feel so great that YOU are doing that for them. let them judge, I'm not looking for anyone else's approval.
I read Peggy's editorial in the latest mothering and it really reinforced for me why I make my decisions with my children in mind. Also, one good friend with similar feelings on issues, and of course, couldn't live without these boards!

Member posted 07-13-2001 11:15 PM
I rarely read this section of the board, so I was SO glad to see this post chosen to be highlighted on the web. I actually laughed out loud when I read the title.
When I meet other people even remotely like me my response is usually, "Oh, so you're a freak, too. Right on." Ok, I don't actually say that because they it would probably offend someone I just met. But later on I sometimes do.

I don't really think I'm a freak or they're a freaks, but it's certainly how other people think. I think of it more as a compliment. "You're freaky. I'm freaky. Hey, let's all be freaky together and have a good time."

I'm kind of a tweener as well. Definitely adamant about AP, extended breastfeeding, alternative health care, and just about anything remotely touching those topics. Not so adamant about food choices. My kids actually LOVE McD's. Gasp! Not so adamant about TV restricts, but far from letting them watch all day and anything they want.

I LOVE being around people that are every more alternative than me in these ways. They can teach me things that I haven't been as exposed to yet and maybe I can teach more about alternative health care or something.

[This message has been edited by DarcyH (edited 07-13-2001).]

Junior Member posted 07-14-2001 12:32 AM
I felt like a weirdo (wacko?) this week. I was at the hospital for my baby to have major surgery for a congenital disorder. As I sat in the baby's room on the pediatric ward breastfeeding, the nurse came running over and closed the door to 'give me privacy'!
Whenever my baby cried, a nurse would come into the room and offer morphine -- what a bad mom I felt like as I asked for ten more minutes to see if just holding him and singing to him would calm him! Sometimes it did, sometimes I let them give him morphine.

Moderator posted 07-14-2001 09:05 AM
My husband and I are like beckyelem - we are AP parents that "look" very mainstream and we have pretty mainstream friends and family members. We feel like we are pretty alone on the issue of sleep - almost everyone we know puts their kids to bed alone and does CIO. We have been discussing this alot lately because it REALLY upsets my husband.
I don't exactly feel like a weirdo (unless my toddler needs to nurse in public), but I feel sad that so many of our friends and family think that our style is "extreme".

Member posted 07-14-2001 02:11 PM
I just told my sister that I was switching to cloth diapers part-time and she said "what are you, mother earth?" This from a girl who switched doctors and campaigned hard to be able to natural birth her twins, even though one was breech and she wants to be a doula. I think that choosing cloth diapers for us tends to be a retrenchment into "feeling poor" because that's what our parents did when we were poor. I have friends on both sides of the tracks (ha!), but I just spent a morning with my very close friend of four years who is more "mainstream", and I had less to say than I ever had! Mostly I've gotten comments like the "mother earth" thing or "salt of the earth" (re extended bf and natural cb). Lots of weirdos out here!
Actually though, I straddle this too. We are p/t cosleepers although it seems to be easier and easier (i.e., lazier) for us to do. Oh well.

Member posted 07-15-2001 08:56 AM
To Beckyelem and all the other "inbetweeners" you are not alone!!
I think a lot of people who read/post feel that they are not fully AP but different from the mainstream.
I look at it like this: these boards are filled with inspiring attitudes and ideas and I am learning new things from them all the time (like cloth pads!!) When I BF my older dd for a year I really thought that was "extended" at the time.
I think it depends on the particular culture you live in - here in England it is different in lots of ways to the US. When I come on the boards I feel very mainstream but I try to pick up what I can and store ideas to try out. All we can do is be open-minded, right?
And the best thing about these boards is that I never feel any less for being an inbetweener.

Member posted 07-15-2001 12:37 PM
I totally understand what it's like to feel like a weirdo. I have no friends that are ap so I come here as much as I can to feel sane. This might sound weird but it mom once told me about an episode of The Twilight Zone where everyone looked like pigs except for this one beautiful girl. All the pig people thought the beautiful girl was ugly and were harassing her. It just reminds me of how it is for us. We are NOT the weirdos. Parents who let their kids CIO, etc are. It is just that the mainstream parenting world is like The Twilight Zone,lol. Anyway, what is this "inbetween" stuff? I know you mommys who claim to be "inbetween" APers love your kids more than life itself and trust your instincts and try to do the best you can every day. That doesn't sound like anything that's in between. I am nursing my sixteen-month-old dd Julia, still haven't bought cloth diapers cause I can't afford them yet, and sometimes we eat not very good things. But I do my best to love her and give her as much of me as I can. I am trying to do better by buying organic, etc but I just thing you guys(and me) need to give ourselves a break. Sure, we'll feel like weirdos but it's either that or not nurture our kids so we can fit in...nah, I think I'll stay a are entering a new dimension..the dimension of Mainstream least that's what they call it...I prefer to call it...THE TWILIGHT ZONE!!! doo doo dooo doo...

Moderator posted 07-15-2001 03:32 PM
I have felt this way my entire life. I have always thought outside of the box. My aunt when she was commenting on the breastfeeding (saying breastfed babies are always happier) and noting the cute homemade cloth diaper also said, "well you always were a peculiar child".
I just see it as being more aware and in-tune. Dh says I am hauty about my choices but it is not that I am predjudiced, I just have a hard time imaging why others would not make the same choices. I cannot fathom WHY a woman would NOT TRY to breastfeed, or HOW a mom could leave her baby at 2 weeks old with a family member to go on a weekend trip to get away.

It truly is the others who seem like weirdos to me since they do not have the education to make better choices. (and the ones who know but dont do TRULY baffle me)

anyway, I am still waiting for my AP mamma friend to move to Douglas Georgia...

Member posted 07-15-2001 04:49 PM
Shelberty, this 'weirdo' just wanted to say 'hi' & hope that your ds is feeling better & doing well. Keep us posted on his recovery

Member posted 07-15-2001 04:53 PM
We're here too!! I nurse my daughter who is 4.5 years, I home-school her (until kindergarten anyway), and we are one small happy cozy family at night in our family bed! Just wanted to let you know that you are not alone, and there is one more "weirdo" family out there (in Hilo, Hawaii) giving you support!!

Member posted 07-15-2001 07:42 PM
yesterday we were at a cook out for dh's work. I felt so out of place listening to the other moms talk. Mostly I don't engage in too many conversations with them. Sometimes, I sit there thinking-I can't believe she just said that! Dh agrees with me that it would be nice to know more people who parent like us.
Then I come home from something like that where I felt like the outsider, and I cuddle up with ds and dh, and I think they are the ones missing out. I feel sorry for their babies. I really can't understand how people can let their kids cry it out or put them in a carrier with a propped bottle.

We are the ones who are parenting the natural way! It is too bad we are not in the majority though. That's why I love these boards!

Junior Member posted 07-15-2001 10:54 PM

Originally posted by beckyelem:
Not to outdo you with personal pathos, but sometimes I think it is more lonely to be like me - an "inbetweener" with AP and, I guess, mainstream parenting. You have wholeheartedly commited to all the major maxims of AP: cosleeping, tandum-nursing, stay-at-home, home-schooling (and I am guessing mostly organic food and no vaccines?).
I am sort of in between, which means that NO ONE AGREES WITH ME I cosleep and am planning on bf my dd for at least 2 years, and we don't ever spank or even say "no" very often. I feed dd mostly real food, not baby food. BUT, I work and am in law school, and am planning on sending dd to school (albeit probably Montessori), and I do most of the vaccines and I eat plenty of real sugar stuff and non-organics.

So I kind of feel like an outsider to everyone, except for one friend I have in law school who is alot like me. But I like you full-blooded APers alot more than the total mainstreamers, so you have a friend in me


You're not alone in the middle! We are whole heartedly practicing AP, but, like you use vacs and are planning to send the kiddos to school. We found a great alternative school-very integrated style of learning. They don't have "grade levels" & encourage children to move at their own pace and explore their talents. The children are responsible for gardens and animals living on campus.
We also use dispo diapers-I tried cloth with #1 for a while, but I'm not very good at keeping up laundry! lol!
I also feel like an outcast for reasons others have mentioned, family bed, breastfeeding, & not circumcising our bb- although- we live in an upper/middle class neighborhood & the babies could have their own rooms, but they don't. We often don't feel like we fit in cuz everyone is so different-we're the only ones around with homegrown veggies and a compost pile!
It's great to hear about all the other families like ours out there!

Member posted 07-15-2001 11:02 PM
I feel very lonely and isolated for the parenting choices I make. I know they are the right thing to do but sometimes it would be nice to "fit in".
I've finally realised that at the playgroup I was attending the mums all used to make comments like "It doesn't matter if you bottle or breast feed" or "It doesn't matter how your baby is born and an elective ceaserean is just easier" because they KNEW that they hadn't done the best thing for their children and the only way they could face it was to pretend it doesn't matter. I can accept that people make different choices, but I can't stand by silently while people degrade the choices I make. AP'ing is not the easy way, it's putting in the hard work now so that our children can benefit in the long run. (not meaning that I don't love that "hard work", but come on, it must be easier when you can prop up your baby from 3 months old to drink his own bottle).
Anyway, I stopped going there and now we're both lonely but we have each other.

Member posted 07-16-2001 07:08 AM
It is a shame that people (relatives, strangers) feel that they can make comments about other's parenting choices. I have been trying to be careful not to throw my views out there to others who may not be able to make some of the same choices as me (i.e have to go to work and therefore must put their kids in daycare). I am learning to not be quiet - but to be diplomatic - and let others know that ALL parenting choices can be valid - but mostly, they are personal. I have people that accuse me of being "alternative" just to be different - not, of course, because I believe that certain choices might be best for my child.

Member posted 07-16-2001 08:00 AM
I've always been viwed as "weird." I feel like my whole worldview, value system, and way of thinking are so different from everyone else's. I have a hard time understanding where other people are coming from when they make decisions. Fortunately, I know plenty of other weird people.
When my mom told me I was the weirdest person she knew (and she cloth diapered and nursed until kids were like 5, so that's really saying something), I told her about the people I know who do things like sit in redwoods for a couple of weeks, dumpster dive their food, live below taxable levels, or get arrested on a regular basis for a cause. By comparison, I'm not that weird.

It's all perspective. The people on these boards seem pretty mainstream to me.

Member posted 07-16-2001 08:44 AM
This topic comes up frequently in my counselling sessions with AP parents, so I was very happy to discover the wonderful article "Banished! Are parents who follow their hearts left out in the cold?" by Australian psychologist Robin Grill. We've received permission to post it on our site at
Jan Hunt, Director
Natural Child Project

Member posted 07-16-2001 10:04 AM
Motherdownunder- You're not alone, you're only down the road from me (well, sort of- I'm in Townsville!!) I'm an in-between AP and mainstream kind of weirdo, but come on over and chat with other Australians under Finding Your Tribe- Any Aussies Out There? I'm in Brissie now and again- we have family in West End. Hope you read this!

Member posted 07-16-2001 11:25 AM
Where was this thread about 8 months ago when I was so tired of all the "Give me my drugs during birth" "No kid of mine is going to be attached to my breast" "I won't be able to go out if I nurse--I'm not changing my life". Forget about all the women who just treated their doctors like gods and willingly gave up their woman/mother power every day. I was sometimes so sad and heart broken for these women and then so sad and heart broken for their children. I worked with a lot of women who were either pregnant or just had children. I was the first to go and was definitely the "weirdo" until I finally just left that workplace. It was a lot of "Girlfriend's Guide to Pregnancy" girls, as I call them--pregnancy sucks, but you got to do it kind of a thing. So many people just going with what's been done without questioning or making informed decisions. So sad. Where I worked was a children's mental health organization that served kids under 7. Many children came in with "sleep problems" ie: sleeping with their parents. I was the clinicial director, so I supervised the therapists. I got so sick of seeing treatment plans with the therapeutic goal of "child will learn to sleep on their own". Sometimes this would be the only reason a family would be in therapy. I remember the first family I worked with. The son was sleeping with the mom. I asked her if it was a problem, and she said "no, but shouldn't it be?". We didn't end up including that in her treatment plan. It was deemed that I had no clinical skills because I tried to offer the therapists an alternative way to think of family and raising children. I was able to at least encourage a few people to breast feed and supported them while pumping at work. My hallway became the "lactation station". Now that I'm away from there, for some reason I feel more normal. Maybe because it isn't shoved down my throat every day. My AP way (or I guess I'm an inbetweener because I work--DH stays home with our DD--way too many student loans and other debt--long story). In fact, my dh said we couldn't do AP because I was going to have to return to work. I said fooey. It's been the best thing to keep me attached to my dd when I'm away from her. Now he's so glad we did/do it. At any rate, all you weirdos hang in there. I'm so proud to be among you women who claim you woman/mother power to better your children. Yeah!
jennifer Amelias mom 5/27/99

Member posted 07-16-2001 06:28 PM
I'm another in-betweener. DH doesn't understand why I love these boards so much. I tell him it's because you ladies think mostly like me regarding parenting, and my friends do not. He wants to know "like what?" So I tell him, extended bf, co-sleeping, gentle discipline, natural childbirth, etc. His response: "And?"
And what? Isn't that enough? I'd say those are major differences. But he knows that some of you are *really weird* (you should have seen his face when I mentioned cloth pads! ) so he thinks "what's the big deal? You're diff. from your real friends in some ways and diff. from your cyber friends in other ways."

He doesn't get how important it is to be able to talk about childbirth and parenting with other moms who feel the way I do! I may not agree with some of you about food, religion, health care, etc. But mommy is who I am right now, it's my whole life. Those are the issues that count.

Sorry to ramble, but I'm frustrated with being "tribeless."

Member posted 07-17-2001 04:22 PM
it's really....nice to read all these. i'm twenty six, pregnant with my second child, same dad but we're not married or even together anymore, breastfed my son until two and half, family bed, cloth diapers, no tv at for years, now limited, worked as a nanny so i could be with my son, then taught preschool. still teaching preschool, and will not go back to normal work until this unborn is in kindergarten. i go to school at night and have two years left to grad. with my journalism degree. i'm pretty poor and plan to birth in a home birthing clinic near my house, which also does water births! i'm researching that now.
at the same time, i have taken my son to disneyland three times, we do eat out occasionaly at fast food, etc.
i am young and single but i don't drink or do drugs. i am NOT conservative but not a party animal by any means. i live by strong personal ethics but find nothing unsettling about raunchy humor or bold speaking. i don't go to church but i'm spiritual.
i could go on...i feel i am a bundle of 'these and those'. therefore there is no prepackaged group of people i can mix in with and immediately expect to be on common ground.
it really, really sucks sometimes.
on the other hand, i have self worth that is such a helping hand i don't know what i'd do without it. i know what i USED to do without it, and that was worse than feeling occasionaly horribly lonely.
i really like this stream. i work in preschool and it gets absolutely depressing.
'no, i can't pick her up. how high was her fever again?'
'my child has been hitting. what are YOU going to do about it?'
'why can't i give him oreos and soda for breakfast here?'
'i can't make it.'
'i'm too busy.'
'he-she won't care.'
'he-she is a brat anyway.'
it makes me cry sometimes. everyone's hurting, the parents, the kids....

Member posted 07-18-2001 09:03 PM
Ditto to all of the above. I have been thinking about this topic a lot. My DH always says that he doesn't understand why I care about what anyone else thinks - we know we are doing the right thing for our children and that is all that matters. I don't really care what other people think, but I do often feel like I live on another planet when it comes to parenting. NO ONE that I know has anything to do with AP. I think the only reason it bothers me is because I need validation and when everyone around me is doing something completely different than what I am doing, it doesn't validate my own experience. Does that make any sense? In the past few days since I have found this site and have been reading the posts, I have felt so much better!

Junior Member posted 07-19-2001 09:18 AM
You are my idol! My daughter is 8 months and I am breastfeeding her and plan to continue till she wants to stop. I am a SAHM who quit a really high powered job in NYC to be with my daughter. We desire a large family and I want to homeschool my kids. There are a few other things that make us "alternative" parents, like the vaccination issue and not eating meat but hey, why stop with just one difference right? I think you are an incredibly strong woman and you give me faith and hope. Keep it up! And go and do something for yourself every once in awhile like taking a walk or yoga in the living room!

Member posted 07-19-2001 09:56 PM
I have had such great fun and felt such support reading all of the responses. It's almost 1 a.m., and I SHOULD be in bed so I can handle my day tomorrow, but eh, I wouldn't have time to read and post otherwise.
I just wanted to share something that's been bothering me lately about being a "weirdo." When I'm with my AP friends I strive to be a better mom - more patient, less cranky, and more grateful to have the chance to be home with my delicious kids. But when I'm with a non-AP parent, it's like I inhale their bad vibes and become less patient with my own children, and more likely to gripe about how hard of a time I'm having.
I feel terrible about this - like how wishy washy of a person am I to be so swayed like this????

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