Have you eaten any of your own words? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
 
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A pregnant, AP mommy-to-be says things like, "I will never let my baby cry. I will never give my child a bottle. I will never use a crib. I will never use a playpen," and so on...or things similar to that. I know I said quite a few of those "I nevers" myself. Well, boy, being a parent for REAL is a whole heck of a lot different than what you imagine, and I'm sure many of us have eaten our words a few times.

With a few threads running around here that got a little judgmental, I thought maybe we could share our more fallible, human sides. Which of your "I nevers" turned out differently than you expected?

With me, it was letting dd cry. I always got up and nursed her back to sleep when she woke, but at some point (about ten months, I think), she started waking again several times a night and would literally latch on for two seconds and fall asleep. This would have been easy if we coslept, but we didn't, and I could never get back to sleep afterwards! After ruling out teething and illness, and waiting about a month to see if she would get through the "phase," I had just had it. I was a walking zombie. I almost got into two car accidents due to lack of sleep. So I decided I was not going to nurse her in the middle of the night anymore. Well, nothing we did worked - singing to her, rocking her, nothing. If dh went into her room instead of me it was even worse. So for one night, we let her cry. I hated all ten minutes of it, and then she fell asleep. All night, I was up feeling guilty. The next night, it happened again, but she cried for a minute or two. And after that, she slept through the night, or at least till about six a.m., when I would nurse her and she would sleep another hour or two (and I would stay up, but that was fine!).

Is that the same as using CIO? Many would say yes, but I could not function as an effective parent with no sleep. So there's my confession...how about you?
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#2 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 07:53 PM
 
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here's what i think of your CIO experience: it was only one time! and you were desperate for sleep. so if someone were to call you a bad parent for that one night, i would give them the finger for you.

let's see, what did i say i would never do? hmmmmmmmm....

well, i didn't want an exersaucer but ended up buying one when my husband had to leave the country for 6 weeks. i didn't know what the hell else to do with her while i showered or cooked.

and i used to sneer at the moms who had their kids in dance classes at 2yo. looks like i'm gonna be one of those moms. shoshie is VERY active and athletic and loves to dance, so we are going to put her in dance and gymnastics ASAP. we are starting at the Little Gym next month.

also, i didn't think i would leave her until she was verbal, but i didn't plan on being left alone with a toddler for 8 months. so she is now in a children's day out program 2 days a week. and it's fine. we're both doing fine with it.
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#3 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:10 PM
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I had all kinds of "nevers", too, and I am pleased to say that not only did I NOT do things I say wouldn't do, but I added more to my list. I have never left my baby to cry for any reason whatsoever, no pacis, no strollers, no crib, no playpen, no exersaucers, no highchair - no baby gear other than my sling and now my backpack. When I need to shower, I take baby with me -always have.

If you don't want to do those things - well, that's fine. But is there something wrong with having really high standards?

Sure, it's hard sometimes, but it all passes. So quickly.
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#4 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Nothing wrong with high standards - I have them myself. But I do think that too many of us beat ourselves up for not being the perfect AP mama every second of every day. We should allow ourselves a little margin for error and still know that we're doing one hell of a good job.
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#5 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:18 PM
 
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beanzer

you come off very judgmental...I don't think that is what this thread is about.

I said I would "never" use a pacifier, but when I had a c-section (had been in labor for 43 hours) and was exhausted, DH couldn't be woke up to help soothe the baby and the nurses kept bugging me about giving DD a bottle, I caved!

I also said that I would try my best to never say the word "no", well that lasted until DD could crawl...then it went downhill from there
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#6 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:25 PM
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Absolutely, LunaMom!

I've always operated on the assumption that anything I feel guilty about is probaby wrong, so I should stop doing it. Note that it is totally a personal call. I don't care what anyone else thinks - but if *I* feel guilty, I assume there's a good reason for that.

So I agree, there is no reason to beat yourself up over stuff that wasn't the greatest call, as long as you didn't know you were making a bad call. I always feel a bit sick when I hear other mums talk about how guilty they feel about doing XXX - it makes me wonder why they're doing XXX? If you know something isn't right because your own internal sensor is telling you it isn't right, why keep doing it? If you know in your heart that CIO is the best way to go, then you shouldn't feel bad about it. But if you're lying there feeling sick to your stomach, torn up with guilt, well, maybe your brain is trying to tell you something. Why is it so hard to trust ourselves?

We all make mistakes, sure. What drives me nuts is when people KNOW they're making a mistake, but keep right on doing it .... I don't get that. I can honestly say I feel guilty about NOTHING I have done as a parent. I've made mistakes, but I didn't know any better. I check things out as they come up, get the research, make a decision and move on. I have never behaved in a way that has made me feel that I was doing something wrong. And that's a big difference, I think ...
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#7 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I understand your point, beanzer. I did think you sounded a bit harsh in your post at first. But I do know a few people who repeatedly do something that they know is not right, in fact, every time they do it, they say, "I know, I know, I shouldn't be doing this," but they still do. I wonder about those people too. But that's not what I meant by my question!
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#8 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:48 PM
 
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its not what you say, but how you say it. good grief.
High standards...hmmmm
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#9 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 08:53 PM
 
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I said I'd never use a swing. After two months of exhaustion and dh standing swinging dd#1 in his arms for hours at a time every single night - and if he stopped, or sat down she woke - we went out and bought the top-of-the-range 6 speed model with music. Bliss. She slept in it as long as the hoover was running continually in the background.

Dd #2 is not bothered about the swing and will sleep anywhere. Dd#1 often still climbs in tho - and she's now two and a half.

"Never say never" is my motto - you don't know that you won't get a high maintenance babe!
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#10 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 09:09 PM
 
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I said I would never use formula, especially Carnation GoodStart. Adopted Dylan, breastfeeding didnt work out, formula we used. I cried when I made bottles at night. Carnation was the only thing he didnt puke up.
I said I never would cosleep with my kids, I did.
I said I would use a playpen, and didnt except if you consider the toys I put in it using it.
I said I would never Extended Breastfeed. I did.
I said I would never use CIO, I did it was terrible with first, with second child he cries to go to sleep everynight, so I guess you can say he did CIO at times.
I fail at a lot of things when it comes to gentle discipline. I just try again each day. Today is a bad day.

I have said I would never use cloth diapers. Well, maybe with the next one I will try it.
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#11 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 10:00 PM
 
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I said I would never talk "baby talk" to my babies ~~ that lasted until my oldest was about 3 seconds old :LOL

I said I would never spank or become a "yelling all the time" mom ~~ I did for a few years but thankfully have since stopped

I can only think of those two... mostly because when I was pregnant with my oldest I never really planned out how I'd parent, I just went with my what felt right and what worked ... then my mom gave me The Baby Book by Dr Sears and I found out what felt right to me was called AP!
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#12 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 10:35 PM
 
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I said I would never use a binky, swing, saucer, bouncer....I use all of them! DS has reflux so if he nurses too much he cries and spits up all over....so we broke down and tried a binky. It works great in our situation. But I still don't recommend them to people. As for the swing, saucer & bouncer - I can't believe it but I have them strategically placed around the house so they are there when I need to put him down. When I was pregnant, I had visions of myself slinging my baby everywhere like a tribal mama. Didn't realize my baby would be 20 lbs at 3 months and how heavy that would actually feel. Also didn't realize that my baby would only tolerate the sling for 15-20 minutes at a time MAX!

"We shape the clay into a pot but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want" Lao Tzu
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#13 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 10:38 PM
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Cute thread.

I think those who have stuck to their high standards perfectly should probably just bow out and let us imperfect mortals enjoy our true confessions.

I said I would never have a c-section. I had an emergency c-section.

I said I would never use a pacifier. I used one. Sparingly, but it was a lifesaver many times. Dd luckily weaned herself of it at 7 months.

I said I would never, ever use a crib. Guess where dd sleeps?

I said I would never dress her in pink. Guess who owns many rosey clothes?

Life, and especially parenthood, loves to teach you lessons. You do what works, you follow THEIR lead, you stay sane, you stay happy, you make them happy. That's what it's all about.
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#14 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 10:41 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Serena
I said I would never dress her in pink. Guess who owns many rosey clothes?
Oh goodness I cannot believe I forgot this one!!! I *HATE* pink, more than anything! (except maybe purple!) and almost ALL the girls' baby clothes were pink ... they ended up with them because I was given 2 garbage bags full of baby clothes - most with the tags still on!
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#15 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 10:55 PM
 
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absolutely i've eaten my words. "i'm never doing this again" after delivering dd tops the list, and "i could never do a home birth" (my ds).
more to the point that you are asking about, though, there are plenty of things i do that i wish i didn't do (lose my cool and yell, get so tired i just want them both to leave me alone) and i am working as hard as i can to heal the parts of myself that keep me from being a fully conscious parent.
there are also things i'm not entirely comfortable about doing but am resigned to them b/c i know my limits and i don't have the energy at this point in my life to push myself beyond them (putting a video on for them to get some down time, not keeping all processed foods out of the house, not staying on top of the tooth brushing sometimes.)
all in all, i just hope that i can let them grow up to be their full and glorious selves, without making them hide, ignore or deny aspects of themselves that i react negatively to out of my own conditioning. and i'm shocked at how hard that is for me, even after years of personal growth work.
okay, that was a bit melodramatic : but i guess that's how i interpret the parenting challenges you're talking about...
warmly,
susan
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#16 of 33 Old 03-19-2003, 10:59 PM
 
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I have noticed a difference between #1 and #2. I feel with ds we were pretty hard core. We are much more mellow with dd. She had sugar way too early, wears disposables to bed and plays with our neighbor's barbies.

My biggest change was weaning. I said I would let my kids nurse as long as they wanted. Well, I discoved 2.5 was really my limit.

Oh, and yes...the pink thing
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#17 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 12:40 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Serena
Cute thread.

I think those who have stuck to their high standards perfectly should probably just bow out and let us imperfect mortals enjoy our true confessions.

I said I would never have a c-section. I had an emergency c-section.

Same here. I just knew that I would be one day homebirthing babies. Its not going to happen, ever. Next life maybe?
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#18 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 01:08 AM
 
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Nice thread! I said I would never use a pacifier, and that I would never let my child CIO. Well...

When he was just a couple of weeks old and hysterically crying all day long, I tried desperately to get him to suck on a pacifier...but he refused. he spit it out each time!

and...

I once tried CIO when he was about 8 months old and I got fed up with all of the floor pacing...but within 10 minutes, he threw up in the crib. Never tried that again!

So, in conclusion, to make my life more bearable, I would've happily eaten my words on at least a couple of occasions, but my stubborn baby forced me to stick to 'em. As if he had been there when I was writing my mental guide to parenting!
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#19 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 01:35 AM
 
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I said I would never co-sleep but have since DD was about 6 weeks and I'm really glad I ate those words!

I also said I would never breastfeed in public but I got over that too.

BUT...

I said I would never let her CIO, and while I haven't intentionally done it, there was one afternoon when I was busy cooking dinner and she was crying in her swing to the point where she threw up.

I said I would never go back to work, but I have started working part time on a temporary basis while DH is home.

I usually try to stay away from absolutes like NEVER and ALWAYS... I think one of the best lessons that motherhood has taught me is to be flexible.
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#20 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 01:38 AM
 
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I said no bottles, but DS was sick and started taking EBM from a bottle at 4 days old. We quickly weaned him off the bottle as soon as he was home and safe to eat (about 8 weeks old).

I said I'd have him trained on the Ezzo schedule b/c "it works according to my friends", but the first time he cried, and I picked him up and he stopped, that thought was gone (about 30 mins after his surgical entry into the world).

I said he wouldn't get junk food, but I laugh when DH gives him mc donald's ffs or lets him mouth his twinkies or Mellow Yellow.

That's all I can think of right now, but I know there's more.
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#21 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 01:54 AM
 
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I said I would never give my kid fast food,
me too! honestly, i never said "never" on anything, mostly because i didnt want to sound as stupid as the people who did!

the one thing i did say, was that my kid would never have mcdonalds. my daughter was 7 months old when she got her first taste of a vanilla shake. no turning back....
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#22 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 02:52 AM
 
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I was the opposite of alot of you. I said I would never extended breastfeed, still going strong as I am pregnant. I said my son would know how to put himself to sleep, as I still nurse him to bed every time. I thought picking him up whenever they watned would spoil him. Luckily I have thrown all those crappy ideas out the window. I guess that is the good thing of starting out with bad ideals as opposed to good ones, when I threw them out I was happy. Yet my son has cryed it out a total of two times, and I couldn't handle it. He tried a sip of a cappucino blast with me stupidly thinking he wouldn't like the coffee flavor, wrong assumption. The one I can proudly say he hasn't done is have McDonalds. I am not so cocky to say he never will, but hopefully not. He has had Carl's Jr and other fast food, I just personally can't stand McDonalds, so I avoid there. When I hear moms to be and first time mothers talk about their nevers, I try to just smile and remember the time. I then try to gently remind them that you never know what life will throw you, and flexibilty is a great parenting tool.
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#23 of 33 Old 03-20-2003, 10:52 AM
 
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LIke Fifel the mouse says,"Never say never" I did not have any nevers that I can remember. There were things I knew I would like to try and avoid. I was new at parenting and I knew enough that I did not know enough to say I would never do something. There were of course the big things like CIO and no formula that I knew I wanted to avoid, but at the time I did nto wether or not BF'ing would work,it did and I am glad but who knew.... I also agree that being flexible is one of the things that has made parenting a smooth transition for us.

But Having a second child who is very active has given me a new insight on parents I might have judged unfaairly when I was a first time mom. I now understand that sometimes you can be the best parent in the world and it is not going to stop your child from having a temper tantrum in the grocery store aisle. There was a time I would have thought in my head that the parent did not have control of the situation and now thanks to my amazing son I have a more open mind and a more compassionate heart. I always say that my oldest helped me fall in love with motherhood and my son has showed me how to be a better mother.
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#24 of 33 Old 03-21-2003, 12:57 AM
 
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HOw does that old expression go? "Always make sure your words are sweet because you never know when you will have to eat them"

Get ready to gasp... I feed my baby formula. When I was pregnant I was 100% sure, no doubt about it, definitely bfing for at LEAST a year. Well, I won't bore you with the details, but after 3 months of pumping I decided I just couldn't do it anymore. I had over 100 8 oz. bags of breastmilk in the freezer that I planned on using but he wouldn't drink it - turned out it tasted like soap (high lipase activity). Anyway - this is not intended to be a big justification for my decision. I know plenty of women pump for much longer than 3 months. But for me, it was affecting my ability to parent so I felt that quitting was the best choice. So be it.

Also I was very against co-sleeping, but Cole was very PRO co-sleeping so guess who won that argument. Oh, and I NEVER thought I would CD, but I changed my mind about that too.

I try very hard not to criticize people's parenting choices. You truly don't know what you would do if you were in someone else's shoes.
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#25 of 33 Old 03-21-2003, 01:33 AM
 
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#26 of 33 Old 03-21-2003, 02:29 AM
 
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DD is only 14 months old right now, so I don't feel that I have had to eat too many of my words, but there is still plenty of time for that.

The biggest one has been the pacifer. I did feel strongly about not using one, but DD really needed it, it seemed. Interestingly, she is sort of weaning herself from it now.

Oh, and the pink thing. We got a BUTT load of clothes as gifts when she was born, and many of them were pink. And now we get my neices clothes, who is a bit older than DD, and there are plenty of cutsy things in there that I would have never bought myself, but what do you say to free clothes? My sister makes fun of some of the outfits, but I remind her that we are consuming less by reusing (she is also very much into reducing consumption), and you can't argue that. Course, since we get so much given to us, it justifies us into spending more $$ than we might ordinarily on single outfits that DD "just must have." We need a few indulgences.

I am definitely using a stroller more than I thought I would. But I never said I would "never" use one.
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#27 of 33 Old 03-21-2003, 10:17 PM
 
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Let me see:

I said that I would never let DS sleep with us. Heck I even said that I wouldn't let him in the same room with us. He didn't sleep in his room until it became a necessity. We wish we could let him co-sleep all the time but it isn't entirely possible. But he does come in bed with us when he is sick and every morning at 5 or 6 am.

I said that I would let DS CIO and sleep through the night IMMEDIATELY. We have actually tried the CIO a few times because friends and family keep swearing that it is the best thing for him. FORGET IT. I even lay down with him for all naps or he sleeps on my lap.

I said that I would raise my kids the EZZO way from the first hour of their life. HAAAAAAAAHAAAAAAA. I have since learned that the "shuck and shell" method of parenting is the only way to keep your sanity and happiness. I am quite happy "spoiling" my baby. And he hasn't turned into a brat yet.

I did get a "king of the castle" outfit for him to wear whenever we are around my EZZO friends.

I won't say that I will never yell or spank because I don't know what life holds for me and my kids but I hope that both are kept to a bare minimum or non-existant.
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#28 of 33 Old 03-21-2003, 11:44 PM
 
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I said I'd never have a family bed or be "one of those weird no-vaccination hippies" or give birth without a doctor and a hospital ... Oops. :

On a lighter note, I swore I'd never dress any daughter of mine in pink and/or ruffles. But when she came along and we had very little money, I got *lots* of pink, ruffly hand-me-downs and gifts from people. Now I own so much pink that it's just easier to keep it in her wardrobe, even 20 months later.

But it's *hot* pink, not pastel. :LOL
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#29 of 33 Old 03-22-2003, 03:26 PM
 
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I guess my nevers are mostly on the other side. I was pretty against co-sleeping before dd was born, and I was never going to nurse my baby "too long" (she's 1.5 yrs old now). Ha ha. So that has changed. I came to AP style after dd was born.

Here's one thing you're looking for, though. I used to get disgusted when my mom and other moms would say "oh, goodie, you're having a girl. You can dress her in beautiful dresses!" Oh, geez, I though, how sexist. But I went berserk last week picking out a spring dress for her. It sounded like my mom was speaking, instead of me.

Edited to say I just saw that my post is so similar to mamaste's!! How funny.
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#30 of 33 Old 03-22-2003, 09:09 PM
 
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I hear ya, comet ...
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