Tired of having to justify my choices! - Page 2 - Mothering Forums
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#31 of 54 Old 12-12-2001, 07:24 PM
 
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Thank you for the words of encouragment...you are awesome mamas! Peacemama, in a previous posting you mentioned that you don't allow your child to watch commercial television Kudos to you....my husband and I both agreed to get rid of the television when the baby was born. I actually had a person ask me how I expected my child to become oriented with pop culture/society without a television in our home. Oh my gosh! I told her, "That's where WE step in..." I agree that perhaps the reason some people may criticize parenting skills that are different from their own, is because no one really wants to admit that they are/could be wrong. Better to call someone else wrong than admit that fault may lie with themself. Mamapie, I love your signature...I was just discussing the fact that although the days of being a parent are long and often VERY routine, the months (and years, I'm sure) FLY by.
I appreciate the advice about night-nursing. I will follow my heart and nurse my baby until he doesn't want it anymore!
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#32 of 54 Old 12-12-2001, 07:52 PM
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Good for you, Ahappymel and very nice to meet you. Look forward to seeing you around these boards.
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#33 of 54 Old 12-12-2001, 10:22 PM
 
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So what is the big deal with nursing a baby to sleep? Most, no, ALL the bottle feb babies I have known were or are bottle fed to sleep. Is it that I just know the "right" people?
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#34 of 54 Old 12-12-2001, 11:55 PM
 
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i read that 65% of people breastfeed
and every one of my friends breasted
so, my bottle-feeding was actually going against the 'norm'.

just wanted to say that.
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#35 of 54 Old 12-13-2001, 01:16 AM
 
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I nurse my 14 month son right before bed he sometimes falls asleep, but often will finish eating, sit up, crawl up to put his head on my shoulder and his arms around me and play with my hair. We sit like that for a while and I eventually lay him down. He will cry no matter what. If he is asleep he will wake up and cry, if he is awake he also cries, not for long and it no longer bothers me. I have decided it's just his style. My first son was a great sleeper, so this one has been a real trial. I had to kick him out of my bed at six months because neither one of us was sleeping anymore. He did better in his crib but still woke up ever 2 - 3 hours. He just the last month has begun sleeping for eight hours a night, though not always.

If you are looking for a good book on the subject look into the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weisbluth (I'm not sure on the spelling.) He doesn't oppose cosleeping or nursing to sleep, and he talks a lot about the physiology of sleep. He is not a big fan of Ferber, but on the opposite side he is not a fan of Sears either (I am.) I learned a lot from his book and can see everything I did right with my older DS and everything I did wrong with my youngest DS.

Give it a try and let me know what you think. If anyone else has read it, I'd love to know what you thought.
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#36 of 54 Old 12-13-2001, 11:23 AM
 
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I'm to the point now where I don't even discuss my mothering style with anyone unless they ask me questions, then I'll answer truthfully. It's a good thing you ladies are here so at least I know that I'm not alone...my choices, the things I know are right instinctually, are definately not popular around here, where I live. My son is 3 1/2 and he breastfeeds and has slept with me in our bed since he was born. Never has he had to cry for me to come and get him out of a different room. I have never even left him for more than a couple of hours at a time. It's so sweet the way he says, "mom, Donnie loves your breast!"

However, I have had experiences where I'll let one little thing slip through and I'll get jumped all over! I don't see my dad very often, (thankfully) but when we do it's so uncomfortable. If Donovan starts pulling at my shirt my dad is not shy about letting me know how disgusting it is to let him breastfeed at "his age."

I think what bothers me the most is when people CANNOT understand why I sleep with my son. To each her own, but I can't even say how many times people get hung up on the sex issue. There are people who are threatened by the loss of oppourtunities of having sex with their partner if there is a child in the bed. Oh, good heavens, do those of you who co-sleep know what I'm talking about?

Just a few thoughts this morning.

Peace,
Amie
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#37 of 54 Old 12-13-2001, 12:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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A reply to wishful's comment about why people seem to think nursing to sleep is a problem while, a baby falling asleep with a bottle is not:

That is an interesting point, and I never thought about it until you brought it up! You know what I think? I think it's because eventually the baby can hold the bottle by herself, whereas Mom needs to be present for nursing. The problem those less enlightened people must have probably is about the baby needing MOM to sleep, not the breast per se.

Why is it that people want babies, LITTLE BABIES, to be independent? They're not supposed to be independent, they're babies! Why is needing Mommy seen as a sign of weakness rather than a sign of a strong bond? I personally feel sad at the image of a baby lying alone sucking on a bottle in a crib. I'm not bashing bottles or cribs, mind you, but I think if a bottlefed baby needs a bottle to fall asleep, a parent should hold that baby and "bottle-nurse" her, even if she can hold it herself.
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#38 of 54 Old 12-13-2001, 04:26 PM
 
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I agree with Peacemama! Let them be babies as long as they can! I was unable to BF and very saddened by this. However my kids still need ME to get to sleep. They are 3 1/2 and 19 months. They never went to bed with a bottle ( soooo bad for the teeth among other things) alone they always had me. Even for naps they still need me to lay with them, unless they are sooooo exhausted, and I LOVE this. I feel that there will come a time when they don't need us. My mother and other people do not understand how I can do this. And I admit that at times it makes things a little more challenging but I LOVE IT. I will cherish and recall these times when they are 15 and don't seem to need Mommy as much. So whether you BF or not I say be close to them for as long as they will let you and love every minute of it.

We may not have it all together, but together we have it all
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#39 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 04:29 PM
 
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I am responding mostly to the first post, from Peacemama. It seems to me to be a boundary issue; you were saying that since you respect others' boundaries, you'd like yours respected, I think. And that's utterly reasonable.

I'd like to add: I guess, like many of the other posters on this thread, I don't strictly fall into the AP category though mostly do. (I do bf and co-sleep but use disposable diapers, have both a stroller and sling, for example.) The situation around a lot of bottle-feeding mothers I know is that they seem kind of defensive when I bf, as if just by doing so is an implicit criticism of their decision not to. I sense there is some guilt there, and a lot of them feel deep down they're not doing the best thing by their baby, and that's where the defensiveness comes from.

I have found that often when the conversation at all touches on a particular choice my partner and I have made, and I start to explain or respond as though the person was genuinely interested, that while I'm speaking that person has tuned out. After a few times of this (at family gatherings almost invariably) I've learned that people are usually not really interested and to just deflect it with the old polite vague thing.
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#40 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 08:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Jempad, I can see what you mean about people thinking it's an implicit criticism of their choices when we make ours apparent...believe it or not I had a friend (notice the PAST TENSE there ) who pretty much came right out and told me that it bothered her when I breastfed dd at her house because it made her feel like I was judging her for bottle feeding. Well, sorry, guess I should have given my daughter formula just to spare my friend's feelings...aren't I just the most inconsiderate friend EVER????? This same friend also said to me, "You turned out to be a very different kind of parent than I thought you would be and it's really hard for me to deal with." Obviously she has a lot of insecurity about how she was raising her own two children.
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#41 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 08:47 PM
 
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that is one pretty messed up ex-friend you had there peacemama. how sad that we women judge each other so much.


where i live it is a "Given" that you breastfeed. I don't know how many times people have asked me why I don't. I have complete strangers ask me almost every time I go out. Some are even males! That really weirds me out when a man asks me.

i don't know why it bothers people one way or the other. all of my friends breastfeed, and I could care a less. it doesn't impact the way i feel about them. well, except i maybe have a little more respect for them...as i think what they are doing is admirable.

ok. i guess i'll put posting. i just enjoy the conversation.
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#42 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 08:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Sleepies, just out of curiosity, what do you tell people when they ask you why you don't breastfeed? I've asked people that question myself and I've gotten lots of different answers. Lots of the moms really just didn't have enough information, as in, "I have flat nipples and my OB/GYN said I can't breastfeed" but some just didn't know. No judgments here, just curious!
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#43 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 09:00 PM
 
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Sleepies, I think that is terrible that strangers ask you why you don't BF. I must admit I was wondering myself, but then I said to myself, "what difference does it make to you? Stop being so nosey!" What do you say to those rude people? In another thread they were talking about "zingers" for people that disapprove of NIP and someone commented that we should use those opportunities to educate. But I think you are free to "zing" anyone questioning you. I guess you could reply, "because it's a free country!"
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#44 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 09:02 PM
 
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P.S. My previous comment is not directed at you, Peacemama- I was writing my post at the same time.
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#45 of 54 Old 12-14-2001, 10:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, Marlene, it was thoughtful of you to post again to say so. Bet you had an "oops" moment when our posts came up together. Hey, I am kind of nosy, but if someone puts it out there, they have to be prepared to answer a question...
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#46 of 54 Old 12-15-2001, 12:00 AM
 
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i usually just say "i am not comfortable with doing it".

it took me a long time to come up with a response that wasn't offensive or defensive though.

i didn't want to go ooon and ooon about why or why not.

so now i just have my one line statement.
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#47 of 54 Old 12-15-2001, 12:04 AM
 
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oh.
i have a ton of reasons why i am uncomfortable and a ton of reasons why i just plain "don't want to"

but they are long and i doubt anyone really wants me to go into it, especially here.

i hear a lot of "excuses" why people don't breastfeed too, that seem a little strange. my reasons are more just that i don't want to.

im all for everyone else doing it though. just not my cup of tea. or is that bottle of milk?
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#48 of 54 Old 12-15-2001, 01:19 PM
 
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Peacemom I know how you feel. I've found it very effective to be mostly in seclusion for the first year of Isabel's life. To be honest, I don't feel comfortable with either "mainstream" parents or "hardcore" AP parents, lol. If I allow myself to be judged, I can easily feel it from either group.

My mothering "retreat" has been an exercise of determining what works for me and not feeling the need to explain or justify it. My parenting style is simply not open for debate with anyone--parents, friends, strangers--sorry! Lol, I've learned many techniques to protect this wish of mine. My approach is very personal and I guard it like a watchdog--not an attack dog, but a watch dog. I know who I can trust and who I can't in discussing things, and who is respectful.

And I've also wondered if I'm being elitist--but I let that thought go. I don't believe it's an ego thing with me--it comes from a place of wanting to do what's best for *my* child. To each his own. If I decide I can't be around someone because our parenting styles aren't compatible, I'm entitled to that.

Thanks for bringing up this subject!

~lee
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#49 of 54 Old 12-20-2001, 06:00 AM
 
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Yes, I too am tired of having to justify my choices.
Today I found myself defending myself with a total stranger over doing something I don't even want to do... I'll explain-
On another thread I asked for advice- should I give my dd a pacifier. While pregnant I swore I wouldn't use one. Now I see there may be a use for one during car rides. It really upsets me when dd cries and I am stuck on the turnpike. I finally tried to give dd a paci- she didn't like it, I was told to continue to try to give it to her, she'll "learn" to take it. OK, so today I am in line at a store (a long line) and I can see that look on her face, you know, she's gonna wail any second now if I don't get her on the breast so I think ok, let me try the pacifier. I'm gently putting it in her mouth, letting her chew on it a bit and she's spitting it out a little and the woman behind me tells me not to give her a pacifier. So I start to explain that I really don't want to, but I think I need to since I can not breastfeed AND drive. She tells me "I breastfed all of my children, too and I did not give them a pacifier!" I am trying to get out of this conversation and she keeps saying, "don't give it to her...you're the only mother I've ever seen trying to get her daughter to take a pacifier...don't give it to her, she doesn't want it" (And you know, I'm having enough trouble trying to get dd to take the thing without this lady trying to boss me around!)
You know, all I want is to do what's best for my child. I want her to be comforted when I drive. Why do I have to discuss this with a stranger???
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#50 of 54 Old 12-20-2001, 05:56 PM
 
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Marlene

I am sooooo totally with you!

I swore no pacifiers, but my baby also cries in the car.

It was either wreck or suck :-)

That stranger never met me.

I tried to give my first baby a pacifier, but he wasn't interested.

I try and try with this baby. In the car is when I want him to have it.

It is your baby. I hate it when people try to raise your baby for you.
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#51 of 54 Old 12-20-2001, 06:20 PM
 
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marlene,
I am so sorry that you had to go through that! That is just plain ridiculous. While there have been times that I thought of "helping" someone else "see the light", (such as driving a under 7 child around in the front seat of a car with all the windows closed while the mother was smoking ,I never do. Basically how someone else decides to raise there child is nobody else's business but their own. Besides giving a pacifier is not going to harm your baby and if you need her to have it for WHATEVER reason you have decided that woman had NO right to tell you otherwise. Both my boys had "binkies" as we call them and if ANYONE did what she did I think it would have been very hard for me not to tell her to mind her own business. I mean why is it that when we are minding our own business doing our own Mommy thing people decide that it's ok to be rude and unacceptable and we have to politely stand there and take it. God I am so Mad at that woman! Again I am so sorry this happened to you. And to answer your question, you don't need to have that conversation with people like her, from all I have read you are an excellent mother and people like that have no clue, next time thank her for volunteering to sit in your back seat when you go out to entertain your dd while you drive, tell her you'll be by to pick her up thursday at 5am for the family's cross country vaction , that ought to shut her up!

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#52 of 54 Old 12-20-2001, 06:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Mamabug, that vacation thing is too funny! Love ya!
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#53 of 54 Old 12-20-2001, 07:08 PM
 
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love ya too peacemama!
crunch crunch!

We may not have it all together, but together we have it all
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#54 of 54 Old 12-21-2001, 01:40 AM
 
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Oh you guys are great! Thanks for the support. I think the venting worked.
P.S. Tried the paci again today- no go. Oh well!
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