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I have included a letter that I am planning to send out with my dd's birth announcements and 4 months pictures. Yes, my dd is 5 mo and I haven't sent out her announcements<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">: I have written the following letter for these reasons. 1) My Dh's relatives have made several rude/crititical and passive comments to us since our dd's birth and I would like to respond in a positive way versus personally attacking them 2) I'd like to let people know how we are doing 3) I would like to inform people a little bit about APing and NFLing as well let people ask any questions. I am hoping this will be a good way to stop the "when are you going to stop bfing questions" and gifts plastic toys in a gentle way. Please read this letter and let me know what you think. Is it defensive, is it an obvious comeback to critisism, does it sound natural? I don't want it to be perceived as an attack or comeback or that I am shoving our beliefs down their throats. I have never let on to his family that their comments upset me and I don't know that they really see anything wrong with them so it shouldn't seem obvious to them. Also this letter will be going to relatives and friends who have been really suportive. i am hoping that people will email me with questions about APing and will also have a bit more compassion for us versus judging eveything we do. I know that I oculd directly address my Dh's family but I think this is good way to let them know what we are going through and choosing and see if the comments continue-then I can address them more directly. Okay here is the letter. I took out personal stuff because I am scared of the internet. No offense<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br><br>
To our family and friends-<br><br>
We thought we would write to update you on how life with our little angel Lily xxx is going. Some of you haven’t heard from us since Lily’s birth so we would like to apologize for that. No one can really prepare you for how challenging being a new parent is. Lily was born naturally at xxxxx Hospital here in xxxxxx around 6:00 a.m. We spent two days in the hospital and then came home to our one bedroom apartment. We soon realized we would need more space and moved when Lily was two months old. For the first six weeks Lily would only sleep for any length of time if she was being held so xxxxx and I really felt like we were living in another world. We now understand why sleep deprivation is a torture method. Eventually things settled into more of a routine and now Lily only wakes a couple of times a night.<br><br>
xxxxx and I are really enjoying parenthood. xxxxx is a natural daddy and loves singing and talking to Lily. Luckily for me he also helps out with diapers, baths, and her occasional fussy meltdowns (as we call them). I really love being a mother but it was definitely a challenge in the beginning as I experienced postpartum depression and anxiety. We have finally found our groove and feel like normal people again.<br><br>
Lily is almost 5 months and is the light of our lives. She has been rolling for about a month (mostly from back to front). She loves to grab her feet and try to get them to her mouth. She is also working on consonant sounds and can say “buh”. She has been a happy and content baby from the start but does want a lot of attention and loves to interact with others. We have been really trying to get her to laugh and she has let out a few chuckles., the biggest on her Papa’s birthday.<br><br><br>
During my pregnancy xxxxx and I looked into different parenting styles. We both agreed that we would adopt Attachment Parenting. Attachment Parenting has really helped us bond as a family. We co-sleep, babywear, and I plan to nurse Lily beyond infancy. This has really made parenting a joy but can be challenging at times. We are also committed to natural family living so we have been using cloth diapers, wooden and cloth toys, and we do not vaccinate Lily.<br><br>
Now that things have settled down and the weather has cleared up we are planning our first trip to xxxxx to visit xxxxx’s parents and my dad. They have all met Lily already but we are really excited to take her to visit them. We are planning to take her to the xxxxx Aquarium although she will probably enjoy the reflections on the glass more than anything else.<br><br>
We have sent Lily’s birth announcement (finally!) and her four month old pictures. Lily is really a ham and has learned that when the camera is out all eyes are on her. If you would like to be added to our email list so that you can receive more timely updates and pictures please email me at <a href="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected]</a>.<br><br>
Aside from parenting there have been other exciting developments since Lily’s birth. xxxxxx became the media supervisor shortly after Lily’s birth and has received a lot of praise for all of his hard work. I am pursuing a career as a birth and postpartum doula and childbirth educator. I have completed part of my doula training and will finish in August. Fortunately I was able to bring Lily to the training and as usual she was very happy and loved all of the attention. I am also still working with adults with disabilities on a part time basis.<br><br>
We hope this letter finds all of you well. Thank you to all of our friends and family for their love and support. We have been so lucky to receive so many gifts and so much help from our friends and relatives.<br><br>
Love,<br>
xxxxx
 

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Personally? I'd skip it, your opening yourself up to a lot more problems and a lot of it is stuff that they really don't need to know. Just remember the mantra "I'll keep that in mind" when they give you advice you don't agree with and go about your merry way. As for the BF'ing comments I love those and I'll admit to being snarky, I still remember the look on my aunts face when she was bugging me about weaning my dd and I asked her why? was she wanting some? lol! That was the last time she ever bothered me about BF again<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol">
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Satori- this is why I am hesitant to send the letter but I also want to give people the bennefit of the doubt and let them know that I am proud of how I am raising my dd. Most of the critic has been less about our parenting and more about things like not having visited MIL yet, not sending thank you cards promptly enough (ie. Dh's grandmother made a rude comment for not receiving a thank you for her christmas gift on christmas day). There have also been comments about not getting pics out fast enough because his family doesn't have email. What I really want to do is say F U to his family but in the end I want us to have good relationships.
 

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I would skip the letter and just send the announcements and 4 mo pics.
 

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I tend to agree about skipping all the details of your parenting style.<br><br>
But if you choose to include them, I would change the words "co-sleep" and "babywear." They're AP lingo. Most people with half a brain would be able to figure out what co-sleeping is, but some might struggle to envision what wearing a baby might look like.<br><br>
I would say that "our whole family sleeps together in one bed, and I carry the baby next to my body in a sling."
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Satori</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7918738"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">Personally? I'd skip it, your opening yourself up to a lot more problems and a lot of it is stuff that they really don't need to know. Just remember the mantra "I'll keep that in mind" when they give you advice you don't agree with and go about your merry way. As for the BF'ing comments I love those and I'll admit to being snarky, I still remember the look on my aunts face when she was bugging me about weaning my dd and I asked her why? was she wanting some? lol! That was the last time she ever bothered me about BF again<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"></div>
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I agree.....and I wouldn't add the part about not vaxing if you do send it. They don't have the same background knowledge that you do, and just springing that on the uninformed tends to freak them out.<br>
Yeah....I really vote for note sending it. No offense. It's well written, I just know now to let the dogs sleep.<br>
The more normal you treat your parenting choices, the better they go over kwim?
 

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Its a great letter and well thought out. Personally I would sending it as an "update" letter in addition to your birth announcements simply because your DC is 5mo old now. People would be kinda wondering what took so long to get a birth announcement out. (<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/bag.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Bag">: I never did get around to that myself).<br><br>
However, I would leave the part about not vax-ing out. As a pp said, you don't want to freak out people who aren't aware of the vaxing risks, and you'd be opeing yourself to "discussion" with them. The less peole know, the less problems you'll encounter with them. YK?
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Satori</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7918797"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I would skip the letter and just send the announcements and 4 mo pics.</div>
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I agree.<br><br>
It's wonderfully written, but it comes across to me as justifying your choices. Your choices are all normal and natural--justifying them makes them seem less so.
 

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I think its a very well thought out and written letter... but am not sure I'd want to send it to my family, and certainly not to DH's. I know I would just be asking for *MORE* advice, not less, but thats just me. I would absolutely 100% though leave out the not-vaxing bit, as that tends to freak folks out the most... and who knows, they might even try to call CPS on you. *WE* know there's nothing that CPS can do, really, but they don't and it might give CPS a reason to 'check you out' anyways - and thats the last thing that anyone wants.
 

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I think the letter sounds great and positive. I don't see it so much as justifying your choices as sharing them, which you would probably end up having to do with relatives/friends on an individual basis anyway. This way, you get it over with in one shot, and you come across sounding confident and resolved, thus deterring any unwanted 'advice'. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/thumb.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="thumbs up">
 

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I think the letter sounds great! It is very positive and upbeat. If you are happy that is all that should matter! People tend to forget how hectic it is to have a newborn. I don't know why people expect new moms to sit down and write thank you cards. Its just silly.
 

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Yoour letter is well thought out. However, I would not send it to everyone, only those that support you. Your Dh's family seems to be very closed minded and sending such a letter to them will not make things better.<br><br>
love and blessiings<br>
angie
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks everyone. I think I am going to revise it a little and include it. I do agree I should probably avoid the vaccine part. I would hate for someone to call CPS on us adn it isn't really important to share it. I am hoping that it is received n teh way a pp mentioned. That I am confindent i n my choices so they will leave us alone OR if they have questions they will ask about our choices versus acting like we just forgot to get our dd a crib<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"> I also agree that I should change the language regarding co-sleeping and babywearing. Thanks mamas! At least I know I am supported here.
 

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I like it. BTW, I didn't send out birth announcements until November/December after my May baby - I figured this way I got to do birth announcements and holiday cards in one go! :LOL<br><br>
I agree about vaxing and the language. The other thing I'd do is put in a phrase that says something like, "these choices may seem unusual or unfamiliar to some of you and indeed they may not be right for every family - but they are right for us and we are happy with how things are going." I think that is a non-confrontational and respectful way of saying a little more directly "don't criticize us."
 

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I really like it! I think it is nonconfrontational and flows really well so that the AP info is not the main focus. I think it is ok to include the vax info as long as you have alot of information to back it up, because people will ask. I also agree about changing the wording of co-sleeping and babywearing. I like how 2tadpoles worded the same information, it sounds really warm hearted. I don't see how anyone could take offense to that letter, good job mama!<br><br>
p.s. 6 wks and I still haven't sent out birth announcements or updated our blog...oh well, if they really care, they'll call!
 

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I would leave out the non vax-ing for sure. Also, I personally don't discuss my sleeping arrangements with anyone we don't stay with or who doesn't stay with us--then they'd find out anyway, otherwise why is it their business? it's just opening up for more comments IMO. And I'd just be around them with her in a sling--for me, that's gotten way good reception even if it is a lot of 'gee I wish they had those back when *I* had kids' <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
it is a good letter and explains why they haven't heard from you pretty well.
 
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