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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am wondering what some of you wise mamas say to other parents you know who are not doing AP at all. When you are with them, do you have nice ways of talking to them about AP? What do you do when they talk proudly about their very un-ap ways?

Here is where I am coming from. I went to a bday party today for an old friend's one year old. This is her only child. We've been friends for a long time but live an hour and half apart and don't get together that often. She and I are both teachers but I don't work now because I don't want dd in daycare. I am practicing ap and living pretty meagerly in order to not work. My friend, on the other hand, went back to work when her ds was 3 months. He has been nonstop sick in daycare but she won't pull him out and says this is the best daycare in her small town. She does not need to work full time, she tells me, but likes being able to have spending money and go on vacations, etc so she wants to work full time. Her ds has been so sick they finally put tubes in his ears. He is constantly on antibiotics. I asked her if she had tried any alternative practioners for his health care and she said she did not have time for that.

At the party today, she was showing me his little play cell phone that the daycare people had her get him. At daycare, he is on a nap schedule and whether he wants to sleep or not he must go in his crib. If he is fussy, he can push a button on the play cell phone to hear his mommy's prerecorded voice. That soothes him since the daycare workers are too busy to hold him. She was also telling me that she is going to keep him in daycare 2 days a week this summer so she can have some "me" time. She also has a bunch of battery operated toys for him to play with in his crib at home so she can put him to bed on a schedule so she can get to bed on time. This way, he can play quietly and not disturb her.

I was really flabbergasted by all of this. It is just so opposite of what I do and seems to only be unattaching her from her child. I know plenty of mamas who work and are much more attached to their children and do whatever they can to spend time with their kids and not pacify them with electronic equipment. I did not know what to say to her. She truly does not need to work full time. While I was there, she and her dh paraded out their brand new digital cameras (plural) and showed off dh's newly remodelled hunting room, complete with a fridge-sized safe for his guns. That is not cheap!

After two hours, I realized that I just could not handle hearing any of this anymore so I took the first excuse I could come up with and dd and I hightailed it outa there. I am in no hurry to get back together with her. I had no clue how to even begin to talk to her about attachment.

Those of you who are bolder and wiser, what would you have said? Am I weird or is this a truly sad situation? It just makes me wonder why she even had a child. I truly don't get it.
 

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I've had a lot of success in the past with people who have initiated conversations about AP. That indicates to me they can already see there is a better way, and are interested in learning about it.

But this person sounds like she is already completely disconnected from her child, and will likely remain that way. Sadly, your friend seems so far down the dark path, I doubt there is anything you could say or do to bring her back.


You are probably wise to just avoid her like the plague. She *might* benefit from seeing a better way, but in the process, you will have to expose yourself to her, and from my own personal experience, unattached parents can be really toxic.
 

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I don't know that there is really anything to say in this case. In general, I am all about promoting AP/NFL practices that are near and dear to me, but I think there has to be an opening in there somewhere, a glimmer of hope that something will be heard and that the person wants to hear it.

I find that I am very different than my "old friends", no matter how close we once were.

L.
 

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I'd say nothing. You are a totally different parent and while you may think she is doing a disservice to her child (and I agree) I don't think there is anything you could say to change her. Just like there isn't anything she could say to sway you her way. Avoid her if you cannot stomach it.
 

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For me it depends on who it is I'm listening to. If it's someone that I'm not really close to I kind of shrug and just escape as fast as possible. If it's a friend or family member they're liable to hear what I really think.... :LOL
But I'm less concerned about offending people than most people are.... I figure it they get offended - oh well.

-Angela
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by alegna
For me it depends on who it is I'm listening to. If it's someone that I'm not really close to I kind of shrug and just escape as fast as possible. If it's a friend or family member they're liable to hear what I really think.... :LOL
But I'm less concerned about offending people than most people are.... I figure it they get offended - oh well.

-Angela
Well, there is a point to that. So, I avoid her like the plague or try to question her methods and say something that might either offend her or help her? I guess the worse thing that can happen is I loose a friend who I really don't like too much right now anyway. It is just such a bummer.
 

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Yeah... no great solution. But I've long since given up on not offending people.... BUT I figure I'm never going to really manage to be friends with someone that can treat their kids like dirt anyway.


just me- I never said I was nice


-Angela
 

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I don't say much in situations like that, I tend to see red and I don't think I could really be beneficial. From what you've said it sounds like she's made her priorities clear - that the baby gets to bed on time for example. I think if you had a suggestion which helped her do this in a more AP way and which was less work for her she might listen, but if you try to convince her not to be so focused on herself, she'll probably just be offended.

With folks I see a lot I tend to try to contribute suggestions that are specific that may be AP when asked what I do, but I don't start the conversations.
 

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I usually make an AP-ish comment to "test the waters" and if it's not received well, I shut up. The other day I was talking to some moms from school. One of them had a baby two weeks ago and the other one said: "I wouldn't want another one. I hated sterilizing all those bottles !" I said "Well, there's a way to avoid that. Just breastfeed !" She answered "Yeah but eventually you always have to give a bottle ! I breastfed for 5 months and I was so proud of myself ! I felt like a milk cow !" THEN the one that just gave birth said: "As soon as anything comes out I'm like BOTTLE, BOTTLE !"
I didn't say anything else. You can't convince people like that.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by boongirl
Well, there is a point to that. So, I avoid her like the plague or try to question her methods and say something that might either offend her or help her? I guess the worse thing that can happen is I loose a friend who I really don't like too much right now anyway. It is just such a bummer.

You might lose a friend. But, you might find that y'all drift apart for a few years, but start getting together again when your children are a bit older. You might make a point of getting together with her during the rare "child-free" moments, if you still enjoy visiting with for non-parenting discussions.
 

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Your friend sounds exactly one of mine! It got to the point where I have avoided her for 3mo....but no love lost I guess since she hasn't tried contacting me either.

Anyway...what I do usually is either give a book or print out tons of stuff and give it to them. I haven't had anyone get mad at me about it or feel bad. They've all gratefully accepted the stuff.

fyrfly
 

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It sounds like she is pretty set in her ways, and may not be open to parenting advice. I would probably not say anything and just not spend time with her. When you have children, time with friends is precious, why spend it with someone who will drive you bonkers?
But you never know, maybe as her child gets older she will become a better momma. I say this only because of what I have observed with a friend of mine. She was so not AP when she had her baby, although at the time I didn't know what AP was or have any interest in baby raising practices. Well, 9 years later, she is a GREAT mom. She became a SAHM and is so involved in his life, I really respect her for what she is doing.
So I guess I would just hope for the best for her and her family, and spend your free time with someone you have more in common with.
Frustrating though isn't it?
 

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I don't want to be told I should use CIO, or a schedule, or punishments. I don't want unsolicited parenting advice at all from people who don't share my attitude about parenting.

I assume that neither do non-AP people.

Therefore, I don't offer unsolicited parenting advice.
 

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I have ended a friendship with somebody over parenting differences. I felt like I *shouldn't* say anything, should try not to judge, to each her own, etc etc


But... I found it emotionally wrenching to be around her interactions with her daughter. I simply didn't want to hang out with her anymore. We had a big fight about parenting stuff, and we haven't spoken since.

I don't miss her.
 

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What Dechen said. And to add to that a little bit... there are people who seriously think I am doing a disservice to my child by responding to him every time he cries, by helping him fall asleep every night, by not forcing him to eat foods he doesn't want, by carrying him when he wants to be carried, etc. I think people are doing a disservice to their children by NOT doing these things. I don't appreciate it when people try to convince me that I'm harming my child, or doing things the wrong way. I would probably be offended at such suggestions (unless I asked for advice.) I try not to give advice unless asked, (although sometimes I slip and do anyway.)
 

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The trouble I have with the "to each their own" argument is that it implies that each parenting choice is equally valid, and it doesn't really matter to our children's well being what we do.

I don't agree with that. I think AP is harder. And I think it's better. I think mainstream (unattached) parenting practices are a symptom of out of balance our society is, how off track we are, and how disconnected from each other and the earth.

I think many mainstream parenting practices actively harm children. Circ, CIO, fear of "spoiling" etc. And I do feel it's my responsibility to speak up, or to try to effect change, when a child is being harmed.
 

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Quote:
I think many mainstream parenting practices actively harm children. Circ, CIO, fear of "spoiling" etc. And I do feel it's my responsibility to speak up, or to try to effect change, when a child is being harmed.
ITA. But many mainstream parents also feel that MY parenting practices are harming my children. My way (while right for me,) is not the only way.
 

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No, I don't think it's the only way. But I do think AP is inherently *better*. I know this sounds obnoxious, but it is honestly how I feel. I know mainstreamers feel their way is better (everyone must feel their way is *best* or we wouldn't do it). However I feel that this belief is usually uninformed/misinformed. How much information do we really have about AP unless we go looking for it? And society has an interest in fostering a detachment between parents/infants, for many reasons (including IMO keeping parents functioning as the good little cogs-in-the-wheel everyone is encouraged to be).

I think the way children are raised is a commentary on how we are as a culture. I think bad parenting passes on wounds and disconnection from one generation to the next. I think it's important to spread information about attachment, and to encourage parents to parent in ways that are best for children.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by thismama

I think many mainstream parenting practices actively harm children. Circ, CIO, fear of "spoiling" etc. And I do feel it's my responsibility to speak up, or to try to effect change, when a child is being harmed.

ITA!

But I'm a very strong person, and direct conflict does not bother me. I will tell people to their face that that what they are doing is wrong, stupid and cruel, and not flinch.

I'm not a gentle, soft person. Particularly not when I see babies being abused.

But I would caution more sensitive people to think about the effect saying something would have on themselves. Some people can end up really hurting themselves, and feel poisoned by being confrontational, if it is not in their nature.

I don't believe direct confrontation is the right response for everyone. Sometimes avoiding this issue is a better choice, for some people.
 
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