Updated: Mar 13
“She should be sleeping better by now. If you didn't co-sleep, she wouldn't be waking up so often”
“If you keep picking her up when she cries, she’ll be spoiled”
“You’re still breastfeeding? Isn’t she a little too old for that?”
“You pierced her ears at 3 months? That's so early”
Have a child and you'll soon realize how many parenting "experts" you have around you. It's hilarious really! Everyone has an opinion about how you should raise your child and what you should or should not do. These persons include but are not limited to your family, friends, colleagues, acquaintances and even random strangers (like your work place's security guard, maid, cleaner or car park attendant lol!). These opinions/statements/comments/advice/whatever you want to call it, for me, is more annoying and draining than anything else... Yes! Even more draining than constantly waking up in the night to feed a newborn. It's so draining because on top of all the parental guilt you will ultimately feel after hearing one of these statements, you still feel the need to give an excuse or an explanation as to why you choose to parent the way you do... and it really shouldn't be like that.
First of all, parenting is a learning experience. There are so many different ways to raise a child and no one way works for every child. Each child is different, so the best thing to do is to create a secure bond with your child, learn their needs and try to meet them. The issue with this is in the details - co-sleep or not? Self-soothe or not? At what age should you stop breastfeeding? etc. etc. etc. You can adopt multiple parenting styles depending on your child but the issue is really why these parenting "experts" are so convinced that their way is the best way.
I saw this quote once...
Unsolicited parenting advice is a lot like an unsolicited dick pic. No one asked for it and no one wants it.
Don't get me wrong, some of this advice can be helpful but the majority of the time, it isn't and comes in the form of a snide remark, a slight jeer or a sarcastic comment (just the thought of it is annoying me right now).
I honestly don't really care what others think about the way Leroy and I parent our daughter. We're doing the best we can. I just think it's absurd the way people try to impose their unwanted "wisdom" on you. We know that it takes a village to raise a child but parenting in the midst of a sea of unwanted advice and comments, really tests your self-esteem and confidence to raise your child. Do what works for you and your family. At the end of the day, no one knows your child like you do. You’re loving them the best way you can... and that's all that matters.