All posts filed under: Parenting

baby in a onesie lying on bed

2 pieces of bad parenting advice that made me angry

When I hear about and see bad parenting advice I usually want to scream. Bad parenting advice can range from the possibly well-intentioned comments around feeding, sleep, weaning, having a break which may have moved on from previous decades, thanks to research, to the guidance and throw away comments from health professionals who should know better. And then there’s the books and the practitioners who want to sell you a package and a solution. I can’t stress this enough – babies are not a problem to be solved! We need to better understand them, what they need, how they grow and thrive. And most parents just need this knowledge along with support through the tough days and reassurance to know that it is normal and that it will eventually pass. When you first become a parent, it is easy to feel overwhelmed and confused by all the conflicting information and advice. As you try to work what what you are doing, it can also be difficult to know which advice is right and which advice …

make a rod for your own back

You’ll make a rod for your own back

To ‘make a rod for your own back’ is to do something that inadvertently creates troubles or misfortune in the future. The expression is usually used when someone has done something which seemed like a good idea at the time but comes back to bite them in some unexpected way. http://www.phrases.org.uk I now have children at college and in university and I have been reflecting on life as a mother and on those early days, weeks and months with my babies when I felt a bit lost, like I was doing it wrong and being told I was making a rod for my back. Becoming a mother was a huge transition – as it is for most of us. I became more selfless and I learnt to trust my instincts. Before I became a mum I was never interested in breastfeeding or co-sleeping – in fact I mocked it when I went to antenatal classes..  When I was pregnant, I started reading and talking to friends who were mothers and they spoke positively – although fairly realistically …

loneliness of motherhood

Loneliness of Motherhood

There is a loneliness of motherhood because having young children is not all about coffee shops and idle chatter. It is not a holiday. It can be one of the toughest times in a woman’s life. The loneliness of motherhood can be torture. With your first child, the learning curve is steep – learning to keep a baby settled, soothed and alive while recovering from pregnancy, birth and unrealistic expectations of how motherhood should be. You might be sleep deprived, in need of supportive mum friends and it could feel like you are on our own with the day-to-day responsibilities of looking after your baby. As a mother, you might feel judged, with unreal expectations stacked against you and your baby. It can be a hard slog. When you become a mother it doesn’t matter what job you do, how old you are or how much you spent preparing for your baby’s arrival. You have a baby to look after and it can knock your confidence when they cry, struggle to poo, won’t sleep or …

enjoy every second

enjoy every second

I will never forget the first time I heard someone say “enjoy every second with her” about my time with my daughter, who was a few weeks old. My first thought was ‘you’ve got to be kidding me, I’m too knackered to enjoy her’ and then I felt this huge wave if guilt because I wasn’t enjoying my gorgeous, healthy, tiny, precious baby. I loved her, I felt incredibly protective of her and I did everything within my power to keep her healthy, safe, alive – I kept breastfeeding when I didn’t have a clue and when I cried with every latch (thankfully the bad latch was sorted and feeding was a dream after that); I got up every hour in the night; I tried to listen to my instincts and I cuddled her and I gazed at her when she slept, although that was more relief that she wasn’t crying than of enjoyment. My first baby – who didn’t do sleep – nearly broke me. And of course I did enjoy time with her …

Can I Cuddle My Baby?

Can I Cuddle My Baby? comes up a lot especially from new mums with a baby who just wants to cling to them. This post is about baby development, your parenting instincts, what’s normal and why cuddling babies and children is not just lovely it’s crucial. In Western society babies can be seen as creatures to train and parents are encouraged to make their babies independent and self soothing. Any parent who cuddles, carries and soothes their baby can be seen as giving in, as failing, as making a rod for their own back. So, if you are asking Can I Cuddle My Baby? Here’s what the research tell us… When your baby is born  he has approximately 200 billion brain cells but there are very few connections between these cells – these connections are mainly responsible for emotional and social intelligence. 90% of brain growth takes place in the first five years of life Early stress (prolonged crying) can create negative changes in a  baby’s brain which could mean they develop an over-sensitive stress response (stress and anxiety) …