Congratulations. You’re having a baby or just about to have one! Welcome all of the unwanted parenting advice from your mother-in-law, your Great Aunt Joan, and strangers at the bus stop. I mean how many times are you going to tell me to sleep when the baby sleeps Grandma. (Does anyone actually do this?)
I feel like once you are expecting or have given birth, people come out of the wood works to offer you advice. And it isn’t some simple, logical advice (I mean some of it is), but most of the advice and “tips” are absolutely absurd! Like where do people even come up with the whole Q-tip in the baby’s butt for constipation?
During my time as a brand new Mom, I received outrageous advice! Advice that would make you do a double take to make sure they were completely serious. Okay, enough babbling Marissa, spill the beans.
Ridiculous Parenting Advice:
Don’t pick up the baby when they cry, you will spoil them or they will get used to you holding them and won’t want to be put down…
This is something I heard ALL the f-ing time. And this advice applied to newborns. This has to be the most stupid advice ever. If your baby is crying, just pick them up. There are many reasons why a baby, specifically a newborn baby, is crying. They could be hungry, tired, cold/ too hot, wet, experiencing some type of discomfort or just looking for you! Now let me highlight the last point. “Just looking for you”. Your baby was A PART of you for the last nine months or so. They were a part of you, meaning they can sense when you are not there or near. It is your job as a parent, as MOM to be there for them and comfort them. It is literally YOUR JOB. Please discard this foolishness.
What to ACTUALLY do: just pick them up, give them love, sing to them, walk around with them, rock them, verbalize how much you love them and how much they are cared for and how they will always be taken care of.
Let them cry it out- it is good for their lungs
Fresh air is good for your lungs, crying maybe not so much. And please don’t do this. As much as people tell you. Letting them cry it out is a BAD IDEA in my opinion. Back to the first shitty tip, they were a part of you. So if you are avoiding to pick them up when they are feeling lonely and sense you aren’t around they are going to continue to cry. This can create detachment issues, which who knows could potentially lead to neediness, a sense of not being cared for or not feeling safe in this world. Now this is MY theory and I have yet to dig deeper into this topic. I feel like that is common sense. If you are not picking up your baby if they are feeling lonely, once you finally pick them up they are going to PROTEST when you put them back down because they probably assume that you won’t be coming back for them, at least not for a while.
What to ACTUALLY do: Pick them up and figure out what they need (food, love, diaper change, or maybe they are experiencing digestive disturbances)
Let them cry themselves to sleep
DON”T EVER EVER DO THIS. PLEASE. I did this once because my girlfriend said it works. It doesn’t work. I let my son cry for 40 minutes in his crib alone. I couldn’t take the crying anymore because I felt SO GUILTY so I finally picked him up. He was doing that panic, hyperventilating cry. That was the first and last time I did that OR listened to that friend's advice. Now, fast forward 3 years later, he REFUSES to even get into the crib. Don’t listen to this BS. Crying themselves to sleep puts them in that fight or flight mode. They are stressed TF OUT because you are not there. They feel neglected, they feel like they are alone and NO ONE is coming. Once they eventually fall asleep, this isn’t going to be a restful, peaceful sleep because they exhausted themselves by crying. All of these feelings of loneliness and neglect WILL manifest in their body and will potentially have to deal with these emotions when they are older.
(If you are interested in me expanding on this point, COMMENT BELOW)
What to ACTUALLY do: Pick them up, hold them, tell them they are safe and taken care of, rock them until they sleep, lay beside them so they can feel you
When they cry or whine, and you come running, they are learning to manipulate you
I’m talking about newborns and infants. They are amazingly intelligent beings. WAY more intelligent than we as adults are. However, they have no concept of manipulation. They simply don’t have a voice yet to tell you what they need or what is wrong. I mean talk to me about manipulation when they are 2 or 3 years old. That is when they understand manipulation. At this age, they have far exceeded our intelligence as an adult. But as an infant, their goal is basically survival. And for them to survive they know they need YOU.
What to ACTUALLY do: punch that person out who told you this (not really but you can do it mentally)
If they are constipated, put vaseline on a Q-tip and put it up their butt…
Um… who even thought of this. Please, I would love to know. Who decided to stick something up the butt when nothing is coming OUT of the butt. Where is the logic behind that? If your infant is experiencing constipation, that speaks to a larger issue at hand. WHY is it happening. If your little one is experiencing constipation, that is the body's way of telling you something is wrong.
What to ACTUALLY do: If your infant is constipated and they are formula fed, it is the formula. If they are breastfed, something Mom is consuming is ending up in her breast milk and causing the constipation. Simple as that.
You baby is experiencing X,Y, Z because they are allergic to your breast milk
Okay WHAT THE ACTUAL FUCK. Your baby is NOT allergic to YOUR MILK. Your breast milk is perfect for your baby. Period. Your milk is THE BEST form of nourishment for your baby. Nothing can compare. However, if they are solely breastfed, and are reacting to it, then something you are consuming is causing that reaction. So, technically it isn’t your milk, it is something you are eating or drinking that is ending up in your breast milk and causing an issue.
What to ACTUALLY do: Take a look at your diet, keep a food journal and track what you are consuming and when your infant tends to react…
Sleep when your baby sleeps
Seriously, does anyone do this? I’m telling you, I never once slept when my son slept, unless it was at night, and of course, they don’t ever really sleep at night do they? There were so many things that needed to be done during the day while the baby sleeps. Laundry, cook, clean, make the bed and oh yeah, shower. Forget washing the hair that shit is in a “mom bun” 24/7.
What to ACTUALLY do: if you are feeling tired and feel like you need rest. Do it. You have a big job girl, raising and feeding a human being. If you have chores that need to be done, ask friends and family for support. They are there for YOU!
The baby comes first
They don’t, you come first. Period. If you are not taken care of, rested, nourished, and loved, how can YOU take care of your baby if your needs are met and taken care of? You know the saying put your oxygen mask on first in the plane before putting on your child’s? There is SO MUCH truth to that.
What to ACTUALLY do: take time for you. You deserve it. Have a bubble bath. Eat a nourishing meal, dance naked, read a book, meditate, journal, exercise, sing. Do whatever that makes you feel GOOD!
Add cereal in the bottle so they can sleep longer
This has to be hands down one of the WORST pieces of advice I have received. This caused my son to sleep EVEN LESS because he couldn’t digest it. Adding the cereal in the bottle caused him to experience discomfort all night long which continued until the next day. But it gets better because I was oblivious to the fact that it was cereal causing it. I truly thought he was hungry, so what did newbie mom Marissa do? Offer more cereal to satiate his hunger with the guidance of my family doctor. I was also encouraged to introduce solids at four months because I assumed he was simply hungry.
What to ACTUALLY do: AVOID GIVING GRAINS IN THE FIRST 1.5 YEARS- 2 YEARS. This is absolutely crucial because introducing it to soon can lead to digestive disturbances, intestinal damage (the small intestine), increase chances of food sensitivities/ allergies, malnourishment, and overactive immune system (increase risk of autoimmune disorders)
Up until 2 years old, infants DO NOT have the digestive capabilities (meaning digestive enzymes- pancreatic amylase) to digest grains. Offer your infant more breast milk (preferably) or formula if you are formula feeding.
Boy was I wrong... Want to hear the worst piece I have heard and even used, keep scrolling
It will go away don’t worry or “it will clear up”- Dr advice
Currently rolling my eyes… This is AWFUL advice. My son experienced rashes and constipation and I was told it will go away, it is not a big deal, how common it was, blah, blah, blah. Let me tell you. It is worse if you do nothing and expect constipation, rashes, colic, diarrhea to “go away” And if it DOES go away, you should be MORE concerned because it will manifest somewhere else in the body and even lead to full blown health issues now or in the future.
What to ACTUALLY do: figure out what is causing a reaction AKA digestive disturbance in the first place. This is known as the root cause. Finding this out will eliminate the issue all together. Then once out find out the cause(s) it is crucial to do digestive healing for your infant to reduce or prevent that reaction or other reactions from happening again
Introduce allergenic food early and often
THE WORST ADVICE I HAVE EVER RECEIVED. Please don’t do this. I did this and I caused my son WAY more harm and damage than good. I caused him to experience more colic, constipation, rashes and even blood in his poop from listening to this shitty advice. I introduced dairy, soy, gluten, wheat, eggs, and citrus foods all in the first year. Let. Me. Tell. You. Liam became HIGHLY reactive and sensitive to these foods because I introduced them to early. Infants have immature digestive systems and need to be given the opportunity to allow their digestive systems to heal on their own. This means avoid these foods. However infants who are formula fed are going to have a WAY more difficult time letting their digestive system heal because of the large dairy and soy molecules that are found in commercial brands of formula, like Enfamil, Similac and Nestle.
What to ACTUALLY do: breastfeed. This is the best way to let your infant’s immature digestive system heal. Avoid introducing top allergenic foods like dairy, soy, gluten, wheat, eggs and citrus foods. And if breastfeeding isn’t an option and you are formula feeding, begin to do digestive healing under the watch and care of a HOLISTIC PRACTITIONER
Have you received any ridiculous parenting advice? I would love to hear about it! Comment below OR send me a direct message on my Instagram @noblebabywellness