Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Day 7: More Controversial Crap.

I have been thinking a lot lately about the very fine line that lies between opinionated and jugdemental. That line is crucial because it can be painful to be in the presence of a judgemental person. And, you know what they say...Opinions are like buttholes, everyone has one. Classy, I know. So lets get into it, shall we?

Having two kids has re-enforced my mantra, "you do what works for you".
What works for me? Sometimes I feel like nothing is working for me, but here's what we do. I breastfeed exclusively. I wear slings but also depend heavily on the swing and the Jumperoo. We co-sleep, but not because I like it or believe in it. I do it for my own selfish reasons, I. Need. Sleep. and I am too lazy to wake up any more than I already am. Actually I really don't like it. Every morning I wake up with a stiff neck and a sore back. I can't tell you how much I 'd give to sleep in my own bed all sprawled and free. In due time. We don't "cry it out". I tried it once and it was the most traumatic thing I've ever done. To hear my baby's cry turn from pissed to terrified was the most horrible thing for me to hear. I vowed to never do it again. It just didn't work for us and maybe I didn't really want it to. So do I do "attatchement parenting"? Nope, I hate to label and I don't meet all the criteria. I do what feels right and natural and frankly, sometimes I do what gets me through the day.

I have this friend who has a baby the same age as Harper. They were struggling big time as a family from the lack of sleep. Their marriage was getting shakier by the day. They needed to try something different and decided to try CIO. I agreed. When you get to the point of your marriage suffering, it's time to make a change. I was totally supportive of the choice they had made. So yesterday we were talking about the method I was totally clueless about. They have been reading books to make sure they are doing it the right way if they are going to do it. We got to talking about what to do if your baby throws up from being so distraught. The books says to change the babies clothes and bedding and quickly put them back into the crib without comforting them. This is so wrong to me! I am 29 and still prefer to be comforted and taken care of if and when I puke. Puking is scary. To me that implied that if you comforted your baby after puking, that would be their crutch. If I puke, I get picked up. What a sad thing to think a baby would force itself to puke just to get picked up. Isn't that our job are parents to comfort our kids when they need it? How sad. So when I was talking to my freind yesterday I told her I had a huge problem with that. And at that point I became opinionated bordering on judgemental. I just hope that I didn't cross the line that is our friendship.


The Hilarazzi said...

Oh, ooooh, eeee, ouch. Personally, I think it's easy to cross the opinionated/judgemental line when you feel that the health or safety of a baby might be at risk. Do I think your friend is harming her baby? No, that's not what I'm saying. I just don't think it's right to let a baby cry so much that he/she throws up. I could never do that. I could never stay away from my child at that point, if they were THAT hysterical. But that's just me.
I have done CIO. It worked for me. But that's only because I did it my own way. I didn't read books. I didn't listen to others. I did my own thing. I set my own boundaries.
Every parent is different and every baby is different. And I wish people would start realizing that. There's not one book that explains it all. There's no one method that will work everytime for everyone. That's why this is all so nerve wrecking.
Your friend thought you might have been judging her but that's probably only because she is second guessing it herself. I wish her luck in whatever she decides and I hope it works for her, her baby, and her husband.

mama k said...

Wow that turned my stomach a little. Something is really wrong when a child is throwing up from stress. I mean, I would treat a puppy better than that. (Does that sound judgmental? LOL) I think most mothers would instinctually feel that is not a good situation for their baby and a book that tells them to ignore their instincts is just bad advice IMHO.
I'm not hard-core AP either, but I firmly believe in trusting your instincts and doing some research when it comes to parenting decisions. And well, not everything that works is necessarily healthy… like I guess giving a teething baby bourbon would "work" but not so good for the kid's liver.
And as far as "Ferberizing" CIO there is a lot of info saying that it can damage your child even if it's only in the short term. A tiny baby can only cry to communicate a need and if we don't meet their needs they go unmet. A baby can't feed or comfort him/herself and yes that requires a lot of sacrifice on the parents' part sometimes. That being said I have let my baby cry for short periods of time and I can completely understand your friend's desperation.
Personally I don't "judge" anyone who decides to parent differently than me, but I will share what has worked/and not worked for me. I'll also pass along any research I've done if they are having a problem 'cause you never know if it will help someone else out.

So I guess after this long-a$$ comment, I'm saying that
Judgmental=thinking you are better than someone else 'cause they don’t do things they way you do them
Opinionated=means you have strong convictions/opinions on a topic and you share them

And I agree w/ the previous comment that it sounds like your friend was second guessing herself when she read that.

AnnieM said...

Just to let you guys know, my friend called today, less than 24 hours after "the incident". I hope and think she took it as I had hoped, I just didn't agree with that advice, I think that is WAY hardcore for a 5 month old baby. They hadn't gotten to that point with their child so they didn't have to do what the book advised. Pheew, looks like a still have her has a friend.

Ashley said...

Poor baby - I'm way too wrapped around Jackson's finger to do that, but I agree with hilly on this one :)

jillymom27 said...

I am with the hilarazzi BIG TIME! What is up with this book stuff, where everyone turns to a book to find answers for anything and everything. Does anyone realize that books are written by people? People just like you and I. I feel I am a very instinctive parent and I just do what works naturally, I never needed a book, nor do I even have time to look at a book! I did the CIO method (without taking advice from a book) but wouldn't even think about that method at 5 months old. At 10 months it worked and I feel it has helped my children in their sleeping habits and given my husband and myself sanity in knowing that every bedtime is and will be peaceful for all involved. And I have to add, fearing that I am being way too blunt here that my childrens' cries were never painful? Mad, yes. Painful, no way. I agree that there is not a book that explains it all, so I am a big advocate for doing what is best for my own and trying not to judge others for what they do. But this book thing really does throw me!

Christy J said...

Ok, first of all you have absolutely no idea how parallel our lives are, seriously. We co-sleep for the exact same reason. I hate it. It is nice to snuggle with Fin, for like 5 minutes. Once she starts kicking and tossing I'm over it. I really hate it when she wakes up every hour and says, very clearly (in her sleep), "Please Momma I want Ninnie!" Justin and I jsut had a talk about this tonight because I went to the chiropractor today and my neck is out of wack. it is out of wack to the point I got headaches, and it is because I do not sleep comfortably because I am nursing a 28lb human leech. SO I totally feel ya on the 'great' sleep, or lack there of.

I have learned (and this is probably so shallow of me) but when I am talking to someone and I don't agree with what they are doing, I shut up. I don't like to talk about CIO because I have never done it and never will. I think it is cruel and I can't lie to someone. SO if they ask, I will tell them. Just the same as how I feel about formula. I don't talk about it because again, I don't believe in it. My nephew had been getting a few formula bottles, and a week later he went to the ER with wheezing, and horrible mucus build up. Was it the formula? Maybe not, but it was milk based. Could have been.
I just can't be a good listener to something I am so against. Maybe I am a horrible friend, but THAT is why I like to hang out with people that have the same beliefs as I do.

Bottom line? I guess I am opinionated AND judgemental. People can love me or SCREW OFF!!! HAHAH!!! MUUUAAAAHHH!

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