This go around, I have finally recognized that I am the gate keeper. There are no set rules that dictate the do’s and don't s of parenting my children so I am eliminating the following pieces of bad advice:
1). A baby only cries for a reason
Lie. Sometimes you can try simultaneously: soothing, feeding, burping, singing, rocking, or changing your baby and they will still cry. Don’t beat yourself up when you have tried everything, tag your partner in and quickly locate some ice cream.
2). Wait 6 to 8 weeks before introducing a pacifier or a bottle
You might as well Velcro your baby to your boob because you will be their only source of food and comfort for the next year, and likely until they start college.
3). Don’t vaccinate your children
If you listen to this advice, you don’t have time to be reading my blog. You should be out researching cures for diseases such as Polio and Small Pox. Oh wait, they already exist.
4). Don’t exercise for 6 weeks
Unfortunately, you cannot consider breastfeeding a form of exercise. While you shouldn’t be doing squats or bench pressing anything, it’s amazing what a walk can do for your mental health after feeling like you’ve been under quarantine since you gave birth.
5). Your toddler is trying to manipulate you
While obviously my toddler is a genius and capable of more than most well trained Labradors, manipulation assumes that toddlers have the ability to use a part of their brain that hasn't actually developed yet. It would be like saying your baby was kicking you in utero before he developed limbs. Sometimes toddlers are tiny terrors, but that's why they make them so gosh darn adorable.
6). Get your newborn on a schedule
A newborn eats every two hours. Wrong! They eat on demand and sometimes that can be every 15 minutes. The only item scheduled into you day for the first months should be humming the mantra, “Stay calm, this too shall pass”.
Parenting is all about trial and error. Sometimes you gain a nugget of insight from a fellow Mom or from your past parenting experience which becomes a life saver. Other times you simply have to kiss your baby and throw the bad advice out with the bathwater.