Whether you are a first time parent or a 5th time parent, people will always tell you what you ‘should’, or more often ‘shouldn’t’, be doing with your baby.
Some people can easily brush this off, but for others it leaves you questioning your own judgement, and even ability as a parent. For me, especially with my first child, I thought that if these people were so adamant in their lists of should and shouldn’t, that perhaps I was doing it wrong. I needed to change my approach or do things differently. After all I didn’t want to make a rod for my own back, or spoil my baby in any way. I didn’t want a 15-year-old who needed rocking to sleep, or a school aged child still expecting milk on demand, or a toddler with a wobbly neck because I hadn’t done tummy time. All of which seemed possible if I continued doing the thibgs I should/ shouldnt be, according to others. Peoples unsolicited instructions, I say instructions because it was delivered in such a way, impacted on my confidence as a parent.
Here are a few examples, I am sure you have many more…
You should let her self sooth
You shouldn’t pick him up all the time
You should get out more, it’s good to be busy and keep baby stimulated
You shouldn’t go to so much, you don’t need to go out all the time, your making baby too tired and overstimulated
You should do more tummy time
You should have a rear facing pushchair
You should have a forward-facing pushchair by now
You shouldn’t use a dummy
You should use a dummy instead of feeding all the time
You should feed on demand
You should feed every 2 hours
You shouldn’t co-sleep
You should just put baby in bed with you
It is so hard to know what you are doing in those early weeks and months. Babies don’t come with a manual and we all try to learn as quickly as we can. Yet we do forget a vital thing – instinct and intuition! It is initiate in us, if we let ourselves listen to the only people who matter in your parenting, you, the parent(s).
YOU are the expert on your baby, after all you created and grew this person. YOU know what is right for your baby.
Use your intuition to do what feels right for YOU and YOUR BABY
No should or shouldn’t. There is no one way, only your way to parent.
*One way to support you to do this is through baby massage, language and connection programme. It gives you a space to be, connect and tune in to your baby. It helps you to trust yourself and know that you are reading your baby and doing the right thing for them. Whilst having time to bond and enjoy this special time.
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