14 Things Parents get Judged about

I recently shared a Facebook post of someone else’s blog post. It was about putting your child on a leash. I know it’s a very controversial topic. I completely agree with it. I’d rather have my child be safe than be sorry later on in life. Anyways, someone on my Facebook shared it and people started commenting on their post. One person wrote, “I despise these things and people look so stupid using them smh.” So I commented because sometimes I don’t know how to keep my mouth shut. I wrote: “They’re actually not stupid. Every parent parents differently and just because people choose to use them, doesn’t mean you should look down upon them and call them “stupid”. I guess I’d rather look stupid and know that my child is safe than risk their lives, especially in today’s world. Accidents can happen in a matter of seconds but to each their own.” Some people agreed with me and some other people disagreed. One person who disagreed said that they could end up hurting the child’s back. I’ll have to disagree with them there. Because my child pulling on my hand could end up pulling her arm out of socket. There’s pros and cons to everything we do. I just hate how people are so quick to judge and how people call other people “stupid” because they choose to parent differently. Why can’t we all just get along and support each other’s decisions? I mean, unless the kid is in danger, I don’t see the big problem with everyone having their own parenting ways. So, let’s take a look at some of the things people get judged on and think long and hard why we are so quick to judge. This starts even before the baby is born.

Epidural or natural birth: As soon as you announce that your pregnant, people will start asking you questions about your parenting decisions. They’ll wonder if you’ll announce the gender. They’ll wonder if you plan to have a natural birth. They’ll wonder if you’ll circumcise if it’s a boy. They’ll wonder if you’ll create a birth plan. You’ll be asked all these questions before your baby is even born. There’s nothing wrong if you choose to have an epidural. There’s nothing wrong if you choose to have a natural birth. The only one who should be worried about that decision is YOU. Your body is the one who has to go through all the changes a baby brings. It’s no ones choice but your own. Don’t let people bully you into changing your mind.

Personally, I chose natural birth. However, during both labors I asked for the epidural but I was too late for it. The baby was ready to come and I didn’t have enough time. That was my choice though. I’ll never have anyone bully me into a big decision like that.

Breastfeeding VS Formula Feeding: This is a big one. If you don’t breastfeed your baby, your automatically wrong. But then when you do breastfeed your child, you HAVE to stop at a certain age and you HAVE to cover up. If you don’t do these things, then you are wrong again. People will complain about seeing your boob or complain that your child is too old to still be breastfeeding. There’s so much pressure on mother’s to breastfeed that babies are actually be starved and dying because the mother’s are concerned about failing as a parent due to not be able to breastfeed. A fed baby is a happy baby. No one should be pestered about how they’re feeding their child. No mother should feel stressed out because she’s not producing enough milk to feed her baby. No mother should be pestered because she chose to formula feed instead of breastfeed. All that should matter is a happy baby. The baby’s well being is PRIORITY.

Personally, I chose to breastfeed. For one it’s cheaper. For two, it’s a healthier choice. But I will never look down upon a mother who chose formula.

Crib Sleeping VS Co-Sleeping: This is another big one but people are much more judgmental if you co-sleep. The research shows that a baby is safest in a crib with just a sheet on it and nothing else in the crib. There shouldn’t be any blankets or bumper pads. You’ll see people who put their children to sleep in a crib and have bumpers or blankets. You’ll see people who put their children to sleep in a crib with nothing. And then you’ll have the parents who choose to co-sleep. Research as shown that if practiced right, co-sleeping can be safe and actually beneficial to a breastfeeding mom.

Personally, I chose to co-sleep with my first born. It was easier with breastfeeding. I made a lot of changes to how I slept. I took away blankets where her face would be. I never slept with pillows so I didn’t have to worry about that. It worked for me. My second born sleeps in a crib because my first born still co-sleeps.

Children Leashes: This is the big debate that made me want to write a blog post. This is the big debate that I argued with people on Facebook.  You can find many different blog articles for and against this.  The people who are against it argue that children aren’t dogs. The people who are for it understand the freedom and the safety it provides the child. No matter your decision, you shouldn’t be judged by doing what is best for your child. No one knows your child better than you.

Personally, I leash my child. I haven’t done it out in public. My daughter usually goes in the store with me and we haven’t been anywhere busy enough to use the leash. If we go in a store for a short amount of time, I hold her hand. Eventually the hand holding hurts though. She pulls me places and I’m always worried about her pulling her arm out of her socket.  I couldn’t imagine holding her hand for a long amount of time, like at Disney or an amusement park. I feel that’s where the leash would come in handy. She can have the freedom to walk and I don’t have to worry as much about some stranger trying to steal her.

Spanking: It’s been proven that spanking doesn’t solve anything. There’s other ways that you can discipline a child.

I personally will never hit my child. I don’t agree with it and I feel that it just makes the child afraid of you.

Vaccinations: This is another big topic that people are argumentative about. Some people are against it because they’re afraid that the vaccines will cause Autism or other dangers. Then on the other side you have people who are for them and then people who despise the people who don’t get them. By children not getting their shots, it can bring back these diseases. It can also put sick children and premature babies at risk.

Personally, I didn’t want to give my children all those shots at once. I decided to do an alternative vaccine schedule. Instead of my children getting all the shots at once, they’re split up. It just means for their first year of life, they have to go to the doctor every month for shots. With my first daughter, I started shots when she was two months old like the schedule says. If I could go back in time, I wouldn’t have done that. After her first set of shots, she was constipated and miserable. I chalk it up to her being premature and her body not really being ready for the shots. With my second born, I waited until she was 3 months old for her to get her first set of shots. She didn’t get constipated. I don’t know if it was due to the wait time or just because she’s a different baby. I’ll never know. Some people may not agree with the alternative vaccine schedule but my children’s lives are my choice. I know the way I live and what they interact with. Just because it may not work for you, doesn’t mean it won’t work for me. The bottom line is my children will eventually have all of their shots.

Pacifiers: Many people use pacifiers. The only controversy with them is the age at which children have them. Many people will see children who are over the age of 2 with a pacifier and look down upon that parent.

Personally, I used Pacifiers with both of my children. However, I didn’t want to be the parent that’s child had a pacifier when she was two or older. When my daughter was around 6-8 months, I started to wean her from it. Then I gradually started taking it away more and more. I’ll write a separate blog post on how I weaned my toddler from her Pacifier. My infant stopped using the pacifier all on her own..when she found her thumb. I have no idea how I’ll wean her from her thumb. I guess I’ll figure that out when I get there.

Car Seats VS Booster Seats: Both car seats and Booster seats are designed to keep our children safe in the car. However, many people get heat for either the way there child is facing in the car, what kind of car seat they use, how loose the belts are, or using a coat. The most important thing about a car seat is to make sure you are using the right kind and to make sure you are following all of the rules. The seats can’t protect your child if they aren’t being used right.

My toddler is still in 5 point harness car seat and she still rear faces. I’ll get to that in my next bullet. There’s so many different articles out there about parents who lost their children because they didn’t do something right.  Every time I see these posts I share them in hopes people will fix their seats. I have a few friends on my Facebook who don’t have their children in the proper seat, the belts are too loose, or the child is wearing a jacket. From what I’ve seen, the belts are supposed to be tight but loose enough that you can only put a finger between the child’s shoulder and the belt. If you live in a cold climate, your child shouldn’t wear a coat in the car seat. It’s the biggest pain in the butt to have to dress and undress your child every time you put them in the car but it’s worth making sure they are safe. Children shouldn’t go into a Booster Seat until they are at least four years old and can sit the entire trip without bending forward and slouching. A good website for information on this is: http://thecarseatlady.com/booster-seats/

I highly suggest checking out this website. I highly suggest reading as many articles as possible to make sure you are doing everything right. Your child’s safety is in your hands.

Rear Facings VS Forward Facing: This goes with the above bullet.  A lot of people forward face their children far too soon. They say that children can rear-face up until their four years old, depending on the car seat. This is another thing that’s worth looking into.

Personally, my toddler still rear-faces and she’ll rear-face for as long as her car seat lets her. It’s the safest way for the child to be in the car. You can look up YouTube videos about the difference between rear and forward facing.

Only Child VS Multiple Children: This one is such a hypocritical topic. Once you have one baby, everyone is quick to ask when you’re going to have another one. It could be hours after you give birth or a year. However, if you have more than a certain amount of children, people look at you like you’re weird. They especially pity you if you have 2 or more of the same gender.

It’s not anyone business but that family’s on how many children they choose to have. If someone has four children and they’re all the same gender, don’t look down upon them. Don’t ask them if they are going to try until they have the opposite gender. Don’t look down upon parents if they decide to only have one child. Don’t look down upon parents if they decide to have more than 2 children. It’s not up to you to tell them how to live their life. You don’t know their situation. You don’t live their life. They do. It’s up to them to have however many children as they want.

Ear Piercing: Another debatable topic. I’ll just go straight into my personal feeling. I personally chose not to pierce my toddler’s ears and I won’t pierce my infant’s either. I see no reason for them having their ears pierced. First of all, why should I make that decision for them? Their body is theirs, not mine. Second of all, I don’t think it’s a safe choice. If you do it as a baby, you have no idea if they are allergic or if they’ll get an infection. You don’t know if the baby will pull at them and rip them out. There are so many things to think about when it comes to ear piercing.  I won’t look down on people who decide to pierce their children’s ears but I won’t be one of the ones to do it.

 

Stay at home mom VS Working Moms: Neither sides of this party can win. If you’re a stay at home mom, people think you don’t do anything all day or expect more from you. If you’re a working mom, people will wonder how you can be away from your child all day.

 

Personally, I’m a SAHM. We chose this because it was what best for our family. Other families will choose to do what’s best for their family. A mother shouldn’t be judged if they are a SAHM. From personal experience, being a SAHM isn’t easy. You don’t get to sit and eat bonbons all day. It’s a full time job and it’s very demanding. There’s always good days and bad days and you just have to go with the flow of things. It’s not just taking care of the child(ren). It’s taking care of the house and the pets and the dinner and the cleaning up and the laundry.

 

Potty Training: If your child is in diapers past two years old, people will look down upon you or think you are a lazy parent. People will judge you for this as well.

 

Potty training isn’t an easy task and every child reacts differently to it. My child was pretty easy to potty train. I started out slowly when I trained my daughter. I also always talked to her while she was doing number 2 in her diaper. I believe it helped her not be afraid to do it in front of someone. However, I know someone whose daughter took a while to train for number 2. She was still doing number 2 in a Pull Up when she was four. Every child is different. Is it ideal to have them potty trained early? Most likely. It’s less money to be spending on diapers and some daycares require it. It entirely depends on the child though.

 

Screen Time: This is another one that’s highly talked about. They say that screen time is bad for children and that they shouldn’t get a lot.

 

Here’s my outlook on it. Sometimes you do what you have to do. When my second daughter was born, I used a tablet to keep my toddler busy while I fed her baby sister and while I pumped. In between those moments, she would play with her toys. She would either watch YouTube or play some games. But then YouTube became her go to and her attitude started to change. When I took the tablet away, she would have a meltdown. She was starting to act like the videos she was watching. I started to watch what videos she watched more but there’s too many of them out there with kids who don’t set a good example. So, one day YouTube disappeared. I told her it broke. She’s not as interested in her tablet as she was. She still asks for YouTube and I still tell her that it’s broke. One day she’ll forget YouTube even existed. Until then I’ll just keep telling her that it’s broke.

 

These children don’t ask to be brought into the world. As parents, it is our job to make sure we are doing our very best to be a parent and make sure we do everything to keep our children safe. Some people may not agree with us but that is perfectly fine. Only YOU know your child and your family and what works best for you. Don’t listen to other people’s judgment, if you are doing what is right for your child.

 

To Leash or not to leash?

Last summer, my parents threw a July 4th barbecue. It was a yearly thing that we did and we always invited some of the family. Some of my boyfriend’s family came and some of my Aunts and Uncles came. I had made the decision to put my daughter one one of those children leashes. That’s how I was taking her outside before the barbecue even happened. Now, I don’t live on a busy street or anything like that but that doesn’t mean anything to me. Just because danger isn’t 10 feet away, doesn’t mean it’s not there. I have two hills at my house. I’m not as worried about the one going up as I am about the one going down. The one going down leads to a road where cars fly by. I choose to leash my child in her yard for HER safety. By leashing her, I know where she is at all time. I don’t have to worry about her running away from me and running down the hill into the road. I don’t have to worry about her running down the hill and getting hurt. I don’t have to worry if someones dog got lose and entered our yard. I don’t have to worry about the foxes that roam around or sometimes the bears. All because she’s leashed. Being leashed, gives her the freedom to walk without holding my hand constantly. It gives her the freedom to explore things and be a toddler. She may not be able to run around fully but that can come as she ages. The leash will teach her where she can go. The leash will help her learn boundaries and help her learn to stay close to an adult at all times. Anyways, I had her leashed at the barbecue. One of my relatives had the nerve to say something to me about my daughter being leash. I don’t remember the comment fully. Something about treating my child like a dog. I didn’t bite their head off but I’m starting to think I should have.

Because:

First of all: My Kid, My Rules. You had your children. You chose to parent the way you wanted too. You’re parenting days are over. This is my daughter and I’ll choose to parent her the way I want too.

Second of all: Yes, I’m going to leash her. You know why I choose to leash her. Because it’s the safest thing for her. Because I didn’t carry a child for 9 months so that I could be careless when she came out of me and risk her life in other ways.

Third and lastly: Watch her. First of all, it’s not always that simple. Accidents can happen in a split second. It’s hard to have your eyes on your child every single second of the time you have company over, especially if you want to mingle and talk and spend time with said family. Second of all, watching her doesn’t necessarily mean she’s safe. I could be watching her and in a split second she could run off. I may have longer legs than her and be older than her, but chasing her is not something I want to do. Running in places she doesn’t know is dangerous and so is me chasing her. I don’t want to risk her falling. I don’t want to risk her getting away from me.

I fully believe that using a leash on a child is a safe idea and it also gives them freedom. Would I do it if our yard was fenced in, No. But it’s not so I choose what’s best for my child. Some people will disagree with me and that’s fine. Just don’t look down upon me for choosing to parent my child a different way than you would parent yours. I want what’s best for my kids and I’m the only one who gets to decide that.

I don’t want to be done…

As the months progress and I watch my second born grow, I’m realizing how fast time flies. She’s starting to be more alert and smile more. Before I know it, she’ll be holding her head up on her own and then from there she’ll learn to roll over and crawl and then walk and talk. My first born is already forming full sentences and learning new things every day. It’s a bittersweet feeling. Whenever I see pictures of my first born little, I can remember the time and how the days went. I can remember watching her grow. I just never realized that it actually happened so quickly. My second born isn’t even 6 months old yet. She’s almost 4 months old though, so 6 isn’t far behind. Even though she’s still a baby, I’m wishing the newness of her wasn’t passing by go quickly. She just recently stopped waking up every 3 hours at night. Sometimes she sleeps through the night. Sometimes she wakes up once or twice. She’s growing. She’s becoming older and it makes me sad.

It literally feels like the NICU days were just yesterday. I remember her birth. I remember my stay and her stay in the hospital. I remember the trips to the hospital. I remember knowing that it was best for her there but hating I had to be so far away. I remember feeling like a crappy mom because she wasn’t home with me. I remember everything so vividly. How the week went leading up to her coming into this world way to early. I remember being scared the night before I had her. My biggest fear was having to have a C-Section and I thank god every day that I didn’t have too. I remember all this like it just happened yesterday. But it didn’t. Soon, she’ll be 4 months old. And then so on and so forth. Before I know it, she’ll be a year old. And all I’ll have are the memories of all this. It makes me sad because she’ll be the last baby I have. Don’t get me wrong, I want more babies. I always pictured myself with at least 3. 2 girls, 1 boy or 1 girl and 2 boys. I’ll never have that though. Just because I WANT another baby doesn’t mean that I’ll HAVE another baby. As much as I’m not ready to be done, my brain tells me that I should be.

My heart breaks at the thought of being done though. If I knew she was absolutely going to be the last baby I had, I would have done things differently during my pregnancy. I would have taken those monthly pictures. I would have painted my stomach for Halloween. Or just took more pregnancy pictures in general. But that stuff didn’t happen because I found myself with no time. I found myself constantly busy raising my toddler. And I always thought to myself that I’d have at least once more, especially once I found out she was a girl. I love everything about my daughter but I also wanted my chance at a boy. And thinking about that boy just makes me yearn so much more for another baby. I was told by my gynecologist that I could have kids but they’d make me take a shot. It was offered during this pregnancy but I opted out since my first born wasn’t crazy early. But my brain can’t stop thinking about the “What ifs..”

“What if I took the shots and the baby was full term? Would my body be able to handle it? Would I be able to deliver naturally like my other too?”

“What if I needed a C-Section? I hear they’re very painful and the recovery time is longer than a vaginal delivery. How would I take care of two children while being in pain? Who would help me take care of myself? How many days would I want to cry because of the pain?”

“What if, even with the shots, the baby was born prematurely? How prematurely would it be born? Would it be born at the 36 week mark like my first born and be fine to come home? Would it be born like my second and have to stay at the hospital until she was cleared to go home? If born too premature, who would take care of my two other children while in the hospital? Could I handle leaving another child until it was well enough to come home? What if it was born way to premature and only weighed a pound when it was born? What if it had to stay longer than 12 days? How would I be able to afford that?”

“What if I took the shots? What if they didn’t work? What if I had a reaction to them?”

All the what ifs and hows and whys. They drive me insane. I yearn to have another baby. I don’t want to be done having children. I wanted three. I wanted a somewhat big family. I want to keep raising my children because it’s such an amazing family. Being a mother is something I’m good at. Something I feel like I was born to do. Watching my children grow and learn and become their own person is such an amazing feeling, especially because I’m a Stay at Home Mom. I can take credit for everything that they learned because I’m the one teaching them. When they become potty trained or learn a letter or their name or how to count, I can say “I did that. That’s because of me.” And that’s an incredible feeling. Being a parent is such a demanding job and even though it has it’s bad moments, I wouldn’t trade them for the world. I love being a mom and I’d love to have a third child. But just because it’s something that I want doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s going to happen. Because in my brain, I know it’s not plausible to have another one. And that truly breaks my heart.

Love-hate relationship with YouTube

I have a love-hate relationship with YouTube.  My daughter just started using it recently (that’ll be another post). First, YouTube is like a drug for children. When my daughter first started watching it, she was into it all the time. She’d watch these dumb videos about these older girls who would be bad and cry and have pacifiers. These girls were like 8 years old or somewhere around there. These girls were throwing food. When I noticed my daughter acting out a bit more, I told her no to these videos. I told her that they would bad. Being the smart girl that she is, she would see one and point to them and say “That one bad” and then I would tell her yes and she would find a different video. I’ve never realized how many “weird” videos there are on YouTube until I had a kid. Some of the videos she watches are annoying but educational. There’s a couple where the child uses different things to talk about what colors they are. Some of the things he uses are balloons, chip containers, M&Ms, etc. Educational Yes. Annoying: Super Yes. The child practically shouts the color every time. I honestly don’t know why he can’t just talk in a normal tone. Then there’s the videos of children who play with their dolls or their siblings and use their imagination. They’re not always the best but they’re better than the Bad baby ones. Then the weirdest ones to me are the adults who make videos with dolls. These adults are buying ball pits and toys for these dolls and treating them like real children. They’re taking these dolls to the park like it’s a real baby. I just don’t know how or why they do it. The second most annoying videos, to me, are the ones where these 5-8 year old children have pacifiers in their mouths. I honestly want to know where their parents are thinking?

YouTube has is pros and cons. Lately I’ve been seeing YouTube pop on my Facebook newsfeed. The one thing that it popped up for was a creepy person dressed up as a clown at the bottom. This was supposedly popping up on the kids version of YouTube. Another thing that popped up the other day on my newsfeed was how there’s videos of Peppa Pig or other popular characters doing bad things, like suicide and burning down houses. This also pops up on the kids YouTube version. These videos are allowed on the kids version because they aren’t labeled as bad. I think YouTube needs to fix this. I was going to try to contact them about it but they don’t have an e-mail where you can contact at them.  They should pay stay at home mom’s to help clean up these videos so they aren’t appearing on the Kids version or coming up when children search videos. I’m a stay at home mom and I closely monitor what my child watches. I’m sure there’s other mom’s like me out there. If YouTube just hired some SAHMs to take care of this, I’m sure their app could be cleaned up and more reliable. Because at the end, the kids version should be clean enough for our children to watch.

 

 

 

Happy Easter!!

The holidays are more fun when you have children, especially when they get older. Melody didn’t understand Easter last year but now she’s starting to understand so much more and it’s so amazing to watch and it’s pretty awesome to be a part of. I told her the Easter bunny was going to come and bring her presents. I told her if she was bad he wouldn’t come at all. The week before Easter, I did some crafts with her and read her a couple Easter books.

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This one one of the crafts that we did. I helped her paint her hands and make the bunnies. The next craft we did was this:

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I was originally going to glue these onto string and make a garland out of them and hang it like that but I ended up running out of time. It’s hard to see in the photo but she colored most of them herself. Her Pa, Grandma, Dada, and Mama colored one each. Grandma actually colored a couple more than one. I didn’t even have time to cut them out perfectly. I did a rush job the night before Easter.

 

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Melody’s daddy and her colored eggs the night before Easter as well. I helped out for a bit but then the infant needed me so I had to tend to her. It was Melody’s first time coloring Easter eggs and she was so excited to do it. This is one of the reasons why holidays are more fun with children, seeing the joys on their face as they do things.

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This is her plate to leave carrots for the Easter Bunny. My boyfriend actually made the vinyl for it. He has his own Etsy store, if you want to check it out –> Etsy Store

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After Melody went to bed, I hid her presents that night for her to find. I hid them in a simple location since she’s young. As she gets older, I’ll hide them in a more difficult spot. The baby is hiding her basket. Funny story about her baby: For like a year now, my mom and I have been hiding that baby every night for her to find in the morning. Every morning when she wakes up, she finds the baby. Every time she finds it, she laughs. It’s fun.

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We didn’t do much for Easter. My mom and I actually went shopping. We didn’t have an Easter dinner or anything like that. We ended up just spending some time together as a family. We also took some photos. The shirts are also something available in the Etsy shop. Overall it was a good holiday and time well spent with family. It’ll be more fun next year when the little one can tag along and be excited too!

I hope everyone had a Happy Easter.