In my opinion, part of the reason we have the “Mommy Wars” in the first place is because we’re all so freaking insecure about our parenting choices (the main reason is the patriarchy but I do not have time to delve into the patriarchy, plus it’s Friday and I’m all worn out from wanting to scream and vomit from reading the NotAllMen blah blah BULLSHIT and I’m tired so I’m focusing on this).
In the short time that I’ve been a parent, I’ve been offered a ton of advice, most of it astonishingly bad. I’m not trying to say that I’m some paradigm of wisdom or anything but I do my best to stay on top of recent research and pediatrician recommendations, etc. I get that some people had their babies, like, 30 years ago, but still. No I will not be putting my child down with a fuzzy blanket draped over her. No I will not be having her cry it out at one month old. No I will not feed her solids at two months.
I have to bite my tongue a lot, which does NOT come naturally to me. And I shouldn’t misrepresent that I follow all of the guidelines to a T. We probably did cry it out a wee bit early (almost 4 months, rather than 4 months or later). I do (gasp!) use powder on Ellie’s bum when I’m diapering her for the night. I did place her on her stomach, laying on my chest during the first weeks and fell asleep with her there. And I’m comfortable with all of these things, obviously, or I wouldn’t do them. So I try to remember that MY things are going to be different from someone ELSE’S things, and keep my mouth shut accordingly.
There’s a woman who I’m Facebook friends with who had a baby a week after me. I’m not actually friends with her – she’s the wife of a former co-worker of Tammy’s – and I find her insufferable. I posted a few times before we did sleep training, lamenting Ellie’s poor sleep. She commented a few times with things like “you’ll have to have baby [her son’s name] over for a play date so he can teach your daughter how to sleep! LOL!” And she posts status with the hours her child sleeps. “Baby [name] slept 10:30-8:15 last night! Love my little man!” “Baby [name] slept 9:00-4:30 last night! My lil man is such a good sleeper!”
So is it wrong that I get a strong superiority complex when I look at her postings on sleep training (that she did when her son was three weeks old) or his first time eating purees (when he was three months old)? And did I mention that this woman is a doctor? No, she’s not a pediatrician (she’s doing her residency in psychiatry), but wouldn’t a doctor listen to the recommendations of other doctors? And don’t they do some kind of rotation or learn some kind of basics of general medicine, which would include pediatrics?