Navigating Conflicting Advice

When you become a parent, or even before during pregnancy, suddenly everyone is an expert on your child. Okay- maybe not everyone, but well meaning friends, family and yes even strangers will give you their thoughts and beliefs on how to raise you baby.

I’ll never forget- walking outside with my four month old son in the baby carrier. He was born at the end of December, so this was a particularly warm spring day we were venturing out in. When a lady on the street yelled at me, “get a hat on that baby! He’s going to get sick!” I was taken aback and any parenting confidence I had was momentarily shaken, “crap, is it too cold out?” I thought to myself. Then I shook myself out of it and declared, “he’s fine! He doesn’t need a hat, it’s totally fine.”

It wasn’t cold out at all. If he did have a hat on, someone else would have likely shouted, “that baby is going to overheat, good grief!”

Ugh!

This is just a small example of how impactful the well meaning proclamations and suggestions from others can be confusing and tricky to navigate. Early on in your parenting journey you’ll likely come across this confusing myriad of recommendations, suggestions, philosophies, must haves and most nots. It’s simply overwhelming, and difficult to know which voices to listen to.

This blog post was inspired by a recent email with a client who was finding herself confused on the conflicting advice she’s been told. She was confused on how often she’s suppose to be pumping, and how long each breastfeeding session should last. She had heard conflicting instruction on one breast or two during each feed, and for how long her nipples needed to be exposed to the air to dry in between feeds.

All of this can be rather frustrating when, as a mom, you just want to do the best thing for your baby. Having someone in your corner who’s got your back and can chat things out with you can be a life saver as you gather your parenting confidence. Birth and Postpartum Doulas do just that. We are current and familiar with parenting recommendations, and can help you determine what’s a pediatrician or baby health question, what’s a parenting philosophy question, and help you find the parenting pace that works for YOU and your family.