When I was pregnant I was often
I didn't for one second believe that this behavior would stop after Morgan was born. It did, however, take on a different and perhaps more intense form. As much as people have to say when that baby's inside of you, they have EVEN MORE to say once that baby's outta there! Now I get to hear about how I'm doing this wrong, or how that is totally inappropriate, and don't I know I should be doing this?
Here's the thing: I know I'm just a rookie at this, but I firmly believe that the way you parent is completely different from the way I parent. And I also believe that's totally fine, in fact, I believe that's the way it should be. I don't believe that a single method exists that will work for every family, or even for each child within the same family. We are all so different that what works WONDERFULLY for you and your family may not work AT ALL for me and mine. And visa-versa.
I am a breastfeeding, co-sleeping, baby-wearing momma. I believe in routine, but not a strict schedule. I embrace what I know about the benefits of using sign-language with children and, with the help of my amazing babysitter, I've begun signing with my baby. I've parented by instinct since Morgan was born: letting her tell me what she needs and responding in whatever way works best for us. I didn't know that I had a "parenting style" but as I've read about it, I've found that the things I've done so far, and the reasons why I do those things, are in the same school of thought as attachment parenting. (If you care to click on that link, you may also want to click on this one about what attachment parenting is NOT.) I think this style (as well as most others, I'm sure) can be taken to extremes, and I'm not a fan of ANY extreme whether it be in religion, fashion, politics...whatever. I believe a happy medium can be found in any enterprise, and I'm only beginning to learn what mine is as far as parenting.
If you feel the best and most healthy thing for your baby is to give her a bottle of formula every three hours, on the hour, please feel free to do so. And if you let your child cry-it-out for as long as 40 mintues before they finally fall asleep, more power to ya! If you're one who believes that a strict and unwavering schedule is the only way to go, that's wonderful! Really. There are countless ways to do things, and I promise I won't judge you for whatever method you opt for. But please know that as you're trying to convince me that your way is the ONLY way, I'll be nodding along and smiling with you, but as you turn to walk away, I'm going to promptly forget everything you've just said to me.
Because my child is different than yours. And you and I are very different people. And that's okay.