Wednesday, January 22, 2014

You're Not My Type

Parents of the world UNITE!

That’s the motto that I think we should all scream every day as loudly as we can to as many people as will listen before someone calls the cops.

Raising babies is a very hard job.  The decisions you make along the way are personal. You do what you think is best for YOUR baby…which may or may not be what someone else thinks is best for THEIR baby. 

And here is where the so called “Mommy Wars” are born.  Because if you believe strongly enough that you are doing something right then that means anyone who is not doing it that way is wrong.

And now we have to go so far as to label people’s parenting styles.  They have to have names and they have to have rules.  And you have to follow all the rules of the parenting style you chose or you will have spent all that money on books that lay out the rules for nothing.  And we can’t have that.

I don’t understand this phenomenon.  Why do we have to pick teams?

“Ok, you’re on the red parenting team and you’re on the blue parenting team.  You have to hate each other.  Ok, GO!”

Let’s take so called “Attachment Parenting” for example.  I recently read a description of this type of parenting which started with the sentence:

“In attachment parenting the goal is for parent and child to form a strong emotional bond.”

Ahhh…I’m sorry.  Is that not the goal of ALL parenting? 

“Congrats on the new baby!  Do you feel attached to him?”

“Oh, no.  I didn’t pick that parenting style.”

My best friend recently had a baby.  She exclusively breast feeds and she wears the shit out of her kid cause he loves the baby carrier.  But if I ever found a cloth diaper in her possession I would think that some other being had taken over her body because there is NO WAY she would ever use those. 

WTF type of parenting is this?  Where does she fit in?  Could it possibly be that she doesn’t have one single “type” of parenting style?  We just don’t know. I’m going to set up an appointment for her to be evaluated by the experts.  She clearly needs some direction.

Authoritative parents want their kids to follow the rules.  Permissive parents are “nurturing and communicative”.  Helicopter parents want their kids to be safe.

Go ahead, folks.  Pick one! 

Unless you pick one you can’t be on a parenting team.  And if you’re not on a parenting team your child will never survive! Plus, if you don’t know what type of parent you are how are you possibly going to know which other parents you’re supposed to hate?

And we can’t just all start getting along because then Time Magazine will have nothing to write about.

Know the phrase “everything in moderation”?  Can we start applying that concept to how we raise our children?

If Suzie only eats vegetables and Mary only eats fruit…then they’re both friggin’ lame and missing out on something. 

Will the world as we know it cease to exist if some parents decide they want to be attached to their kids while keeping them safe and want them to follow the rules while every once in a while giving in?

Let your kids be free! Except if they’re gonna fucking kill themselves by jumping off the top of the jungle gym.  Then step in.

Breast feed your baby! Unless you can’t or don’t want to.  Then stick a bottle in that kid’s mouth and get him fed.

Establish ground rules and enforce them!  Unless you feel wild that day.  Then let them stay up an extra half hour to snuggle and watch a movie as a special treat.

The only parenting style that should exist is “Parent”.  And we can all be on that team. 

Next time you pass parents out with their kids give them a high five and say “Hey! I see your kids are alive and well.  Nice work.  Way to go team!”

And then when our kids are grown and out in the world on their own we can all sit around, have a cocktail and sign each other’s parenting year books:

Team Parent 4-Eva!


Things Carter Says…

p.s. Stay in touch!

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