New Moms: Forget the Advice, Close the Help Books

So I’m on child #2, and I’m finally realizing that those new mommy books are mostly unhelpful. As in, take them with not a grain of salt but a whole container of salt. I’ve never had much of anything happen 100% as a book described, or even 75%. (Some books are really helpful medically, like Baby 411, FYI.)

They said a baby who sleeps on their back (like my baby #1) won’t crawl in a normal developmental time frame compared to one who sleeps on their tummy (like my baby #2). Okay, first baby crawled around 10 months and walked at 1 year exactly. Second baby took her first steps at 9.5 months and still has yet to crawl at 10.5 months. Bullshit, baby books!

I’m convinced those books serve mostly to make a mother paranoid because, literally, every baby is different. (That is pretty much the only baby advice that’s true, by the way; it’s analogous to “50% of statistics are misleading.”) What you read in the book will apply to your friend’s baby (of course), but naturally your own child won’t follow suit.

Think your baby’s teething at 5m? She shows all the signs according to the baby survival book … nope, those first tooth nubs won’t pop for another two months!

Those tables showing how often your baby will nurse and how many ounces go in at each session? Just tear out the page now, but I guarantee you your baby won’t follow it. At all. (Except for a brief 1 month period, enough to make you swear the book is accurate and pore over the next chapter.)

The sooner you accept your baby won’t follow the norm and start to follow your own gut, you’ll be much happier. Don’t freak out if your baby isn’t who the book was written about. She’ll survive.

Now … advice from the random 85-year-old at the grocery store who tells you exactly how much pureed pears to feed your baby or that totally nosy mom in your playgroup? Tune them out. OUT. Because they are basically a live version of the baby book, by the way. Just listen to your friends who are sane (you know, the even-keeled ones who at least appear to keep it together) and have sane kids, as well as your mom and husband’s mom (even a generation removed, they know what they’re doing … obviously, because we’re happy and healthy).

This post is such a rant; I’m sorry…. If I save one mom’s sanity, so be it…. (Even if it’s only my own!)

Am I the only mom to feel like this? Do you?

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3 thoughts on “New Moms: Forget the Advice, Close the Help Books

  1. Amen!!! Back in my day, a generation or two removed, Dr. Spock told us, in his lengthy book, to not hold your children/babies very much because you set them up for a lifetime of needing comfort all the time!!! How did that one work out??? Advice from any source is worth nothing, it may work, it probably won’t, but it really has no value. Most of the time many mothers either want you to go through all the hell they are, or they make their little one to be perfect. Mostly not true.

    Trust your instincts!! That’s why you have that little voice in your head telling you what to do!

    Love this one!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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