I’m giving up reading parenting advice. Why? Because reading parenting advice is making me nuts. It’s giving me a serious case of multiple parenting styles disorder. Unable to decide on the best way to handle things I approach parenting like one of those multi cuisine buffet restaurants. I pile my plate high with various parenting styles, and hope that one of them does the job.
Parenting advice makes me feel guilty. Don’t call it the naughty step or the kids will have no self esteem. Don’t shout, ever. Give boundaries, but don’t break the spirit. Honestly it’s a surprise to me that we function as a species considering how many different ways a parent can screw up their child!
Instinct, counts for a lot. Love counts hugely too. Surely if my children are loved then that will be enough (along with food, education, and clothing obviously). I cannot do more than my best. Even if Dr Sears says I ought to find it in myself to do a little more.
Trying to do it ‘right’ makes me crazy, and frustrated when my children don’t behave like the book says they should. It can feel like trying to figure out how to use my hoover with the washing machine manual. I am tired from trying too hard, and exhaustion leads to shoutyness which leads to further guilt because I didn’t do it right.
I pledge to love my children wholeheartedly. I will provide them with everything they need, within the resources I have. I will follow my instinct, and deal with situations as they arise using a combination of gut feeling and common sense. I say no to parenting techniques and yes to knowing my children and implementing what’s right for them as individuals. I promise to always try my best to give them a good childhood, and equip them with the resources that they’ll need in adult life. I will no longer be asking Super Nanny how to do that, because in my heart, and my gut I have all the information that I need.
Yep, go with your instincts because they will get you there the way you need to get there. We are all different and one parenting mould certainly does not fit all! x
Thanks Ali. Exactly, all my children are very different and need individual approaches.
Something I try to remember is that my parents did lots of things I personally wouldn’t but it’s not ruined me. Your children don’t need a mother who’s perfect. They just need one who loves them which you so obviously do. x
I feel the same way, I read one thing, than the next article says the opposite or makes me feel awful for something I’ve done.
I’ve tried giving up yelling, using the naughty mat, not using the naughty mat, ignoring bad behaviour entirely. I think as long as they know I love them both, ultimately we’ll all be ok.
I also make a point to apologise when I lose my rag for no reason and try to be as honest as possible about my illness so they know that I’m fallible.
I think being honest about being fallible is actually really good for children. It tells them it’s ok not to be perfect. Good parenting!
Love this post Ella, it’s exactly what I do! I know all the things I shouldn’t do but I haven’t really found a way of parenting that works for us so I kind of do nothing when Cherry does something like kick me or let Tiger out of the stair gate. I stopped time out because I read something about how bad it was and to be fair it wasn’t actually working but now I just feel like she doesn’t take me seriously. I love my kids with all my heart but sometimes I shout and I’m not sure with all the best will in the world I can stop that. And like you said it is making me feel so guilty worrying about whether I’m doing something wrong all the time! I think I am going to follow your lead and just try to trust my instincts a bit more x
Thanks Jess, and yes only you know what’s best for your family and your children.
Yes yes yes. As with most things in modern life we are all in danger of over thinking everything. Love, common sense, enjoying a laugh together and a dollop of politeness. The rest is instinct.
Why hello darling, fancy seeing you here 😉
Yes! Ella i could not agree with you more. i hate reading parenting advice becauase it just makes you feel inadequate or that maybe you are doing things wrong. i wish i had used my natural mummy instincts more when Burton was a baby but i didnt have the confidence to stand my ground against others. I think sometimes you have to read/listen to advice and then decide if it is for you or not. Gut instincts count for more i think x
Exactly, and what a wonderful Mother your instincts make you Jenny.
I realised the same as you and blogged about it in August 2011, access to the internet for parenting advice is scary and can set some people up to think they are a failure at being a parent. http://www.chickenruby.com/2011/08/whos-your-support-network.html
Thanks for sharing.