Post # 1
I spent the weekend with my SIL, 8 week old niece, and some more of DH’s family. Quite a few older women in DH’s family were giving SIL some outdated advice on how to care for her baby. She just smiled and nodded mostly, but I know she was probably pretty annoyed by it. She is well aware of how to care for her LO, and I think she is doing an awesome job. Most of these women had their children at least 30 years ago, and they still think they are experts on babies.
I am not looking forward to this when I have a baby. I guess I will just have to learn to ignore most of the comments, and assume that most people mean well when they try to give you advice.
What are some of the crazy pieces advice you have received from your relatives?
Post # 3
I think the best way to defend yourself is to educate..then you know to take the advice with a grain of salt.
My MIL was mortified when I told her I would not be giving DD “pablum” (rice cereal) as her first food, and that she had avocado instead. I just politely explained that it was no longer a good choice.
She was also shocked to know that I would be breastfeeding, as formula feeding was shoved down her thoat when my DH was a baby.
Luckily, she’s very open to new information, so she didn’t bug me and actually wanted to know more.
Most other people that offer advice which I don’t agreement, I just politely state that that is not how I do things, and unless they ask why, I don’t expand at all. I’m confident in my mothering choices, so I don’t worry about what other people think.
Post # 4
A lot of them were telling her to put rice cereal in her LO’s bottle. She just told them that her pediatrician said not to give LO cereal until she is 6 months old.
They were also talking about how they all made their own formula with Carnation milk and Karo syrup.
Post # 5
@urchin: My MIL had the same reaction when I said we wouldn’t have the expense of formula or disposable diapers! Shock and horror!
The woman giving the advice usually have kids in their 20s, 30s or older. Their advice is outdated but well meaning. I do the smile and nod unless it is someone, ahem MIL, that I will have to be dealing with for quite awhile. Just know they are not coming at you with any malice and you’ll be fine.
Post # 6
smile and say “thank you for the advice, but i’m happy with what i’m doing.” simple as that. everyone is gonna have an opinion, and they’ll be excited to tell you what you’re doing right and wrong. just smile and thank them, and go about what you were doing before.
Post # 7
If you don’t want to really “engage” them in a discussion, perhaps saying something like, “Well, actually a lot of research over the past 30 years has suggested that it is much better to do things like X instead of like Z… I could recommend some books or websites if you’re interested in learning more about it.” Or depending on your relationship with them, you could make it a bit snarkier.
Post # 8
To the rice cereal/Karo/Carnation comments, I would say something along the lines of, “They’ve learned a lot more in recent years about how there are much better, healthier options for babies than all those simple carbohydrates.”
For the general onslaught of advice, if it’s from family, friends, etc., I’d probably just smile, nod, and blithely ignore. If it’s from total strangers, I might be inclined to get a little snarkier and say “thank you for the unsolicited advice.”
Post # 9
Smile and nod, lol. Then I change the subject. Luckily I haven’t gotten any of the advice from random strangers yet!
Post # 10
@NCSUchick27: Learn to tune it out. But honestly, some of the oldest advice can be the best advice.
ETA: Also think about the fact that whatever we think now, 30 years from now it will be out-dated too.
Post # 11
I would always jusy smile & say thanks but I’m good. Seriously I was too focused on taking carr of dd to pay attention to out dated advice. I had go to people for advice on specific things. The cereal advice is a common one.
Post # 12
FH and i have decided to start trying in May so no baby yet but ive already decided on breastfeeding and cloth diapers, those really cute reusable diapers like BumGenius. I’ve already been given grief about it. Why would you want your boobs to sag and hurt from all that milk or why would you want to clean diapers all the time? Maybe because my milk is free and i feel that it will be better for my baby and maybe I rather use cloth diaper because its more enivormentally friendly. Unless I ask I rather not hear it. I think it’s rude. i feel that if its not comming from someone who truly loves you then they dont think your raising your baby correctly. Which is rude. I rather not hear any advice unless I ask for some. Which I probably will but just let me figure it out first.
Post # 13
@YellowMoon: I’m with you. I consider myself a resourceful person. I can’t *remember* the last time I gave someone advice on anything – certainly not unless it was solicited. If it’s asked for, I’ll give it gently and kindly. I know too many people who are too quick to tell others how to do things…it’s very annoying.
Post # 14
I hear the rice cereal in the bottle so baby is full longer thing a lot, and generally just say that research has shown in recent years that it’s not such a good idea.
My one 60 year old coworker though was all about putting some sort of alcohol (whiskey/rye) or something on LO’s gums when they’re teething. Apparently that’s must-do parenting.