The very best advice for New Parents-DWYGD!

(The one question readers ask me all of the time is,"What is your best advice for new parents." Being a (new) first time parent myself, I never felt like I was the best person to answer that question. However, now that I have survived the first year of parenting I think I have enough experience (read: screwed up enough and have been peed, pooped and puked on enough) to give a well informed answer on the first year of parenting. So without further ado, my very best piece of advice for new parents...Because they do not get enough...)

Do what YOU gotta do. That's it. DWYGD!


It's Ollie Wonka!






Naturally as a new parent you want to do everything right, you want to be the best and provide the best. Somehow you know in your heart what the best thing to do is, you just feel it. Unfortunately, unless you are super sure of yourself, you are going to second guess the hell out your parenting choices. Don't do it! The whole mother's/father's intuition business is real. Follow it. Do what is best for your baby, you and your family.

In your quest to be the best it's natural to turn to books, friends, family and professionals, but keep in mind when you are on this quest for knowlegdge, there are four million published "parenting experts and medical professionals" contradicting each other. So just when you decide you are going to follow one doctor's advice, another one tells you how horrible it would be for your child's development to follow any method but theirs. Personally, I started wiping my ass with the pages of those parenting books around six-months into my son's life. I had finally had it with the contradictions and false advice.

I had one pediatrician tell me I could let Ollie cry it out as early as 6-weeks old. Then another pediatrician, IN THE SAME PRACTICE, tell me that the CIO method would be neurologically too much for a baby under 12-weeks old. SO... Who was right? I still do not know, but I will tell you what was right for my family, not letting Ollie scream bloody murder at night. It broke my heart and FTD's too. We never had the balls to let Ollie CIO. Ollie slept through the night off and on from 6-months, and then consistently at 11-months old. We have moved on from this issue, and we are proud of the decision we made. We did what we had to do and it worked for us, and that is all that matters!

Believe it or not, I got grief about exclusively breastfeeding Ollie. I made a lot of sacrifices and faced criticism for it. Yeah sure, I could have given him formula and had more of a "personal life," but I didn't, that was my choice, and I am SO proud of myself for that! I did what I had to do for my son, and dammit it was the right thing to do!

Being a first time parent is not easy, and a little (a lot) scary. Everyday you are forced to make choices for your child, like to use cloth or disposable diapers, nurse or give formula, let your baby CIO or not, allow TV before two or not, daycare, toys, activities... the choices and decisions never end! All you can do is do what you gotta do in the situation with the information you have. Just know this, no two children are alike, and their needs in the same situation may be (usually are) vastly different. Just do what you gotta do for your child and your family and have faith in yourself that you made the correct choice.

I learned to take each day and issue as it came. Some things I googled for answers and some things I called family and friends, but as time went on and my son got older I learned to trust my instincts. Yes, some decision were wrong, some of my methods were nuts, but my kid is super bad ass and that is all that matters!

Now, will the DWYGD method be easy for you to follow a first? Most likely... NOT! Will you second guess yourself every time you DWYGD? Absolutely! Will you be surprised at the crazy stuff you come up in the heat of the night? Without a doubt! Will you argue or disagree with you significant other about the DWYGD method? Like a freaking boss! Over time will you find that the DWYGD method really is the best? Without a freaking doubt!



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Two confused parents=One amused baby Hopelessly we are trying raise a baby who is clearly smarter than both of us. April is an award-winning writer, blogger and proud debut novelist - The Devlyn Disguise. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more about April, Visit AprilMcCormick.com

11 comments:

Shay Grant said...

Oh HELL YES!! I am SO with you on this one - if I had listened to some of the advice I was given that went against my gut instinct, my boy would have been admitted to hospital at 10 days old.
Mothers instinct is the first point of call for anything and everything to do with your baby.

Anonymous said...

Love this post :)

Jessika said...

I LOVE the "DWYGD" philosophy- so forgive me if I steal it! and who the hell gave you grief for exclusively breastfeeding?? Seriously? and hey, I still sheepishly admit I'm still b/f Chase- at f'ing 14 months now- although it's only once a day, I can't decide if it's him or me that can't cut the ties -hmmm. As I've seen- and am currently seeing- EVERY baby is different, and there are GUIDELINES out there for a reason- but they should not be set in stone. Just like the putting a baby on a diet- they can shove it up their... anyway- you're doing freakin' amazing as parents- not just as 'first time' ones.

Chandelle Foote said...

That's a great way to put it! Might I also add, that each kid is going to be different! So if you do find a "parenting book" that works with one, it may not work with the next. You know your kid better than some book does...so I'm with ya! DWYGD! I'm a first time mommy to be, but I was nanny for quite awhile for 2 little kiddos and they were drastically different!

Jen Provenzano said...

Parenthood is nothing more than a game of survival. The stakes are high. "DWYGD" is the only way to be. Perfectly said, April.

April @First Time Mom and Dad said...

That's right! I just wish I would have followed my gut from the gate! Luckily I don't flinch now.

April @First Time Mom and Dad said...

Thank you. Hearing that means a lot to me! xx

April @First Time Mom and Dad said...

Steal it! I know I didn't make it up. I think the only thing the "experts" agreed on was telling us DWYGD is wrong and they are right.

Thanks for the encouragement. xx

April @First Time Mom and Dad said...

This is SO true. I have 4 nephews and Ollie, not one of those boys are alike. Not at any stage of their development.

April @First Time Mom and Dad said...

Thanks Jen. Seeing how you are a rockstar mom and really know your shit... thanks for backing me up! xx

Quirky Chrissy said...

OMG. Ollie Wonka is THE BEST. Eep!

Also, you're my hero. I love how you embrace every choice you made as your own whether or not someone else though it was "right." You go, girl!

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