7/19/17

Do You Follow The DWYGD Parenting Style?




It's Ollie Wonka!

One of the hardest things about being a new parent for me was trying to follow all the insane amount of expert advice, and four hundred different "right ways" to hold, rock, wrap, change, carry and feed my infant. Then to add insult to injury, many times my instincts told me to try something else. But, no. I wanted to be the perfect mom, so I followed the experts over my instinct.

Oh, if I could go back and slap myself. I look back and think, HOW FU*KING DUMB?  That internal mom-instinct is a gift like no other and I denied it. Please, if you learn anything from this blog, FOLLOW YOUR INSTINCT! Especially because 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.

Thankfully, 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 leading to wasted time and discomfort for both my child and I. I knew inherently what to do, so I did it.

Unfortunately, it didn't stop the loads of crap advice and parenting expert 'dos and don'ts'. I just learned to take it politely, then do what worked best for my family.

I had one pediatrician tell me I could let Ollie cry-it-out (CIO) 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 for two years. 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.  Every day, you are forced to make choices for your child; 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 decisions never end.

Thankfully, I finally learned to trust my instinct first and have faith in myself that I made the correct choice.

I've learned to take each day and issue as it comes. I trust my instincts. Most of all, I've learned to follow the Do What You Gotta Do (DWYGD) Parenting style. Screw the experts, if something works for my son, then THAT is what's best.

No matter your parenting style, the sooner you learn to trust your instincts, the better for all involved.  Don't get caught up in keeping up with the constantly changing expert methods and truck loads of  advice from fellow parents.  Have a little faith in yourself. Trust yourself to be a great parent without the help of fourbillion talking heads.

Who cares if the method is different from your mother, pediatric expert, Dr. Googe, or worse, your mother-in-law, DWYGD and know, if it works best for your child, then that's what matters most.


April is an award-winning writer and blogger. 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 on April, Visit AprilMcCormick.com

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