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Monday, June 21, 2010

The Other Side of the Face(book)

I am a big fan of Facebook. I like to look at other peoples profiles, yes creep, and love to see pictures and videos of people that I can't see in real life. I have over 300 "friends" and have joined many a group and a fan page over the last year. I like to chat, as other people seem to choose that over the phone, and I just like to feel connected.
My DH is out of town alot so FB becomes a little like going out on a Friday night to me. Socializing, laughing, commenting on pictures and posts etc....but in the last couple weeks I have become a little disillusioned by the glorious Facebook.
The thing is that nothing is private anymore. Nothing is new news. If I do end up talking on the phone with someone I already know what they are going to say. I already saw their status update, pics from the zoo, and the video of the birthday party. So what do you talk about? Other peoples walls..."so did you see what suzie did yesterday?" "yea that video was funny".
It kinda gets old...and a wee bit boring.
The worst part that has happened just recently was that I was party to a "discussion" between a couple of my the old way (like 5 years ago) they would have picked up the phone or met for coffee to discuss their disagreement, and I would not have had any idea that they were having an issue. They may or may not have included me, and even then I would have had to take their word for I saw the whole thing; and BOTH sides were not very nice to eachother. I kind of feel like the kid whose parents want to get divorced and they are arguing and the kid is sitting there with her ears covered, but she still knows what they are saying.
It was just bad.
I really did not want to see that side of my friends, especially directed at eachother. It makes me that much more uncomfortable.
So for me that was kind of the end of Facebook as I know it.
Dont get me wrong, I will still post and check it etc, but I need to get off of it and make an effort to see people in real life where words do not get confused in tone.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Over Protection

It's no secret that I sometimes lose it when the kids are driving me bonkers. I raise my voice and say things that I shouldn't say.
It's funny that I can let myself get away with this bad behaviour but can't allow anyone else to; especially my husband.
It's not really fair. I am not sure why I hold him to a higher standard than myself. He has just as much of the stresses that I do, he works just as hard and he has just as many issues with the boys, but when he reacts just as I would I hold him more accountable.
Sometimes I feel that it may be because he is a man, and yes I know that is a total cop out...but I mean it in the way that he may be harder on his boys because society wants us to toughen them up. Meanwhile I am searching for why the child is acting out and making excuses for it.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Attachment Parenting - The Fallacy

We have all heard the term "Attachment Parenting." It was coined by paediatrician Dr.William Sears after reading a book called "The Continum Concept" by Jane Leidloff. Combining her ideas with the work of Dr. John Bowbly he introduced AP to the world. He wrote many books and articles in magazines such as Mothering to outline the 7 Baby B's that one must follow to "be" an "Attachment Parent."
As a new mom trying to find her sea legs 6 years ago I read everything from Baby Wise to The Baby Book and what he was saying in those 900 pages really resonated with me. I followed those Baby B's exclusively. Now as a mom of 3 young boys I want to let you know that the Baby B's and "Attachment Parenting" is a crock.
You can Breastfeed that baby until he is 10 and he will still say that he hates you. You can bed-share until she is 15 and she will still defy you. You can wear that baby in a baby carrier until your heart is content and he will still look you in the face and lie to you about something.
The Baby B's and the term "Attachment Parenting" just give women more tools to oppose eachother, to continue with the mommy wars and judge eachother more harshly.
In my opinion you could do every single one of the Baby B's and still NOT be an "Attachment Parent". You could also not do any of them and have the most well adjusted and attached children ever.
I like to think of it as who a person IS as a parent and not what they DO.
The Baby B's are like a loose list of things that you can do with an *infant* to foster attachment, and all of these become obsolete for most of us once our children are around 3 or so. (there is of course the stray person who continues to co-sleep and breastfeed until 10, but there are not many here in North America.)
So after 3 years do we just cease to be an "Attachment Parent"? I think that instead of focusing on the list of things that make you AP we stop putting all our efforts into judging those that feed with formula, wear a bjorn or push a stroller and focus more on how to foster attachment with the preschooler, young child, tween, teenager and young adult.
How to instill confidence, self esteem, and self worth. To foster empathy and sympathy but also assertiveness.
We need to ignore the claims made by other moms saying that "I AP my kids and they turned out so right" because her kids have just as many off days as yours do, and she loses her temper or takes the easy way out sometimes too.
So stop believing people when they say AP is the BEST way, it may be for some people, but I think what the best way is LISTENING to your OWN gut and doing what is BEST for YOUR family. If that means following 2 or 1 or none of the Baby B's so be it.
Parent your children with love, with respect, with kindness, empathy and compassion. Have no regrets, and be kind to yourself in the process and you will be even better than a so called "Attachment Parent". And as a bonus your kids will be better off as well when these unattainable expectations are released from your psyche.
I am no longer an "Attachment Parent". I cast that label from myself. I am my kids' mom AKA a parent and the BEST one that my kids deserve.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010


When my first was just a little baby I would get so caught up in the *shoulds* of life. He *should* be eating this much, pooping this much, crying that much etc. I would get such anxiety if he wasnt meeting these arbitrary milestones. Who exactly created these milestones? Who was I putting him up against? I constantly went on all sorts of message boards to try and measure him up against someone. I had NO confidence.
Why? It's not like I didn't understand babies. I have 3 younger siblings. Not only that but I babysat and nannied all through my youth. So you would think that I would have known and understood that babies are all made differently and there are NO *shoulds*.
I look back at his little life and think of all the times that I got so frustrated about when he should sleep. I would try to put him down at 7pm, (because I wanted to watch survivor) I thought that he should be asleep so that I could have my "adult time".
It's laughable. I shake my head.
As I type this it's 11pm and my littlest (8 weeks) is lying here sleeping on the couch beside me. I watched the whole season finale of Glee with no problem, nursing and patting him down while enjoying my program.
No *shoulds*. I don't expect anything from him. Ever. I just take him one day at a time.
This comes with experience, confidence and age. I know that times will be tough and then they wont.
I just accept that he is a baby and babies are unpredictable at the best of times and just roll with it.
Now, if only I could use the same techniques with the oldest...........
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