Friday, August 20, 2010

parental choices

I know how everything written about parenting says how there are many styles and that individuals need to listen to their babies, follow their instincts, and way the pro and cons for each choice. But still ... I can't help comparing sometimes. I'm sure that others are doing the same to me all the time.

What got me thinking about this most recently was when another mother said she has switched her daughter to a forward facing car seat. I was surprised by this since her daughter doesn't meet the either of the requirements: 20lb AND 1 year. Now, this is also a mom who let her child sleep on her stomach, but that I understand. Every woman in her family had done that and woman used to be recommended to do so by doctors. But switching to a device as potentially dangerous as a car seat before it is recommended by its manufacturers (and generally everything I've ever seen about car sears ever) is different. In fact, I think I just read in Parenting that its recommended to keep a kid rear facing up to 4 if possible because it is so much safer.

Another big thing I compare often is food. Most of the time it is stories I see on line or hear from others, not people I really know. And usually, this is the bad things parents give their kids. My sister has a story about seeing parents let a baby drink soda in Target. I've heard that french fries are most toddlers favorite vegetable. I've never really been shocked at anything I've seen anyone do though. I've seen a baby about Natalie's age cry and chase people around the room to get some ice cream, and I've heard about a baby eating Lucky Charm marshmallows (but I think it was only one time). Even in the baby info I've been reading the last few days, I've seen a lot about babies knowing the word "cookie" at 8-12 months or understanding about dessert. Natalie has had ice cream twice and probably a teaspoon or less each time, and she had a few crumbs of cake once at a party. Other than that, the only sweet things she's had are naturally sweet, like fruit or fruit flavored yogurt or sweet potatoes. However, I often feel like I'm not doing a good enough job with food when I read about moms who make all their own food from organically grown ingredients and such. Times like those, I feel like I'm giving her junk.

It seems like I see these types of differences every day whenever we go out. Things like letting a toddler walk alone through a parking lot. I can't think of any others at the moment, which is funny since I see them all the time. I will say that I see these things less now that I'm a mom and understand some of the situations.

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