Saturday, June 18, 2016

Parenting Advice From People Who Have Never Seen a Baby

My perfect little boy now has four teeth. He is very proud and protective of them, opting to ensure that I know about them by grinding them together (making a sound akin to fingernails on a chalkboard) and using them to bite my face rather than letting me actually look at them.

I am now facing a new parenting challenge- making the child who won't let anyone see his teeth calmly hold still while I brush those pearly whites.

It is not going well.

This morning, I took to Google and spend twenty minutes rolling my eyes while various web sites instructed me to sing a song or model brushing or wait until my child surreptitiously falls asleep on his back with his mouth open to attempt brushing.

So I have to wonder if I am the only one who occasionally feels that some of these parenting advice sites are written by people who have never actually seen a baby.

Here are a few other examples of my favorite stupid advice:

  • When your baby is ready for solids, you just want to place a small amount of food in the center of his tongue. Oh, OK... Let me just get my six month old to sit still while I shove this foreign object in his conveniently open mouth. 
  • Bite your baby's nails if they won't sit still for clippings. Sure, this one is likely a personal preference thing, but umm.... eww. Also, if my child will not sit still for me to clip his nails (and he won't), why on Earth is is logical to think that he is going to turn into a patient little cherub while I gnaw on his fingers?
  • Zero screen time until two. All right, this one isn't stupid so much as it is improbable. I took this very seriously at first and found myself diving between my precious angel and any errant TV that happened to be in our vicinity. The first time my kid reached for my phone, I felt like a failure. I have finally realized that technology will be part of my kid's world. We don't let him sit and watch TV except under special circumstances (he's sick, or I'm sick, or there is a nice bottle of wine just waiting....) but I have stopped sweating the idea that he will sometimes see a fun screen and stare at it enthralled instead of working on some advanced mathematics while drooling in his pack n play. 

So, mama's... what are your favorite moments of stupidity in the advice column?

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