When it comes to dirty nappies, baby boke and crying, you are on your own but when it comes to doling out pearls of wisdom and un-welcomed advice…..well there are plenty of experts out there to tell you how to set your life straight, right? Here are 5 common pieces of the best advice you can give to a mum…..see how many you can relate to!
Number 1: You must sleep every time the baby sleeps.
This sounds absolutely wonderful doesn’t it!! So let’s have a look at when babies sleep, after breakfast or morning feed. Great, let’s go back to bed except, you actually want to be able to have long enough in the shower to wash all the shampoo out for once. You want to boil the kettle for coffee, not formula/ baby rice/ porridge! You need to find a tee shirt without crusty baby boke so you can turn up at the baby clinic looking semi normal and slightly hygienic…….OR you just want to sit in complete silence for 10mins.
When else do babies sleep, in the car? Emm no, please don’t sleep while driving! In their prams, I can see a few issues with curling up on a park bench to catch a few Zzzzzs and leaving an un-attended baby….
Interestingly it always seems to be the people who give out this helpful tip, just when you have actually crashed on the sofa while your little one sleeps, who arrive at the door and immediately begin to paw at the Moses basket hoping baby might just…”wake up of their own accord,” so they can have a cuddle. When a better tip really should be, use these little impromptu visits to pop to your own bed for 10 mins while THEY watch baby sleep! Check out 5 things we think you should actually do when your little one is catching some zzzzzz….
Number 2 : You are really spoilt for choice here…
You MUST breastfeed. End of. It’s the only way to be a good mum. You can’t connect to your baby properly if you don’t. You don’t know what you are giving you baby when you give it formula. Breastfeeding is easy. Breastfeeding comes naturally to every mother. Breastfeeding is what is best for mum and baby. Breast fed babies sleep better. Breast fed babies are more intelligent.
Don’t get me wrong, I breast fed both my babies for as long as was possible for me, I cried and broke my heart both times when it wasn’t working and I had to stop but it is ABSOLUTELY NO ONE’S business but yours what way you choose to feed your baby. It’s a relationship so it has to work for both parties!!
Here’s another news flash, it doesn’t always come naturally, it certainly didn’t make my first baby sleep any better and it bloody hurts at times! Having a baby gumming away on cracked, dry nipples…yeah, that bring tears to your tired eyes!
What tip should they really be giving? Seek out support when you need it, from people who actually know what they’re talking about. You do what works for you and your baby, and disregard any pressure put on you to do one or the other.
Number 3: You need to have another one quickly so that they have company!
Again, why would you say this? I bet most of us mums heard this after baby 1, so when are you giving them a brother or sister? You’re like hold on, I’m only just holding my s**t together here, I managed to have half a cup of tea and part of my toddler’s half eaten toast, I think I washed my hair two days ago, I’m sitting here trying to entertain you while flapping my arms like a mad women and doing my best loud stare as my child drums the table with every piece of cutlery close to them…..and you want to know when I’m having the next one???? Don’t even….just….don’t….ahhhhh!!!
Number 4: You’ll have to get rid of the dog/cat now.
When you invite a pet in to your home, it becomes part of your family. They have their routines, their spot, their belongings etc just like we do. It’s why they feel safe, loved and at home. Sure it may take time to transition into a new routine, the pecking order in the house may change, their food bowl might have to have a new home to stop toddlers sharing the biscuits but are our furry friends and their unconditional love for us not worth a little extra bit of effort? I know it doesn’t always work out, but don’t write them off without giving them a fair chance, you have been their entire world up to this point and they haven’t had to share your affection. You could always pay a dog walking service to take your bouncy pup and out to get their exercise in the early days, when you haven’t enough energy to manage yourself?
Number 5: A biggy!!
You have to be intimate with your partner as soon as you can, after having your baby to keep them interested. Even in typing this out now, I’m in disbelief that someone would offer me this little treasured piece of “advice.” So let’s get this straight, you’ve been growing this little person for 9 months, your body has been theirs, you have given birth which included doctors, nurses, midwives, students (I think it was the epidural made me agree to that one!) seeing and probably “investigating” almost every part of your anatomy, they may well have seen you from angles that would give you nightmares, you’ve lost all dignity, you have only just managed to start peeing normally again without crying, your boobs are swollen and sore, you still haven’t found that non crusty t shirt that covers all the stretch marks, you’re feeling totally un-sexy in your Bridget Jones giant panties and nursing bra and you’re telling me I should feel obliged to be intimate with my partner??
Well how about this, how about you decide when your body is ready? How about getting your baby looked after so that you can go on a date with your partner, so you can remember what it is to be a couple again? You can get dressed up, put on a clean top, wear some make up if you want, even do your hair! How about also giving the partner some credit, trusting that they will stay around long enough to help you through this tough period and be there when you’re ready?
As a new, tired, stressed mum it can be so easy to take every piece of advice offered to you as gospel. I’m here to tell you it’s not! Listen to your heart, listen to your gut and always seek professional help when you suspect something isn’t right! You know your body and your baby better that anyone.
If someone gives you advice that isn’t right for you (or anyone!!) let it go in one ear and out the other, you have got this!!