Tuesday, February 22, 2011

My New Parenting Philosophy

If anyone gets the "New Philosophy" reference, you automatically get 5,000 cool points.

I have a rather unique parenting style. Well, not really. I have a rather.... relaxed parenting style. Hence why I call my parenting philosophy "Relaxed Parenting". Catchy name, eh?

I do a lot of things that are considered "AP" (Attachment Parenting), but I can't get myself completely behind their discipline techniques (although I do implement a lot of them). I don't do CIO (Cry it out) for bedtime. I'm still (barely) breastfeeding at 16 months. I wear my baby whenever we're out and about, and a good bit at the house as well. I fully believe that an attached baby is going to be healthier and happier.

That being said? I've barely scanned my attachment parenting books. I don't know the theories and the reasonings behind why I do what I do. I do what I do because it works for me.

In fact, I've barely read any parenting books at all. Let me rephrase that, I haven't read any parenting books. I've checked Dr. Sears 'The Baby Book' occasionally to make sure my daughter is on track developmentally, but other than that? Yeah, no. Haven't read anything.

Does that make me a bad parent? Maybe. But if you meet my daughter, you would probably think differently. Other than being a little bashful at first, she is friendly, outgoing, well behaved, talkative, sharing, and genuinely a lot of fun to be around. Not that I'm the least bit prejudiced mind you.

I just go with the flow. If she's up until midnight one night? We try to get up a little earlier the next morning. If she's up til midnight two nights in a row? We change our bedtime routine. If she's up to midnight three nights in a row? We head to the chiropractor.

If she falls down? I pick her back up. I'm very much a "non-panic" momma. I distinctively remember, when she was JUST learning to walk, that she face-planted while we were at my in-laws. She started SCREAMING, but I could tell it was a mad scream, not a "I hurt something and now my world is ending" scream, so I just picked her up, snuggled her a second, and put her right back down going "You're okay!". My mother-in-law said something like "You're so relaxed! You didn't even panic!" and I responded with "Well, she face-plants all the time". She's right, I just don't panic.

Now, let me rephrase that. That doesn't mean that I don't EVER panic. But honestly? Looking back over the last almost sixteen months? I've really only panicked three times. First time was at 9 weeks when my daughter decided to roll off the bed. THANK GOD my mom is an RN. Second time was one of the many times she has choked on a piece of food, it wasn't really any worse than all the other times she has choked, but it scared me for some reason. Third time was when she had this whole bronchitis thing going on, and she was in her carseat crying, and threw up. I didn't even really panic when she got a stomach virus at Christmas, but I'm told that's because I didn't see her choke the first time she threw up.

My parenting mantra these days seems to be simple 'It's okay!'. Because it is. Spilled milk, strewn crunchies, poopy diapers, piled up toys, bruised knees, snotty noses... it's all part of being a kid, and all part of being a mom. Freaking out about it isn't going to help anything. I don't want my daughter to be high-strung. I want her to be go-with-the-flow. I gave her enough stress hormones during pregnancy, fearful of another miscarriage. I don't need to keep up the stressful environment.

So I still breastfeed, I still have her rear-facing, I wear my baby, I still co-sleep, I don't have a set bedtime, I don't have a set naptime, I cloth diaper and disposable diaper, I teach her signs, I teach her potty learning, I teach her to share.

And I don't read parenting books.


I linked up to Serenity Now's Weekly Bloggy Read!


  1. I think there's a lot to be said for "relaxed" nowadays. Love the Diva's picture in the sidebar! I'm visiting from the Weekend Bloggy Reading hop. Blessings!

  2. She is a cutie pie. We have very different parenting styles, but what works for and is comfortable for one family doesn't work for another. ;) As children are added to a family, I think things naturally become more flexible. You learn that things happen and there is a light at the end of that sleep deprived tunnel.

    Thanks so much for joining my Weekend Bloggy Reading party. :) Have fun finding some new blog friends, and I hope you'll visit Serenity Now again soon. :)

  3. As the mother of nine, I can definitely say that I've become much more relaxed as each new child is added to the family. I'm a better mom now (more patient, more relaxed, not easily stressed) with nine children than I ever was with just the first two or three :) I am also co-sleeping mama, my 2.5 year old still sits rear-facing in her car seat, and I'm a breastfeeding mama for at least the first year, but most of the time up until the age of two (my 2.5 year old still nurses for comfort!) Just found your blog through Amanda's bloggy party -- it's nice to meet you, and I'm a new follower!


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