Monday, June 1, 2015
Over the last several years parenting has become increasingly more involved than any other generation. Numerous trends and fads have emerged from the popularity of internet discussion forums, social media and still the good ole' paperback book. There have always been pregnancy/birth and parenting books, but never so many touting so many different philosophies being released at the rapid pace that they are today. The internet has been the driving vehicle in helping to distribute so much information so fast, regardless if it’s sound or misguided advice.
Some parents step back from all the information and take what makes sense to them to use in their day to day routine. They may even discuss “advice” that is potentially medical advice with their pediatrician before implementing it into their routine. While others dive head first into the rabbit hole of a particular method and take things to an extreme. The ones that dive down the rabbit hole and make their child(ren) into special snowflakes are the ones I’m going to talk about.
Look in any corner of the internet where there are mommy groups and you will find discussions about strict birth plans, dietary restrictions and extreme parenting. Stunt home births, denying of nutrition and medicine all in the name of natural, holistic, or fear of the establishment. Attempts at being more natural, holistic or being not as dependent on every single modern technology is all ok in moderation and with a bit of common sense. It is the moderation and common sense the current generation of parents are having trouble, coupled with an irrational fear of all things government and anything backed by a large organization. I cannot personally say I’m a fan of every little thing our government does, or a lot of what it does but all this irrational fear is just….just irrational!
Things like infants not allowed solid food until after a year of age, replacing antibiotics and vaccines with essential oils and backyard herbs and disregarding anything the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends but latching onto anything any internet quack recommends and sells from their online store. For the love of all things holy, using a bleach solution to “treat” or “cure” autism has got to be one of the most outrageous things I have ever heard of in my life! There is a term that floats around the internet around modern medicine that burns me to my core and that is “big pharma”. Ok, has anyone stopped to think about “big alternative”? The people peddling alternative products do not give it away for free for the greater good. They sell them for what are usually very high prices!
On the flip side of the coin, there are the moms who obsess over every itsy bitsy teeny tiny detail. From food to development to baby proofing, every little thing is blown out of proportion. I can understand some situations with a new mom who is having the first grand baby in the family. The new parents and the family around them are learning from the ground up; that isn’t every situation though. These types of moms usually share every little itsy bitsy teeny tiny detail they blow out of proportion on social media groups too. That “I don’t want to see this” option can be a heaven send sometimes!
If there has to be one extreme or the other I would rather read that a mom or dad takes their child to three doctors than none and allow the child to suffer for the sake of “it’s natural”. Why can’t we just have balance? Please world, why is it so hard to stop and think things through? It's normal to worry about your kids, and want the best for them but before making radical decisions consult your pediatrician first. Facebook is not your doctor and there is a sea of misinformation out there. Please, be safe out there.
Stop. Breath. Think. It’ll all be ok!!