Thursday, October 16, 2014

17 Controversial Parenting Topics, Covered in 1 Post

I get emails all the time about "controversial" parenting topics: What are your views on attachment parenting... Why haven't you ever jumped on the breast vs. bottle bandwagon... Do you even have opinions on the strong stuff?

Of course I have opinions on the controversial parenting topics; that's like asking if a bear sh*ts in the woods. I'm a very opinionated person; I just also carefully choose which topics I spout off about and which ones just aren't worth the effort for me.

But not today. You all have asked, I have (finally) answered, but I decided to do it my way. Instead of taking each topic and creating an entire blog post about it (which I totally could have done- seriously, I'm great at climbing up on a soap box), I've decided to get straight to the point on 17 different topics.

Please bear in mind a few things:
  • This is my blog with my opinions. I'm just one person in this world. I feel I was respectful with my answers, so I would like the common courtesy in return when it comes to comments.
  • I'm a firm believer in parenting your family the way that works for you, regardless of what others say or think, as long as your family is safe. It's something I preach over and over in my book, "Tatted Mom's Guide to NOT Screwing Up Your Kids." I have respect for all parenting styles, but I do have opinions on some of them. Just because I share my opinion below doesn't mean I don't support moms who parent that way; we are all on this parenting journey together.
Without further ado, let's get to it. 

17 Controversial Parenting Topics, Covered in 1 Post

1. A mom who makes baby food isn't any "better" than a mom who buys jars of baby food.

2. I will tell my kids "NO!!" and yell and scream, if necessary. Quietly whispering to a child that maybe they shouldn't run out into the street in front of that oncoming traffic doesn't achieve the desired results I'm looking for.

3. Children age in months up until 2. Then, it's years. Your kid is not 36 months old, it's 3.

4. I believe in competition; it helps children realize their strengths and interests, and show them what skills they need to work on. If everyone is given a participation trophy, and no one is deemed a winner because of the possible repercussions on the kids who didn't win, then maybe those kids aren't made for that sport or activity. If we never teach kids about competition, and winning vs. losing, they
will never take a loss seriously, or as a learning experience, nor will they ever fully be able to appreciate a win. Then, years down the road, the NFL is full of guys who want everyone to play in the Super Bowl and get rings. How boring is that?

5. Leashes are for dogs, not kids. Period. End of statement.
When does a couple have sex in
this scenario?
Pic Courtesy

6. Sharing a bed worked for my family until I got smacked in the forehead by random arms and legs; then, I needed my bed back. If you can continue to share a bed after that point, here's a tip for you: Arnica is an herb that's great for bruises. Find an arnica tincture or salve, and you won't have to go around telling people you bear the brunt of your 7 year old's tossing and turning at night.

7. Keeping your child completely gender neutral will not affect their sexual preference down the road, nor will it help them realize their own identity. On the flip side, making girls wear "girls' clothes" and play with "girls' toys" and boys wear "boys' clothes" and play with "boys' toys" will not affect their sexual preference down the road, nor will it help them realize their own identity, either. I have known gay guys who were raised "masculine" and straight guys who played with dolls as a child. So, why put so much emphasis on it? Let your kid wear what they want and play with what they want instead of trying to make a social statement with it. It's your child, for crying out loud; not a billboard.

8. I don't believe a child should be on an adult dose of an antipsychotic. I'm sorry, I just don't think that's going to be a positive thing later down the line. I believe there are definitely other routes that could be taken, less severe, than prescribing an adult dose of a medicine to a 5 year old.

9. I don't care which route you chose on breast vs. bottle, but if your kids asks for your boob to go along with their Oreos for an after-school snack, it might be time to consider weening.

10. My back doesn't allow me to baby-wear my 9 year old, but if yours does, then more power to you... and your back.

11. Rice cereal will not kill your baby. I ate rice cereal as a baby, Hubby ate rice cereal, my kids ate rice cereal- we are all very much alive, thank you.

12. I don't believe the diagnosis of ADHD should be given to small children, especially those under the age of 3 or 4. Kids under school-aged are supposed to run around like chickens with their heads cut off and pay attention to things for 2.5 seconds before moving on to something new. That's being a kid, or having "ants in your pants." Remember that saying from the 80s and 90s? Now, it's called ADHD. Boy, how times have changed.

13. I, personally, don't think anyone under the age of 4 should have their own personal electronic devices. My kids destroyed $10 toys from Target when they were 2; Good luck handing them that $200 Kindle... that they can't even read...

14. I am definitely a firm believer in Freedom of Religion. If you want to teach your very young child about your religious beliefs, then I completely support that. But please teach them respect for other religions out there. When The Girl was about 8, she came to us, crying her eyes out because another little girl told her our entire family was going to burn in hell because we didn't go to church on Sundays. If that flies in your family, that's cool, but just teach your kids the proper ways to express their beliefs, please.

15. I do believe a child's diet affects their behavior. Processed foods and tons of sugar do not have healthy affects on the human body or on the way the mind thinks; it's actually been proven in thousands of independent studies, so it's not a point that can really be argued. And while we're on the subject, let's quickly tackle giving soda to toddlers. Why on earth would you want to sugar load something that is already going a million times faster than you?

16. Disciplining is a necessary evil of parenting. I don't advocate beating the snot out of your child, but I believe teaching them there are consequences to their actions is important. The Ginger once had everything but his bed, a pillow and 1 blanket cleared out of his room because of his attitude, and it stayed like that for almost a month, until his behavior started to improve. Some people may see that as me being a mean mom; I see it as effective, because he hasn't exhibited that behavior since.

17. I do believe in spoiling kids- with love, hugs, time spent together and my attention, not in things bought at a store.

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  1. I agree, pretty much on every point but one- the leashes. When mine were toddlers, my son triggered SIX code Adams in wally world over the space of about 3 months' time. I refused to shop with my children for almost two years.

    I didn't use the "leash" often, but it did save my sanity during the "I refuse to hold your hand because I'm a big boy" stage. Without it, he would take off like a rocket. With the harness and leash, he'd stay within a reasonable distance, and was content to walk along.

    Like any parenting choice, it depends on the kid, and on the parent. As long as you're not actually leash-training your toddler (lol) I see no reason not to use the tools that work.

    (I'm Mary on FB btw... this darn thing doesn't give me the option to sign in with that ID. Sometimes I hate comment boxes.) :-p

    1. I was going to say the same thing. I agree on everything but leashes😜. I had three kids under three that loved to all run in different directions especially in crowds. We only used them at festivals, fairs, and the airport.

    2. Hmm... with multiple young kids, I do agree selective leash use is perfectly fine, and a great tool. I think it bothers me when I see 1 child on a leash... or being dragged by a leash... that's when I smack my forehead, lol. Thanks for your comments, ladies, and for shedding light on the other side for me!! ;)

  2. This just reminds me why I adore you! We agree on so many subjects and you always state your case fairly and logically. :)

    1. Thank you! I do aim for fair and logical, but it doesn't always come across as that, so it's good to know that it does, lol. ;)

  3. Omg I had to stop a second and make sure I wasn't reading my own stuff! Lol great list and I agree we seem to be on the same page on some great topics for sure come visit me when you have some time. Great share :)!

    1. Yay! I'm so glad there are other people who think like me out there; makes me feel not-so-alone-and-crazy lol. I've stalked you a bit, lol. Love your blog!! ;)

    2. Stalk away lol much love chat soon.

  4. I used to be totally with you on the leash thing. No child of mine would EVER be on such a thing. I mean, what kind of parent shirks their responsibility and just puts their kid on a leash?

    Then I had Ciaran, my now 8 year old with Autism Spectrum Disorder. By the time we found out about his Autism, I had a new baby.

    Now I had a young child with no sense of personal safety, and four other children to look after, including an infant. I tried to keep Ciaran close and safe, but he would run off. And because he wasn't verbal yet, and couldn't tell anyone his name, or who his mom was, I was terrified of losing him.

    So, I got him a leash. One of those little doggy backpack looking things. He loved it. He would bring it to me to wear around the house.

    As soon as I could, I stopped using it. But I don't judge people using them anymore (unless they're clearly using it so that they can actively neglect their child). Because it turned out that there were other parents using them for the same reason I was.