Countercultural mothers who lie in the dark, night after night, nourishing, comforting and connecting with their babies deserve to be supported, not chastised. Yet, our misguided society tells us that if we hold our babies, we’re preventing independence. That if we soothe their souls, we’re spoiling them. That if we nurse them to sleep, we’re creating ‘bad’ sleep associations.
I needed this today. This post here spoke to my soul. Calmed my caffeine-deprived attitude. Gave me hope for the rest of my day. Woooooosahhhhhhh.
I’m so over “advice” on how to get my LO to sleep through the night that it’s not even funny. He’ll be a year old in a few days. Can I drop the forced politeness now? No, he doesn’t sleep through the night. No, I will not let him cry it out. Yes, we bedshare. Yes, I rock him to sleep. I get that there are “easier,” more common ways to get him to sleep longer periods. But that’s not how we operate in this family. We answer cries. We soothe. We spoil. We willingly give attention.
I understand every word out of their mouths. “Just try for a few days.” “You’ll thank yourself later.” “He needs to learn to self-soothe now before it’s too late.” “He’s really playing you.” “He just knows you’ll come every time.” Uh, that’s kind of the idea. 😑 The way I parent is not up for debate or in need of anyone’s approval, save my wife. So, respectfully, save your breath. Please.
I am beyond tired. It’s true. And just because I choose to parent this way doesn’t mean I’m not allowed to acknowledge my exhaustion. But it’s worth it. He won’t be little forever. Yes, I’m gonna complain every now and again. It’s probably one of the most trying times I’ve ever experienced in life. And also, I’m human. So, I’m gonna talk about it.
In my 12 months as a first-time mom, I can probably count on two hands how many people have offered simple words of support or understanding instead of spewing off a long list of advice that I’ve probably read on Google 6,489 times. Sometimes, all I needed was “I understand.” or “What can I do to help?”
I can’t imagine…. Well, I can… Based off of the millions of Facebook groups I’m in…. How many other moms just need simple support and acknowledgment in their seemingly abnormal parenting styles, instead of being questioned, laughed at, or guilted into thinking she’s doing something wrong? Even beyond “sleep training”?