Sunday, March 28, 2010

Do you like getting advice from others?

I was planning on only posting tomorrow… until I saw the question of the week on the MoM blog

What is the best and worst advice you have ever received on raising your multiples?

§ How do you handle unsolicited advice? Do you like getting advice from other moms?

§ Who do you always turn to when you have a parenting question?

§ What's the most helpful thing you have ever learned by reading someone's blog?

§ Share with us the worst piece of advice you were ever given!

§ What is YOUR best piece of advice for other moms?

I don’t think the best or worse advice I ever received was specifically related to multiples as the only people I knew who had twins were 4 girls from the infertility support group who, quite honestly, ALL seemed to have it together.

I really thought I was the only one who felt like I did which is why I seriously turned to blogging about my struggles – cheap therapy.

But the absolute best advice I received was from a work colleague who came to visit when the babies were about 6 weeks old.

She told me that it’s all about SURVIVAL, nothing else. Don’t try to be a good or perfect mother – just do whatever it takes to survive. We were talking about money at the time and I was having a moan about spending my hard-earned bonus on a night nanny LOL

So now, my best piece of advice for other new mothers is, “count down those days to twelve weeks because it honestly gets better after that”. That, and you don’t need even a TENTH of the stuff everyone says you need. This is something I’m quite passionate about – I can’t understand why, as intelligent women, we’re taken in by all the marketing hype that we must have all the latest gadgets, clothes, toys, etc to parent our children!

Another really, really good piece of advice I got was not on another blog but was in a comment on my own:

Each child is always working on something – and it’s often something different - and I see it with my two. Connor’s the better sleeper but Kendra’s the better eater. Kendra rolled first (and has now crawled first) but Connor sat first, etc, etc.

Just today at church, a little boy came scooting over, took Connor’s rattle and the father came over to give it back. He asked how old mine were when they first got their teeth as his little boy is about 10 months old and has no teeth. So I said, “he’s working on other things”. The father looked grateful when I said that but it’s true – he was crawling ALL over the place and standing up by himself.

And of course, my paed said something very early on which has stood me in good stead: the babies just happened to be born at the same time but they are their own people and will develop at their own speed. That, and don’t worry about the milestones – they will catch up by the time they’re two J

So I don’t worry.

To answer the questions properly, I love getting advice from others but it depends how it’s given. If it’s in a know-it-all way, thanks, but no thanks. But genuine caring? I love it.

I turn to the internet when I have a question. And if it’s still bugging me, then I ask the nurse or paed at my next appointment.

I’ve read SO MANY things on other blogs that have helped me but I think the things that help me most is when I get reminders to just relax J

The worse piece of advice for me – sleep when the babies sleep J

So tell me, what’s the best piece of advice YOU’ve ever received?

P.S. My worst piece of advice about infertility (that still gets me on my little soap box) is just to relax and have a holiday and you’ll magically fall pregnant. My answer, “that may be true in a small number of cases for unexplained infertility but no amount of relaxing will fix broken tubes, endometriosis and bad sperm”.


  1. The best piece of advice I got was to trust my instincts. I was told by my mother when I was stressed out about my first child that I should trust that little voice about my child because God gave mom's intuition for a reason. The worst advice? Well.. my mother in law trying to be helpful stressed me out with endless advice that wasn't helpful at all!

  2. Veronica's best piece of advice is my favorite too and the one I always give freely. I tell new parents that's about all they need to know. I also do tell parents of teething babies that are having a hard time sleeping at night to give them a painkiller that lasts 8-12 hours, like baby Motrin. It really helps and I do it when I know it's bad teeth like the top front or molars.

    Worst advice is just what I call the "mommy drive-bys", like some lady telling me I'm going to stunt my four-year-old's growth for giving her a sip of a latte. When she's in the 95% for height for her age!

  3. My best pieces of advise were on trusting my instincts and doing whatever I needed to do to get by during the difficult early days.
    The worst piece of advice came from ...tadada... my MIL! Who insisted that I clean my new born babies tongue with glycerine! When I eventually relented and did it I was so grateful to have MY mother (trained pediatric nurse) with me as she was able to handle the situation when Ava started choking and stopped breathing because of the stupid glycerine!
    As for receiving advice, for me, it depends who its coming from. Like if its from the inlaws it really grates me, mostly cos they act like I'm the worlds stupidest mother. But from most other sources I'm cool with it.
    And Leigh, I have to agree with you, the one piece of advice that I do dispense to new mom's is just vasbyt till 12 weeks, its DOES get about 110% better from that point on!

  4. The best piece of advice, just about parenting, I'd say is to go with my instinct and do what works for us rather than trying to force everything into fitting a certain mold. And, the 2nd piece of advice is to take pictures ALL of the time, and appreciate every moment because it goes SO FAST!!! Both help me to not stress out about anything, and when I stop and recognize the big picture (that I have the baby that I always prayed for) then waking up at 3am to a crying baby doesn't seem like such a big deal.

    Worse piece of advice EVER: just relax and quit stressing out and you'll get pregnant, or even worse was people who joked that I should get drunk and go in the backseat of a car (tacky!). I may not have had any diagnosable problem, but I had done every possible thing to conceive before fertility treatment, and relaxing was not going to make it magically happen. Every infertile can identify with that!

  5. Heather, my kids LOVE coffee - and often have sips of mine or the nanny's. Hopefully it won't stunt their growth - they are already peanuts!

    I can't say I dislike advice (I just take what I agree with) but the worst I ever got was from my mom who tried to convince me to do "dream feeds" - instead Ned got addicted and wanted his 10 pm dream feed plus his usual 2 am feeding so I was getting up twice instead of once!

    I hate when people tell me that they just "aren't the kind of parents that can do CIO". What does that mean? That I'm a horrible mom because I could? Grrr.

    I am very guilty of giving assvice. My mom of twins group has an awesome listserve and I post questions (like a recent one about how to encourage my kids to brush their teeth) and I give plenty of it (like the poor mom who wanted to know at 8 weeks when her kids would sleep through the night).

  6. That WAS a great prompt, wasn't it?

    The best advice I ever received came from the three people I trust the most: my husband, my mother-in-law, and my therapist. It was "trust yourself".

    The second-best came from my therapist. "Good enough is good enough." Aiming for perfection in all things leads only to failure and frustration.

  7. Reading back through the comments, I am SO grateful to have the world's most wonderful mother-in-law. I'm happy to share her; she has enough love to go around. In fact, my husband's ex-girlfriend and I are great friends, and she still sees my MIL as a pseudo-grandmother to her kids. In fact, we had a playdate at my in-laws' the last time I visited them! My neighbours keep asking when she's moving closer because they (and their kids) all adore her too.

  8. One of my best friends suffers from PCOS and infertility. They have been trying 5 years and it breaks my heart. I hope that one day she has a success story like yours. Your babies are just absolutely precious!

  9. My worst is the same as yours: sleep when the baby sleeps. Yeah, WHICH ONE???

    And best: if the babies are doing well, you're doing a good job. Helps me to stop second guesing myself so much!


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