Keep Your Parenting Advice To Yourself (please and thanks)


I love how even at my age I am continually lectured about how I should and shouldn’t raise my daughter (and other kids – including the new one). How could I possibly have let her drink from a sippy cup at only 7-months-old? Why we would ever consider co-sleeping with her? After all, this screws with a child’s independence, right? You know, I like to think of myself as a good mother. I have raised three wonderful boys. They have never been in serious trouble or made devastating choices. They are not racist or judgmental. They are good, well-adjusted kids. I raised them and helped shape who they are today. And I did a damn good job.

I plan on raising my daughter and infant son to even higher standards. There is no way I would ever fail them–hell would have to freeze over first. They are my babies. But I seriously wish people would back the >>insert curse word<< off. I don’t make it a practice to tell you how to raise your kid, please have the same respect.

I’m all for sharing helpful advice, recommendations and tips on parenting. There is, however, a right and wrong way to go about it. The right way is just throwing some ideas out there in a positive, “this worked for us” kind-of-way. Or giving friendly advice when asked for your two cents. The wrong way is blatantly pointing out another’s parenting style or technique and criticizing it openly. Do.Not.Do.This. Not only is it poor etiquette, it’s wrong. I’m going to raise my kids how I want to raise my kids. If I ask for your help or advice directly, there’s the open door. If you want to casually toss some suggestions into the wind, go for it. Want to be mini-van driving, stroller pushing jackass that is the President of all Things Parenting? Don’t do it!

Judging, questioning or criticizing the way another approaches parenting is a lot different than having a difference of opinion over politics or religion. Parenting is sacred. We all do it a little differently, what works for one may not work for another. But have faith. Most parents are well-intentioned and try to do right by their child. Unless that child appears to be in emotional or physical distress, or is being harmed in any other way, chances are the parent is just trying to be a good parent. Share your thoughts and give advice when asked. The rest of the time, unless you’re able to do it in a very low-key, non-cynical way, keep it zipped. The last thing you want to do is catch a mom in a “moment.” Gawd knows you better have full body armor on, earplugs in and a fast car nearby if you’re going to shove your parenting advice down my throat during one of those “moments.” Run, if you know what’s best for you!

Posted on by Crystal in Motherhood

7 Responses to Keep Your Parenting Advice To Yourself (please and thanks)

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  2. Molley@A Mother Life

    I hate the know it all Judgy McJudgesons… And how many times do the people who tell you you’re wrong have asshat children?? A lot!
    Thanks for hooking up to the Hump Day Hook Up
    Molley@A Mother Life recently posted..Boundary Realignment is the New Fight.My Profile

  3. Norine of Science of Parenthood

    Great to see you here, Crystal! I’m with you. People are awfully generous with unsolicited and undesired advice! Thanks for a great read!
    Norine of Science of Parenthood recently posted..Follow The Blog On BlogLovinMy Profile

  4. Ray

    Yes and thank you…. I especially love the mother that feels the need to share and doesn’t even have a child of that particular age. Ie a teenager. Zip it.. you have no idea.

  5. Seana Turner

    I so agree, parenting is a vulnerable, sacrificial and often stressful profession! The problem with unsolicited advice is that it is probably coming from someone who doesn’t understand my specific situation. All kids are different, and just because something worked for one parent does not mean it will work for another. I generally suggest that we listen and encourage each other, and then offer advice only when we are asked.
    Seana Turner recently posted..YOU Are The Role ModelMy Profile

  6. WriterMom Angela

    Amen! Amen! Amen! Unless it’s asked for, keep your #$@#$ opinion to yourself!!
    WriterMom Angela recently posted..The Uncelebrated Milestones of Childhood (and Parenting!)My Profile

  7. Luke Ciciliano

    Agree with Ray. I think the majority of the people who throw out the negative style criticisms, rather than the positive input Crystal mentions, are the ones who have either never had children or they don’t have children of that age.

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