Why Google is not your parenting friend. Step away from the smartphone.
Ok you, stop googling ‘colour of baby poo’ and ‘how soon should my baby sleep though the night at 2 days old’. And look at your baby. Because your baby doesn’t care what google thinks about his bowel movements and how long he goes between feeds. Your baby only sees you. Your baby only needs you. And you don’t need google.
Every mammal in nature is allowed to do their own thing in parenting. Follow their instincts. Those instincts that mother nature gave us in order to SURVIVE. Instincts that DO NOT require google. Baby wearing, co-sleeping and breastfeeding. We are inherently designed to do it. So why don’t we just get on with it? Why do we need google and every online parenting forum to validate every parenting decision we make?
I was that mum who, in the early days, looked at google more than my own child. Google must be right and my child is wrong. Why isn’t he doing what google says he should do!
I put google in the same 101 room as that ‘advice’ you will undoubtably get. Every. Fucking. Minute. The advice that is based on no facts whatsoever, just that one annoying line ‘well I did it with my children and they turned out fine’. (That’s what you think). For example. Why are we told that by baby wearing you are not allowing your child to bond with other people / family? Fact. Baby has been inside mother for 9 months. Anything else other than mother is scary. Baby wants the smell, warmth of mum to continue until world is not so scary. Same with cosleeping. Fact. There is a reason your child ends up in bed with you every night. They sleep better there (we all know this is true). It is less scary. Let them sleep in your bed. I promise they will leave before they are 18. I remember a fellow google ‘net mum’ telling me on a particularly horrendous breastfeeding growth spurt day ‘if you stop breastfeeding you can have some ‘you’ time’. Fact. Yes breastfeeding is time consuming. I won’t lie. But I am not going to feed my child something less nutritious just so I can have a cheeky Nandos. I’ve had 30 years of ‘me’ time. I made this child so I can be with this child. I want to be with my chid. Even if this means they are attached to my poor nipple 90% of the day. [Insert annoying family member name here], you will get your turn to look after the baby. Just not quite yet.
This all happens naturally in nature. So, you go tell that gorilla mama to stop holding her baby, and put that child to sleep in another tree. I dare you. You tell the tiger mama that she is making a rod for her own back by ‘cave sharing’ and tit-feeding past 6 months. I dare you. They don’t care what you think. And they certainly don’t care what google thinks.
Now, you may say that our babies are not in any danger of getting eaten by the lion next door. Therefore why not put them in their own room? Well. Does your baby know that it won’t get eaten by a lion? No. Does ‘cry it out’ teach your baby not to be scared of the lion next door? No. Are you teaching your child that if they are bat shit scared of the lion next door no one will rescue them? Yes. Why else are they crying for you? They are scared of the world and they need you. It was far nicer being in that big bag of warm fluid, sleeping and dreaming away. Now you’ve stuck me in a cold cot, on my own, and I am scared.
Animals don’t need midwifes and health visitors. Formula or cribs. They don’t count the hours between every feed, and check the colour of baby poo against a chart. They just get on with life.
I am writing this blog because I am a mother who worries about everything. In the early days I had to check the poo colour chart 10 times a day. I had to time how long my son went between feeds. I had to to google the crap out of my child’s life every single second of the day. Once I spent the day googling ‘why is my baby staring at me’. (He was freaking me out a bit. I’ve since realised, with out google’s help, it’s because I was his world. And he loved me). And I lost time, in fact days with my child by doing this. The best day of my life? Deciding to stop this crazyness. I put down my phone. And I stepped away. And on this day I saw my child for the first time. And he saw my face and not the back of my iPhone. We had a mother son relationship of the first time. The one that nature intended.
I am aware this blog may be controversial. But that is ok. We all have our own opinions and experiences we want to share with other mums. And mine is simple. Parent how nature intending you to parent. Mother nature knows best. She has given you all the tools you need to raise your child. And this does not include growth charts, poo colours charts, weaning charts or any other shit that is designed to make you worry unnecessarily. And especially NOT google.
Your instincts are far superior to any advice google can give you. Trust them. Not google. Am I being unfair to google? Maybe. Of course they do give you some vital mum information. The number of of the nearest Nandos that will deliver. Now for that you do need google.