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to think that a lot (but not all) "Gentle Parenting" FB pages are full of sneery nobbers?

(295 Posts)
Fourwillies Mon 05-Aug-13 08:37:22

Inspired by a post by MrsDeVere, and the fact that I have just removed myself from FOUR of these pages, I'm reaching the conclusion that despite the high ideals, there are a lot of judgemental sneery fuckers on these pages, clueless about anything beyond their own nose.

[and relax]

Angelico Tue 06-Aug-13 12:53:56

Very funny thread grin I didn't realise the perils of hatting before now!

I am very much of the 'love your child and do your best' school of thought. Disciplining children is crucial and it is so unfair that the child pays the price / gets the blame socially when parents have failed to discipline. We have lovely friends who we won't invite to stay again after a nightmare visit with their DC. DC1 was a nightmare - constant whingeing and tantrums with no discipline or consequences ever.

HaroldLloyd Netherlands Tue 06-Aug-13 13:39:05

Some of these groups make AIBU look like a hug-fest.

Lady asking for advice about weaning a premature baby as told by doctors etc to start at 6 mo corrected:

If you want to Force Feed your baby solids before she is developmentally ready then its Up to You.

Imagine how that would make you feel.

Seems odd to me that some people feel better about taking advice from self styled internet parenting gurus than medical professionals.

I must stop looking!

charleyturtle Tue 06-Aug-13 16:21:50

I know one of these "I do gentle parenting so I have ALL the answers about parenting and you will hear my opinion even if you never asked for it" type of women. She does my head in! Constantly sending me "helpful" links via facebook with little messages like "I expect you are having problems with sleeping/ teething/ weaning so I thought this would help" the most annoying thing about it is that i have never had any problems with my dd (i am very lucky i know) she slept through the night at about 2 weeks old. took to solid food like a duck to water (our biggest problem is her hissy fits when you tell her dinner is finished) and the only way we knew she was teething was because her little tooth poped through. where as my friends child still wont sleep through at nearly 2 years old, is an incredibly fussy eater and her partner has told us they have no end to the trouble with their ds because she rufuses to tell him off of "make" him do anything he doesn't want to (apparently he wont go to bed before 11 because he doesn't want to). I am not slagging off her parenting by any means but it really gets under my skin that she is always giving me parenting advice i have never asked for on issues i have never told her (or anyone) that i have.

I don't think i have all, or any of, the answers about parenting. i know how to look after my dd in a way that works for us but i know she is so completely different from any baby i have known because they are all individuals and i think it is so wrong that these groups have a go at anyone who parents their dcs differently from them even if it works for them.

WhoreOfTheWorlds Tue 06-Aug-13 16:36:47

I'm just the same as you Angelico, and I feel like a bad person for saying it sad

I have friends who seem unable to discipline their DCs effectively and there never seems to be any consequences if their DCs are being naughty. Their form of 'discipline' seems to comprise of repeatedly saying calmly 'You really should think about what you're doing, it's not very nice is it' etc. While their child completely ignores them and carries on being naughty.

Eventually the child gets fed up and wanders off to be annoying somewhere else. And our friends congratulates themselves for having handled the situation in a very calm manner without having to show any annoyance or wound the child's self esteem (or some such crap).

Our friends don't seem to realise or care that everyone else around them has been unfairly subjected to 30 minutes of their child's tantruming and whinging.

Then they wonder why the don't often get invited to the group BBQs or picnics or why they're not included on the Round Robin holiday emails for that year. It's such a shame.

Diamond7 Tue 06-Aug-13 17:47:27

My LO is only 7mths and I'm terrified of her becoming a toddler and the parenting actually starting. As mentioned above I co sleep, use sling etc but hate the term attachment parenting. So far it has worked for this LO, she doesnt get winding down. Never has. Thankfully the sling works and we both get a good amount of sleep. Maybe Im making things worse in the long run but right now it works, she is happy(most of the time), I am happy (most of the time if I can have wine). I do have very wobbly days though and find myself over justifing the rod I am creating. I may have to deal with the rod one day but right now I'm enjoying my baby.

Before this trend I hadn't heard of unconditional parenting but had heard of gentle parenting/positive discipline (I'm not on any FB parenting groups, don't know whether I'm now intrigued to look or terrified in to staying well away). My understanding is that it's not about not having discipline but being empathetic to their feelings, boundaries and discipline of a type are important. No idea how this works in practice. I like some of the ideas but in no way wish to follow any one parenting style/set of rules. I think there are very very few purists out there in all forms of parenting. There are probably as many gina ford extremists as there are AP/UP extremists.

I am sure the OP is completely accurate in her original post but I think there is a lot of over generalising going on which makes me quite uncomfortable. I think there are probably a hand full of over opinionated, and/or vary narrow minded, self righteous mums who ruin the vibe of the whole thing. I am sure this is no different than other non-AP/UP pages? I don't think it's fair to tar all mums with similar ideas with the same brush.

I don't want to follow a parenting style, I don't want to get boxed in to a parenting style or judged because I 'babywear' and not offended by the term. I feel very neive. I have a step and scary learning curve ahead. I hope we naturally find what works for us and I hope I don't offend anyone in the process. I know there will be tears. Reading this trend has just made me more scared.

Sorry for the slightly off tanget emotional drivel. And for the fact I have completely forgotten how to write.

Diamond7 Tue 06-Aug-13 17:51:53

The terms (AP, UP etc) do really need to go. Who came up with them?! They make me cringe too.

nenevomito Tue 06-Aug-13 18:30:17

I have two friends very much into the baby wearing / attachment parenting ethos.

One is utterly lovely and is doing it as it suits her and her child but its not the be all and end all for her. The other, sadly, is the sneers kind. Not only are her children pretty much her only topic of conversation, but her judging of everyone else is tiresome. Sometimes I feel like shouting "but where are YOU in all this?"

Your parenting style should be just that; yours.

One caveat to that is the whole gentle parenting malarky. Never have I ever met such badly behaved children as those of a serious gentle parenter. Children need love, attention and boundaries. Talking at them is risible.

MiaowTheCat Tue 06-Aug-13 18:57:38

HaroldLloyd pretty much what some bitch said to me... same deal in terms of a prem baby and whatever. I should have ignored all medical advice and hung on months and months and months in order to BLW or be deemed to be "ramming food down your child's throat"

I've seen a LOT of parenting shit hurled on the internet but it was utterly, totally the most hurtful thing said to me as of yet - still makes me angry nearly a year on from it.

That was on a peace and flowers and fluff fluff fluff nicey nicey site where they all call each other mama as well.

LongTailedTit Wed 07-Aug-13 02:56:01
cory Wed 07-Aug-13 08:20:42

Diamond, I wouldn't worry about the whole rod for your back thing. Children change so many times during those years, you are going to be changing your approach so many times too to adapt to them, there is no way you will be treating a big 9yo like you are treating your lo at the moment and by the time he gets to 9 he will have forgotten whatever you are doing now.

My own parenting philosophy is simple: remember that your children do not exist in a vacuum. I need to know it and they need to learn it. All the members of our family matter, all families around matter, we all need to be sensitive to each other's needs. And if that means swooping in and removing my own little horror for the greater good, then so be it.
(well, so was it- she is 16 now, so will have to be in charge of her own swooping).

petuniapickletits Wed 07-Aug-13 09:03:17

I haven't revisited this thread since first page and I see its gotten very busy here!

I do not subscribe to a label, but know that much of my parenting relates to AP ethos. But im very much of the school of thought that whatever works, works. We gave cloth a damn good go but found it too difficult for our lifestyle. Not beating myself up over it..nor did I make anyone feel bad for using disposables while I was using cloth. I did blw, but gasp always spoon fed yogurt!
I bf a long time but Dd did have bottles too. We cosleep when needed but always put her in her own room to start with. I need sleep. .she needs sleep..I cbf to spend all night putting her back. Ive had as many buggies as slings..

anyway my point is.. I do what I like and maybe a bit oblivious to any snobbery going on but only tend to refer to these pages if im after certain info. ........id be mortified if anyone felt I was judging them for parenting differently!

chesterberry Wed 07-Aug-13 09:57:42

Love the cat-hatting LongTailedTit grin

congresstart Wed 07-Aug-13 17:50:04

I just checked on of the facebook pages out...very nicey, nicey on the surface, why do they all call each other mama and the babys bubs?. I always find that kind of fluffy language a bit try hard TBH, like that makes you a fabulous parent talking like a fool.

And amber teething ring for the pain anyone? sounds really effective. It's not for me really.

BlingBang Wed 07-Aug-13 20:30:24

just looked at a Gentle Parenting FB site. didn't seem anything like folk have been saying on here.

mam29 Wed 07-Aug-13 21:21:19

Theres a group of local women i sort of know in passing who called themselves mamas.Amazing mamas
for that reason i avoi their toddler groups
have no intention of applying to their school.

They into breastfeeding and cloth-fine so was i
very anti religion and go on about how all schools should be secular.
on surface nice but quite bitchy.

Its one thing see them on fb another thing to come face to face with them.

But sits through fb i realised what they like and some of their veiws

YoniBottsBumgina Wed 07-Aug-13 22:42:14

I'm finding this thread a mixture of interesting and hard work. I keep wanting to say things but can't seem to formulate the words. So just sort of checking in really.

I think my problem is I read too much, fall in love with something ideologically and then if it doesn't work I get really frustrated with myself!

LotsOfNettleTea Wed 07-Aug-13 23:05:13

I'm on a couple of these facebook groups and some of the people on there are lovely, others not. I think for a lot of people they're just another way of coping and talking through issues with someone who has similar ideals. For example (and I'm not talking about myself) sometimes its nice to complain about a difficult night feeding every half an hour without being told just to put them on the bottle. Some people do seem a bit OTT though, and I wouldn't want to give my parenting 'style' a name!

FrogsGoWhat Wed 07-Aug-13 23:20:50

I joined a couple of these groups because I was fed up being "the weirdo" who used slings rather than prams, cloth nappies, and breastfed and coslept.

The fact that I did all of the above (apart from cloth nappies - that was just being cheapskate grin to deal with my nightmare, never sleeping, never able to put down DD - was neither here nor there - a lot of people on these groups also fell into a "style" of parenting just to cope with their rather difficult babies.

And even now it is quite nice to have somewhere to talk about how to deal with requests to breastfeed a toddler when out and about, or how often they still feed at night etc without being made to feel a weirdo again.

Generally I find them supportive, and most people are nice (I avoid the ones where people call each other "mama" - makes my teeth itch! grin

But yes, there are some people who are a bit "committed" to it all ideologically, and sound a bit nuts about it all. So you just ignore them eh? confused

Although I love a good argument about how quacky homeopathy is, and that vaccination is actually a good thing etc. Oh and yes I DO praise my child, and say "good girl" etc. And I was the one rugby-ball carrying my tantrumming 2 yo away from the swing park this afternoon.... just because I like to be a gentle parent doesn't mean that I don't enforce boundaries (like we need to go NOW) grin

BlingBang Thu 08-Aug-13 08:28:56

see, i like the idea of being a gentle parent rather than a shouty one. just don't know if it's in my nature and how much your upbringing still weedles in. definitely more gentle than my parents were but times have moved on.

PeazlyPops Thu 08-Aug-13 09:48:46

A Facebook acquaintance has her employment section filled in as "full time mummy - attachment parenting" biscuit

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