parenting strategy for newborn

(98 Posts)
mustardtomango Thu 05-Sep-13 16:22:39

I'm expecting in early November and I've been asked what our strategy is for many things recently - soothing /sleeping /noise etc. Is this kind of preparation really necessary or is it just over thinking things?

Seaweedy Sat 07-Sep-13 21:46:31

Honestly, I wouldn't bother reading if I were back at that stage. Have a couple of informative books about, for consultation. Agree that the first couple of months are about surviving, and agree with whoever said do whatever gets you most sleep.

You should do some advance thinking about feeding method and sleeping, maybe - we had decided in advance to buy a bedside cot, for instance, because we liked the idea of a kind of modified co-sleeping, which turned out to work well for us. Don't beat yourself if something you planned doesn't work out in practice.

For what it's worth, we never had anything resembling any kind of 'parenting strategy', and our baby is now a toddler, and completely wondrous.

VegasIsBest Sat 07-Sep-13 22:10:44

Just keep loving and cuddling them :-)
The rest will follow in time

Good luck

Yep wing it and hope for the best was my strategy. It seems to have worked ok dd has survived to two.

bouncysmiley Sat 07-Sep-13 22:25:08

Strategy is listen to your baby and do as you're told and take it from there! Baby will guide you (for the first 6 months anyhow!)

TerrorMeSue Sat 07-Sep-13 22:48:09

Strategy: hold baby as much as possible, feed baby. Change nappy when dirty. Try to remember to eat and drink and not stress about housework. Pray kind friends and relatives do helpful, supportive things like providing meals, listening without offering advice, and making cups of tea. Tell all interfering annoying unsupportive friends and relatives to fuck off (ok maybe just thin that last part).

Noseynoonoo Sat 07-Sep-13 23:07:26

I think TerrorMeSue has summed it up well.

I wish I hadn't listened to well-meaning friends and family who told me about routines/schedules/'making a rod for my back' and gave me books telling me the same.

If you feel that you want some guidance (and I have to stress that I think a mum's intuition, if left to her own devices, is the best guide) I would recommend the BabyCalm book and there are even BabyCalm workshops that run through what your baby needs and how you can calm them.

Good luck with it all - I wish new mums could get enough sleep to actually enjoy the wonder of having a newborn baby.

HaveALittleFaith Sun 08-Sep-13 09:57:35

Oh yes ignore anyone who says the words Rod for your own back. Someone said this to me this week - I explained I nurse DD to sleep, cuddle her and put her down very sleepy. This works for us, for now and we will sleep train at 6 months if we need to. I honestly agree the best thing is to listen to your baby. Remember you will be the expert when it comes to your baby. It's ok to put your foot down if someone is interfering!

FreyaKItty Sun 08-Sep-13 10:02:47

I bought a number of books, sears (attachment), breastfeeding (dr jack Newman - brilliant book). Penelope leach - best bit (seven reasons why babies cry - had a checklist - very handy when new to it and sleep deprived). Lots of lovely things on sky box (or box sets if you fancy) - I got a lovely musical changing mobile (sadly not made any more) which calmed baby and a bright starts mat (again with a music attachment which dd 1 adored and calmed her (used to attach it to her car seat etc when we were out.
Lots of food in the freezer, for those days you only have one arm. Dh had a sling so used to take baby in the evenings while I went to bed (from 8-11). A little notebook to write down weights, any issues (ds didn't like coffee, iron tablets etc).
Db sent lots of trashy books (Sidney sheldon types which I loved in the early days - nice read in the bath)
Get used to going out - you will notice good & bad times.
First 6 weeks baby will sleep a lot so nice to get out for nice relaxed coffees / lunches if you can manage it.
Visitors - use dh as the gatekeeper, visitors should be useful,
People want to give advise - you don't have to take it. Best practise is always changing.

Enjoy - as while the days go slowly - the months go quickly

Hawkmoth Sun 08-Sep-13 10:11:14

My strategy, and let me be clear, this worked exceptionally well, was to give up my life.

Don't expect to do anything, learn to enjoy telly in the early hours, embrace the haggard look and do what the baby tells you. The only advice I found useful was "sleep when the baby sleeps", which I did. I became semi-nocturnal. After a few weeks you notice things becoming more normal and then one day you've slept for six hours and the world seems a better place.

Hawkmoth Sun 08-Sep-13 10:12:10

Oh, and buy a thermal cup.

Sunnysummer Sun 08-Sep-13 12:58:57

smile at hawkmoth. Me too!

Does anyone who already has children talk about a parenting strategy? Do any of you have one? (Desperate daily prayers to any and all gods of sleep presumably does not count as an actual strategy.)

are you sure these friends aren't just asking if you've a particular style of parenting in mind in case you ask for advice? I've had friends (who had DC long before me) suggest I just put DD down in her cot at naptime rather than rock/feed/carry her - but if they'd asked me about my 'strategies/parenting style' at any point they'd have realised that wasn't something I could ever do (unless she just fell asleep without crying) - what works for one family can be totally wrong for another and I try not to give advice unless it's asked for, but partly that's because I never have any idea how other new parents view the whole thing and I wouldn't want to offend them by suggesting something that went against their parenting style. just a thought smile

JesusInTheCabbageVan Sun 08-Sep-13 17:47:42

Strategy = Mumsnet, no?

TheNaughtySausage Sun 08-Sep-13 17:59:08

Lol at "strategy". You're having a baby, not a meeting.

Don't buy any books. The baby hasn't read them. The mumsnet search box is your friend.

Sleep when the baby sleeps. Clean when the baby cleans. If the baby won't sleep, give it gin and laudanum*. Live off cake if you have to. Live in your pyjamas if you want to (but remember to wash them every so often).

Accept all offers of help.

Be wary of all the marketing. Babies don't need much.

*probably best not to give them gin or laudanum really. But it's ok to want to.

OhDearNigel Sun 08-Sep-13 18:19:03

The only parenting strategy you need is this

do what you need to do to get through the day

and don't give a fuck about what other people think

my advice is
1)smile sweetly at all offers of advice
2)when being offered a cup of tea GRAB IT

3) the most important piece pf advice is YOU WILL KNOW YOUR BABY BETTER THAN ANYONE SO GO WITH YOUR OWN INSTINCTS and know you are the best mummy to your baby

cake and thanks

DontmindifIdo Sun 08-Sep-13 18:20:40

I think it's important that you and your DH are consistant, if you have a plan to cuddle to sleep, hten you both need to do it, not one of you doing cuddling down and the other trying crying down - if you are going to follow a set routine then you both need to do it, not one of you then the other not sticking to it. If you are going to settle your DC with no noise, then you both need to do it.

It's also worth thinking about these things before hand, doing a bit of research, because otherwise you just fall into what you are doing and if it doesn't work for you, it's bloody hard to change. (And yes, I did make a rod for my own back having DD in the bed with us, it's now 14 weeks on and she's at last back in her own cot, bloody hard to do and wish I hadn't started with it because it was easier with night feeding, DH sleeps very deeply and I realised it wasn't safe for her to be in our bed, but once we were in the habit it was just hard for her to learn to go to sleep elsewhere)

Think about things like co-sleeping, dummy use, feeding options etc and make sure you talk to your DH about it, because it's hard enough when they are on board, really tough if they want to do something else.

Sonotkylie Sun 08-Sep-13 18:24:20

Strategy:
A. Complete flexibilty
B. Trust yourself - instinct is an amazing thing.
C. Eat cake

catgirl1976 Sun 08-Sep-13 18:36:36

What. Ever. Works.

SugarMiceInTheRain Sun 08-Sep-13 19:15:49

My strategy is to follow baby's lead. Your baby hasn't read all the books by 'experts' who claim he should be sleeping through at x weeks. Trust your instincts, ignore others who criticise you - everyone has an opinion hmm do what you need to in order to survive the sleep deprivation - napping in the day/ ignoring the housework/ unplugging the phone/ accept offers of help from visitors (if you want them).... Enjoy those newborn cuddles :-)

KingRollo Sun 08-Sep-13 19:28:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Oceansurf Sun 08-Sep-13 19:35:35

Agree with all the other posters!

Just go with the flow.

What did work for us though, round about the week 5 mark (when sleep deprivation really kicks in) was the Harvey Karp method. Swaddling and rocking to stop the baby crying. Was an absolute lifesaver.

That, and buying a memory foam raised wedge for DD's moses basket, which helped her reflux no end and meant by 7weeks she was happily sleeping through (with just a wake up at 11 for a dream feed)

Looking back now (DD is 10months old) I wish I'd enjoyed the easy days a lot more!!! (sleep deprivation aside!)

bigbuttons Sun 08-Sep-13 19:40:29

I never had a strategy for any of themconfused

hettienne Sun 08-Sep-13 19:45:26

My strategy was:
If the baby cries - fix it.
That usually involved a boob, sometimes a nappy, and works for the first 6-9 months or so. After that you might need some more strategies, but I wouldn't worry about that yet.

dragonflymama Sun 08-Sep-13 19:52:37

Some great advice above...things I agree most with (1) think through feeding preference beforehand (2) always trust your instincts (3) let the baby lead you re sleeping preferences (times, place), frequency of feeds etc.

A few extra tips: (1) learn to do all domestic tasks with 1 hand slings helped us with both children (2) take one day at a time....you will have bad / tears days but tomorrow always brings a new day / baby smile!

Good luck!

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