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Ridiculous parenting advice

303 replies

GreasyHairDoNotCare · 05/03/2018 12:29

Aibu to ask you what the most ridiculous bit of parenting advice that you've ever been given is?

I can think of a few but these stand out to me

'It's good for him to cry like that, gets the air to his lungs, leave him for a while'- DS was screaming with teething pain and wanted comforting

'Can't you just lay him in the bath, he'll hold his breath obviously' - no DS will drown if I do that

OP posts:
Chienrouge · 06/03/2018 12:54

Come on... don’t go out after the birth in case you get a chill up your vagina would be ridiculous advice whenever it was said.

penypass · 06/03/2018 12:54

I was told, (25 years ago mind you,) that if I didn't stop giving my children a vegan diet the HV would call in social services. I was also told the same when they started to primary school. I hope it is better for parents now!!

bricksareheavy · 06/03/2018 12:59

My DS was five months old when I was stood at a bus stop with him in his pram. There was an old lady sat on a bench there who asked if I was breastfeeding him. When I said I did, she advised me to stop as in her day they settled much better if you gave them tins of Nestle carnation milk via a bottle.
Funnily enough, I didn’t follow her advice.

cathf · 06/03/2018 12:59

To be honest, if I had a baby now, I would be reluctant to follow today's advice for a lot of things.
My babies were all in a routine from birth more or less, which I know is frowned upon now, and I do believe in baby fitting in with you rather than everything revolving around baby.
I also think a lot of current advice actually discourges good sleep, but that's another thread!

happy2bhomely · 06/03/2018 13:00

There is a massive difference between advice like when to start weaning, which is evidence-based and changes with what we know at the time and advice like biting a biting baby back to teach it a lesson.

I wouldn't judge anyone for feeding baby rice at 4 months or swaddling even though it is not currently recommended. But putting a crying baby in a shed or giving a 3 month old coke has never and will never be ok!

Some gems that I have had passed on to me over 18 years and 5dc include,

Feed mince, mash and gravy from 3 months- GP
Bite him back- MIL
Put a rusk in his bottle- DM
Breastfeeding a boy is perverted, express into a bottle- School mum
Slings are dangerous, you will fall and crush them- Stranger
Let them cry, it's good for them - Grandparents
You'll never manage to breastfeed without supplementing with formula- Midwife, said about ds born at 11lbs. He was EBF for 6 months.

The advice does tend to dry up as they get older which I find quite strange.

I remember my MIL telling me that I would receive lots of advice and I should listen to it all, pick out what was useful and ignore the rest. It was the best advice she ever gave me!

FrayedHem · 06/03/2018 13:04

DS1 was a very fractious baby and I took him to a cranial osteopath when he was about 4 months old. The practitioner told me his problems were because he was formula fed (I'd bf'ed for 9 weeks) and it was wicked to give a baby dairy and I should give him apple juice instead. I did not take the advice or go back.

NomsQualityStreets · 06/03/2018 13:04

That I should potty train at 12 months.
When my DF made a joke as my DM was rocking my DS for ages to get him to sleep she said if she was on her own she would just put him down and let him cry - he was 8 weeks old Confused

That I can't eat cabbage or drink fizzy drinks if I'm BF as it will make my baby suffer with gas.
That a cold bath is a great way to bring down temperature in a toddler/child.
That my DS having longer hair will make him have sight problems (obviously girls don't have that risk).

I have also had the "if you hold them too much you will spoil them" etc about tiny babies. My DS was a Velcro baby and very cuddly even now. I had no chance of putting him down and used to get upset until I read that you can't spoil a tiny baby.

That a one year old shouldn't have a dummy.

GreasyHairDoNotCare · 06/03/2018 13:05

I remember my MIL telling me that I would receive lots of advice and I should listen to it all, pick out what was useful and ignore the rest. It was the best advice she ever gave me!

my mum gave me the same advice! I just laugh at the completely ridiculous suggestions people have now.

OP posts:
drspouse · 06/03/2018 13:13

The advice does tend to dry up as they get older

Then they just tell your child what to do instead.
"You're a naughty girl, you're going to get a smack" (won't get in buggy).
"If you're naughty Father Christmas won't come" (already wound up 5 yo)

BustopherJones · 06/03/2018 13:59

To tell my 4 month old ‘no’ whenever they put a toy in their mouth and remove the toy and they will eventually learn not to do it. Or they will just stop when their hands naturally take over and you won’t have wasted months of your life on misery. Not to mention the fact that the toys were designed to be put in their mouths.

Graphista · 06/03/2018 14:03

Not to feed dd to sleep, sleep on me in day. - my mum (who on babies is usually sensible) thought bf was bad generally and certainly didn't think babies should "get used" to it.

That I was being neglectful moving dd onto green milk - she NEVER liked blue milk would drink far more if it was green and I had go ahead from GP to do it. She was 2.

That it was "dangerous" to take dd out - wrapped up warm in pram with blankets etc because we lived in Northern Europe at the time and it was "so cold her lungs will freeze" not sure how they thought the locals survived.

Nice normal hv - hmm, my first was something else. No experience with children at all but an EXPERT all her advice came from books or research. I had enough at one point when she tried to tell me dd SHOULD be sleeping through the night at 6 months in a way that suggested I was flipping waking her deliberately! Told her not to come again. I was then assigned someone else and when dd developed asthma and some quite serious allergies she was fantastic! She'd a big family of her own and a wealth of experience and took a very common sense approach.

"nap during the day, they will sleep better at night!" Yep - from parents and non-parents, parents lucky enough to have children that slept well. Mine - didn't sleep through until school! (Now 17 and needs PRIZED out of bed!!)

I think I recall Aprils posts about this dh from another username - multiple issues with him and his mother iirc. April I don't know how you coped!!

Fizzy drinks do have an effect on milk. The carbon dioxide gets in and while of course the milk isn't fizzy it changes the consistency plus if iirc changes the ph? I did find it was better for dd when I was bf if I didn't have fizzy juice.

My (now ex) mil was really great and accepted fully that times and knowledge change. She'd had a hard road to motherhood and was really understanding of my anxieties when pregnant with dd after losing 3 previously. When others (inc her own son!) were dismissive of these concerns she soon put them back in their box!

My own mum I've had some ahem disagreements with regarding dds disability. Apparently nhs specialists make stuff up to keep themselves in jobs! There's nothing wrong with her (yea apart from the chronic daily pain, swollen, regularly dislocating joints, repeated related issues which have resulted in hospital admissions and risked her losing her sight!)

"I have little faith in Gp's" me too. Many reasons but including several years of me and dd being sure something wasn't right prior to her diagnosis. Eventually a (female - I'm sure a big part of it is many male gp's think women are mainly hypochondriacs!) locum took one look at dds latest 'barely a bump caused it' injury and referred us to a paediatric orthopaedic specialist. To be fair HE took one look and was fairly sure what the issue was likely to be (tests and assessments were still done of course). Not only frustrating and causing extra suffering for dd but I can't help but think it would have SAVED the nhs money if we'd been referred earlier instead of repeated trips to GP, a&e and numerous X-Ray's plus ineffective treatments for other issues (her condition makes her resistant to certain Meds).

However I do remember an incident where I was expecting daft advice/criticism - dd was having a SUPREME tantrum in the supermarket, I was so embarrassed but also frustrated and so sort of pretended to walk off and "abandon" dd - knowing she'd jump up and catch up realising she's pushed mum too far. An older lady with an unfortunately strong case of "resting bitch face" approached me. I thought "oh here we go" instead she broke into a smile and said "you're doing fine. Some of mine were lucky to live to 3!" And patted me on the arm 😂

"and you're all here to tell the tale."
I hate comments of this type. There are babies and children who DIDN'T survive due to what we now know to be incorrect advice or just lack of knowledge. Eg lot of heavy smokers in my family, the norm for that generation and older but me and my sister both have quite bad asthma, I've an aunt who's baby died of Sids, her and her dh also both heavy smokers at the time and kept their home very warm "for the baby" it's now 30-odd years later and she's wracked with guilt that although she COULDN'T have known any better those things could have contributed to her sons death, mum's cousins dh is disabled due to being in a car accident as a baby. In a carrycot not strapped in (I only recently learned that was why). So no NOT all of those babies and children survived/stayed in best possible health.

I'm not a granny yet (and hope not to be too soon) but even when I'm advising (only if asked) friends or family on baby/child issues I do preface with something like "what worked for me was..." Or "the advice when dd was a baby was..." And I try to keep up with the latest advice, partly curiosity, partly as I still occasionally will babysit for folk.

Dd did actually comment recently she hoped I wouldn't be how one of her friends mum's was being with friends older sister that's just had her first. Apparently she is being a bit too free and insistent with the advice. I said I hoped not and if I was just either ignore me or let me know what the correct current advice is. (When the time comes)

But there's ALSO incorrect info coming from the other end of things. I was reading recently that although how I did making up and storing formula was no longer the "ideal" it wasn't as "verboten" or potentially harmful as is often claimed.

Some advice comes back around, a thread I was reading recently a few older posters said some of the "new" advice was what they were being advised in the 50's/60's.

Dd totally wrong footed me! I was all geared up to be a relaxed, flexible mum - nope! Dd HATED being out of a strict routine.

Sleepyblueocean · 06/03/2018 14:08

"The leader said he should be left as he was exploring the sensation or something."

My son does that at special school. It's good for sensory development (but they use proper play trays for it)

Haffiana · 06/03/2018 14:20

Breastfeeding a boy is perverted, express into a bottle- School mum

This is so, so sad.

GreasyHairDoNotCare · 06/03/2018 14:37

So my mum is reading the sun online and guess what she has found - this bloody thread!

OP posts:
ILostItInTheEarlyNineties · 06/03/2018 14:39

I can see how putting your hands in trays of paint could help sensory development Sleepy, it just seemed odd to encourage a child to essentially wreck the painting table for everyone else because it was sensory exploration.
It was an unlucky if you wanted to paint a picture of a house or something, the table's dripping in paint now scenario.

I don't really like the current trend for mud kitchens either. Our local pre school had a lovely little garden with grass and a wooden ship to play on and now it's been changed into a mud bog and all the children have to wear plastic head to toe forensic suits to play in it. I don't really understand it myself!

GreasyHairDoNotCare · 06/03/2018 14:40
OP posts:
ILostItInTheEarlyNineties · 06/03/2018 14:40

That's annoying Greasy!

CurlyBlueberry · 06/03/2018 14:41

When my DD was late in walking (and also shuffled/crawled weirdly with one leg dragging behind her) I took her to the GP, who thought her leg creases were a bit uneven and referred us to the hospital for a hip scan. I was telling my lovely SIL and saying "I'm sure it is all fine but obviously we are a bit worried".

BIL's wife, childless at the time and no qualifications in anything remotely child-related, piped up from across the room with "oh our friend's DD was the same and you know, they took the time to TEACH her to walk and by the end of the afternoon she could do it! Maybe you could try that!" with one of those smug smiles.

Oh yeah, that's where I went wrong, I'd obviously never bothered to try and help her walk Hmm I mean REALLY?!

BlurryFace · 06/03/2018 14:44

If I raise my hands above my heads, the umbilical cord will hang my baby - but here's a recipe for a hot toddy made with vodka, it'll help you sleep. I miss my oldschool russian coworker something fierce.

MissCherryCakeyBun · 06/03/2018 14:51

Fizzy breast milk? Carbonation getting into the milk? How ? By magic?

I'm still astonished that people believe this....after all if it worked like that you must have fizzy blood. Grin

Breast milk is made totally separately to the digestive tract, however as caffeine is absorbed into the blood high quantities of caffeine style drinks ( carbonated or not can effect the blood and so the milk)

afrikat · 06/03/2018 14:53

Babies don't need naps (this advice started around 8 weeks). If they are fighting the nap it's because they aren't tired. Being overtired isn't a thing. If you keep them awake all day and put them to bed at 9pm they will sleep all night.

If the baby is screaming in the car seat we should just turn it around so she can see forwards. She was 10 weeks. When we said that would mean she would very likely die in a crash the advice was 'don't crash then'

ethelfleda · 06/03/2018 15:07

after all if it worked like that you must have fizzy blood


Puremince · 06/03/2018 15:08

We should bind a silver sixpence to the umbilical stump to help it heal.

We should organise someone to wait outside the church to give us cheese and oatmeal after DC's christening.

Bananas are indigestible and shouldn't be given to toddlers. (In fairness, she showed us her old baby advice book from the 1950s and it did say that.)

reluctantbrit · 06/03/2018 15:49

Fizzy breast milk? Carbonation getting into the milk? How ? By magic?

I'm still astonished that people believe this....after all if it worked like that you must have fizzy blood. grin

Breast milk is made totally separately to the digestive tract, however as caffeine is absorbed into the blood high quantities of caffeine style drinks ( carbonated or not can effect the blood and so the milk)

I have no idea how it works but it does. As soon as I stopped fizzy water DD's reflux and colic DID go down. Yes, there are other things in the diet which moves into the milk like acid fruit, spices, dairy which I also cut out but none of this was a staple of my diet like sparkling water.

And the relief of not having a screaming baby after each feed is worth the maybe non-exisiting medical support.

Graphista · 06/03/2018 15:58

Yes the carbonation doesn't get in the milk but the carbon dioxide reacts to create acids and they get into the milk.

Many who've bf and had a baby with stomach issues has found there are certain foods and drinks that make matters worse/better.

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