Natural birth or epidural? Breast feeding or formula? Cry it out method or immediately comfort your baby? There are so many different choices you make as a mother, and when everyone else’s opinion thrown at you it can be a bit confusing at times. There are people out there who will tell you that you should or shouldn’t do something when it comes to your baby, but remember this is YOUR baby. This post is guaranteed to make some people hate me, but I’m writing what I believe so that doesn’t matter.
I had an epidural once I was two centimeters dilated. It was uncomfortable at first, but before long I felt great. I wanted an epidural as soon as possible because I didn’t want to risk a seizure during labor. Choosing medication was right for me, but that doesn’t mean having a natural birth is the wrong choice for you. No one knows your body and how you handle pain better than you. The only person that should have a say in this matter other than yourself is your trusted doctor or midwife. The one you chose.
Andrew is formula fed, and he always has been. I have epilepsy and am on a newer medication that hasn’t gone through many human trails involving breastfeeding women. Because of this I chose to play it safe and formula feed my son. In the beginning I cried every time I fed Andrew because I felt like a terrible mother for not breastfeeding. It didn’t help that I was attacked several times by complete strangers for choosing not to breastfeed. I was even called lazy. After a while I realized choosing not to breastfeed didn’t make me a bad mom. In my situation it made me a great mom. I was choosing to not risk putting my son in danger of possible risks that could come from my medications.
I know some moms who use the cry it out method, and it works for them. If I hear Andrew cry for more than a couple minutes odds are I’m about to cry with him. I am nowhere near emotionally strong enough to handle hearing anyone cry, and that’s especially true when it comes to Andrew. If one day it comes down to me having to use the cry it out method for a situation like weaning him off his pacifier, then I will do my best to tough it out. I, personally, would only use it as a last resort though, mostly because I am a bit of a sympathetic crier.
Another common debate I have seen among moms is weather or not to baby wear. I’ve tried baby wearing, but it just didn’t really work past when Andrew was a little over a month old. He and I are much more comfortable if I just put him in his little bouncy chair and move it into whatever room I’m in. As long as we can see each other, he is happy. I know of other babies who prefer always being as close as possible to their mother. Again, there is no right or wrong option. It all just depends on what makes you and your baby happiest.
The important thing to remember is that everyone’s situation is different. There may be times when you think another mom needs to be told that she is making the wrong choice, but really you shouldn’t. You won’t know the whole story of why she chose to take care of her baby in that way. Unless you are her constant shadow, and were raised the exact same way she was, then you will never know the whole story. Just ask yourself if you would want to be told that you are doing something wrong especially by someone you barely know. The only time you should voice your opinion is if the baby is in obvious danger, or if the mother asks you to say what you think.
If we all can stay a little more open-minded, then maybe we can put an end to mom wars altogether.