Brittany has some thoughts on unsolicited parenting advice-
Has that ever happened to you?? I know it has happened to me, and it drives me bonkers!!! In my opinion, unsolicited “advice”, or undermining what I do with my kids, is the worst. And some people just can’t take the hint!
My mother in law absolutely drives me crazy when it comes to my kids. We actually lived with her for a couple months while we were transitioning and trying to save a little money. If you have never lived with an in-law…..don’t do it! It’s not a good idea. The whole time we stayed there I got the “pleasure” of hearing all of her input on what I should do with my kids. The snarky comments and going behind my back made for a rough couple months.
She seemed to think that what I said to my kids didn’t matter. Here are some examples of what I had to deal with. I would be in the middle of cooking dinner and she would be sneaking them snacks as she is watching me cook. I would tell the kids it was bedtime and try to get them ready and, right in front of them, she would say “Oh can’t they stay up a little longer” or take them to her room to show them something and keep them in there for 30 minutes (or until I came to drag them out screaming and crying).
She always had a comment about the clothes I put them in. If I put lotion on them at night. If they had sunscreen on. What they were eating. What they weren’t eating. What they were watching. Even the shampoo I used on them!
We got into a couple good arguments during the time we were there, but I tried my best to pick and choose my battles since we were staying under her roof. Once we finally left, it got a little better. This was because I finally put my foot down and told her that if she didn’t like the way I was raising my kids, she could just keep it to herself (plus I don’t see her as much now….yay!)
I still get an occasional comment about their clothes or something but I just brush it off.
Close family always have a way of butting in when they shouldn’t. I know in their crazy/caring mind, they think they are helping, or at least trying to help. But in all reality….they are not! Moms, dads, brothers, sisters, even other close relatives like aunts, uncles, and cousins, seem to think that they know what is best for you and your family. And for some reason they have no problem sharing their thoughts.
My mom has been known to tell me that I put my kids to bed too early or criticize the way I discipline my babies. My dad will always ask where their coat is (even if it 75 degrees and sunny) or ask what’s all over their face or clothes. My brother seems to think that I started my kids in school too early and thinks I should have waited another year. And I have an aunt and uncle that just can’t help but push religious beliefs on my kids every time they see us.
Friends and outsiders
All of my friends have children who are pretty close in age to my kids. They deal with the same issues when it comes to people telling them how to raise their kids. So, you would think they would mind their business when it comes to other people’s kids. Guess again. I have one friend that keeps pushing me to get my daughters ears pierced. She always has a comment about my son’s haircut, and the time I spend with my older boys.
Strangers are the ones that really get to me. I don’t know you, and you don’t know me. So, what makes you think that you know how to raise my kids better than I do??
Everyone has a comment these days. I don’t get my kids out of the car if I’m just pumping gas. I pay at the pump, I have the windows down so I can hear them. There is no need to get them out around the cars and chemicals if I’m gonna be at the car the whole time. Evidently that’s an issue for some people.
People at restaurants always have something to say about their volume level and I even had one lady come to our table and question their food choices! Really? The grocery store is another place I tend to get a lot of input. If I tap my daughters hand for grabbing the 15th candy bar in 10 minutes, people have a worse meltdown than then she does.
I understand that for the most part, people only have good intentions. They generally care about other people and their well-being. However, as a mother, my number one priority is my children, my family and their well-being. I have been doing this mom thing for a while now, and I think I’m doing a pretty good job. There are tons of moms out there like me just doing the best they can for their family. You don’t know what they go through every day.
So unless someone asks for your advice or opinion….please don’t give it.