3 Good Parenting Practices That Put A Lot Of Pressure On Us (But Eventually Learned To Take Easy)

Tuesday, 22 September 2020

There are many good parenting practices but that does not mean that they are the golden rule or the only standard when it comes to raising our kids.

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When Khris and I learned that we were to become parents, we both already had a clear vision of what we wanted to be as mother and father. Ultimately, our goal is to be good parents and be able to raise healthy and smart children.

Mother and father with toddler and baby
Our little family

3 Good Parenting Practices That Put A Lot Of Pressure On Us (But Eventually Learned To Take Easy)

    Conforming with society's standards


    Most of the information that we gathered was from friends, from colleagues, from our own parents, and from reading parenting sites and even Facebook groups. When we were on the internet, we were always searching for good parenting habits, best parenting tips, and the best advice for new parents. 

    From our conversations and readings, we were able to create our own list of good parenting practices that we vowed to follow to the dot. That must have been the idealists in us working overtime. 

    However, among all the things that we have learned, there were three that stood out and promised to stick to no matter what. 

    Eventually, though, they have caused a lot of pressure on us to have almost put our baby’s health on the line. It’s a good thing that we were able to realize the risks early on and decided to just follow our instinct. 

    My wife and I are not dismissing parenting best practices as false, what we are just saying is that we should learn to treat these as guides and not really rules that are cast in stone.

    Good parenting practices 


    We realized that good parenting practices are meant to be guides only. They are not the standard and that if we do not follow them, that does not mean that we are being bad parents and that we are jeopardizing the welfare of our kids. 

    In the end, we reckoned that they may even do more harm than good if we did not let go of our ideals and learned to adjust. 

    Here are some of those parenting tips that we believed to be ultimate truths but put get pressure on us because we could not follow them. We learned to let these go and trust our gut feel instead. 

    1. Exclusive breastfeeding 


    We believe in the many advantages of breastfeeding. It has countless health benefits for both moms and babies. Aside from that, it’s also a practical alternative because you do not have to shell out extra cash to buy milk. 

    As such, we would always recommend to parents to breastfeed their baby whenever they can. We breastfed both our children but eventually shifted to mixed feeding because we had to go to work. 

    Two baby boys sleeping side by side
    Our two babies

    There was a time though when our firstborn was just a few months old that breastfeeding put loads of pressure on us. Again, we wanted to exclusively breastfeed our baby but Khris’ milk supply was inconsistent. There were days when her milk was abundant but there were also instances that it came in trickles. 

    In short, there were occasions when our baby would be crying frantically because he was hungry. Some friends and our doctor told us not to worry because the milk supply will soon stabilize. 

    It did for less than a month but by the time our baby was three months old, it was dwindling again and we had to go to work. 

    There were still crying spells from our baby because he was hungry, he was not gaining enough weight, and we cannot stock up on milk supply. That was when we decided that we really had to ask our doctor to prescribe a milk formula for our baby, which she readily did. 

    We were glad that we did so because our baby eventually gained weight and never went hungry again. 

    This was probably one of our greatest lessons in parenting. When our second baby was born, we asked his pediatrician for a milk formula recommendation when we had to go back to work even though Khris’ milk supply is much more abundant this time around. 

    That was just to make sure that he would not go hungry unlike his big brother. 

    In the end, what we have learned is to know when not to press on with your objective when it is not practical to do so, no matter how seemingly beneficial it is. 

    2. Feeding our kids healthy food only 


    I had to include this here because of a recent conversation with a colleague with regard to feeding our children. Naturally, we wanted to provide our children with a balanced diet, which is rice, meat, vegetables, fish, and fruits that are appropriate for their age. 

    However, no matter how tasty or delicious we prepare their food, there are occasions when they would not eat it. Instead of pressuring them for eating food that they do not like, let them eat the food that fancies them, as long as it will not be harmful to them. 

    Believe me, no matter how much you pressure kids, they will not eat their food if they do not like it. They would rather go hungry rather than consume something they dislike. 

    For our firstborn, for example, what works is we let him eat the quantity that he likes to eat, then give him milk afterward so that he will feel full. We sometimes give him hotdogs, burger patties, or fried chicken depending on what he wants to eat.

    During our conversation, my officemate and I both attest to the efficacy of giving our kids multivitamin supplements. It helps a lot in filling in the nutrients that they might have missed from not eating their food. 

    It also works well for us because our children rarely get sick or, if they do, they only get mild allergic rhinitis. Consult your pediatrician with what will work well with your children. 

    3. No gadgets 


    We actually once believed that gadgets were beneficial for growing children. For one, I learned a lot from watching cartoons when I was young. It also kept me preoccupied when I had no playmates. I figured it would be the same for my firstborn. 

    Happy family with baby in a toddler salon

    As time went on, we learned from our pediatrician that gadgets could actually prove to be unfavorable to children because they could affect the development of their social skills (or overall development, in general). 

    Since then, I felt the pressure to eliminate tablets from my son’s daily routine. Worse, I felt like a bad parent for exposing him to gadgets and possibly causing him harm. 

    We tried hard to wean him from gadgets but could not do so. For one, it kept him in his chair when we were dining outside or when we needed to finish some things. 

    Eventually, our solution was just to limit his gadget use to one hour each day. It worked for us and our baby eventually developed an interest in educational videos, particularly alphabet songs. 

    Yes, he learned to read letters from watching videos. He also lost interest in being glued to his tablet for a long period of time. He would watch his favorite shows, then lose interest afterward, and would play with his toys or gesture for us to play outside. 

    Epilogue 


    We all want the best for our children. When we are new parents, or about to become parents, we are excited to know the things that will be beneficial for our children. There are a number of good information and best practices available in cyberspace and from the people who are close to us. 

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    Good parenting practices that put a lot of pressure on us but eventually learned to take easy

    It’s good to follow and test out these best practices because they have proven to be effective by many people. However, remember that what may be effective for one will not necessarily be effective for us. 

    We should have the peace of mind to say that we have tried something but it did not work for us and that’s perfectly alright. It does not mean that we have failed as a parent or that we are bad. Keep in mind that it is only us who will know the best for our kids.

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