As parents, we sometimes feel like we’re wading in the waters of uncharted kiddy territory, so seeking advice every now and then is only natural. However, I think we can agree that not ALL advice is not welcomed, especially the ones that are unrequested and rather critical as it can actually be quite condescending and rage-inducing. So, here are 5 fairly polite responses to the all-knowing child whisperers.
It’s nearly impossible to raise children to adulthood without learning a few things along the way, and many veteran parents are very eager to share their knowledge with newcomers to the parenting club. Let them share their insight. Then, do what you feel is best for your child.
People regularly give me unsolicited parenting advice and you know what, I get it. You’ve had a few kids and now you want to share your great revelation or perhaps you don’t have any kids, so you have this fresh prospective as an outside observer. In all honesty, if I didn’t ask, I’d rather you refer all questions, comments and concerns to someone who cares. Below are a few examples of unsolicited advice and an appropriate response. For kicks and giggles, I even included the response your brain might want to give.
1. The Unwanted Advice
Parenthood is a beautiful thing. We all experience this universal adventure, yet each of our lives are completely different. One thing that remains the same for each parent is the unwavering amount of recommendations we receive on how to raise our children. We’ve all been counseled by well-intentioned people, including strangers, about our baby’s needs. Always consider the source and respond accordingly—be assertive and advocate for your child’s needs rather than following advice that contradicts what you believe will serve in your child’s best interest.
The Babble Interpreter: “Babies are always cold. Keep a hat and socks on him.”
Your Classy Comeback: “Hmm… that’s interesting because when I do put him on the hat and socks, he sweats his little life away.”
2. The Unwanted Judgement
If you‘re being lectured because of a parenting decision, embrace your choice and express to the concerned party how well this alternative is working for you and your family.
The Insightful Inquirer: “Your baby sleeps in the bed with you? That is dangerous! Babies should sleep alone, on their back, in a crib. Remember the A-B-Cs of safe sleep?!”
Your Classy Comeback: “I understand your concern, but we’re taking all the necessary precautions. Believe me, we didn’t come to this decision lightly. But, um, can you pass me the butter?”
3. The Unwanted Comment
Most of the remarks made about your parenting style deserve little to no consideration, but the audacity of the commentators is what often fuels our desire to give a snarky counter. However, you should use this opportunity to hit them with the facts. Of course, it doesn’t have to always be exactly factual, but making it sound like a fact usually shuts people up.
The Parenting Pioneer: “Put that baby down before you spoil her rotten!”
Your Classy Comeback: “Well, contrary to popular belief, it’s actually impossible for parents to hold, or even, respond to a baby too much. Infants need constant affection and attention to give them the foundation to grow emotionally, physically and intellectually.”
4. The Unwanted Shaming
Yes, we’ve all heard that “breast is best,” BUT breastfeeding doesn’t always work for everyone and that’s okay! Moms who bottle feed shouldn’t feel ashamed or have to explain why they aren’t breastfeeding.
The Internet-Approved Medical Scholar: “Wait, so, you’re not breastfeeding? You do realize that breastfeeding will give your baby much-needed antibodies and enzymes, right?”
Your Classy Comeback: “Yeah, I’ve read that breastfeeding has a plethora of benefits, but so does this formula my baby’s drinking.”
5. The Unwanted Bragging
Let’s be honest, we’re all obsessed with our kids and each of their achievements no matter how teeny tiny, which is completely fine! The flag on the play comes from the competitive comparison other parents make about their “prodigal overachiever” to the child of yours truly.
The Not-So-Humble Boaster: “Did I tell you that our little one is finally walking around on his own? We were crawling about with him for so long that I thought he’d never catch up to your little cruiser and, now, he’s completely surpassed her!”
Your Classy Comeback: “Wow, you must be so proud! It feels like just yesterday you were crying about your little one not being able to sit up on his own. He is impeccable proof that all kids really do progress at their own pace.
So, there you have it 5 respectful ways to acknowledge and dismiss dreadful unsolicited parenting advice, comments, judgment and shaming; unless, you want to tell them to buzz off because that’s most definitely your prerogative.
Have A Beautiful Day ✨