Please, Just Don’t! – What to say to a Mother & Baby NOT.

From the moment I became a parent, I’ve discovered that many people we don’t know at all try to interfere in our life. Very often the interference is kind and comes from people who just want to say hello to Little Man, they want to make him laugh, they smile at him and wave goodbye. Though it can be annoying at times, I can’t blame those people because:

a) Little Man is really cute 😛

b) It’s usually nice

c) I do it myself .

I’m fine with it, as long as this someone treats me and my child with respect and keeps distance. Other than that – I’m ready to rage!

“All children are ours” sings a polish artist and there surely is a drop of truth to it, and I agree everyone should keep an eye on all children around because you never know when you could help one but for goodness sake, why can’t everyone just stick to common sense when it comes to this? To add to it, (un)fortunately I’m not the type of person that will immediately cut a stranger’s behavior if it irritates me but I guess I will slowly have to start doing it….

Here’s a list of interferences, interractions and behaviours that drive me ridiculously mad! (talking about random strangers):

  1. “What is your mommy doing to you poor thing”

Oh yeah, I take great pleasure from watching my baby crying its eyes out and catch every opportunity to make him do so!!!

When Little Man was born, for the first few months he would literally wake up crying when hungry not giving me even a slight chance to prepare myself for feeding. What more, there were a few times that he would start crying out of the blue when I had to walk into a shop and before I found a mother & baby room I was nearly crying with him. Later on I had overcome certain “first time mom issues” (like fear of breastfeeding in public places or panicing instead of trying to understand my baby) ) and fed Little Man pretty much anywhere as soon as he started crying but before that it wasn’t easy at all, I was all stressed out and so was my baby and people saying  “What is your mommy doing to you poor thing” really didn’t help a bit….

TULTUL

  1. “He’s hungry!” “He must be hot/cold!” “I’m sure it’s baby colic!” “You have to change his nappy!”

Oh really? What would I have done without your help? I would have never thought of any of this!!! I have no idea how my baby survived up to this point without you in my life! But most of all – No shit Sherlock!

Some people are living models of tact when it comes to supporting young mums in need. If you’re not spending 24 hours a day with my baby and you’re not a pediatrician, please stop posing as its expert and start sharing constructive ideas instead or at least pretend to be understanding.

  1. “Can I touch that sweet little hand of yours?” And before anyone knows it, there he/she is holding my baby’s hand!

This is something I really hate! As long as someone is just speaking to Little Man or me, I can ignore it or just turn around and say “sorry, I have to go”. If someone touches Little Man’s hand, that’s it. My head gets attacked by thousands of ideas what that hand could have been touching right before that and I’m not even meaning anything gross but it could even be a handle-bar on the bus which has been touched by at least a few people with different infections before. I’m definitely not that kind of person that doesn’t let my baby get dirty in any way and I surely don’t have a sterile home but there are certain things I do take extra care of and that includes washing hands after leaving the toilet, after touching money or using the tram or bus and I really don’t think I’m being over the top here. These are basics for me and I know that many people don’t follow this at all, no matter whether they’re rich or poor, young or old. I work in a big corporate company and I have many times noticed someone leave the toilet without washing their hands…. . I know I will not be able to protect Little Man from this forever, especially when he starts crèche but it’s worth remembering a child’s immune system is much weaker for the first 2 years of life not to mention how fragile a newborn is for the first several weeks.  Anyway, call me mean, a weirdo or whatever, there were a few instances I actually walked a few steps away and cleaned Little Man’s hands with wet baby wipes… The world is evolving and so are different infections. It’s up to every parent but I personally hate it.

  1. “Will you go home with me?” „Come with me”

As creepy as it sounds, yes, Little Man hears that very often. It’s usually the elderly who tend to reach out their hand to him and try to convince him to go with them. I know that they don’t intend to do anything bad by saying this and that they wouldn’t really walk off home with him but they don’t even think about what they’re teaching the little earthling. At the moment I just calmly say “no, he won’t” looking at Little Man who just turns around and runs away. He was never one of those little people who smiles to everyone or gives his hand and walks away with anyone. Luckily he’s always been quite suspicious of strangers but if this keeps going on one day he’ll follow someone and think it’s ok to do so. Not to mention what I feel like standing next to him and hearing this especially when I’m trying to teach him to hold my hand when walking along the street… Argh! Again, I think I’ll have to become more  assertive here….

WB2F0909int

5. “Isn’t he too big for breastfeeding? ” „Such a big boy and still drinking breastmilk…” ” Shouldn’t you stop breastfeeding?”

Just leave it, will you? This is a very sensitive topic left alone itself and really, LIKE REALLY doesn’t need any commenting, especially by people you have never met before and will probably never meet again. How many people – this many opinions about breastfeeding, so I won’t be digging deeper into this. It’s my choice for reasons I can keep for myself and nobody else in this world has nothing to do with it. All I can say is our path to breastfeeding certainly wasn’t a bed of roses and I have put an extremely lot of effort into making it work! It’s my conscious decision and I’m absolutely happy with it, not to mention Little Man himself. Next time you think someone has been breastfeeding for too long, recall the content of the link below and make sure you have a very solid purpose and solid arguments to contest such choice:

World Health Organization Guidelines

Mama-karmiąca

I am a very tolerant person and I do understand that the elderly miss children in their life, that there’s quite a big bunch of lonely people out there and that most people have no intention of being a pain to anyone of us but that doesn’t explain anyone from not following the basic rules of common sense, understanding and a bit of empathy, and it will make me – English Mum in Wroclaw Town RAGE.

This is still a short list which I’m sure will be getting longer and bigger with every year of Little Man’s life but for now this is it and hopefully by the time I come back to add some more points I will have learned how to deal with the above more effectively…

I’d love to read  about what you would add to this list and whether you have came across any of the above mentioned before? How did you behave? Do you have any tips on how to deal with such behaviour in a nice and short manner?

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