Monday, March 29, 2010

Parenting Advice

Apparently, you can get parenting advice for free simply by taking your child out in public. I have heard numerous stories from acquaintances about unsolicited advice from strangers of the "you're doing it wrong" sort of nature. These stories are remarkably intrusive. I have been sheltered from these incidents because babywhumpus spent most of his first year out of public places, and even now, I don't take him out a lot because he's a handful, and I know how much can suck for other people to have your child out in public.

You can also buy parenting advice in the form of books galore. We have a few books, but they are not about behavioral issues; they are of the baby-owner's manual variety. I have one book entitled "Nurture Shock." I bought it because I heard the author twice on NPR, and he seemed to be giving research-based advice, which appealed to me, plus, he that advice was interesting.

In the intervening months, I have completely forgotten what that advice was, and I have not read the book yet, but this article reminded me. Thankfully, it's short.

It's a point/counter-point between two authors: one who wrote a book entitled "Instinctive Parenting," and the author of "Nurture Shock." She says "close the book and go with your gut" and had to write a book to say that, which seems contradictory. He says that instinct can tell us to do something, but not necessarily what to do.

"It probably seems to people out there like one scientist says this and the other scientist says that," Bronson says. "That is not the case. The scientists have been reproducing each other's research and been saying one thing for 10 or 20 years. And we as a society haven't been listening to that."

I think the important thing to remember as regards this quote is that people are not necessarily listening to the science, they are listening to the "experts," who may or may not be scientists and who may or may not have a specific agenda. This is what led me to his book in particular, as he seems to be doing work based on the science, which interests me.

Hopefully, I can get to this book soon, and it will give me more interesting things to say here. Until then, you may have to put up with random pictures and annoying links.

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