Some people ask me if I believe in any particular parenting theory, and the answer is no, I don’t. I don’t subscribe to one parenting theory in the same way I don’t subscribe to any one religion. Yes I read Buddhist philosophy and I meditate, but that by no means makes me a Buddhist. One of my favorite Buddhist quotes is: “Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.” Of course this is loosely translated from Sanskrit, but I love the sentiment and apply it to my life daily. Like religion, many new parents are looking for a book or theory that will give them all the answers. The problem with following one theory or one religion, is in the consequences. For example, some parenting theories (and religions) argue that if you don’t follow their principles, you will create an emotionally damaged child (or go to Hell). Sorry folks, but this doesn’t agree with my common sense or reason! When I speak with confused new families, I suggest they try to forget everything they’ve read and everything they’ve heard and everything they think they SHOULD do, and then simply look carefully at their babies and at each other and in their own hearts. The answers are not in a book or a theory or in anything you can buy. So go and throw out all your parenting books and listen to your own reason and common sense!
Hi, I’m Natalie, founder of Mommywise. I’m a Brooklyn mom of two (now) teenagers, PPD survivor, still humbled by the early years of parenting. I started this blog in 2004 as a way to help other parents who felt as dark and lonely as I felt to feel less shame, normalize the feelings of not loving parenthood, and raise awareness about postpartum mood disorders. I’m passionately committed to helping new parents feel more joy, offering sustainable employment for women and mothers, and contributing to positive change in the world.