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What to believe if you’re expecting?


You’re expecting a baby, you’re reading a lot, and you’re getting confused about what to believe. Sound familiar? You’re not alone. If you Google “recommended pregnancy books 2010”, 47,600,000 links appear, including hundreds of top-selling books (yes, you read correctly, that’s 47 million, six hundred thousand links)! New moms, beware. There’s a lot of conflicting information out there, and you will need a strong filter to weed through the crap that doesn’t apply to you, and a tough skin to endure the things that may make you feel like a bad mom, even before you become one! The politics of sleep and baby-wearing are the biggest bones of contention in the reading stack. On one side of the fence, you have the Attachment Parenting theory (which advocates co-sleeping and baby-wearing); and on the other side, you have a variety of Get-Your-Baby-to-Sleep-Through-The-Night theories. Both contend that if you don’t follow these methods, you will have a difficult, needy baby, and potentially inflict some sort of psychological trauma. Here’s what I recommend: Don’t buy it. Read all the books if you must (regretfully, I did), but don’t buy into the orthodoxy in any of these theories, unless it really works for you to follow one method 100%. One of my favorite Buddhist quotes applies very well to new parenting, “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 common sense.”

My advice is to read what appeals to you, but take it with a grain of salt, and integrate a few different theories into your new life as a parent, with a good dash of your own instincts. Because generally, nothing works 100% for everyone.


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