Friday, January 24, 2014

Finish The Sentence Friday: Traditional Or Non-Traditional?

Finish the Sentence Friday

We can either be traditional or non-traditional in the way we do things, I... 

I like to think of myself as a fairly balanced mix of the traditional and the non-traditional. However, when it came to my parenting style, I was definitely more on the non-traditional side.

It started with the birth experience....I refused all drugs, all three times. By the time I was far enough along that it was time to push, I was really wishing I'd made another choice (all three times!), but I knew from all of my research that if I could hold out it was what was best for the baby.

I was also a breastfeeding mom, at approximately 18 months for each child, and exclusive breastfeeding for the first year. With people all around me starting their kids on cereal or baby food at 4 to 6 months, I got a LOT of flack over that choice. My kids were going to be sickly, they weren't going to grow properly, etc. Funny how they stayed in the 95th percentile for weight, and had great health, until they STOPPED breastfeeding.  :)

Sleeping arrangements were another non-traditional choice. Each of the kids bed-shared from the day they came home from the hospital, until they were somewhere between two and three years old. When they moved to their own bed in their own room was THEIR choice, which made the transition quick and easy. Once they made the choice, the only time we saw them in our room at night was when they had a nightmare, or when they didn't feel well.

I chose not to rush any of them out of diapers, either. I waited until they let me know they were ready to be a "big kid," at which point we went out and bought them a couple of packages of underwear, which they wore 24/7...and in a week, they were accident free, without a lot of stress on either them or me. For my son, that time came at 3 1/2, and for my girls, between 2 1/2 and 3.

Discipline was yet another big non-traditional area for me. I was spanked/hit for just about every infraction, big or small, and I knew I didn't want to subject any child of mine to that. In fact, that was a decision I made from the age of twelve. So, when I was pregnant with my first, I started researching alternative methods of discipline (with no internet back then, I spent a lot of time at the library, checking out every book I could get my hands on, and then doing some major reading). Eventually, I decided that natural/logical consequences were the best fit for me...a way to teach children right from wrong, where their consequences were directly related to their behavior. Sometimes it took time and creative thinking to come up with a consequence, but I honestly believe that it was worth it.

Funny thing is, looking back at this list, even though my choices weren't considered traditional at the time I made them, or even today, there was a time when most of them were the majority point of view----so maybe I'm more traditional than I thought, in a VERY old-fashioned sense of the word.

6 comments:

  1. I love that you were so thoughtful about so many parts of your life, and that is the good thing about being a parent, we can make a choice to do it our way. Funny thing is, our kids will see our ways as old and their ways as new and better, right?

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    1. So far, not so much. My oldest daughter has been doing most of the same things with her son that I did with them. And I've gotten to hear her apologize for giving me such a hard time as a child...LOL

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  2. I love the way you ended this and even sometimes as much as we think we aren't going to be traditional or conform in sense we do. Interesting concept and I know for all the fight I had in me, I totally (as I said in my post) have become more traditional with age now.

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  3. Teresa, When my son was little, I was not as confident in what I was doing. I admire your focus on what the best thing was for you and your children. I never considered that my son would know when he was ready to be potty trained. Amazing!!

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  4. We have extremely similar parenting choices- from the childbirth to the feeding to the sleeping! :) Good for you for finding something that worked for you!

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  5. I so agree with the feeding and the sleeping. My son was breast-fed exclusively until he was interested in food and weaned himself at about 14 months. Maybe later... He was in his own bed for night-time pretty early but co-slept with me for naps (I'd sneak out) for a long time. Years. And it worked. So yeah, I agree - whatever is best for our kids and our families...is the best tradition of all. Thanks for linking up with us!

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