The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Everyone Is An Expert …
September 29, 2016, 6:20 am
Filed under: A Bit Of Inspiration, Babies, Empathy, Family, Fatherhood, Jill, Mum, Mum & Dad, My Fatherhood, Otis, Parents

So this is going to be a weird post, but it’s an important one.

You see a few weeks ago, my wife wrote this …

“As I nursed my baby into toddlerhood I noticed a shift in the messages from outside voices. From supportive and encouraging in the newborn days to surprised, questioning or doubtful once he was a walking, talking toddler.

I like to think that most people want to help with their comments or advice, maybe they worry that our ‘extended’ nursing could somehow impact negatively on my son, after all, it’s not what most people do… Dependence seems to be something a lot of them are concerned about.

I want to show them how my beautiful, sweet, spirited, glorious little boy greets the world (and taxi drivers) with a wide smile or a cheeky ‘Ni Hao!’… how he chants ‘run, run!’ as his still chubby legs stride ever faster down little hills … how he bops and boogies to every kind of music, at every opportunity, in every environment … how he sometimes forgets to even look back to find me because he’s exploring his amazing, ever expanding world … but I guess they’re not completely wrong about him being dependent on me.

He depends on me for comfort, safety, security & connection when he’s sad or tired or hurt or frustrated or overwhelmed. As long as nursing provides this place of refuge for my precious boy I’m ecstatic I can be there for him. So I want those out there who question or doubt or suspect to know, we’re doing great thanks, our version of dependence is exactly as it should be …”

OK … OK … so she writes much better than me, but the fact is, I have been shocked how many people feel they have a right to be a judge on my sons upbringing just because they have their own child.

I accept most of them do it in a well-intentioned way [and fortunately, most of our friends have said, “the best rule to parenting is to only follow your rules and ignore everyone else”] but there has been more than a few – often relative strangers – who have used a judgemental tone or look when they’ve discovered we don’t agree with letting our son ‘cry himself to sleep’, let alone play with dolls or dance whenever music is on.

But here’s the big thing …

Given 50% of Otis is from me, the fact he is turning out to be such an amazing, wonderful little boy means it is 100% down to how Jill.

What she wrote is not an attempt to say ‘our way is the right way’, the purpose of it is to remind people that we have the right to decide what is the right way for us.

But what I find even more amazing is that given how well Otis is turning out, those who challenge our approach are trying to find fault in perfection … so I’d just like them to do me a favour and be an expert on their children, rather than other people’s, though this ‘know when to talk and know when to shut up’ could apply to far more than just raising children as I am sure many of you can appreciate.

26 Comments so far
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You were wrong yesterday. I agree with this post too. Now I have to go and lie down in a darkened room.

Comment by John

thats some serious fucking ill shit you have going on there doddsy. feel better by remembering jill wrote this so youre agreeing with her not him.

Comment by andy@cynic

I feel much better now.

Comment by John

thats £500 consultation fee. cash only.

Comment by andy@cynic

And now I’ve relapsed.

Comment by John

you can pay on the never never because thats the kind of generous bastard that i am.

Comment by andy@cynic

Maybe I should get her to write all my posts?

Comment by Rob

I felt exactly the same way when I had the girls. Strangers would come up and passively aggressively criticize my parenting. Tell Jill to ignore everyone, it is obvious to anyone with half a brain that Otis is a beautiful and happy little boy. I hope we can meet him soon. I can’t wait to pinch his cheeks.

Comment by Mary Bryant

See you next week.

Comment by Rob

If you’re coming for a free phone Rob, don’t bother.

Comment by Bazza

Based on the photos I see of Otis, Jill is a magnificent mother. You are not doing too bad as a father either Robert.

Comment by Lee Hill

He’s obviously an amazing happy boy end of discussion.
However I do hope he grows out of his resemblance to his father

Comment by Northern

compared to how he looked when he was born, the change is well on its fucking way. everyone can breathe a sigh of fucking relief. especially otis. now where the fuck have you been hiding northern?

Comment by andy@cynic

Surprised anyone noticed. Life’s not the best at present to be honest.

Comment by Northern

when youre bored shitless by this blog every fucking day you notice any fucking change. dont know whats going on but hope it gets better for you northyboy.

Comment by andy@cynic

Hope you’re OK Northern. And I missed you too … both in terms of noticing you’d gone and that you’d gone.

Comment by Rob


Comment by andy@cynic

only fucking advice jill should have listened to was from me when i told her to run for the fucking hills the moment she met campbell. but the kid is super fucking cute so everyone can fuck right off with their bullshit.

Comment by andy@cynic

It’s not dependency, it’s called attachment and the real experts know that it’s a very good thing.

Comment by John

Three cheers to Jill.

Comment by Bazza

[…] the skills and knowledge to handle whatever life throws at you and all we ask in return is you stay cheeky, curious and happy. Be safe knowing we will always support you in the things that excite you and move you and will […]

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