February 15, 2007

Can't we agree to disagree?

Again, with the "staying in" - it's in the upper teens here and I just didn't feel like bundling us up to fight the elements. Fortunately, it's harder on me than Arun but fortunately, I get to escape today because Cousin J is coming by this afternoon to babysit. Yeehaw.
  • I can't remember if I am repeating myself, but I have really come to enjoy the magazines Brain, Child and Wondertime. Both are really cool parenting magazines with thought-provoking articles that encourage enjoying your children and their childhood (imagine that!) No, you won't find any "how to get your kid to eat veggies"or "how to stop the tantrums" articles in these mags - that's precisely why I don't like the other publications because I always feel itchy and on edge after reading them. I hate the "you're doing it wrong/do it this way instead" slant those other mags seem to take on. I like Brain, Child and Wondertime because I always feel refreshed, inspired and excited about parenting after reading them. And really, shouldn't we ALL feel that way about parenting?
  • The Kansas City Stitch n' Bitch is meeting this Sunday at the Cafe Roasterie for it's 1st Annual Stash Swap. Bring in your old skeins of yards for swapping. The KCSnB has been going really well! Nearly every meeting we've had at least 5 people and what's exciting is that it's always a different set of folks. If everyone ever happens to show up all at once, we'll have easily 15 folks. Which will totally freak me because the table we reserve is for about 8.
  • Well, it's official. Arun is weaned at 16 months. I nursed him on the trip out to Boston, but not at all while we were there. Frankly, I didn't think about it and he didn't ask for it. We both sorta forgot. On the trip back home, I decided to just be done with it. However, on the flight from Chicago to KC, his ears started bothering him and he would not take a drink for anything so I did nurse him that last time. But he hasn't asked since. I am very comfortable with how it all went down. We were both ready, there was no trauma or drama. He nursed as long as he apparently needed to and that's a good thing. I am not really sad about his weaning himself, but that's probably because I have NewKid lurking around the corner.
  • Speaking of NewKid, this little tyke moves SO MUCH. I am so grateful - I was very spoiled with Arun being such a kung fu fightin' hamster and know that if NewKid is a quiet one, that will make me nervous. To have a baby that moves all the time is a such a blessing because it's a constant reminder that they are still ALIVE. Also, I've already picked out boy and girl names, but X won't even discuss it until we have our sonogram in about 4 weeks. Yes, we are going to go with Indian names and will totally fuck around with the spelling so that people will think "Gawd, R U trying to be KEWL?"
  • Time and time again, I hear stories of people being upset when their pediatrician disagrees with how they are doing something. I'm not going to go into specifics, but there have been several instances where my ped and I have disagreed. The most recent is the big milk vs. soymilk controversy. I am well aware that children need a high fat diet for proper brain development. I did research on serving sizes, fat content, etc. and I make sure that Arun gets the same serving size in Stonyfield baby yogurt that he would have gotten in whole milk (a toddler only needs 16 oz per day of whole milk). Arun will not drink milk like he drinks soymilk - I have thrown out gallon after gallon of spoiled milk trying to fight the Good Fight. I am not going to fight the issue any longer when soymilk has TONS more nutritional value than milk does anyway (do a cup by cup comparison - Silk Soymilk Enhanced wins by a landslide, it's just missing rhe fat). I am also not going to argue with my ped. It's her opinion. And I do value her opinion and in general, agree with her approach to things. However, like all doctors, she is human and we do not see eye-to-eye on everything. I am not going to stress about it and I don't think other parents should stress when they disagree with their doctors, either. Of course, I am not saying I would ignore my doctor, and I do take what she says into consideration. But I don't get myself into a tizzy when she disagrees with me. And really, who knows your child best? I would argue that parents know their child best and maybe in some cases, knowledgeble, reasonably educated parents probably know what's better as well.

12 comments:

Leah said...

The thing that bothers me about pediatricians dispensing parenting advice, is when they make it sound like it is medical advice. I have various examples, I just find it really annoying. I'd love it if they would just say, "here's what I think" instead of "now you need to do this" with the "or your kid will be effed up" implication. Sorry, I would write more, but D. is trying to type.

Leah said...

Oh, and I'm glad the weaning was mutually pleasant!

Cagey said...

Leah,
re: 1st comment....I know what you mean. A friend of mine had her ped tell her she needed to let her baby "cry it out" which pissed me off because THAT is definitely an parenting opinion not based on medical needs. And my friend was really upset about it because the ped made her feel like she was being over-indulgent. Another hot topic is breastfeeding - it's crazy what doctors will tell their patients. Like you must stop breastfeeding while pregnant, even if you aren't high risk, or you must stop breastfeeding once your child is 12 months old.

Overall, I just LOVE my doctor. I totally trust my children in her hands, otherwise I wouldn't be going to her. But, I don't always agree with her - that was really the point of my post.

re: 2nd comment....I am glad I waited until HE was ready. I never understood what was so "magical" about the 12 month mark and was fine with going to 16 months. Also, after the 12 month mark, I was very careful to not nurse at the same times every day so he didn't get an emotional attachment to them - for example, he doesn't need to nurse right before bedtime or first thing in the morning because it's not part of any routine. That's probably why he "forgot" to nurse.

Anna said...

That's how weaning worked with my daughter as well - by 19 mos, she was just nursing in the morning and finally started biting more than nursing. Once I couldn't use it to buy that extra half hour to an hour of sleep, that was it, we just switched to cuddling. She never asked and never seemed to miss it.

It's interesting that you say that about your pediatrician. I had a pre-natal appointment with my family doctor this week, and the discussion turned to my desire for a VBAC. While I agree with everything she's going to DO (which is basically nothing, no interventions), I disagreed with a few of the things she said, i.e. maybe my body just doesn't "work" for birth, maybe I have an improperly shaped pelvis. I really like my doctor, I've been with her for fifteen years, but I was wondering if I was being stupid not looking for someone who totally agreed with my outlook. I think you've voiced what I was feeling - that we can both have opinions and they don't necessarily have to be the same on everything. She respects what I want, and that's what's important.

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

I sometimes think they might be a little overenthusiastic with advice that straddles the boundary between social and medical advice because they're afraid of litigation-I think that might be a possible explanation for the soy v. whole milk controversy ("notes for date X: told Cagey she is feeding Arun the devil's drink"...I keed I keed).

However, I don't see why anyone would ever tell a parent about "cry it out", co-sleeping, length of breastfeeding, or how much they hug or pick up a child because that is NOT medical advice. IMO that is social advice and when I want that, I'll ask my mom and dad and my friends who already had kids, whom I know personally, and generally share social views with.

One of the big things for me, with doctors, is not necessarily the degree on the wall and where they came from, because the average american medical school is nigh near impossible to get into, so I don't give a crap about Harvard v. State U as long as the physician is board certified. What I care about most is the manner in which they communicate. I still remember, to this day, the Harvard derm who told me I'd never recover from a certain problem (at the risk of being totally embarassing, my hair had started falling out) and that I'd just have to wear a wig. He said that to me. To my face, when I was 21 years old. I mean, seriously, I almost contemplated becoming a nun.

State U derm, who I'd been seeing for years hugged me as I sat in her office crying, said "we'll work on it" and discovered what? That the women in my family are all genetically anemic and that that predisposition, in combination with the fact that I don't eat red meat, had led to a dangerous iron deficiency. I went on supplement therapy and my hair grew back.

As long as they listen to you, they're doing their job is my opinion. I've never been afraid to sack a doctor or seek a 2nd opinion when my gut tells me that I may not have an MD, but I'm not going to take their attitude lying down.

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

Which is basically to say that one of the most famous derms in the *country* (my parents pulled a lot of connections to get me an appointment ASAP) wrote me off within FIVE seconds of seeing me without even running tests.

And my regular derm saved my entire self-esteem by holding my hand, asking me questions and running some blood tests.

Stacey said...

See, every time I comment on a blog, I end up looking like an asshat. I made the comment a while ago about people making up ridiculous spellings of kids' names for the sake of uniqueness. It has bothered me since, even though I never meant any cattiness toward you, and part of this post reminded me of that.

So I wanted to say sorry about that. I think you'll pick out something lovely, just because I think you would be someone I would've hung out with in real life, if we didn't live, you know, several (many) states apart. And I trust my friends' taste. Not that you need my approval or anything.

Oh hell. I'm just going to stwp talking. ^__^

Cagey said...

Anna,
I think it is very hard for people to disagree with their doctors, that's why I wrote the post. Nothing makes me more angry than watching a friend feel like she was a bad mother because of something her doctor said.

Monkey,
Oh, sister - I hear you. From the age of 18 through 23 I went to a doctor complaining of various mild symptoms that were never taken seriously. I blamed myself for the symptoms based on my doctor's indifference and had low self esteem because of them. Then, at the age of 23, for whatever reason (I think it was insurance), I changed doctors and happened to mention the symptoms. That new doctor very pertly said "oh, it sounds like you have polycystic ovarian syndrome". One week and one sonogram later, I had my diagnosis which explained EVERYTHING. That lesson taught me that doctors aren't perfect and are human.

Stacey,
Ah, no apologies needed. Seriously. I make fun of "uneek" spellings, too - primarily because life is more fun with hypocrisy! No, what really gets me with unique spellings is when someone goes crazy with their kid's name, but then gets cross-eyed over MY kid's name which is a real, centuries-old name. Also, my name is "kelli" so I grew up with a "uneek" spelling. No biggie. So again, no apologies. Just don't call my kid "Aaron". Then, I might insist you say sorry. ;-)

Diana said...

So, so true on the doctor front. A doctor is your advisor, not your boss.

Christy said...

I am a vegetarians, and will not be giving my daughter cow's milk. She will be drinking soymilk, just like Arun. I am gald that you do not blindly listen to all of your doctor's advice. You know what is best for your baby.

I had a similiar problem when I told our old Ped. that we were cosleeping. She told me all the different ways a child can get hurt or killed when sharing a bed with parents. She made it very clear that she thought I was endangering my child. I left her office in tears. Needless to say, we started going to a different ped.

Great post!

MaGreen said...

hi, i just happened upon your site. i'm a whitey w/an indian husband and a toddler named who is 13 months. but no buns in the oven.

i like wondertime, too.

Cagey said...

Diana,
Advisor! That was the word I was looking for!

Christy,
I am very fortunate in that my doctor is actually pretty "crunchy". We discussed co-sleeping while I was still in the hospital and she is a big proponent of breastfeeding until 2, but isn't too pushy about it. Overall, I love her laidback approach. We just really disagree on soymilk. :-)

Magreen,
Thanks for stopping by! I will definitely be checking out your digs as well.