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zkat March 8th, 2013 07:57 AM

Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
This is intended to be a very respectful, educated discussion. When we were pregnant with Bourne, I found it very helpful to explore the different parenting styles and listen to why other parents (especially ones with biggers) came to their styles. It really helped DH and I to talk through our thoughts on parenting before he was here, so we were both on the same page (which no matter what style you go with - it is vital for success). We talked through everything from Sleeping, to CIO to discipline and food. A lot has changed as B1 has grown and we tailor it to fit his personality, but we always present a united front to him.

So how did you come to your parenting philosophy? Now that your biggers are older, do you think you will change anything this time around?

Again, please no judging or disrespect - I really am curious and want this to be an honest, open discussion.


Madison.Hailey.Zack March 8th, 2013 08:24 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
For us what works is Co-sleeping (bassinet and sometimes in our bed), breast feeding, cloth diapering, baby wearing, homemade baby food and crying it out to an extent.

I did not BF Madison due to issues that I didnt have the right support to overcome. I was more educated and had the support with Hailey and cant wait to bf Zack.
All three will sleep in a bassinet next to my side of the bed for the first couple months and sometimes will sleep in the bed but Mike isnt a fan of them in our bed.
I made baby food with both the girls since I wanted to save money and wanted to know exactly what was going on their food. We didnt start cereal till 5 1/2 months and solids around 6 1/2 months.
I started carrying Madison but got really into it with Hailey since it was easier to carry her and deal with Madison. I will be carrying Zack too.
We did not cloth diaper Madison since I had no idea what it was even about. I didnt start Hailey in cloth till she was 3 months old but am now a 99% of the time cloth user. I have cloth for Zack now too. I just love saving money and when I found out how easy they are I wished I had started sooner with Hailey.
With the crying it out, we dont really do that until they are around 1. We want to see if they can learn to calm themselves down but we never let it last more then say 5 minutes before we go in to them.
We just found this works for us but we know it doesnt always work for others.

MamaSkunk March 8th, 2013 08:34 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
Im more traditional with a few AP things. The traditional because my biggest influences on me were my grandparents who were very very loving yet....you just knew not to act up or grandma would chastise you to no end. I was spanked as a child and I said I wouldnt spank but DD is a very headstrong child and you can yell and timeout and she will ignore you. So one day when she was pretty much torturing the poor cat dragging it by its tail...pulling fur etc(poor cat was howling in pain and couldnt get away) I just knew...some situations merited a swat (butt only...no where else!) So she got spanked.
Also I am huge on manners with kids as alot dont know anymore how to use them. And I got complimented twice this week alone by strangers saying my DD was the politest child they have seen in awhile.....I was insanely proud of her and myself. For her pleases/thank yous/your welcomes/excuses mes.
I just kind of discovered there are a few things I am fairly AP about after she was born...we bedshared til 6 months. And DD still lays down with me at naptime(Its our snuggle time and she naps and often I relax or nap too...and hey I am taking advantage of the snuggle time before I cant anymore) I have also never let her cry it out. As usually she just needs reassurance
Cant say I do other crunchy things as some moms do but I totally respect there decision and right to do so. :) But I do feel that DD isnt suffering for my choice to be more traditional. She and I are very close. And shes a great kid.

Madison.Hailey.Zack March 8th, 2013 09:09 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I used to spank but I've since realized it doesnt do any good so I stopped. I will spank if its really bad but that hardly happens. My oldest is 4 so she is very head strong and yells and screams and throws things so its a battle of wits around here. I've had to step back to save not only my sanity but my BP too.

zkat March 8th, 2013 09:43 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
We co-slept for 18 months. He started in a pack n play in our room, but when he was about 6 weeks old we had a super frigid cold spell and couldn't get the house warm enough, so we put him in bed with us to make sure he stayed warm. We all slept so much better that we kept it up until it no longer worked for mom. He still tries to sleep straddling my chest like a newborn.

Food - we did BLW. He was ready for solids fairly early. He lost his tongue reflex early and sat unassisted well before 6 months, so around 6 months he started on soft table food - mostly what we ate. He didn't like purees, so that was pointless.

discipline - we do positive re-direction when possible. We save spanking for extreme situations that need to get his attention quickly (stepping into the street, pulling up on the oven door etc). We also give him 2 chances to follow directions before we take action. (If he throws a toy, we ask him 2x to pick it up, then we take his hand and physically pick it up. Then he loses the toy)

Sleep - we did not do CIO. At 18 months we transitioned into his room with us sitting on the floor at night until we went to sleep. It took until past 2 yr. old to convince DH to not go in there when he wakes in the middle of the night. He mostly sleeps through the night now. He often wakes around 5 and comes and gets in bed with us until 7ish.

I exclusively breastfed for 6 months, until solids were introduced and continued nursing until 10 months - I weaned him then because I was traveling a lot for work and didn't have the stash to maintain while gone (piggy still drank 34-36 oz of milk on top of solids). The stress of having to pump and store and have enough breast milk was doing me in, so we switched to formula for about 6 weeks.

MamaSkunk March 8th, 2013 09:59 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I also dont spank DD except for extreme situations. And it does work for her. Most of the time its like Kat said...when shes doing something that could seriously injure herself. (Or if shes being mean to the pets and i dont want them to snap out at her cuz shes being naughty to them)

I have noticed alot of people seem to think if you spank your child that your spanking them ALL the time...which is completely not the case. And I feel the need to dispel people from that notion. I grew up in a home that spanked and was seriously only spanked like maybe ten times and they were for serious serious offenses(extreme situations). And DD has only been swatted twice...once for literally beating on the cat...once for running out into the street almost in front of a car coming down our street. And i had been yelling at her to stop each time and I was ignored.

eshute March 8th, 2013 10:02 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I'm glad this was brought up. I've been researching the different parenting styles and have come to realize that I'll probably be a mix of everything. Each style has something that I want to use in my parenting. It's good to know that you don't have to be 100% one style to make things work.

edgeofelise March 8th, 2013 10:19 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
When I was pregnant with DD I thought I'd be very AP. I didn't believe in CIO, I knew I would BF for as long as possible, she wouldn't watch TV, etc. We held on to a lot of AP philosophies but I'm turning out to be a lot more traditional than I thought.

Sleep- the only place she would sleep when she was a newborn was her swing or with me. However, I couldn't nurse side-lying because of my c-section incision so it just wasn't comfortable to have her in bed with me since I had to be upright to feed her anyway. I slept on the couch with her in the swing next to me for the first two months or so, because it was easier with the all-night feeding marathons for me to not wake DH. She had to be burped every five minutes because she spit up so badly, so a feeding session would take up to 45 minutes. I watched a lot of movies at 3am. This time I have a TV in the bedroom and we'll keep the swing and a bassinet next to the bed depending on what he likes. If I'm able to have a vaginal birth and nursing lying down is more comfortable, we may bedshare. We'll see.

Around 8 months DD starting having serious, SERIOUS sleep issues. I didn't believe in CIO so I tried the No-Cry Sleep Solution, but it did absolutely nothing to help and I became completely obsessed with her sleep to the point where I would camp out in her room staring at her, waiting for her to show signs of waking from a nap so I could swoop in and nurse her back down. I lost my mind and it wasn't healthy. One night I just SNAPPED. It was one of those moments where it's safer for everyone to just put the baby down for a minute and step away before somebody got hurt. I closed the door and had a panic attack in my bed while she cried in hers. It last 20 minutes and she slept until morning. That was the moment I decided a little bit of crying might actually be what she needs to learn to sleep, so I got the book Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child and it was so, SO helpful. We never let her cry longer than an hour (we never needed to, but I wouldn't have, anyway) and the book helped me come up with a concrete plan that I didn't feel terribly guilty about. We'll be using the same techniques with Henry if he needs them, and much sooner. But again, every baby is different so we'll play it by ear.

Food was a nightmare with DD, and still is. She just wouldn't eat. Anything. She dropped below the charts completely and I got a lot of crap from her doctor about her failure to thrive. I thought I'd make all of her food and she'd never get anything unhealthy, but she got so thin that her ped was seriously like, FEED HER MILKSHAKES. ANYTHING SHE WILL EAT, JUST GIVE IT TO HER. So now she has terrible eating habits and it's caused an unbelievable amount of stress. I've learned to let go, and to offer healthy foods along with foods I know she'll eat, and hopefully someday she'll come around. We may try baby-led weaning with Henry, and we'll start later. I'm actually really dreading starting solids with him. We'll do extended BF again, as well. DD weaned just after her second birthday.

We don't ever, ever spank and so far we've really lucked out with her behavior. She's very sweet and mild-mannered and most of the time redirection works very well. She gets time-outs, but only after two warnings or if she does something that could hurt someone. Works like a charm for us. I mostly try to anticipate her needs and make sure that we don't expect to much of her. For example, if she doesn't nap we try not to run errands. Taking an overtired toddler to the grocery store is a recipe for disaster. We set very clear expectations and give small rewards. Positive discipline works very well in most cases. I hope Henry is as easy in that respect!

I'm hoping our lifestyle will change drastically by the time Henry is out of the infant stage. DD gets WAY too much screen time because we just don't have access to the outdoors (we live in downtown Seattle) and our schedule is nuts with DH being in school. I thought I wouldn't let her watch TV at all but I need a break. I don't drive, so we don't get out much. Our neighborhood is dirty and unsafe at times. I'm really, really hoping DH gets a job somewhere where we can afford to live in a suburb or even a rural area and our kids can be more exposed to nature. I never realized how important it was to me to raise my children this way, but it's the single most frustrating aspect of parenthood so far. I really hate where we live.

Kalynas_Mom March 8th, 2013 10:22 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
This is a hard question for me to answer because I think that my parenting child is/will be very child specific.

DD was an absolute disaster as a baby. I did NOT want her in my bed.....but she was....and still is at some point most nights. This was because she screamed all day long and wanted to breastfeed every second of the day so the only way I could get any sleep was to have her in bed with me. Had she not been that way, I doubt I would have wanted her there.

We did not do CIO with DD. Ever. This time i'm going to sleep train and do a modified CIO by 6 months (if I feel he has the temperament for it). But I'm not going to make any grandiose plans and i'll just see how things are going at that point. ETA: I should mention that baby's crib is in our room and will remain there so really the goal is just to have him in his OWN space but still in our room

I was dead set on breastfeeding DD. And we managed for a VERY long time. I plan on weaning by 2 this time. We did BLS (baby led solids with DD) so no spoon feeding. I will do that this time as well. DD never had a bottle (she liked to play with them with water when she was 3 but she's never used one prior to that). I think I may introduce bottles to her brother earlier if its necessary and not be such a nazi about it.

I love babywearing but I live in the city and walk often so it makes the most sense for me. I prefer to have my babies close. I didn't use a stroller with DD until she probably a year old. I'm not opposed to strollers at all I just find it more convenient to babywear

As far as discipline goes I don't believe in spanking and have never spanked DD. Thats just personal preference. I was brought up in a non-spanking household. DH was spanked and doesn't see any harm in it but is on my side for not spanking our kids. If I need to get her attention quickly or remove her from a dangerous situation i'll either raise my voice or physically remove her from that situation. We are strict with time out and she loses privileges or toys for specific behaviours.

momneedscoffee13 March 8th, 2013 11:47 AM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I lean towards the AP side of things as well. Like you, I researched a lot, read a lot, and got different views and opinions on it all before Connor came along. I knew I wanted to do more gentle parenting, since I grew up in a screaming, fighting household, I wanted to be quite the opposite. We are still working out some kinks, but we don't spank, we try not to yell, and we try to talk about things and reason things as much as you can with a toddler! We would never even consider CIO, not on our worst days!

I always knew I would BF, and luckily it came very easily for us. We did attempt a bottle after a few weeks, but Connor wanted nothing to do with it. Looking back, I'm glad he didn't because pumping is a PITA! I'm not sure if we will attempt to introduce a bottle this time around or not, I may leave it up to DH.

We did baby led weaning when it came to solids. We started offering bite sized pieces of fruits/veggies around 6m old, but Connor wanted nothing to do with solids 'til he was past a year! It may have had to do with his low muscle tone delays. Originally I had wanted to make my own baby food, but then just ended up doing more BLW style. I'll do the same with the new one as well, a little of both maybe.

We sort of fell into bed sharing. I knew we would co-sleep with a bassinet for the first few months. We were using the top of a pack n play which maxes out weight around 15 lbs IIRC. When that happened, we attempted to put him in his crib, which lasted less than a week! I was EBF'ing and tired and lazy lol and since it did not disturb DH, it was easier to have Connor in the bed with me!

This time around, we may try a little harder at getting her to sleep in her own space, but still in our room. That was the one thing I would have changed slightly with Connor, was to get him used to his own space/mattress/bed in our room. It may have made this transition to a toddler bed a little easier! ;) But I would never have changed the co-sleeping part of it!

The one thing I would change that we did not do with Connor was schedule things more. Because I'm a SAHM, and we didn't do much outside of the house when he was a baby, except a few playdates here and there (more for me!). But we didn't have any scheduled nap (and later, feeding) times. He would nap whenever he fell asleep, in the car, on the floor, in our bed, wherever. It was fine with us in the beginning because we were very go with the flow. And Connor sort of made his own schedule, which changed slightly over time.

But as he got older, it makes things a little more difficult, especially when we try to schedule events and things. Luckily, it hasn't been too hard to get him on a nap and meal schedule as a toddler. I think I lucked out because it could have been a lot worse! lol I think with the new baby, once we're past the newborn stage, I will try to lay her down at the same time every day for naps. I'm sort of jealous of my friend with babies who nap 3-4 hours every day at the same time! :D

Some other NL/AP things we do is baby wear and cloth diaper, but we also use strollers for big outings (zoo, mall) and I have a backup stash of disposable diapers if I don't do laundry soon enough! lol But seriously have only bought about 5 packs of disposable diapers in 2.5 years!! :D

I would have totally had a homebirth if I had more support and/or kicked DH to the curb before that! LOL My original "birth plan" with Connor was for a med free/all natural birth. Of course, that ended up in a c/section, why wouldn't it!? So we're trying for a med free/all natural VBAC this time around! And would totally attempt it as a homebirth if not for DH....and the fact I don't have a home now! LOL

DH always calls me a hippie, so maybe I'm more crunchy than I think!? :lol:

Oh and we did delayed/selective vax with Connor, and I will do the same with her. I don't mind vax'ing, however, I hate the thought of all those nasty chemicals and stuff going into his little body, and so many at once! So we would spread them out over 2 or 3 months at a time. Instead of 5+ at one visit, we would only do 1 or 2. The only vax I'm truly against is the chicken pox, and I really hope he catches it before I'm forced to vax him for it for school! :rollseyes:

navywifey2003 March 8th, 2013 01:45 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
When David was born I was a lot different than I am now. Think of how I am now and I was the complete opposite. Cloth diapers were weird, baby wearing was odd, and there as no way to parent other than spanking. I have completely changed my views but I don't think less of others who do things differently than us. But I do like to offer alternatives. The key is staying consistent. :)

QueenCrafty March 8th, 2013 06:01 PM

I don't think I fall into one specific category. I'm a mix of traditional and AP. we started out traditional with Lily, but she was such an easy baby that it just worked with her. She was on a schedule, she slept in her crib great, she liked her stroller, I failed at breastfeeding so she had formula. We never did sleep training or CIO as an infant with her because she was just a good sleeper early on. Once she hit 2 we did some CIO for tantrums. At 5 now she will get the occasional spanking, but it is for bigger offenses. We have always counted to 3, then had timeout before resorting to spanking.

With Abri, she was just different from the beginning. Her reflux threw us for a loop so we had to change everything we did with Lily so we ended up more AP. She didn't sleep at night and nursed all night long so we decided to bed share until she was 14 months. Sitting in her infant carrier made her reflux worse and she hated the stroller, so I did babywearing. I didn't even bother with CIO or sleep training because she would scream all day and all night if you let her. She flat out refused bottles and hated solids until closer to 9 months. Plus having reflux made me choose breastfeeding over formula for sure (breast milk is easier to digest and is soothing on a burning throat). I did cloth diapers because it is cheaper and we were broke. Now that she is older, we still stick with mostly counting and timeouts for punishment. She listens well and rarely even gets to the time out stage. Again spanking is reserved for serious offenses and she really hasn't done anything much to warrant one.

I will EBF and use cloth diapers for Henry for sure. I would like to start him out in the crib and see how it goes. I don't mind bedsharing but I will admit that I slept poorly for over a year. I kind of want to avoid that. I really hope he won't be as high maintenance as Abri was, but at least now I know how to trust my instincts and adapt to fit the needs of my baby.

edgeofelise March 8th, 2013 06:05 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?

Originally Posted by eshute (Post 27175951)
I'm glad this was brought up. I've been researching the different parenting styles and have come to realize that I'll probably be a mix of everything. Each style has something that I want to use in my parenting. It's good to know that you don't have to be 100% one style to make things work.

I think where you can actually shoot yourself in the foot is picking one "side" and not being flexible to your own child's needs. All kids are different and they all require a different approach, so it's good to keep an open mind.

I had a big long response but it has to be approved by a moderator before it'll go up, I guess.

ashleykathleen March 8th, 2013 06:32 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I'm a bit of both but since having Kiefer, I've started drifting more towards the AP side of things. With Jaleigh, I was young and just didn't know a lot of other options other than how I was raised. She turned out to be an extremely easy baby so I started becoming more crunchy. I breastfed her so she was in my room for convenience at first. Early on, there were many nights I would fall asleep feeding her so she would end up in my bed for half the night. I was shocked that it didn't bother me. I was actually sad when at 3 months old she started sleeping all night long in her own bed. I missed the cuddles and I think this effected my decision to let Kiefer bed share with us for so long. I did not do any baby wearing with her but I started with Kiefer because it was easier to do things with Jaleigh and Kiefer wanted to be held constantly. I absolutely do not do any CIO and never will. Even if I wanted to try it, DF wouldn't allow it. It's just not for us. Jaleigh never needed it and Kiefer would have cried all day and night if we let him.

With this baby I plan to BF, baby wear, room in and bed share (if that is what works for everyone), make my own baby food, no CIO, spankings only in serious situations, extended rear facing and then extended harness wearing just like my other kids. Even though I have all this in mind, I am open to anything because I know all babies are so different (my two are proof of that).

SassySami March 8th, 2013 06:36 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I'm very very AP, but I adjust to each of my children. Those that know me, I'm very passionate about things and tend to speak my mind about them.

co-sleeping... yep yep yep We have slept with all our children and we still co sleep with Nolan, and we will with Henry. I'm in no hurry to move Nolan out of our room.

cloth diaper- all my kids have been cloth diapered at some point. I love them, they have saved us tons of money, they are great for the environment.

Feeding- With Debbie, I failed at nursing. So she was on formula from 6 weeks on. Kaytie was nursed for 10 months, Nolan is still nursing and Henry will also nurse. We practice BLW, with self weaning. Nolan did not start solids tell almost 11 months old and it food off of our plate.

Baby wearing- I'm a huge baby wearer, I always have been. I do it for convince wise. I'm very said I can not wear Nolan right now.

discipline- This is where, we change it up for each child. Debbie and Nolan are the easiest kids ever. Tell them no and they stop, and move on to something else. Kaytie on the other hand is a hard headed baby and still is. She has been spanking, for issues but they are BIG issues.

Our boys will stay intact, we do not do vaxs, we will be having a unassisted home birth and we practice ERF in carseats.

So we are pretty AP. :)

LisaS March 8th, 2013 06:51 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
We fell into the AP style. We didn't really have our minds set on anything...we just did what seemed natural to us and what worked for our family. I babywear, cosleep, and breastfeed. I didn't start cloth diapers until DS came along, but that was because I was working full time after I had DD and I didn't want to waste any of my free time doing laundry.

BUT, we never had to let DD CIO. When DS came along, he HATED cosleeping. We tried and tried, but he finally did best when he had his own space and his own room. We also had to resort to CIO with him because NOTHING else was working. I still think of myself as more AP than traditional, but I also know that now we have to be more flexible and that what works with one kid won't necessarily work with another and accept that we might have to change things up again with this one.

8miraclez March 8th, 2013 08:16 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
I do both depending on the child. What worked for one doesn't neccesarilly work for the other. It's sort of a modge podge of one or the other. I loved nursing some of my kids while others it was horrible. Some of my kids loved to sleep with us while others were very independent and wouldn't sleep in the same bed. I have kids who loved to be carried and others who wanted to run at every chance they got.

I usually start out with what I prefer and then change if it isn't working. I've probably done it all at some point, even the stuff I swore I'd never do. As long as the baby is safe, there isn't a wrong way to do things.

4hearts March 8th, 2013 09:18 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
Sassysami- I'm stealing your template :)

I lean towards AP but we have some "traditional"? aspects thrown in as we are pretty old fashioned.

bedsharing... with all three and will definitely be doing it again. It's just what works for us and I love how I can sleep so peacefully knowing baby is right next to me. I get anxiety when baby is in another room even now still with DD2 who bedshares with DD1 now, I sleep slightly more soundly on the nights she climbs into bed with me. We follow all the bedsharing rules so not to worry :)

cloth diaper- "all my kids have been cloth diapered at some point. I love them, they have saved us tons of money, they are great for the environment." <---stealing from Sami again. Except I fall off the horse constantly for one reason or another. I plan to do better with this one.

Feeding- Nursed DD1 for 17 mos, DS for 24 mos and DD2 for 20 mos. Gave them some cereal and babyfood but not for long before we did the BLW and made some of our own purees for them. We are very passionate about natural foods in this house and rarely keep prepackaged things around.

Baby wearing- I love the idea of baby wearing and every time I've tried I can't get the hang of it and quit. That being said, I always start each new baby trying again so I will be trying harder this time.

discipline- We spank when it's warranted. Not everyday, not every week, maybe not even every month but if they do something dangerous, yes and when it's extreme disrespect towards others, yes. Usually a stern voice or a sit down talk is all that's needed for most behavioral things that arise.

"Our boys will stay intact, we do not do vaxs" <-- more stolen from Sami.

I strongly support and agree with natural childbirth but it's no longer something that is right for me so I have to be a cheerleader for y'all but if things were ideal for me, I'd be homebirthing instead of getting the ole' surgery. C'est La vie!

MrsLat March 8th, 2013 09:51 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
Bedsharing--We don't like to do this... Gabe has ended up in our bed lately alot but it is already driving me crazy and I can't wait to get him transferred back into his bed. It is more about my comfort (that sounds selfish) but I just can't get comfortable with them wriggling about! JMO though!

Cloth Diapering--I had no knowledge on this subject prior to joining JM. So my previous children were in disposables.. that being said, I am sold on the idea and have set myself up to CD this baby!

Breastfeeding--Because of medical problems, the medications I am on are not safe for breastfeeding so my children have been formula fed. I am a big supporter of breastfeeding though and I would if I could.

CIO--we did do this from about 9 months on...

Babywearing--is hard for me because of strength problems from MS. But I am going to try and do a little more of this with this baby. My previous children were easy babies and I was able to set them down but I would like to try babywearing just to feel close to this little guy!

Discipline--It depends on the child. Jocelyn responded very well to traditional parenting techniques. Gabriel has needed a different approach. Spanking doesn't work for Gabe, he just laughs so we avoid that. I don't know much about AP but I am learning more and it seems to be more effective for Gabe. We will just wait and see what this little guy responds to best and go from there.

navywifey2003 March 8th, 2013 09:52 PM

Re: Are you AP or Traditional, how did you come to your parenting style?
And this is why I love this board. Great discussion ladies!

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