I think sometimes with babywearing and attachment parenting (and many other parenting choices that aren’t the “norm” in the west), there is this assumption that parents who babywear think they’re better than parents who don’t.
And maybe that’s true for some parents?! (I have yet to meet any though!).
Just secretly, the reason why I babywear isn’t to cultivate some sense of superiority in my parenting methods. It’s not so I can get my judgey pants on. Nope. I babywear because it’s easy.
Trust me, this is easier than the alternative of trying to get this one to sleep on his own. ;-)
I’m just gonna go ahead and say it...
Here’s the thing: I’m running on about 5 hours of broken sleep per night (which is way more than I used to get in the newborn phase), have zero energy to spare, a house to get in order, chores to do, errands to run, AND a small human to keep happy, entertained, safe, and fed. I do not have spare energy for anything that does not help me get through the day.
So despite its many benefits for my baby, if it wasn’t easy, if it didn’t truly help me do things more efficiently, expend less energy, and so on, I would NOT wear my baby.
But babywearing enables me to do the housework while I put my child to sleep. I can quickly zip in and out of the shops without taking up boot space with a pram. And I can keep my baby more content in social situations.
Sure, some days, I don’t really feel like babywearing. Sometimes, I just really need some space! And on those days I go with alternatives, because they fit my needs better than babywearing.
And it’s really the same with my other parenting choices.
Breastfeeding my baby actually hasn’t been easy for me (though for many mums it will come a lot easier), but I’ve fought for it because I could see that the time, effort, and pain (yep!) involved in sticking it out would probably still be better for my situation than formula. And I have used formula when I needed it in the past.
Sometimes I co-sleep, sometimes my baby goes in the cot. Right now, we’re doing a lot of co-sleeping because my baby wakes up a lot at night. At any given moment, I go with the option that is likely to result in the most sleep for everyone involved. Sleep is a priority around here, seriously!
But that’s not to say that my experience will be the same for everyone! What I am simply saying is that we all have limited time and energy and little people who are counting on us to keep it all together.
We make decisions every day for our babies based on what we feel is the best outcome and the best fit for our families. There is no judgement and no need to feel superior or inferior. Babywearers are no better than non-babywearers. We’re all just trying to do our best (and being as efficient as we can be)!
So here’s to you, mama. Whatever your parenting choices are. Whether babywearing or pram pushing. Whether cots or co-sleeping. Spoon-fed, breast-fed, formula-fed, tube-fed, baby-led… we’re not so different after all. We all have the same end goal.
Happy, healthy babies, more sleep, and sanity in-tact!
I respect your decision to not babywear, if that’s what’s working for you. But if reading this article has helped you realise that babywearing is perhaps not as hard as you first thought (trust me – it really is EASY!), and you want to try it out, let me encourage you to give it a go!
If possible, get yourself to a babywearing meet so you can get hands on help and try on some different options. Or book yourself in to see a qualified babywearing consultant. Then dive in – get your first carrier and give it a go. I am pretty sure you’ll be surprised by just how easy babywearing fits into your everyday life and parenting.
BM Media Manager & Wrap Geek
P.S. If today’s crazy ramblings have made you smile, I’d love it if you’d share the link with your mama friends!
P.P.S. I’d love to know what your parenting hacks are! I’m always up for new, easier ways to do things! Please feel free to leave a comment below.
Copyright Brooke Maree © 2017
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I thought it was time to talk about shopping while babywearing. After all, it’s a bit of a different experience than shopping with a pram ;-).