Monday, September 5, 2011

babies are people too.

so i don't understand why people don't realize that babies are people and not a sack of flour to be passed around from person to person.

they have preferences. they have favorites. they have opinions. they have fears.

when you scare them, they remember.  when you don't respect their space, they don't react well.  crying is their language; why is it okay to ignore that? "she doesn't mind."

actually, she does.  no, "taking her out more" isn't going to solve the problem. the problem is that you're loud, you took her without giving her time to adjust, and she's tired and teething. just about the time that she started to get used to you and warm up, you pushed it again.

that's the problem.  the problem isn't our parenting.  the problem isn't that she's too attached or that we're housebound. we're neither. she's perfectly happy to flirt with you and give you a big gummy smile when she feels safe.  she's perfectly happy to talk and play with you, when you give her her space.

when you keep encroaching on it, she will tell you.

don't judge us, don't judge our parenting, don't act like you've been offended. we didn't tell her to cry but we're not going to force her to do what you want her to do because you want it when you want it.  we're going to listen to HER.  we'll try what you want, but that's all we'll do.   when it all goes pear-shaped, we'll intervene and remind her that she's safe.

her reaction is not a personal offront.  she's her own person.  she doesn't KNOW you.  i can't help that.  give her time. don't breeze into her life and expect her to jump into your arms and play happily. don't ask to hold her like she'll just go to you. don't be shocked when she screams if you make loud noises in her face or if she realizes you're not her people.

gah.  i just hate this.

i hate the expectations, the strange looks when we suggest that Baby Girl might not be excited to go jump into the arms of someone she's maybe seen once, or even has seen every week but only in passing. why can't people just be okay with the fact that babies are where and what they are?

there's no respect. for all people say about babies being born with a personality, being born with tendencies toward being "easygoing" or "happy," very few people treat them as if they actually have desires and wants beyond eating, sleeping, and being clean.

if being a mother has only taught me one thing (and that's absolutely not the case), it's this: babies are 100% individuals. you can't make them do something any more than you can make granite turn into marshmellow. you can teach them, you can mold and shape them, you can help them learn and guide their steps. but you cannot force them to like someone, even if that someone is related to them.  you cannot make them be any other way than the way that they are, especially at this age. 

at two? we'll talk at two. 

but don't you dare EVER tell me that something i am doing is the reason my baby likes me and my husband more than someone that she doesn't know.  don't you EVER judge our parenting because you think she should be happy as a clam with a person who, to her, is a complete and total stranger.  don't you EVER do that.

it's wrong. it's unfair. and it disrespects my daughter.

don't you dare do that.  i like her too much to let you, and i love her too much to not be her safe space whenever she wants it.

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