Things I Wish I Had Known: Parenting Books
Parenting is a learning curve. It’s the kind of learning that never ends and things that work for other parents may not work for you, things that work for you might not work for a single other parent and how we come to realise what works and what doesn’t is such a personal journey.
Over the next few weeks I want to share some of the things I wish I had known before giving birth to Ellie, things I have since learned through trial, error or natural growth;
I wish I had known that no amount of reading parenting books, scouring pregnancy and birth forums or stalking blogs on the subject would prepare me for the journey ahead of me.
I spent so much time worrying about containing all the information because I needed to know it all, but really that time could have been better spent resting my body and mind in preparation.
I could have learned a few select important things instead of cramming my head full of everything I ‘needed’ to know up until my unborn baby turned five. Things that, mostly, I haven’t used and I certainly do not recall.
As someone who thrives and insists upon being informed, there were things I did need to know. There were things I needed to research and discover before I could feel prepared. And knowledge is power after all.
So much emphasis seems to be placed on the books that are out there, each being touted as ‘the one to read’, each appearing authoritative and right. As an expecting or new parent it can be overwhelming. It’s easy, in your sleep-deprived beginnings, to grasp at anything that promises an easy, quick fix. Or better yet a one size fits all perfect solution which you will never have to re-visit as there would never, ever be a repeat of the issue, it’s that good.
Why wouldn’t we want to be able to find all the answers to our questions on something so important within the pages of a book?
The thing I have since discovered about reading parenting books is that they can appear to have all the answers, but when you try all the advice and it doesn’t work for you it can be highly disconcerting, especially if others have followed the very same guidance and had success.
Until you accept that each parenting journey is different and each child needs a different approach these books can lead you to feel unfit as a parent. There are many good tips, great books full of information; if only I’d not taken them too seriously!
I wish I had read more selectively, soaking up the things that actually mattered.
What about you, were you a parent book crammer? Did you find they helped or hindered your journey as a new parent? Or was it a little bit of both?
Interested in what else I wish I had known?
Part One: Parenting Books ←
Part Two: Parenting Philosophies
Part Three: Highchairs
Part Four: Routines
- Hoping today’s post still counts as a things I know post 😉