Babies

17 Things You Stop Caring About When You Become A Parent

We really can’t be bothered anymore.

September 1, 2016

7 Things That Should Be Banned In The Bedroom

These things are a total mood kill.

July 14, 2016

6 Things All Childfree People Want Their Parent Friends To Understand

Catch-ups at play areas are okay. Baby photo spamming is not.

July 5, 2016

My First Abortion Was As Horrific As You Thought It’d Be

They can scrape out your insides but can’t offer an Advil?

April 26, 2016

Why I Ignored My Doctor’s Advice And Co-Slept With My Baby

I safely co-slept with both my babies and it strengthened our bond.

March 17, 2016

Why Your Early 20s Are A Bad Time To Make Life Decisions

Because nothing feels as good in fast forward.

December 28, 2015

Can Controlled Crying Affect A Baby’s Psychological Health?

Sleep is by far one of the biggest concerns of new parents, so if you’ve tried controlled crying it’s completely understandable. In a nutshell, this technique requires the baby or toddler to self-sooth. This is accomplished by placing them in a safe place like their cot or crib and allowing them to cry themselves to sleep. Of course, there’s a lot more to it, but that’s the general concept.

RELATED: The Ultimate Parenting Tip …Consistency

Despite controlled crying being a salvation to exhausted parents, I recently read a very different perspective about it in a new book called Becoming A Mother: A Journey of Uncertainty, Transformation and Falling in Love. The author, Leisa Stathis, talks about how controlled crying can be detrimental to child psychological development and how it can greatly effect parental-child bonding.

This made a lot of sense to me, having used controlled crying myself. This was twenty odd years ago when it was highly popular, however, and when no one considered the psychological effects on the infant. It was all about the parent getting some sleep – and boy did I really need some!

So, back to the book. Quite simply, Leisa wrote that we wouldn’t want an adult to cry themselves to sleep repeatedly. That would be cruel. So why on earth are parents encouraged to place their babies and toddlers in this situation? As a parent, this made me wince. What Leisa put so simply was 100 per cent correct.

She went on to say that babies and toddlers cry for a reason – and yes, some more so than others. My youngest had a very healthy set of lungs, but that was his only form of communication. With age he continues to have a lot to say, but obviously in being older he can now express it. What’s more is that when he does, I listen.

That made me think about what I had done by using controlled crying. As a young child, I would put him in his room and chose not to attend to his cry. Granted it wasn’t easy, many a tear was shed using the professional advice I was given, despite it going against my gut instinct as a mother.

After reading Leisa’s take on controlled crying, I realised I wasn’t alone. Many parents expressed they too felt this technique went against their maternal instinct. It really doesn’t feel natural to leave a crying infant alone for any period of time, let alone to allow them to cry themselves to sleep.

Over time controlled crying has been reported as being detrimental to infant development. Bruce Perry, a psychiatrist who specialises in this field and the impact trauma has on the brain, believes infants don’t learn how to self-sooth at all using this method. Instead, they develop a defeat response.

This occurs because they essentially give up on crying. They do this because their cries yield no response from their parent. Eventually they learn that their cries for comfort will go unanswered – this is why they cease to cry. It’s got nothing to do with learning to self-sooth, as was previously thought. Instead, they rapidly learn that they are very much alone in this world. So in turn, this impacts their ability to trust and does nothing to strengthen the maternal bond.

Thankfully, I have a wonderful relationship with my kids, but I can see first hand the detrimental effects it’s had, particularly on my youngest child. My eldest is far more capable of regulating his emotions, while my youngest has always struggled. In hindsight, I wish I could turn back the sands of time and try something else. If only we had a crystal ball to inform us of our mistakes as we make them!

So in closing, it just goes to show that your maternal instinct will always be your best point of reference. This is the message Leisa Stathis delivers in her book, Becoming A Mother: A Journey of Uncertainty, Transformation and Falling in Lovewhich I highly recommend.

Image via mamamaike.nl

September 16, 2015

How To Choose A Baby Name Without A Fight

So you need to choose a baby name and the importance of this decision is weighing heavily on your mind – your child will be stuck with the name you choose for life! To make things more even more difficult, you and your partner may have different ideas about what makes a perfect name. Don’t know where to start? Some of these strategies will help.

RELATED: Celebrity Baby Names

Choose the surname first

Is it going to be your surname or your partner’s, or a combination of the two? Many of us will agree for the children to have the male partner’s name, even if we’ve kept our own surname after getting married. It’s how it’s been done traditionally and it’s an easy way to keep things simple. Besides, ladies, if you let your child have his surname, it gives you the upper hand when it comes to choosing the first name. Things have to be fair, right?

Discuss types of names

Do you prefer a popular name or an unusual one? How do you feel about a common name but with a different spelling? If the two of you come from different backgrounds, are there any names that are used or sound nice in both cultures? Will your child have a middle name? Agree on the general direction before getting down to the business of picking the actual name.

Make a list of names you like

Shortlist names you like. Use names of people you know or browse a book of baby names and don’t rush it. Every time you hear a name you like, add it to your list. Then once each of you has a few names in mind, examine each other’s lists and cross out any names that you absolutely hate. Hopefully, you will have a few options left. If not – it’s back to the drawing board, make another list.

Still finding it hard to choose a baby name? Leave the final decision until after you meet the baby. It can be much easier to decide once you have a face to put to the name.

Image by FeeLoona via pixabay.com

July 18, 2015

To Be Or Not To Be… A Stay-At-Home Mum?

To some, being a stay-at-home-mum is the sole purpose of their life, their dream job and the reason they were put on this earth, but to others it’s their worst nightmare and a job they would happily trade in for an office, regular meal breaks and adult conversation.

Of course for some families, having a stay-at-home-mum isn’t an option.  With rising food costs, electricity bills and taxes on everything these days, a lot of families simply can’t afford to live on a sole income.  If you’re lucky enough to have the choice, here are some pros and cons of being a stay-at-home-mum. 

Pros:

  • There is little chance of you missing out on those important milestones such as first words, first steps and that first time your child eats solids and covers the entire room and themselves with pureed pumpkin.
  • You get to spend ample quality time with your children.  Being a working mum is extremely tiring and the days fly by all too quickly.  After preparing dinner, homework for older children, bath time, preparing lunch boxes, bedtime and a full day’s work, it doesn’t leave much spare time to do fun things with the children.
  • You have total control over what you child does and eats each day.  Most daycare centres engage and educate children, enriching their delicate lives, but others have been known to neglect children.  Being a stay at home mum means that you know what your child is doing all day, the food they’ve eaten and how many nappy changes they’ve really had.
  • Stay-at-home-mums have the potential to pick up a part time job which can be worked around the children.  Becoming a freelance writer, a typist, or even running your own small business are jobs that can sometimes be done successfully when the children are napping or having some down time.

Cons:

  • Many women are eager to return to work to ensure they don’t lose vital skills.  Most jobs require training of some sort on a regular basis so being out of the workforce for years could leave your CV looking dilapidated and your ability to return to the workforce much more difficult.
  • Conversing in baby talk and playing charades all day can be tedious to some woman, instead preferring to return to work in order to get the brain ticking over again.  Being in a stimulating environment with grown-ups and engaging in adult conversation can be much more appealing.
  • Being a stay-at-home-mum means that you’re relying entirely on your partner or family for financial support.  Holidays, new clothes or that new car that you desperately want could be way down your list of priorities.  Having less income can also be the cause of some relationship problems.
  • Some women who choose to stay at home with their children can feel trapped in their own home.  It’s all too easy to get stuck in a rut at home day after day.  There is no break for a stay-at-home-mum.  Being on call 24/7 can get extremely demanding and depressing for some women.

Women who make the decision to return to work, whether full time or part time should never be labelled as bad mothers who can’t stand being around their children and similarly, being a stay at home mum doesn’t mean that they are less intelligent or have less chance of getting a job.  Everyone’s circumstances are different, we all do what we have to do to get by and if you’re lucky enough to have that choice of being a stay-at-home-mum, lucky you.

By Karyn Miller

May 31, 2014

Most Popular Baby Names

Each year the list of the popular baby names is released and reveals the trends in naming across the country. We’ve taken a step away from the weird and wonderful and have continued on our flashback to traditional names that were popular at the turn of the century. Below are the most popular names for boys and girls in Australia in 2013.

Top 20 girls’ names:

  1. Charlotte
  2. Ava
  3. Chloe
  4. Emily
  5. Olivia
  6. Zoe
  7. Lily
  8. Sophie
  9. Amelia
  10. Sofia
  11. Ella
  12. Isabella
  13. Ruby
  14. Sienna
  15. Mia
  16. Grace
  17. Emma
  18. Ivy
  19. Layla
  20. Abigail

Top 20 boys’ names:

  1. Oliver
  2. Jack
  3. Jackson
  4. William
  5. Ethan
  6. Charlie
  7. Lucas
  8. Cooper
  9. Lachlan
  10. Noah
  11. Liam
  12. Alexander
  13. Max
  14. Isaac
  15. Thomas
  16. Xavier
  17. Oscar
  18. Benjamin
  19. Aiden
  20. Mason
May 12, 2014

The Newborn Baby Manual Really Does Exist

New mothers (and fathers for that matter) have often been heard to cry, ‘If only this light bundle of joy came with a manual”. Before the birth of your first baby you tend to read everything you can get your hands but you often don’t think about all the information you will need once the baby is actually born and the reality can be overwhelming no matter how prepared you feel you are.

The people you often turn to for advice are your midwife, lactation expert, friends and family (especially those with young children) and, of course, your mum. But now you can get the expert help as soon as you need it with the new app and ebook, New Baby 101.
 
New Baby 101 is the creation of Lois Wattis, a registered midwife, International Board Certified Lactation Consultant and Fellow of the Australian College of Midwives. Lois is also a mother and grandmother herself. With more than 20 years’ experience working in hospital and community settings, Lois has provided woman-centred care to hundreds of mothers and babies.

  
New Baby 101 covers all the baby essentials for first time parents, including preparing for baby’s arrival, breastfeeding, bathing and settling techniques. Filled with answers to the most commonly asked questions, it also contains videos for how to change a nappy (both cloth and disposable), swaddling techniques, breastfeeding techniques and more. It’s reliable and credible information in an easily accessible format.

 
Lois says the idea to share her knowledge came about a couple of years ago following the birth of her daughter’s first baby: “I was on hand to help with my grandson’s birth and support my daughter as a new mum.  She realised many people have to figure all that stuff out for themselves, so she encouraged me to write a book.” Lois and her daughter soon realised that “the first place people turn for help today is their phones, so we decided to create an app and ebook first.”

 
New Baby 101 is a free app which includes videos on swaddling and changing your new baby. You can then unlock individual topics for 99c or all 50 FAQs for $6.99. New Baby 101 ebook is just $19 at newbaby101.com.au.
April 19, 2014

Brand New Hub To Buy Things For Your Newborn Baby

New research from eBay has found that more than 70 per cent of new parents who wake during the night to tend to their babies engage in clever multitasking, and often use the time to get their online shopping done. Nearly 90 per cent of Australian parents who shop online while the rest of the country sleeps say that nappies, wipes and formula are at the top of the shopping list.

Responding to the needs of time poor new parents who require the flexibility to shop anytime, anywhere and on any connected device of their choosing, eBay has launched a brand new part of the site called Bubs’ Corner. Bubs’ Corner will give the 1.1 million mums in Australia who are buying baby essentials (78 per cent of whom are already eBay customers) access to all they need for their baby in one convenient and easy to use place.

Head of Strategy and Customer Programs eBay Australia, Jo Hicks, said “New parents have told us that every waking moment needs to be instantly shoppable,”

“What we have aimed to do with Bubs’ Corner is to create an experience that gives time back to new parents. We’ve handpicked products by trusted retailers including Huggies, Curash and Johnson’s that can all be bought quickly  – on any device or screen convenient to you – and then delivered to your door,”

“It’s been fascinating to delve into the shopping habits of our Australian parents and it has given us the opportunity to address some of their biggest pain points when it comes to shopping for their babies. With Bubs’ Corner there is no need to ever run out of essentials or to even leave your home for these kinds of purchases.”

Regular discounts, rewards and promotions will be offered to eBay Bubs’ Corner members, and as an added bonus, eBay is offering a $15.00 coupon to spend on nappies and formula to all who sign up for the new Bubs’ Corner membership program.

The new dedicated site will also be packed with everything a parent will need for their little ones, from toys, prams, car seats, skincare and fashion.

April 17, 2014