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I know before I was a mother, I had quite a few thoughts on parenting. I thought I had a good ideas as to how I would parent and I thought I had good reasons for these ideas.

For example: I thought that letting a baby cry it out for awhile was a totally normal, healthy practice. After having a child, I ended up hating “cry it out” and I actually ended up co-sleeping with my son. Co-sleeping scared me before I had a baby. But I don’t think I would have ever been rude to someone who chose co-sleeping for their family.

I also used to think that the baby DVD’s on the market were great and thought I would be using them when I had a child. Instead, we got rid of cable and my son has never really watched much tv/ movies. We have no plans on getting cable back. The more research we do on kids and TV the less we want Keagan around it. I know I would have thought someone who made this choice was a bit weird before I had my son, but I would not have tried to tell them they were parenting wrong.

I also thought breastfeeding a toddler was a bit odd. I knew I would nurse. I planned to for at least six months and probably about a year. Now my son is 13.5 months old and we have no plans of stopping any time soon. I educated myself about the benefits of nursing and I changed my mind. I know that being around nursing toddlers surprised me a bit. I found it a bit off putting, I will admit. But I never would have been rude to someone who chose to breastfeed beyond infancy. I think I have always understood that every family functions differently.

This weekend I came across someone who was downright snappy with me about nursing my son. I won’t get into details about it, but I was shocked at how rude this person (who does not yet have children) was to me. I know it comes out of fear and ignorance, but wow. I just tried to smile and reminded this person that the benefits of nursing don’t end the day a child turns one and refererred to the WHO’s recommendation to nurse until two. The person stopped talking but glared at me the whole time I nursed my son.

Maybe I am remembering myself a better person that I was, but as ignorant as I was about parenting before I was a parent, I NEVER was rude to someone. I know that it’s hard to understand how other families function, but I can’t imagine being rude to someone over something that didn’t affect me at all. I get plenty of flack for nursing my son from multiple sources, and I try to keep my head up. I know that what I am doing is right. I tell them the short version of why I am still nursing and most people just shut up and get over it. Most are just confused, not rude. This was different though. This was flat out rude.

I really hope I was never like that. Being a parent changes you. It’s changed me so much that I can hardly imagine ever being the person I was before I had my son, but I have always valued respect. I don’t care how ignorant someone is on a subject, they should always be respectful.

/end rant.

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