The Parenting Buffet

The Parenting Buffet: Yes, you can babywear and sleep trainOnce upon a time, when Dominic was first born and I thought I knew everything (hahahahahahaha, oh how I laugh at my younger self. I hope everyone that I was a total jerk to forgives me), I held fast to a certain parenting philosophy (more on that in another post).

What this philosophy was wasn’t important, but I now regret it. I held on so tight to this parenting philosophy as if it was a holy grail. And while I don’t want to get too much into that today as I’m working on another post that will talk more about that, what I do want to talk about today is the philosophy I embrace now.

You probably won’t find any parenting books or blogs about this, because if they exist I haven’t found them. But I embrace what I’ve come to call the parenting buffet or if you prefer, Smorg parenting. Though I don’t use the word smorg as often as I do buffet, so I thought for clarity’s sake, I would call it the parenting buffet.

Simply put, I no longer believe there is one overarching parenting philosophy that will raise the best kids (this will also be another post later) but that there are many good ideas from all walks of life and most parenting books and philosophies.

Now, I still like to read and take in information.  Then I can make a decision for myself about what I think will work for my kids.

I am sure that to some of you this may sound like a ‘No duh!’ realization, but for me, I really feel best when I have instructions to follow. I don’t think admitting this about myself is a bad thing. Sometimes this is a strength and sometimes this is a weakness. In parenting, this is definitely a weakness because there are no instructions out there for parenting. Of course, the vast number of books out there would try to convince you otherwise.

Realizing that I could take parenting advice and pick and choose from it like it was a buffet was a huge shift for me. Don’t like green olives? That’s fine, in the buffet you don’t have to take them. Don’t like some parenting advice? That’s fine, in the buffet of parenting advice, you don’t have to take it. But vice versa, you can pull separate parts of different schools of thoughts and bring them to work together. Like french fries and cream cheese frosting, not all combinations that work well together seem obvious from the get go.

Yes, you can babywear and sleep train. You can feed your kids organic and also go to McDonald’s sometimes. You can give your kids choices and also give them things they have to do sometimes. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing. This isn’t a restaurant where they serve you one thing and one thing only and you have to eat it for the rest of your life. No, you can make the combinations you want because it’s a buffet.

I hope that you stuck with me to the end and that this post made sense to you. This was a freeing concept for me and I hope that it might be for you too.

How would you describe your parenting philosophy? What do you think of my buffet approach? 

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