As soon as you become parents, apart from gifts and best wishes there is one thing which you will get in plenty- parenting advice. While your frustration at the unsolicited advice may be understood, you need to keep in mind that most of these people are your friends and family who have your best interest in their heart. So how do you handle this interference gently without hurting them? Here are some tips to help you do so.
If it’s a stranger:
Look at the person smiling and just say thank you for your concern, I’ll think about it. No point losing your cool when you are probably not meeting this person again.
If it’s a friend or relative:
It’s natural to get defensive if you feel your parenting skills are in question, but pause and listen to the advice with an open mind. You may learn something valuable. However, if you feel that the advice is ridiculous, then simply nod and move on. You may say that you will find out more about this or you will ask your doctor.
If it’s your parents or In-laws:
This requires proper handling. When your mom or mom-in-law offers her advice, hear her out properly, making her feel that her inputs are important. Remember she loves her grandchild and she believes in what she is saying. Should you disagree with her, explain to her why you don’t agree with her. If it is regarding some health issue, tell her that you will confirm once with the doctor. Make sure to speak in a way that she doesn’t feel let down.
Sometimes you may get harmless advice which you may deem unnecessary but it will keep her happy. For instance, if she says that the kid should wear a particular dress, as long as it doesn’t disturb your plans for the party, you can choose not to fight this battle.
At the end of the day, you are the parent. Listen to everybody but do what you feel is right. You may also join a community of parents by downloading any of the leading parenting apps available nowadays.