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Old 03-15-2016, 11:34 AM
 
Location: New Yawk
8,652 posts, read 4,786,033 times
Reputation: 14011

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I honestly didn't there was much I could do to prepare; it seemed like everyone had their own take and their own experiences, so I didn't want to be too "married" to any one particular philosophy. We prepared the best we could financially (paid off the car, banked a year's salary), and bought the basics that we knew would be needed right off the bat (car seat, bassinet, clothes, diapers) and just took it from there.

Turns out that there is one little piece of wisdom that each and every mom I knew told me. Most new first time moms hate to hear it, but you don't realize how wise it is until after your second kid comes along: Sleep when baby sleeps. No really, **** the housework; from this point on it'll never be "done" anyway. Take advantage of the luxury that comes with having only one child, because once the second kid comes along, there are even fewer opportunities to sit down and catch your breath.

Last edited by Ginge McFantaPants; 03-15-2016 at 12:22 PM..
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Old 03-15-2016, 12:04 PM
 
741 posts, read 1,025,132 times
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A combo:
I found hands on classes best, so if you are offered a series of child birth and infant care classes by the hospital before the birth I would take them.


I didn't read a ton, but I made sure I had a few books on my shelf I could easily reference, such as What to Expect the First Year, and What to Expect the Toddler years.


I subscribed to Parents Magazine and Family Fun, because they had some interesting tidbits and articles and were fairly cheap.


I thought long and hard about myself and my pitfalls and read some online articles for patience and attachment parenting because I knew what baggage I had, and wanted to do some targeted reading.
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Old 03-15-2016, 03:10 PM
 
Location: Miami, FL
9 posts, read 4,299 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Linerin View Post
1st child- read everything. Didn't help
2nd child- decided to wing it. Also didn't help
Funny, this was somehow very reassuring. Fake it til you make it?
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Old 03-15-2016, 03:12 PM
 
Location: Miami, FL
9 posts, read 4,299 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bale002 View Post
Money. Faith.

Read some stuff, helped a little bit.

Human beings are complex organisms, there is no one factor that is going to guarantee any outcome, not even an identifiable set of factors.

You can do your best to protect from danger and all you can to increase the odds of good outcomes.

Good Luck, then!
Thank you.
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Old 03-15-2016, 03:13 PM
 
Location: Miami, FL
9 posts, read 4,299 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bg7 View Post
Apart from making sure all my debt was paid off - I did nothing much useful. However, Hunterseat gave excellent advice.


And remember that when they are toddlers they see things differently from a socially-conditioned adult. So be chill about "right" and "wrong" and rein in your age-inappropriate expectations. Reading around can help there since psychologists and the like can help explain how little brains see and consider the world.


And don't fret over screwing up because we all screw up. But do analyze the screw up and take action to reduce that screw up in the future.


Finally - try to do what is in the baby's best interests (and later the child's best interests). By that, I mean don't be focused about other's expectations of what you "should do" or how things "should be" (eg parents, grandparents, neighbors, friends, strangers in the store, your ego etc.). Always put the kid's interests first once you have brought them into the world. For example, screw what anyone else thinks if your kid is having a tantrum - because she's having a hard time and you need to figure it out and calm her down - don't show off to others your "parenting skills" of harsh punishment or whatever other stuff will placate observers).
This was very helpful. Thank you.
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Old 03-15-2016, 03:32 PM
 
660 posts, read 602,050 times
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Read all the books (including the horrible "what to expect" which i gave away to goodwill halfway through) and classes for my first. Was somewhat helpful but found having my mother with me from delivery room and for some weeks after was the best education for my husband and I on caring for babies. Infant, i remember the nurse in the hospital trying to show me all the various holds for breastfeeding which i couldnt get the hang of and she was getting frustrated and my mom took over and was like "I dont understand all these random names for all these holds, just be sure to support the baby's head and neck and be sure to be comfortable yourself and just do what comes naturally" and that was it for me..

As the kids get older (mine are still quite little), I still talk to older parents, learn from trial and error and just also listen and get to know each child individually and what works.. I imagine that every stage will have its own challenges and rewards and my husband and I each try to find our strengths in raising kids and each will do the part they do best
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Old 03-15-2016, 05:45 PM
 
17,159 posts, read 22,175,230 times
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I think having kids in your late 20's or 30's is much better because you are much more mature

late teens, early 20's is tough because we are just getting out of the house and haven't found who and what we are
the more immature we are the more likely we recycle crap from our own childhood..


I was 27 when my son was born..

he came by C-section I got to see the whole thing (no worse than gutting moose)

after he came out and cleaned up,,,i got to have an hour with him alone in the room..he was alert,,,mother was being stitched up....
I was simply overwhelmed, mesmerized and overjoyed,,,that this little guy is my son and he was perfect (to me)

as god as my witness, I made promises to him ...that I would keep,,,,as in I will never strike him in anger,,never break a toy,,, always be his best support,,,,i will be cheering him on sports teams,,,,cheering him on no matter if he was any good !!
I will take him fishing and hunting...as my father did....
and I will try to give him the best gifts I ever could give him,,,,,my time .... and confidence


I could never make these promises in my early 20's


23 years later he is a couple months from graduating college as a pharmacist



to prepare for having a kid????
my wife read all the books,,,and pregnant health books..

a baby shower does wonders for gifts


to the soon to be mothers,,,beware of post partum depression ...it can be severe ,,, learned that the hard way
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Old 03-15-2016, 07:39 PM
 
Location: New Yawk
8,652 posts, read 4,786,033 times
Reputation: 14011
Quote:
Originally Posted by mainebrokerman View Post
I think having kids in your late 20's or 30's is much better because you are much more mature

late teens, early 20's is tough because we are just getting out of the house and haven't found who and what we are
the more immature we are the more likely we recycle crap from our own childhood..


I was 27 when my son was born..

he came by C-section I got to see the whole thing (no worse than gutting moose)

after he came out and cleaned up,,,i got to have an hour with him alone in the room..he was alert,,,mother was being stitched up....
I was simply overwhelmed, mesmerized and overjoyed,,,that this little guy is my son and he was perfect (to me)

as god as my witness, I made promises to him ...that I would keep,,,,as in I will never strike him in anger,,never break a toy,,, always be his best support,,,,i will be cheering him on sports teams,,,,cheering him on no matter if he was any good !!
I will take him fishing and hunting...as my father did....
and I will try to give him the best gifts I ever could give him,,,,,my time .... and confidence


I could never make these promises in my early 20's


23 years later he is a couple months from graduating college as a pharmacist



to prepare for having a kid????
my wife read all the books,,,and pregnant health books..

a baby shower does wonders for gifts


to the soon to be mothers,,,beware of post partum depression ...it can be severe ,,, learned that the hard way
One of mine was a born by c-section. While laying on the table, I happened to look up and noticed a big chrome vent on the ceiling; it was like a mirror so I accidentally got to watch the whole thing. It was pretty neat.
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Old 03-16-2016, 02:01 PM
 
1,891 posts, read 1,132,939 times
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When preparing to have children, my spouse and I made a checklist, and completed all the items before attempting to become pregnant:
1) Finish bachelors degrees
2) Get married
3) Finish masters degrees
4) Develop a stable career
5) Pay off all consumer debt (except for mortgage and school loans)
6) Buy a decent house in a decent school district with enough bedrooms for the number of kids we wanted
7) Buy and pay off two dependable cars
8) Save up at least 6 months worth of bills


We did all these things, then got pregnant. Although #6 backfired because the school zones were redrawn, but because we had done all the other things, we were able to afford private school.


After getting pregnant, I did read lots to prepare for being a parent. Basic baby care and safety (how to burp a baby, don't give a baby honey until age 1, that sort of thing) was of course necessary. Aside from those types of books, I found that everything else I read that was not science/research based was interesting but mostly worthless and not helpful (such as sleep training books). I found that everything I read that was science/research based was very helpful. So my best recommendation to you is to read anything you can find on parenting methods that is based on real science and research. One of the better ones I read (actually listened to) was "Scientific Secrets for Raising Kids Who Thrive", which is a Great Course offered as an audio book on Audible. Another really good one was Nurture Shock by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman.


But one of the most helpful things I did when preparing to become a parent was to frequently visit a mother's forum on the internet (BabyCenter.com being my favorite). Reading a high traffic forum with a bunch of moms who are also pregnant, many of them already having many children, gives you a really good idea as to what's normal, what's not normal, what to worry about, what not to worry about, what different options there are, what other people have done and how it worked for them.


Good luck on your new adventure
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Old 03-16-2016, 02:47 PM
 
1,064 posts, read 3,022,462 times
Reputation: 582
I'm due to give birth any day now, my first. I have only read one book, the Mayo Clinic Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy.............and that's pretty much it. I'm married to an RN, I have 3 sister in laws, 2 cousins that are l&d nurses, MIL is a state health nurse for soon to be moms, well you get my drift so I get plenty of advice, most of which is great and very helpful. We are both older so we feel better prepared for a child than if we were younger.
As some other posts have mentioned, everyone is different and I'm not saying to just wing it, but I have found for me, that having a drawn out, extensive plan always fails so I am going to learn on my own for the most part and I know there will be mistakes along the way but that is part of the experience.

Good luck!
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