Guest blogger Jessica Katz: Ever since I had a baby, I have received my share of unsolicited advice. People approach me to tell me what to do and what not to do. It's amazing how unabashed they are. "You use one of those?" (in regards to a pacifier). "You shouldn't drink caffeine while you breastfeed" (while I drank an iced tea -- and was no longer breastfeeding). "You shouldn't paint your nails while pregnant. You're
using bumpers. Your baby's wearing orange, and girls wear pink." I have heard it
Similarly, everyone feels like they can approach you and your baby and
physically touch you both. It is like they forget your baby is a person. Would you want
some stranger randomly pinching your cheeks (the ones on your face, or the other ones)?
And so of course I felt bad when I saw a woman who was 36 weeks pregnant at the OB
office. She was there because her baby was already eight pounds and she might have to
deliver early via C-section. Two other woman in the waiting room
immediately told her to avoid a C-section at all costs. One
continued, "I had a nine-pounder naturally. It's easy." This poor woman was terrified
enough at the idea of having her first child before these women felt the need
to impose their views. And she hadn't asked their opinion. They just felt
they had the right to tell her how to have her baby, because they'd had babies of their
It's such an odd phenomenon. Would you go up to a fat person eating an ice
cream sundae and tell them they should diet, explaining the dangers of obesity
and high cholesterol? Or go up to a smoker and tell them to quit smoking? Probably not -- and if you did, they would tell you it was none of your business.
really appropriate to butt in. But for some reason, a baby is like a license that gives strangers the right to
judge and advise. As if it isn't hard enough to be a mom without someone
telling you how to do it!