Thumb sucking, vaccinations, and other not-so-controversial topics

As it would turn out, you find yourself under a fair bit of criticism as a mom. Having a baby out with you invites a lot of opinions and ideas and many people aren’t afraid to voice these! Thankfully, most of the criticism I have received are pretty noncontroversial (and even a little silly). Here are some of my favorite (and the most common):

Thumb sucking. Yes, my girl has a particular fondness for her thumb. No, this does not mean she will inevitably suck her thumb until she is 14 and have horrendous teeth. At nearly 5 months old, thumb sucking is a convenient way for her to calm herself down. I love the idea that she is developing an ability to recognize her emotional states and respond in an effective way. I will deem this stage of thumbsucking as emotional intelligence and will leave any issues that may arise in the future where they belong.

Vaccinations. The first anti-vaccination comment I received was actually a little shocking, but I understand that different people have different perspectives. As a researcher, though, the arguments often get under my skin. I don’t feel the need to defend this position, but suffice it to say that the little bandaids on my girl’s thighs provide me with an immense sense of relief. Rather than crying when she gets her shots, I feel like celebrating the awesome role of science in my Little’s life (and how she won’t get polio)!

Headbands. Yeah, this is just odd. I was chastised for not getting my daughter used to wearing headbands. By a medical professional… Conversely, I have also been chastised for putting hair accessories on her, so…go figure, I guess? For the record, I have no strong stance on accessorizing babies as long as those accessories don’t involve those creepy fake teeth.  🙂

Not owning [insert specific piece of baby equipment here]. Before Emmy was born I decided that I wanted to do my best not to let my home get overrun with baby equipment and to take as much of a minimalist approach as possible.  Honestly, I don’t really feel like I succeeded at this (we have a lot of baby junk, I will admit) but there always seems to be something that we are told we must run out and buy.  For example, I fought against the pressures of the foam baby chairs for four months.  But this week, I finally caved and she seems to dig it (just not for very long).  Yay for Craig’s List!

I still try to keep the baby gear mostly limited to smaller things that can be put away and, thankfully, the Little seems to be happiest either when held or rolling around on the floor with her furry siblings.

Her things never remain “hers” for long anyway…

Being too attached/Taking too many pictures/Not spending enough time away from my baby. To this I say “too bad”. Look at that face, how could we not be in love?? 🙂

(An aside: This isn’t meant to be a rant, just a recollection.  Most of the comments we get are loving at best and mild teasing at worst!)


And of course Friday meant our weekly photo shoot!  Em was not really feeling it today, but we managed to get some cute outtakes.  We did not manage, however, to get her hands out of her mouth long enough to get a smile!:

And Emmy’s official 20 week photo:

We love you, baby girl, even when you refuse to smile!


5 thoughts on “Thumb sucking, vaccinations, and other not-so-controversial topics

  1. Love this post. I am glad you aren’t one of those new moms who takes all the comments to heart. I didn’t figure you would be. I just kind of laughed at most of the advice myself. I hope my headband comment was taken in the spirit of fun that it was given. I find it interesting that a healthcare provider would tell you that you needed to get her used to headband wearing. Of course I don’t have girls so I wouldn’t know much about it. I survived 4 babies without a bumbo (sp?) seat, boppy (I just used my own pillows) and most other things people thought were necessary to raising children. I definitely would have worn at least one of the Twins if I had known anything about it. I tried an infant carrier but didn’t like it. All my boys are immunized which many people find interesting once they discover that at least 2 of the 4 are autistic with a possible third.
    Some comments would be well worth writing down just to laugh at years later.

    • I was definitely not referring to your headband comment. 🙂 I have been chastised about imposing stereotypical gender roles on her with bows and frills and such lol. I like to think that regardless of how much pink she wears, she will also grow up with a mom who is a doctor so that should even the score! Thank you for always being an awesome supporter of my family!!

    • It’s true, we are just preparing her for the many life challenges she will face as a result of her cuteness. 😉 Or maybe she will get super awkward when she hits grade school like I did lol. I promise we will still love her!

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