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You’re listening to the slumber party podcast with your host Amanda Jewson, a mom of two girls, a child and infant sleep expert and general sleep lover. If you’re a tired parent who is desperate for answers, or just someone who loves sleep, this podcast was created just for you. Each episode is packed full of tips and tricks to help you maintain your sanity, as well as your social life during the early stages of parenthood. So grab your headphones, it’s time to get comfy.
Hello, everybody. Welcome to another edition of the slumber party podcast. I’m Amanda. And today we’re with Kyla, and I’m so excited about this topic because I mostly am just surprised I haven’t hit this topic yet because it does come up so much in the work that I do.
Kyla, thank you so much. Now, Kyla is you’ll see if you’re watching this not if you’re listening Kela does not have her screen on because Kyla is a smart woman and is doing this podcast anonymously. So she’s not shaming any of her family members. And I think that’s smart. So if you’re wondering, why is Amanda doing this podcast with a black screen, it is intentional. We do no edits, okay.
Kyla, thank you. Okay, so, you know, we’re on the seat of our pants, or you wrote me about talking about parent till involvement in any sort of sleep work or parenting for that matter. And in by parental, I mean, like our parents, our own parents. And I I’m so annoyed that I’ve never talked with that before, because it is such an underlying thing for everyone like it is something that does come up quite a bit. So I would love for you to jump in and kind of like, share your experiences, and then I’ll kind of jump in. Okay.
So let me start by saying that I love my mother in law.
We have a we all do.
I do love my mother in law a lot though. She were a lot of like, so I I’m not just saying that like we are. I legitimately don’t have mother in law issues. I know. Right? You hear that? It’s like a thing. It’s like oh my It’s so nice. And she gives great hugs.
Oh, that’s so cute.
Mine very much to genuinely and and I don’t have any issues with her. And she gives me so much support. And she gives me wonderful solicited advice. And I know that she has the best intentions
for me and for her new grandchild. But as a first time mom, the unsolicited advice can sometimes be quite much.
So when my baby was six months, I was still breastfeeding her. And she would say things like your baby’s a big girl now Why are you still breastfeeding her or my baby is understanding that she can get comfort from me. And I shouldn’t be comfort feeding her if she cries when I know that she’s hungry, and that’s why she’s crying.
And that I should be giving her regular milk at six months old. And you start to feel that you’re doing something wrong. I’m a new mom. You know, she told me that six months she was giving her kids milk and my husband is completely fine. But, you know, I was and by the way, isn’t that the best? Right? Like when someone’s like, well, I did it and I’m fine. And you’re like, right, like 40 years ago.
I’m pretty sure there’s also BTA in bottles at that time. Like there’s a lot that we are doing. Right. Exactly, exactly. So, you know, you start to question yourself and you start to to wonder if you’re doing something wrong because obviously she did something right. And obviously, you know, you look at yourself and you start to to judge yourself in a sense. And then I was speaking to one of my friends who her seven month old baby wasn’t sleeping through the night and spoke to her grandmother about it who basically fully mom shamed her like you’re not giving your kids enough polish. And how is your baby not sleeping through the night and that made her feel
have, you know, like a horrible mother that at seven months or maybe needs feeds over the night as per the doctor? And so it’s just?
Yeah, I mean, I think that they mean, well, they don’t mean to you, but how do you deal with that and have the confidence in yourself and not question yourself for all this unsolicited advice?
Yeah, it’s and it’s so hard, right? Especially because I think, you know, just to go back to the point, and I don’t I totally believe you when you say I have a great relationship with my mother in law, because I actually think that’s when it’s the most problematic or, like, painful, it’s like, oh, hi, I thought we were good. And I respect you so much. And I respect your opinion. And I just really want us I want you to continue to like me. So right when there is, yeah, like it would it would be painful, almost. In at the same time, the the parent is obviously not trying to shame you, like they think that they’re helping, like, and right here. Okay.
I’m going to answer this question. But I’m also going to be honest about something that I’ve noticed about myself is that I think that the farther you get from the baby phase, the more you romanticize it, or you think you were so cool, I put myself in this. It’s just like, Why is everyone so worried when their baby gets up for a few minutes in the middle of the night, like, whatever it’s like, I know that because I have two older kids that are fine, and survived. And this is also my job now. But every once in a while, I have to be like, No, you were a fucking rag. If your kids did anything, like stop lying to yourself, stop being too cool for school. In Ed, I’m always checking myself. And I think our parents are the ultimate versions of that, like, these are people who are like, look at me, I have parentid, these wonderful children, who are now like successful, wonderful 40 year olds or whatever. And I did that. So let me help you.
I do. I really do think that that is where it comes from. Like, look, you don’t need to worry about that. Because I know what the outcome is. Do you know what I mean? Right. Yeah. And in the end, it’s this amazing child look at them. So there’s that part. Right. I think, the, the toughest part in for sure. Like, I’ve had advice from my parents and my in laws as well. One of the things like, you know, going back to the like, Get over yourself, Amanda, like 38 year old, two older children, Amanda is a very different, Amanda, like, you know, like seven years ago, when I just had my baby it was, I am a different person I want differently. And I think about those times where we made a parenting decision. So maybe it was around like sleep, or maybe it was around like feeding or something very similar to what you’re saying. And I would feel so anxious, having to like even bring it up or discuss it. In case it wasn’t anything my in laws actually sad, or my parents said it was more like, I was worried that they would judge me for it. And or be like, Oh, I hope I hope they like it, like judges the wrong word like oh, I hope they don’t have any thoughts. And for the most part, like everyone kind of kept to themselves. And I do think that there’s something about that energy that you bring into the conversation or the room that can make it super awkward, because then it’s like, you know, for breastfeeding, for example. So you know, your mother in law makes this passing comment. Now, every time you breastfeed in front of your mother in law. Now you have this thought, like, what does she think about this? What dah dah dah, dah, dah?
Yeah, there’s like a
narrative. That’s how you almost don’t want to feed her incentive. Or, you know, because it’s like, always she gonna say, why are you feeding her but it’s like lunchtime, and she should be eating Not right now.
Totally. And, you know, so I really want to share this story, because I think this is like encapsulates everything. And I like my I’ve asked permission to discuss this for my brother in law prior and he’s
Like this. So my, my brother in law had a previous marriage and it was like, you know, a children dad like he.
So my husband’s sister and him had a baby three weeks before
I had winning my first so we had like kids extremely close in age. And my brother in law, being like a season father was like, you know, chill out and I was like, I’m fine. I was not fine.
I also had gone back to I went back to work pretty early. And my like winning my first was going through like some pretty tough teething. Like, actually, this is such a vivid time in my parenting journey. It was so awful. I was back at work. She was up all night, I was exhausted. It was it was Christmas. And we all have this like Christmas dinner. And I remember when he would not nap at all at this place. And being the first time parent I was I was like, Oh my god, she never get an app. And if she misses a snap, hit, the whole world is gonna blow up. And unfortunately, I didn’t have someone like me to walk around being like, no, that’s not a thing. Don’t worry about it. That doesn’t happen, baby, skip naps and times, you’ll be fine. And she was finding suicide. But anyway, she’s not napping, right? And I remember, my brother in law sort of said, like, hey, look like, just don’t worry about it. And I went fucking ballistic. Okay, so one thing, and we’re all fine with this now, but this is just such a like, I was already worried because I knew that like, I was, I was this new parent. And then I think I might have been feeling insecure that like my brother in law was there. And he was a cool parent. And I was a crazy parent. And I was like,
like, a fine. And then I totally like ended up like, perfectly, like, even worse, or more. So
acting out my worst nightmare. Because I went in with this story and this energy.
I basically it was like, get a tattoo I want to do as a parent, it was just so crazy. For me, too. I’ve done that. Anyway, I almost left, because I was so embarrassed. Everyone was like, No, you should stay, it’s fine.
It was all good. I called him the next day, he laughed. I got over it. But there why I tell that story is because I manifested my own reality. And my brother in law didn’t actually give a shit about how I was parenting. And like he, he was just like trying to help me chill out when I was obviously attended attend. I’m not saying you’re attended to attend. But what I should have done. And what I advise my clients to do is like, if I was feeling uncomfortable, I should have maybe had a conversation beforehand about maybe some of my worries.
I always like to get like to get it out in the open and not the day visiting or that the moment you’re in the room. Maybe have a conversation beforehand and be like, Hi, I know that we’ve talked about breastfeeding. And now it’s in my head that you might judge me when I do that. I know that I’m probably wrong. But I just want to let you know, I want to feel comfortable breastfeeding around you. And I really respect your opinion. And it can be something as easy as that. It could even be like, Hey, I just want to talk about what we’re doing in terms of sleep. Because sleep especially is a hot topic as you refer to your friend. Um, a lot of parents have a lot of feelings of asleep. Like if you were to my mom is like, I don’t know what you do. I’m like, I know, like, I know. She’s like I just when when I had you, we just put you in the crib, and then you cried for like a bit and then you never did that again. I was like I know. But that’s not the way it is today, Mom and she’s like, okay,
so it’s hard for her to understand. But I think like our parents come from a different generation of were. Number one, we were probably like trotted all over to every social event that our parents went to, you don’t necessarily think is a bad thing. But they I think that our parents think that we’re very uptight generation. So I’m a big fan of like having the pre call like if you’re going to visit for a holiday or you’re coming in from out of town. It’s always good to be like, Hey, this is what we’d love to do for sleep. This is the sleeping arrangements. This is what we’ll be doing. I just don’t want to have any weird conversations when they’re they’re like, do you have any questions or I want to explain what
because you know it. I personally think it just kind of like lessens that pressure in the room when you’re there. You show up. You’re like I said my piece. Now I have permission to do what I want and however I want, and then your parents or your in laws or whoever, your poor brother in law’s No, maybe not to bring that topic up because it might be sensitive to you.
Unknown Speaker 15:29
thank God, he’s an he’s a really nice man. And you just like, Yes, fine. I remember when I there was like another gathering because it was Christmas. And we I saw him and I was like, I just want to let you know that I really sorry. And he’s like, Oh, yeah, fine. That’s fine. Don’t worry about
I know, we obviously manifest and think about it more than anyone else. But you know, as a new mother, you’re getting all this thrown at you and feel so judged and feel like, like you’re doing the wrong thing. Yeah, well,
no, and it just whenever you are acting in a way that is not in line with what you want to do, or how you actually feel. This goes for every single possible scenario, parenting, work, anything, if you’re doing shit and acting in a way that you don’t feel is authentic to you, you will start to feel resentment, you will start to feel anxiety and pushback. And that creates an energy for yourself. It creates
tension that everyone can feel it part of it is like yeah, just be really confident in your parenting decisions. But as a new parent, it’s not that easy to be that confident. Because you’re not that confident.
Unknown Speaker 16:55
I just became a parent six months ago. I do. And am I feeding my baby too much, but she seems happy. And she sleeps through the night. And she’s she’s all good. So am I feeding her too much? Maybe I am. And then you just yeah, you spiral.
I would totally spiral I would totally spiral have spiraled? Even like if it’s not family, like friends who have different parenting practices. You’re just like,
oh, awkward. I hope we don’t like have a weird fight about this. But I think so go back. I wrote this blog, like, two or three years ago, and it was called, like, How to say, Whoa, whoa, whoa, and no, no, no. Because it is hard to say that, like I did have my first that first Christmas I referred to were like, you know, people always want to pass on the baby. Or they’ll be like, Oh, the baby’s not tired yet. You have to be like, well, they’re tired. They might not show it. But it does take practice to show that assertiveness with your parents. And it doesn’t mean that you have to yell and scream at them like I did. I actually don’t recommend that. But have practice and maybe have that call ahead to explain if you do suspect that there will be any pushback. And really, it’s a muscle. It’s just like no things. This is what we’re doing right now. And guess what? It’s gonna feel weird. At that moment to have to say no, thanks to your family. It’ll feel really weird. You’ll get a rush of like,
and then what they do is they go oh, yeah, okay. The end. Truly, that is what I’ve learned. If
I had to tell you, like, in my whole existence, what I learned in my 30s I am 30 8am i 38. Yes, I am. 38. Okay, I had to figure that out. I just turned 38. In my 30s what I have learned is that,
um, no one gives a shit about you the way you do it. Not in that way. But like, you being assertive will not make anyone go crazy or hate you like we have built this up. And by the way, when we are not assertive and we don’t say what we actually want and we are being dishonest with ourselves. That actually creates resentment in you in your body. It eats away at you. And resentment becomes anger. Anger becomes tension. And that’s when you start to get to the yucky zone. So it’s so much easier for you to just practice or write a letter or writing email and just practice that that calm, kind assertiveness and I really don’t think your parents or family members are
Brother in law would really see that as like a sad or bad thing. What do you think? Do you think your mother in law anything you open to them? They would appreciate? I mean, I think she would appreciate the honesty. Yeah. And but, you know, I do think that she can kind of be old school in her ways like, Well, no, you shouldn’t be breastfeeding still. But if I would say, but that’s what we’re doing. I think she would accept that.
And even if you were to say, you know, we’re just going on what our doctor recommends. There’s so much advice out there. I have an Yeah.
That’s in my arsenal.
Me too, so much, so much. 100%? No, I I’m laughing because yes, 100% I do that all the time.
Yeah, so I feel like it’s a matter of,
you know, it’s a muscle. And the more cool you are about it, the cooler they will be to, it’s like, yeah, sure, like, oh, they’re, they’re not, they’re not really bothered. It’s like, it just breaks the ice and the tension.
And, you know, so the other thing that we haven’t really discussed is like sleep training, specifically, right? And because sleep training, you know, gets a lot of nasty looks, sometimes you’re gonna have people who are 100% in or 100% out. I wish there were more people in the middle.
But I find like, what can be really tricky is, you know, maybe it’s day two of sleep training. And mom or dad has put the baby down in their crib, and they’re crying. And you know, the the in laws are there, or the parents are there. And there’s so much advice and like, how do you let your baby cry? Oh, my gosh, how is this happening? I’m going to advise strongly to not have your parents present. Unless they’re, and you’ve explained prior, what sleep training is what’s going to happen that you have a plan for intervention, this is what it’s going to look like, nobody is leaving the baby, the baby gets lots of love and attention. And so I do, I do think it’s best to kind of do that on your own. And listen, if that’s not obvious, like I’ve had so many wonderful parents,
like grandparents who have been actually really helpful in their process and help their their child. That’s just not the case for everyone. You’re you know, if you I don’t recommend sleep training, while you’re vacationing, or Lake Tahoe sharing. I know you’re laughing but I get so many people are like we’re buying a cottage, we thought we’d sleep train. I’m like, how many other families are going to be there? And they’re like, five, I’m like, No, I will not do that to you or
anyone else trying to enjoy their cottage vacation? Oh, yeah, there’s that too. Yeah. So, you know, you definitely don’t want to be inviting that feedback at a time that’s already very challenging. Right?
Yes, yeah. That makes it a no parents. No, no, no. Definitely not.
No, for like, please.
I’m good. Kyle, it was that helpful? Would you like it was a way
to make me it makes me feel like I’m empowered. And I can go and do this.
Good, good. You can? And I’m on the other side, and I can talk very openly and freely with everyone a better parenting decisions, and I don’t really even think about it anymore. Right. But you’re gonna get a lot of advice around sleeping. Eating. Yeah, I’m trying to think of the other ones like a lot of sleep is a big one. I always hear grandparents say they’re just not tired yet.
Unknown Speaker 24:23
You don’t know I’m with them all the time every day.
That’s the other thing. Yeah. You have a PhD in your child’s you are you’re right, the person who would know best. Okay. Well, this I hope this was helpful.
Thank you so much for coming on. I hope people continue with
tangible strategies. And and some like what to do’s and what definitely not to do Don’t yell at your brain like Christmas. No one cares about it as much still as I do, but
I can’t believe I did that though.
Um for anyone else I you can check out the blog on this topic and in you know I forget it’s not it’s like whoa whoa whoa no no no is the title if you want to take a look at that I recount the story there semia a DM on Instagram let me know how you’re coping with all of the advice that you’re getting. You can find firstname.lastname@example.org slash babies best sleep. If you need help in the sleep department. You can also book a call with a member of our team at BB specially calm, we’ll get to know everything that’s going on and give you the best strategies so that by the time you are having your cottage weekend, your video will be sleeping and you don’t have to have these conversations. You’ll be like this is this is a total side note Kyla I don’t know if you’re at the point of like, I have so many of my
client parents who are like oh my god, I can’t believe you’re asleep reading and then at the end their baby sleeps like a dream and then that parent is walking around bragging about how well their grandchild sleeps. Right? Right.
That could be you the next family adventure.
Alright everyone, thank you so much. Please leave a comment like, comment, subscribe, share with a friend it all of it helps and have a great sleep. Bye