If you have been reading my blog (and why wouldn’t you be?!), you may know that I have a kind of “snarky” opinion about the plethora of parenting books available that are designed to prey on new moms and dads who feel pressured to be the “perfect parents!”
First of all, you should know that perfect parents don’t exist. They are as obsolete as unicorns. Secondly, I think that we live in a day and age where we are actually at a disadvantage because of what “texters” (and youngsters) call “TMI,” Too Much Information. (Yep, I’m a pretty hip, 40-year old mom!)
Case in point, during a recent stint of personal research (on Google of course) to find out what could, aside from an infection, possibly be the cause of my ear pain, I quickly became convinced that I had a brain tumor or some other rare but deadly disease that would kill me in just a few, short hours. (Consequently, I have an MRI scheduled for next week.) When I looked up the side-effects for taking what may have been a little too much ibuprofen to deal with the pain, I realized that I had swallowed enough in the past week to literally kill me – or at least pickle my liver. Of course this information mostly came from forums filled with online quack-pots that have nothing better to do and no real medical experience.
When trying to find out what could be the cause of my teen’s itchy skin rash, I became overwhelmed by the thought that the tick we pulled out of her hair last week could have given her Lyme’s disease. When one of my daughters was hospitalized a few years ago with an unknown illness, I found little comfort in symptom-checkers or other information I found online.
Worse yet, some of the ideas and information I have found online about disciplining my children or suggestions for perfect birthday gifts for my nieces, have all been a big BUST to say the least. (FYI, a huge, climb-in play ball is a HUGE waste of dough!)
Need to save your marriage? You can find a guide online. Need to know if your spouse is cheating? Some sales letter will say that he or she is, and will sell you the “insider’s guide” to catching him or her in the act. Looking for a new car? Online searches will make it impossible to make a decision. Even trying to figure out basic things like how to coupon or cook Chicken Parmesan will have you reeling, causing you to have a dizzying case of “TMI!”
The first thing that all of us “perfect parents” do these days when we have a problem is go to a computer or iPhone and become engaged in “information-over-freakin-load.”
I believe that sometimes this can completely stymie our own common sense – especially when the advice we are reading is counter-intuitive.
I believe whole-heartedly that each of us, as a mom, comes pre-equipped with a fountain of knowledge about how to raise our children. I even believe in the metaphysical hypothesis that our children CHOOSE US to be their parents because we have exactly what they need. (Really, how cool is that?) While all of this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use the wealth of knowledge available at your fingertips, it does mean that you should trust your own instincts and intuition.
Remember, in many cases MOM KNOWS BEST! Unless you are that “gem of a mother” who recently made headline news because she had her 14-year old daughter drive her to the liquor store while she rode along wasted — this means you. Blessings.
What do you think? Little Hints for Dealing with “TMI”