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Mum shares how she often feels judged for sticking to routine with her children, but is she judging others by voicing her opinion?

The mum of twins who blogs at Life of Two Halves says she truly believes in mothers supporting each other.

She writes, “It’s a roller coaster. If it works for you and your child, it works. Breast or bottle, cot or co-, puree or baby-led, blah blah blah. These approaches didn’t just happen. Each of us decided it was for the best… that’s why we are doing it.”

While I am sure this mum is not wanting to make judgement or point fingers, she wants to make a shout out to the Mums who have a routine and stick to it. “The Mums who do believe in bedtimes and naughty steps and not letting their child do exactly as they want. The Mums who believe a parent should be a parent and not their child’s best mate. You too are doing OK.”

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She wants those parents to know “You are not the dragon of the parenting world, your approach is also valid and based on loving your child and wanting the best for them. The fact that your dedication to actually ‘being a parent’ and believing that a consistent approach to routine and discipline makes you the subject of criticism makes it all the more obvious that you are doing what you do because you love your child.”

“So next time you have to stand in a supermarket aisle saying, “I will wait here until you are ready to calm down but you are NOT having any Coke” in the face of a screaming toddler, tutting pensioners and the sticky face of someone else’s toddler gleefully swigging Coke from the can…. Stand firm. This is what you *should* be doing,” she added.

Pointing out in her article, “The next time you read a post debating the pros and cons of Crying it Out: Yes orphanages in Uganda are no doubt full of silent children who have learnt the tragic lesson that crying will not illicit the love and comfort they deserve and this is a travesty of humanity that makes me want to cry and rage simultaneously. But don’t be made to feel bad for the fact that you have avoided having a toddler who has you wrapped around their little finger by steadfastly holding onto a ‘bottle bath bed’ routine at 7pm and not rushing in at the slightest murmur. You have given your child a gift too. Sleep. The root of being able to handle what the world has got the throw at them.”

And this gets me onto the biggest of my irritations: being made to feel like having a routine … and, you know, one I actually stick to, makes me some sort of dictator.

“I will not apologise for ‘the routine’.”

“Not to you, not to my twins for whom it is implemented, not to my friends who cannot understand why a visit or a day out must be planned properly around mealtimes and naptime, not to my own mother who only ‘sort of understands’.

‘The routine’ is part of the family, part of the fabric of our now not-so-new ‘we have twins’ existence.

“I am literally so fed up of feeling like I should apologise for it. If you let your child choose to do as he wishes and he is up all night, and that works for you, great. To each his own. Every family (and every child) is different. But if it doesn’t work for you and you’re whingeing about it… This is going to sound harsh but if you’re complaining and you don’t have a routine, I have no sympathy. Get one.

“I am not ‘lucky’ my children sleep.

“I am not ‘lucky’ that they do not often descend into screaming fits.

It’s not luck. I try bloody hard. Very often at the expense of what I want to do.

“I adopt the tedium and regularity of it because I give a shit, because it hurts me to see an overly tired child endlessly screaming because it’s too little to understand it’s ‘just tired’.

“So Amen to 7pm bedtimes and no pudding if you don’t eat your dinner. Stand up Routine Mums, Eating at the Table Mums, Limited TV Mums. I for one know you are doing this because you love your children.

Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.”

 

While many people don’t like the tone of her article, they do appreciate what she is trying to say.

One comment read, ” I am starting to feel that these are exactly the articles that actually create that ‘social media pressure’… Parenting is becoming so analysed, scrutinised, you’re not alone kinda bullshit.. And by mothers themselves … Bit over it actually
Yeah ok routine is good and all that but I really didn’t find anything useful in this article… And she’s (maybe unintentionally) judging a group of mothers right at the beginning of the article… Yet asking not to be judged..”

Another wrote, “Agreed with the overall concept of the article being in support of a routine. Almost lost me at the mums with abs. I have abs after twins. Worked my ass off for that… while the babies slept in their routine. There’s nothing wrong with mums putting themselves ahead of the washing or cleaning from time to time. Exercise keeps me as sane as my boys’ routine.”

This mum shared, “I’m absolutely pro routine – But I don’t like the tone of the article. As parents, we need to do what works for us- for me that’s a routine, and consistency… but I’m not arrogant enough to think that the way that I parent my kids is the only option.”

Another said, “It’s not cut & dry. You don’t either, have a routine or “have an overtired, miserable” child. There is a middle ground. We have a loose routine during the day & a strict one at night. He fits around our plans during the day and is the happiest baby around.
Each to their own with how you choose to parent.”

– “Great article! I don’t see her tone as smug, just someone fed up with the questions and judgment for implementing something that keeps her sane (goodness knows routine did for me!).”

– “I think the basic idea the author is getting at is that you need to do what works for you. She didn’t say what routine was. She said it was important for her to have a routine, whatever that may be.”

– “Omg yes I heard a lot ” lucky” my child sleeps and yes I met lots of ” whinging ” mothers who absolutely don’t want to change anything. Best article ever! Parenting is a skill you have to learn, it doesn’t come just naturally.”

Do you agree with her point?

Share your comments below

This post originally appeared on Life of Two Halves

 

  • Like what the article conveys, to each their own. Whatever works, works. I think the author maight have been fed up with other people judging her parenting, that is why the tone is a bit harsh. I think and believe that all parents (even dads) unconsciously compare parenting skills with other parents. It gets out of hand when we start judging parenting skills. Every parent and every child is different, and that means that every parenting style would be different.

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  • I suppose different people need different ‘tones’ to understand. It’ll help some whole others should look elsewhere for advice.

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  • having a routine is great, kids love it, the only routine I have successfully managed is the after kinder pick up and lunch date with my three year old

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  • I agree kids thrive on routine, but not every family situation can sustain one consistently depending on parents working, separated or other things. Good for her – lets quit the judging


    • Hear. hear – so tired of all the judging – there seems to be so many articles about mums/parents being judged.

    Reply

  • An interesting article on parenting – such a shame that so many mums/parents worry about being judged. I just do not worry or care about anyone else judging me or my parenting style. I have routine and certain standards and they work for my family.

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  • I strived to have a routine with my kids. It didn’t always work out, kids are often unpredictable, but I think it made life better for us all when a routine was stuck to

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  • How you raise your children is your business and as long as that child is being looked after and is happy who is to say what is the best way to bring your children up. Six children and all have had slightly different up brings apart from the younger two who are twins. I found with them I had to have a more structured way with them due to there being two of them and my age. I was so much more flexible with the first one as I tied to enjoy motherhood but soon learn some structure is needed for the child to know their limits.

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  • Yep, I’m a lover of routine too !

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  • I absolutely agree with this post. I believe it is crucial for a young child to have a routine, it let’s them know what happens next and enables the parent to feel organised. Children must learn boundaries otherwise if not they will begin to be one step ahead of you with everything and eventually get there own way consistently.

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  • I very much liked having a routine for my young children however I also am flexible when I need to be.

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  • I agree with her completely. I’m a routine mum and use the word ‘no’ frequently. I don’t think she is being too harsh at all. Kids need structure and dicipline to become decent human beings.

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  • I think routine helps, but you can’t be too rigid with it. Mind you, I am a bit over articles like this.

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  • I agree with her. Routine gives security to kids and stability to the family. We always had routines in our home and they functioned perfectly. It’s no question of “luck” indeed.

    Reply

  • If you love routine, as I do, then go for it. I don’t let the opinions of others sway me from what makes me happy.

    Reply

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