How to deal with judgemental parents
At a glance
Even advice given with the best intentions can come across as know-it-all opinions
Unwanted advice? Learn to politely shut them down
Trust your own intuition, it is more powerful than you think
Learn how to avoid mum/dad shaming
Six easy ways to deal with judgemental other parents
Feeling a little mum or dad shamed? Is every decision you make about your baby being judged and questioned? You’re not alone! Bringing up your little one is tough enough without being mum judged, or dad shamed. Here are six easy ways to sidestep the I-know-better-than-you opinions and ensure you don’t unknowingly do it to others!
Tip 1: Dealing with unwanted baby advice
If you didn’t ask for baby advice, then you can always ignore it or perhaps very politely ask them not to pass it on or to judge you and your decisions about your baby. You can deter unwanted baby advice by asking for support, not opinions, which hopefully won’t offend the opinion giver! We also have more on dealing with unwanted breastfeeding advice.
Tip 2: Be selective in who you ask for advice
When it comes to asking for advice, it might be best to stick to trusted friends and family members with your baby questions. For example, if you need breastfeeding advice, then someone who’s experienced the same issues will obviously be a great person to ask, rather than someone who has just read about it.
Tip 3: Trust your Mum intuition (and your Dad intuition)
Parental intuition is a real thing. If you’ve been given some advice from your parents or anyone else that doesn’t feel right, then check it out with your healthcare professional. Some of the old-fashioned baby myths are just that, old fashioned, and many simply aren’t true. Don’t feel bad about not taking advice; being able to say your doctor or health visitor advised against it is a great way to respond to unwanted opinions.
Tip 4: Misinterpreting baby advice
Sometimes advice given on texts, social media posts and online forums can easily get lost in translation. With a lack of body language, inflection and intonation, things can easily get misinterpreted. Opinions aren’t always advice and advice can sometimes be very opinionated! You can always ask for clarification, wait for a face-to-face chat or just use tip three and trust your mum and dad intuition.
Tip 5: Is it just Mum shaming?
Unfortunately these days people can be very unkind on social media and forums and get involved in mum shaming or dad shaming. These vicious-tongued keyboard warriors can take great delight in criticising your choices, decisions and might be mean about you or your baby personally. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life, especially when you’ve been up all night with your little one! These critics are the ones with the issue, not you. You’re doing great. So, delete the post to stop anyone else adding fuel to the fire, close the laptop and have a cuppa!
Tip 6: Are you inadvertently judging other parents?
As we’ve seen opinions and advice, however well-meant, are not always welcome. Even the best-intentioned thoughts and comments aren’t always well received so be careful on social media and forums when sharing advice. It might be best to chat things through within your close friends and family network instead.