I must confess…the best (& worst!) parenting advice I’ve ever received

This week’s prompt for #imustconfess is “the best advice you’ve ever received.”

I must confess when I sat down to think about my confession, all I could think of were instances of the WORST advice I ever received! Particularly the terrible pieces of parenting advice that I’ve been “privileged” to get over the years.

Parenting advice - www.myhometruths.com

As a special needs parent, most parenting advice is irrelevant. It really is. Even if it’s well intentioned.

Believe me on this one.

Take the following examples of advice given to me based on real life examples. Now all these were well-intentioned pieces of advice but none of them helped me in the slightest. In fact, most of the time I came away feeling worse rather than being comforted or supported!

Example 1

You may know of a distant cousin, who’s daughter has “a touch of autism.” You may be aware that they have put her on a gluten free/casein free diet and that has “cured” her. You may think that because my kids also have autism that I should be doing this too. You may even INSIST on me trying it because it could actually cure my kids’ autism.

You’d be WRONG. There is no cure for autism and, you know what, I wouldn’t want to “cure” my kids anyway. I love them as they are. However, you obviously think there’s something that needs to be “cured” so let me help you with that by walking out of your life.

Example 2

You may have witnessed my son having a meltdown in the supermarket and feel the overwhelming desire to chastise me for my poor parenting as I seemed to just let it happen, right there in the middle of aisle 5. You may also feel the urge to point out that all my kids need is a little more discipline. Because, back in your day, the cane, strap and belt did the job just fine.

You’d be WRONG. You see, my son has just spent the whole day holding himself together in school, a place where there are unwritten rules everywhere. Rules that he just can’t understand.

He is exhausted from trying to engage in social interactions, tired from concentrating all day and weary from trying to keep his ever present anxiety at bay. Plus the lights in the supermarket are bright (& reflect off the shiny floor, making the glare worse), the ambient noise level is high and the squeaky sound of that one errant wheel on the trolley is reverberating through his head.

He’s not having a temper tantrum. He is having a sensory meltdown. And all I can do right now is stay quiet, not shout at him and give him time to recover. So feel free to take your advice elsewhere and relive the ‘good old days’ of corporal punishment somewhere other than here.

Example 3

You may see my son on the street and remark on his “very blonde” hair and general paleness. You may even suggest that he may want to get a spray tan and even dye his hair and eyebrows one day so he can fit in and not look so different. Because you are worried he’ll be bullied and picked on at school.

You’d be WRONG. My son is actually proud of looking different and being unique. He doesn’t need anyone telling him that this is a BAD thing. No-one needs to be told they need to change their appearance in order to fit in or be accepted by others. So keep walking on and in future keep your potentially damaging thoughts to yourself.

You’d be forgiven for thinking I have only ever received bad advice based on the above example. But, I have actually received some good advice over the years too and lucky for you I have recorded some of these gems for your viewing pleasure.

But I do have to admit that the bad parenting advice lingers far longer in the mind than the good stuff. Don’t you agree?

Make your confession and join in with the fun and the real community we are building here at #imustconfess!

And don’t forget to join in with our #imustconfess community over on facebook. It’s where the confessing continues beyond the linkup. And the best part? You don’t even need to blog or be a blogger to take part!

Join the community!

To help you along with the confessing, here are the future prompts so you have no excuse not to take part each week!

I Must Confess...2016 Prompts 1 - www.myhometruths.com

The Rules…

I Must Confess

– I Must Confess is a link up that runs every Monday and remains live for the whole week.

– You can link up something old or new, we’re not fussy around here.

– Feel free to go with the prompt for the week or add your own confession, whatever suits.

– Please go forth and share the comment love – it is bloggy crack after all!

– We’re always open to suggestions for the weekly prompt


Next weeks’ #imustconfess prompt is “what’s your most recent ‘aha’ moment?” 

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13 Responses

  1. Lydia C. Lee says:

    Dye his hair? Yikes. Though of course now you’d have to dye it green or purple to fit in…at least where I live.
    On the sensory meltdown, I’ve noticed a couple of kids with noise cancelling headphones on in restaurants, but yesterday we saw one in a waterpark. I admired the parents for not letting anything hold them back, but I did wonder how that was going to work when the teen got in the water (presuming he had to take them off)….it’s interesting how much more you see when you really look….(or the more you know, the more you see)

  2. I can never understand the unsolicited advice habit of some people….grrrrr. I might give advice if asked…..but of course, like many I have given advice ‘not asked for’ but I usually reserve that for those I love …much to their annoyance. I don’t like unsolicited advice so why do I do this?? Do-gooder? Rescuer? I don’t know. However, I did like this prompt today and it was most helpful. Cheers, Denyse

  3. Wow. People can be so insensitive! When Miss 19 was a baby and sleeping peacefully in her pram, I used to get lots of people give me “advice” that I shouldn’t let her sleep on her tummy. I knew the risk of SIDS but SHE didn’t and it was the only way she would sleep!!!!!
    Janet aka Middle Aged Mama recently posted..Perfect Jeans for an Apple Shape

  4. Advice is a touchy subject for many. I don’t like to give it as I don’t know what happens in anyone else family. I can tell people what I do but that doesnt mean it will work for you.

  5. “Don’t sweat the small stuff” is probably the best advice ever although at the time the small stuff doesn’t seem small at the time, huh? Bloody judgmental people in shopping centres give me the pips.

  6. Vanessa says:

    The amount of things that can apparently be cured by being vegan or vegetarian is astounding. And irritating when you hear it all the time!
    Vanessa recently posted..The Best Advice For Life

  7. Tegan says:

    Wow that last advice is awful. People are dicks. Supermarkets seem to bring out the worst in people too. I don’t have sensory issues but I know that I often feel overwhelmed while grocery shopping too, so I can only imagine how your son is feeling. I think we remember the bad stuff easier because of how it made us feel.
    Tegan recently posted..Important Life Lessons

  8. Ugh! Some people just need to shut-the-hell-up… not you Kirsty, the advisers! I tended to be more opinionated about child-rearing before I had my own (why?) and now that I’ve experienced the good, the bad and the ugly of being a parent, I have no advice to give others – nada! Each of us is different and so are each of our children. We just have to do what works for us and our families. For that it’s worth, I think you’re doing a great job of parenting Kirsty. 🙂
    Lyndall @ SeizeTheDayProject recently posted..9 Pieces of Advice My Dad Gave Me

  9. I could only recall the worst advice as well. People can be so thoughtless.

    I didn’t make it to the confessional party this week. We have a long weekend in Perth and rather than play catch up like I should, I’m having a rare day off. We had my youngest daughter’s 15th birthday party Saturday night/ Sunday and I really need a day off.

  10. Zita says:

    So hard to remember not to sweat the small stuff sometimes isn’t it!!

  11. Interesting advice.
    The other day 3 young children were sitting on the floor reading books off the shelf in the supermarket I work in. We could have told them no but they were being so nice and gentle. When big brother (one of the 3) told them it was time to go they packed up the books, even the littlest who was maybe 2 or 3. and went to Dad. I caught up with him at the registers and said ‘We saw your kids sitting reading books (worried look starting to appear on his face). It was lovely. You have great kids (look of relief and a smile of happiness).’
    Not being a parent myself I don’t think it is my place to judge parents and even when I am one I don’t think it will be my place. Yes there are things I might do differently etc but who cares really. When I see a kid chucking having a meltdown in a shop, my automatic reaction is sympathy for the parent and knowledge (educated guess) that the child is more than likely tired or have just plain had enough rather than reacting with ‘bad parenting’.

  1. March 7, 2016

    […] Linking up with My Home Truths for #imustconfess […]

  2. March 7, 2016

    […] What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? Share in the comments or link up with I Must Confess over at My Home Truths! […]

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