Category Archives: USA

Having a Baby Abroad – Global Differences Series: USA & UK

Next up in the series of The Global Differences of Baby-Making I talk to Katie who is British and had her first son in the USA and her second in the UK. Here is her story:

Tell me a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How old are your children and where did you have them?

Hi, I’m Katie. I’m originally from the UK although I have lived all over the place! I have been living in Marseille since September 2014 with my husband and two children. We moved here for my husband’s job – he’s an astrophysicist working at Aix-Marseille university – and are planning on settling here permanently if all goes according to plan. My older son, Jack, is 6 and a half and was born in the USA and Oliver is 1 and a half and was born in the UK.

having a baby abroad US and UK Katie PieriWhy did you have your children abroad?

My eldest son was born in the USA because that’s where we were living at the time and the same goes for Oliver and the UK.
What do you feel were the benefits to having children abroad?

Jack is eligible for a US passport which, having been through the process of trying to get a job in the US when not a citizen, is certainly a bonus! Other than that, I don’t think there were any ‘benefits’ to having him in the US over the UK. It was certainly a lot more expensive!!

Now that we are raising our sons in France I would say that the major benefit is that they will grow up to be bilingual. I think that this will give them great opportunities in life. The lifestyle in the South of France is much more laid back than in the UK or US as well and the weather obviously is a bonus 🙂
As an expectant mother abroad how did you feel?

I was a first-time mum in the US, so language wasn’t a problem luckily. I think that the biggest thing for me, was being so far away from family. However I had friends that kind of filled that gap and helped out when I needed them.

With regards to the healthcare, it was completely doctor-led which is very different from my experience the second time around in the UK. As a first time mum I personally found this reassuring, although if I had been in the US for my second pregnancy I don’t think I would have wanted it this way. I also appreciated the 2-day stay in hospital, in my own private room, before I had to go home and face ‘reality’. Also, did I mention the cost??? Even though we had insurance we still had to pay a LOT of money!!

Second time around, although I was in the UK it was my first experience of having a baby there and things were very different. The only reason I saw a doctor was because I had a low-lying placenta, otherwise everything was handled by a midwife. I was able to give birth in a birthing centre, rather than a labour ward, and things were much more relaxed and laid-back. I was more relaxed anyway due to previous experience and laboured at home for the majority of the time but once in the birthing centre my midwife spent most of the time in the corner of the room observing and letting me do my thing! Incidentally, she was French and even offered to let me practice my French – I didn’t take her up on the offer! My son arrived at about 7.30am after a 5 hour labour and I was home by lunchtime! I can see how the speed of this discharge would daunt a first time mum but as I wanted to be home when my older son cam e home from school I loved it. Plus I could shower in my own bathroom!

Did you encounter any opinions that would have been different in your home country with regards to your pregnancy or parenting choices?

The only main difference was the hands-on ‘medical’ treatment of the pregnancy and delivery. In the US I definitely felt like my pregnancy was treated as a medical condition whereas in the UK the attitude was quite the opposite. Otherwise attitudes towards our parenting choices are much the same in the US and the UK. I breastfed my older son for a year, which is quite a long time compared to most women in both countries, I suppose. I am still breastfeeding my second son, who is 20 months, which is definitely quite unusual for both countries and even more so now I live in France!. Information and services about breastfeeding and help with breastfeeding were much more readily available and advertised in Portsmouth, the city I lived in in the UK compared to where I was in the US. I am sure the information is available in the US too, but it wasn’t made as easily available. In Portsmouth there are free support groups every day of the week that mums can attend and peer supporters who will come to your home to help, if necessary.

Second time around we have been much more laid back but most of our parenting style is the same as when we were first-time parents. I don’t know how my ‘style’ compares to that of French mothers really, but I don’t seem to stick out like a sore thumb too much – other than the fact that I am the mum yelling in English to her kids outside school rather than French! I still carry my, admittedly rather large, toddler in a sling sometimes and he still ends up in our bed at night but they are not things that make big differences in the grand scheme of things.

What advice would you give other mothers in your situation?

I would say do lots of research, meet as many mums and expectant mums as possible and follow your gut. Listen to everyone’s advice and use all of it, some of it or none of it depending on what works for you and your family. There is no ‘right’ way to prepare for a baby or parent a child – do what feels right and always push for what you want.

Having a Baby Abroad – Global Differences Series: USA

Next up in the series of The Global Differences of Baby-Making I talk to Danielle who is Canadian and had her daughter in the USA. Here is her story:

having a baby abroad USATell me a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How old are your children and where did you have them?

My name is Danielle, I’m 34, and Canadian. I married Matthew, an American, while we were both studying in Canada, and that’s where I gave birth to our first daughter, Alyce. Matthew was offered a job in Delaware and we moved there when Alyce was 8 months old. We were still living there when I became pregnant with my second daughter, Shira. We have now all returned to Canada where we hope to make our home. Alyce is now 4 and Shira is almost 2.

Why did you have your children abroad? What do you feel were the benefits to having children abroad?

If I’m being honest, I don’t think I would have ever said that I wanted to give birth in the U.S.A. As a Canadian I grew up feeling very proud of our universal health care, and I just didn’t know what to expect with the American system (I had never even seen a medical bill before). Fortunately we had insurance and were required to pay for only a few small services during my pregnancy. We found an birth centre with outstanding midwives, where I was able to have a water birth. Shira was born an American in May 2010!

As an expectant mother abroad how did you feel?

I think things would have been different if had been my first pregnancy, but since it was my second, I was able to relax a bit more about the entire thing. Without this experience I think I would have worried a bit more about being so far away from my family. The one real concern for us was not having family close by to offer support around the time of Shira’s birth. It was difficult finding people who could look after Alyce during the birth, and this caused me a lot of stress. We tried to coordinate visits from Canada around when we thought I’d give birth, but of course those plans never work! I was eight days past my due date when I finally went into labour, the day after my mum had to fly home. And it was a bit lonely at first, after her birth, not having anyone around to celebrate her arrival. We had lots of visitors a couple of weeks later, but it was isolating at first.

Did you encounter any opinions that would have been different in your home country with regards to your pregnancy or parenting choices?

In Canada I had a midwife-assisted birth in a hospital with Alyce, but this time around we had wanted a home birth. It turns out that home birth was not available in Delaware, so we were completely out of luck. We found a great birth centre and things worked out in the end. I called the midwives when I was four weeks pregnant, hoping they’d take me on as a client, because in Canada women are used to being turned down because they are too busy. This was not the case in Delaware! My American midwives were also more hands-on than I was used to in Canada. I was given more tests and had more routine examinations than I ever did when I was pregnant with Alyce. And breastfeeding–that was different! When I first arrived in Delaware, still nursing my 8 month old baby, I didn’t see another nursing mother for miles. I would nurse everywhere and anywhere (including Target). Once Shira was born I was starting to see more nursing mothers.

What advice would you give other mothers in your situation?

Work hard at building a community, because it makes all the difference. I didn’t have family, but I did end up joining a mother’s group at my birth centre and it made all the difference. I met wonderful women who, among many other things, could help explain some of the details of the American health care system!

You can find out more about Danielle on her blog Most Days I Win and on Twitter


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Having a Baby Abroad – Global Differences Series: USA

Next up in the series of The Global Differences of Baby-Making I talk to Shadi who is Iranian but grew up in Dubai and had her daughter in the United States (she’s also expecting her second baby). Here is her story:

iranian expat baby abroad USATell me a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How old is your daughter and where did you have her?

My name is Shadi. I am from Iran. I grew up in Dubai and moved to the States at the age of 19 to peruse my studies. I have been here in the States, South Carolina for 14 years minus a break from living here where I completed my masters in the UK. Ironically, I met my “English” husband in the States so we have all kinds of cultures going on in our household! We have a 3 year old daughter and I had her here in South Carolina, US where we live today.

Why did you have your daughter abroad? What do you feel were the benefits to having children abroad? 

Growing up so internationally I didn’t have a specific preference of where I would like to have children. It was going to be where I was living at the time. My daughter is lucky to now have both American and British citizenships. I grew up with an Iranian passport and I know all too well how hard traveling was so I am very happy that my daughter will never experience that. I’m sure there are support groups for moms and women everywhere, there are immensely supportive groups you can find here like the MOMS Club, which I am a part of, I don’t know what I would have done without them being so far away from my family. Women need women, no matter how supportive our husbands are! 🙂

As an expectant mother abroad how did you feel?

I was very lucky to have a smooth pregnancy, I really enjoyed being pregnant. I was also working throughout my pregnancy so that kept me busy. There are so many classes you can choose to take here and if you are looking for support, it is at your doorstep. I was especially surprised at how much emphasis there was on breastfeeding. That was one of the best classes I took, it helped me so much. I ended up breastfeeding for 16 months.

Of course I had the anxieties that any person would have while pregnant, especially being away from my mom, and reading, reading, reading helped a lot, as well as talking to friends and family who have had kids!

Did you encounter any opinions that would have been different in your home country with regards to your pregnancy or parenting choices?

Not necessary with my pregnancy and of course with parenting, everyone has an opinion! While pregnant, I got great care from the doctors, I went for checkups regularly and towards the end, the visits became more and more frequent because that is what is asked of you.

My biggest issue about having a baby here was the clinical feel of it, there is a protocol and it is what it is. Most doctors treat having a baby like it’s a medical process, get it out, job done. I didn’t feel that connection with my doctors. Yes “doctors,” I was part of a medical group so I had many and whoever was available that day was going to deliver my child although at the end I found out it’s the nurses that do everything anyway!

Also, while I was pregnant, I found out that the typical process that takes place here, is they don’t let you go overdue by much, you will get induced, which is a very painful and rushed labor and therefore, you end up getting an epidural, which ends up in a c-section because you and the baby are absolutely exhausted, guess what? It is exactly what happened to me! However, thanks to my husband, we have good insurance, therefore, I had a large private room to myself, great care and at the women’s hospital I delivered at, there was a nurse that visited me daily to help me with breastfeeding, even bra fitting! I also did get to hold my baby pretty much right away even though I had a c-section, my husband held her next to my head until they were done stitching me up so I had my constant contact until I was able to breastfeed her rolling into our private room.

To be honest, in my opinion, the whole attachment to your birth plan is a 1st time mother thing, once it actually happens, however it happens, all that matters is that you are both healthy.

I would like to add here that I am now pregnant with my second and have chosen a different doctor. This doctor will be the only doctor I will see throughout my pregnancy and he will be the only one delivering my child. I also have the chance to have a natural birth even though I had a c-section 1st time around. The choices are there, you just have to look for them.

What advice would you give other mothers in your situation? 

My advice would be, embrace your pregnancy, follow your instinct, listen to your body, do your research, and most importantly, find a support group. Women have been having babies for centuries, where you have your child doesn’t matter, the end result is you and your baby, that is all that matters.



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Having a Baby Abroad – Global Differences Series: USA

having a baby abroad in the USAThis week I talk to Shweta who is originally Indian and had her children in the USA and now lives in Belgium as part of the series The Global Differences of Baby-Making. Here is her story:

Tell me a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How old are your children and where did you have them?

I am Shweta. I was born and raised in India for the first 16 years of my life. My socialization has been American as I spend the next 15 years of my life in New Jersey, USA. I have a three-year-old son and a two-year-old daughter, whom I had in the U.S. Currently, we live in Belgium.

Why did you have your children abroad? What do you feel were the benefits to having children abroad?

The decision to have our children in the U.S. was an easy one for us. We were in the U.S. and were assured that we would be given the kind of care we desired. The benefits of having our children in the U.S. have been handful. We were able to give birth in clean facilities and were able to stand up for what we wanted, which at times was against hospital protocols and policies. For example, breastfeeding exclusively being one of them.

As an expectant mother abroad how did you feel?

Throughout my pregnancy, I thoroughly focused on moderation and made conscious effort to avoid any extremism. I was, however, adamant about allowing nature to take its course rather than falling prey to the constant emphasis on ultra-sounds, induction and so on. During my second pregnancy, I noticed that the preventative treatments prescribed seemed to have an underlying fear of being sued rather than a genuine focus on the necessary care.

Both of my pregnancies were filled with big issues made out of minuscule problems. Initially, each month with our fingers crossed, my husband and I would head to the local hospital to get the prescribed ultra-sounds done. Over time, we realized that the motivation for such care was weak and ingenuine.

Did you encounter any opinions that would have been different in your home country with regards to your pregnancy or parenting choices?

Being married to a Belgian and being the only woman in both families who had children in the States, I constantly heard the Belgian, Indian and the American way of handling pregnancy and parenting. For example, while my husband wondered why I was required to be induced one week before my due date, my parents dismissed the idea of ever questioning the doctor’s motives (the doctor was scheduled to go on vacation three days before my due date).

With three cultures (Indian, Belgian and American) rigorously playing a role in our day-to-day lives, parenting strategies are constantly addressed in our household. It was surprising to my Indian family, how involved fathers are in the upbringing of a child. Parenting in the Indian culture is a community effort where distant family, friends and even acquaintances have a say. On the other hand, parental role is very well-defined in the Belgian culture. Overtime, we came to an agreement that each of us focus on the best interests of the child rather than on our own face-value and the societal expectations. This helped reduce the number of clashes.

What advice would you give other mothers in your situation?

My advice to multi-cultural couples is to consistently communicate “best practices” of parenting in each of your cultures. Every culture presents a unique perspective on parenting and when discussed a middle ground can be found on what works best for your new family dynamic (you, your partner and child alone). Also, it is important to remind ourselves that we are the parent and not the child. Hence, making this journey about the child rather than about dealing with each other’s insecurities.

About Shweta:
After being an immigrant in two countries, she is working on a blog to help understand immigrants and their quest for a better life. Since three languages are spoken in her home daily, mixture of Indian and European foods cooked each day of the week and language misunderstandings are just part of her life, she fondly calls her family a “culture jungle.” She and her husband with their two little ones recently moved to Belgium from the U.S. You can read her endeavors at



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Having a Baby Abroad – Global Differences Series: USA

This week I talk the Gauri AKA the “Loving Earth Mama” who is half English, half Portugese and is a real TCK who had her daughter in the US – I won’t go into too much detail as she’s got it all covered as part of the series The Global Differences of Baby-Making. Here is her story:

having baby abroad USA TCKTell me a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How old is your daughter and where did you have her?
I was born in Boston where my parents travelled to study complementary medicines and join the health food movement 🙂 My dad is Portuguese, my mother is English. I grew up in Portugal which we moved to when I was 5. At 18 I went to the UK to do a degree and ended up living there for 15 years. I now live in the San Francisco Bay Area with my hubby (who himself is bi-cultural: British-born Chinese) and 20 month old baby girl (nicknamed Nica). She was born in San Fran after we had been living here for a year and a half.

Why did you have your daughter abroad? What do you feel were the benefits to having children abroad?
We didn’t plan to spawn abroad, as such… we just moved here because it is so sunny and wonderful and then found our life naturally moved that way. But, though there are many challenges – not least of which being away from my family and friends – there are some benefits to living far from your tribe, too.

When I first gave birth I concentrated on the negative. I cried ‘cos my mother wasn’t here to help me (though she does help me a lot from afar and comes for long visits, too) and ‘cos I had no friends coming over with food and comfort. ‘It takes a village’, I sobbed, ‘and mine is the other side of an ocean’. Then slowly I remembered the reasons why I left Portugal. I LOVE that country but I left because, even living in the capital, I felt smothered and hemmed in, like I was living in… err… a small village – you know, where everybody is up in your business, talking about you, judging you, interfering? And I remembered that actually I don’t like ‘village’ life, at all!

Over here, a continent away, I was able to completely re-invent myself as a mother. I was able to start from scratch which, though painful, is also incredibly invigorating and empowering. It was also freeing: breaking with the old ways, ‘the way things have always been done’ was much easier, over here. I mean, for example, I often heard other pregnant women complain about how people would give them so much unsolicited advice. That didn’t happen to me. I assume it was because the people I knew here didn’t feel close enough to me to do that and the people who are close to me are, well, far – so nobody’s opinions were getting in the way of me forming my own.

And let’s be honest, being into alternative health and natural birth, I was always going to do things a little differently… but if I were in Portugal I’d be feeling judged and different and crazy and that would undoubtedly lead to me second guess myself all the time and, on some things, probably bowing to the pressure, if for no other reason than I would have known no better.

On the other hand, here in California, I have been able to surround myself by a network of incredibly insightful, smart, alternative, gentle mamas. I knew so few people here that once I had a baby I really had to go out there and build community, attending every mother-baby group I could find. The hidden advantage there is that it really enabled me to ‘pick and chose’ and connect with friends who resonate with who I am and with my life choices, NOW.

My old friends are all wonderful but don’t necessarily share my present parenting ideas or ideals.
And these new mama-friends teach me so much (whereas in Portugal I may have been myself a bit of a natural parenting pioneer…?). Here, I can learn from others leading the way in conscious, green, natural parenting. I am so awed and inspired by these women.

If I were in Portugal or even in England, while I would have been held, loved and supported, I would have undoubtedly relied on hanging out with my old friends who see me as the old me and expect me (without thinking about it) to do things the way everyone there does it… I would find myself having to explain/justify/re-think why I do things differently (like co-sleep, breastfeed a toddler, do sign language, don’t eat sugar or watch TV, etc, etc) ALL THE TIME. Phew. I feel tired just thinking about it. The clean break here has been amazing in allowing me to find out who I am as a mother with only my soul and some books as guidance – along with my amazing, supportive husband.

US TCK having baby abroadAs an expectant mother abroad how did you feel?
I felt blessed and embraced, as people here are very open and positive. At the same time, I also felt very alone and isolated staring down such a big life event, knowing nearly nobody else locally who was expecting or a parent. But honestly, most of the pregnancy I was blissed out and looking forward to my heaven that was coming after giving birth (or so I thought). It was really only after I gave birth that the magnitude of this life change really hit me – I was no longer a career woman but a stay-at-home-mom with no community. Enter the ‘going to EVERY mothering support group and local play groups I could find’ stage.

Mostly, as an expectant mother, I just smiled and enjoyed the state-of-the-art health facilities and options you get here (all paid for, though, whereas in Europe I would have had access to free healthcare). I did wish there were more independent birthing centers, as there are in Europe so that my choices weren’t as stark as: big hospital or homebirth – which I ultimately went for. I would have loved midwifery to be more standard here, too. And I yearned for the kind of work-related benefits you get in Europe. I couldn’t believe most women here, in the US, only take 3 months off work! How can you possibly bond and practice natural breastfeeding (no pumping) in those conditions? ‘You can’t’, is the answer and so many women give up breastfeeding here, because pumping doesn’t always cut it for them. Sad.

Did you encounter any opinions that would have been different in your home country with regards to your pregnancy or parenting choices?
Hmm, not just opinions but practices. I am pretty sure if I had stayed in Portugal (and perhaps even in England) I would not have known people who ate their placentas, practice Elimination Communication and perhaps I wouldn’t even have a name for co-sleeping… or would I? I do tend to ferret out the alternative communities wherever I go, so maybe motherhood would have been the catalyst for me to seek them in Portugal, too.
In California, though, safe in my little circle of AP and alternative moms, I live in a kind of a bubble where extended breastfeeding, gentle discipline and self-directed play are all if not the norm, at least absolutely accepted. I definitely think I would hear people’s opinions about these things if I were living somewhere else. So glad they are ‘nomal’, at least in pockets, here.

What advice would you give other mothers in your situation?
Stay connected to your community at home, your good, old friends who really know you, will call you out when you are being stupid and sing to your soul when you need sympathy. They are important and you will need that (alongside the support you get from your new community in the place you move to). Skype is invaluable in this way.

Ask for what you need, even from family and friends who are abroad. If you need/want them to come over for a few weeks/months after the birth – ask. I know this depends a lot on economic conditions and perhaps they can’t do that, but you can ask them to call you every day for 5 mins, just to check in on you or to send you a care package or to write long emails about mundane things back home so you feel part of things, even as your life changes so much and everything else is off center, at least this will be familiar. I didn’t ask my mom to stay after the birth and I regret it, now. Okay, regret is too strong a word, but I learned from that. I learned that I need to ask and I need to be open to whatever answer comes, even if it is a ‘no’ but at least then I asked.

Then, after nourishing your roots, go out and spread your branches into your new community of choice (I do hope you moved by choice! and not only necessity). You will need them, too. You will need lots of mothers in your circle. That is the best healing, post-partum, talking to other mothers!

Learn more about Gauri by Liking her on Facebook, following her on Twitter and checking out her blog


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Having a Baby Abroad – Global Differences Series: USA

Next up in the series of The Global Differences of Baby-Making we head to the USA to hear about how a Polish Mama dealt with cultural differences, preserving her heritage and the challenges of making it work.

Tell me a bit about yourself? Where are you from? How old are your children and where did you have them?
I write the blog Polish Mama on the Prairie, which is about Polish culture, history, food, etc. from a Polish Mama living in the Midwest.  I also have written contributing articles for Polish Texans, foodista, and other sites and am working on becoming a freelance writer, as well as hoping to help Polish Americans reconnect with their heritage.

I was originally born in Wroclaw, Poland while Poland was still under Soviet Communism.  When I was very young, my parents decided that for my future and safety, it was best to flee Poland and go as refugees to Austria, where we waited for US citizenship.  While I grew up in the US, my parents raised me the way they would have in Poland, but did instill in me a love for both countries and a thirst for knowledge and intellectual debates with others by having them with me from a very young age.  And I love them for it.  Eventually, I met my American husband and fell madly in love with him.  We married and had two beautiful girls together here in the USA.  So now, they are US Citizens but I can easily claim their Polish citizenship, which is actually something we are planning on pursuing very shortly, so that all their options are open for them.

(Polish Prairie Mama has 2 daughter’s aged 1 and 5)

Why did you have your children abroad?
I live in the US now and while my American husband wants to live in Poland, he refuses to learn Polish, thus making it impossible for us to move back to my home country at this time.

What do you feel were the benefits to having children abroad?
The ability to be US citizens as well as Polish citizens is one nice benefit.  I also have my parents and brother here so I couldn’t imagine leaving them yet.  Plus, because I have been here for so long with hardly any Poles to interact with on a daily basis and many Poles I have met want to speak English to improve their host-country language, my Polish language skills are no longer on the level I would like.  It’s something I try to work on at home by myself.

As an expectant mother abroad how did you feel?
On one hand, I would cry because I wanted to be with my family, such as my grandmother, during my pregnancy.  On the other, the US is my home now. I never felt as torn as when I was pregnant the first time.  It was a real eye-opener to the complete picture of what it is for me to be an immigrant and how to blend both cultures in my life.

Did you encounter any opinions that would have been different in your home country with regards to your pregnancy or parenting choices?
One thing that really struck me as funny during my pregnancy was that when Americans would find out I was pregnant, they would offer me cakes, ice cream, jokes to eat as much as I want and constant reminders to take my vitamins and not be lazy during my pregnancy and yet sleep a lot.  The Poles would thrust green leavy salads and vegetables at me with extreme urgency and many reminders that I need my vitamins, not from tablet form, but from my foods.  They would also tell me to drink plenty of water, relax, exercise gently, and to remember to teach my children that they are Polish and what it means, including the language.

Something that struck me as shocking was when I announced I was pregnant, a woman who I am no longer friends with asked me “So, are you gonna raise your kids to be dumb Polacks like you, or are you gonna raise them to be American, like your husband?”  Considering I wasn’t very familiar with her, it was pretty shocking.  The rest of the conversation was me being dumbstruck and asking what raising a child in each way entailed, and ended with my just walking to a different room and not speaking to her anymore.

After my children were born, my in-laws constantly shoved candies, french fries and junk food at my children and their favorite phrase was “One French fry won’t kill them!” with almost an angry tone.  Many of my American friends felt the same way.  I have one true girlfriend who would come to my defense and point out to people that I was teaching my children moderation and that the reason I was in physical shape so fast was because I did the same and that children did not need such junk foods.  I really love her!

My husband for a while saw no reason for the children to go anywhere during the day.  Many other “friends” would make comments that “I have nothing but time” since I “just sit at home with the kids”.  I cook from scratch, it’s not an option, that’s how I was raised and that’s what I like to eat. I also believe that children should go outside a lot and that museums, parks, zoos, libraries, and other cultural resources are for children as well as adults and we go to such places very often.  My house is always clean but we don’t sit around the living room all day long.

My grandmother-in-law told me not to teach my children anything and it’s actually something I have heard a lot.  I should not teach my kids the ABC’s, numbers, how to spell their name, colors, shapes, etc. because I could teach them wrong, that “that’s what teachers get paid for”.  I’ve never heard of such nonsense before.

I also used Elimination Communication with my older daughter and plan to with my baby, just as my mother did with me and all the women on both sides did.  I use cloth diapers and am thankful to have an automatic washing machine and dryer, since my parents used one which you had to pour in the heated water yourself, crank, and drain and hangdry the diapers.  I get told often that it’s “disgusting, a lot of work, not worth it, and the wrong way to potty train.”  That somehow I will damage my children.

I also hug my kids a lot and hear that I will spoil them by loving them, such as when they are sick.

Sometimes, though, I think and hope that this isn’t an American vs. Polish thing, but rather, different parenting styles that have nothing to do with nationalities.

What advice would you give other mothers in your situation?Do what you feel your parents did right for you.  Let it roll off your back but when you feel it can’t anymore, sometimes just telling people that we all have different parenting styles and that you are sure others criticize that persons parenting style and that in the end, all that matters is that the kids grow up healthy and happy, it’s all that matters.

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