Read your Way to Becoming a Better Parent: Why Parenting Books Matter
If you’re a new parent or soon-to-be parent and you have just brought the big news to your family or friends, then you surely had at least one person come at you with one or two parenting books suggestions. You know that they’re obviously trying to help and that they’re sharing your joy and they’re trying to offer their support and help through such recommendations, although maybe you’re not so eager to dive head first into a big pile of books about all the things you should or should not do as a parent and risk overwhelming yourself from the start.
The topic of parenting books can be both a source of relief and a source of anxiety for a new parent or an expecting pair, depending on how well they have selected the said book. Such a read could easily calm down a lot of worries regarding the future baby and you could actually end up gathering plenty of helpful tips and tricks on how to manage a newborn and hopefully how to manage yourself and your changing schedule and lifestyle as well. You and your significant other both could benefit from reading a parenting book, and while all of those books have the same goal, that to help you through your new journey, there are more ways to read a parenting book in order to get the full benefits of the lecture.
The Simple Way
Soon-to-be parents or those who have already gotten to hold their newborn for the first time have all heard that parenting books are a great way to familiarize themselves with what situations are to arise and what kind of obstacles are to be encountered and overcome, and it could give them a sense of security and control over the immediate future for their baby’s development stages.
However, this way of reading parenting books can have its ups and downs. While it indeed foreshadows what a parent should expect and can provide some nice and helpful pointers, it can also induce a lot of anxiety in the new parent, more so than what going through certain situations or scenarios would cause them if they hadn’t read a book before. Mostly it’s because a book may present a lot of generalized scenarios, many of which a parent might not end up going through or experiencing. However, it creates a deep seeded feeling of anxiety with the thought of “what if this happens to me too?” or “I don’t want to have to go through X”. For example, a book addressing the issue of having trouble lactating to feed the newborn might make the mother unnecessarily stressed on that topic even if she might not encounter any problems of the sort later on.
The Comparing Way
Another way to read parenting books is to consult different, various sources on the same topic at hand for a while. That way, the parent is able to compare the given information and weigh which version of the story would work for them, to put it simply.
The issue with parenting books is that they tend to generalize a lot, and no two children are the same just as different couples can have different parenting techniques and can go through different struggles when raising a baby. One book can provide useful on a matter, while another might present a slightly different piece of advice that might not work with your own situation. As such, a smart way to educate yourself on different topics is to collect and compare information from different sources. Ups and downs will be outlined easier like that and you will be able to form your own opinions on different matters, as well as start developing or discovering your own parenting style!
The “What Not To” Way
Sometimes we’re so sure about something that we’re doing, that it just seems like it’s the normal way to go about something. We can get used to a technique or another of caring for our child, and then suddenly somebody comes along and tells us that we’ve been doing it wrong all along. That’s bound to raise a couple of questions in us and it drives us towards finding more information on what we have apparently been doing wrong, or what we could improve on and simplify our struggles with.
As such, reading a parenting book can be of great help if we want to underline all things we shouldn’t do, or should just watch out before accidentally doing that. Parents learn faster and easier when they’re told what to do instead of how to do something, and as such figuring out what not to do could be of just as much help in various situations.
The Group Way
If you have a large family or household, then a good idea would be to have everyone get the hang of a few basic notions regarding how to take care of a newborn before they arrive, or now that they have joined your family. As such, you can propose to your family to maybe read a parenting book together, or distribute various ones in-between your household’s members to get everyone to be ready in case of anything. Besides, the more knowledged a household is when it comes to babies and children, the more help they can provide along the way, whenever you might need an extra hand or even a small break for yourself.
Regardless of how you choose to read parenting books, every style can help you learn something new about what you might be curious about or struggling with, from ways to get your newborn used to a sleeping schedule or pattern, all the way to how to introduce them to an older sibling, parenting books have it all! All you need to do is find one that matches your style and in the end, you will see why these books matter so much. Don’t forget to pull your significant other along in your journey of discovering the books that suit your parenting style the most as well!