I think I’m starting to understand why parents didn’t trust my suggestions when I was teaching but before I was a mom myself. Ok, so I didn’t know firsthand what it was like to raise kids, but it wasn’t like I hadn’t been around kids before. I have to wonder sometimes where “experts” get their ideas, though. Is it firsthand experience? Is it classroom and textbook theory?
Like when my daughters were potty training and the “experts” in the books said NEVER be negative about an accident and ALWAYS say it’s ok you’ll do better next time. My daughters took that to mean they had permission to have an accident. When we used positive reinforcement (a.k.a. bribery), they were fine with only earning something (Hershey’s kiss, M&M, mini-Reese’s) once per day—in other words, success once per day.
Or how about the experts who say allergies don’t make you lethargic? When I’m sneezing my head off, my eyes are itchy and swollen, my nose is running like a faucet, I’m feeling pretty lethargic.
How about overweight doctors? Need I say more?
Then there are certified dieticians that recommend giving your child diet sodas instead of sugary sodas and juices. Really? I would think that a limited amount of fruit juice is better than soda AND diet soda. Better double check your research on artificial sweeteners. Some of those can be worse than sugar itself.
Now I’m reading an article in Going Bonkers magazine by a psychologist about social phobia. This expert warns about safety behaviors that people practice thinking they are helping, but supposedly make you more nervous. For example: If you’re afraid of saying something stupid or boring, your safety behavior is to plan everything out in your mind before you speak. I do this frequently. I thought it was called “think before you speak.” Oh, and you’re not supposed to go over anxiety-provoking situations after the fact. Really? I would have thought it would be a good idea to think about what went wrong, figure out how to improve so you don’t make the same mistake again. Don’t torture yourself with the mistakes, but how do you improve if you don’t consider what went wrong for a moment?
And how many times have “experts” argued and given us conflicting information?