Researching parenting advice or talking about parenting is dangerous. There are many things that can cause a sensitive parent to go off. These are the top 5 things you shouldn’t say to sensitive parents.
I may be guilty of every one of these…
5. Mentioning Babies Bounce.
Having had two very wiggly and active children, I may have dropped them… a few times. Thankfully they were alright. Children are scary resilient to falls and damage in general. I have actually seen my daughter get hit by a teen on a swing and keep going without hesitating.
Not all parents appreciate the grey humour about babies bouncing and they will take it personally.
4. Calling a Teether a Chew Toy.
For some reason, parents don’t like having their children compared to pets. Unfortunately, I keep forgetting what a teether is called.
In this vein, also avoid calling the baby tethers leashes, cereal kibble, and especially avoid asking a baby, “Who’s a good baby?”
3. Talking about Sexual Health.
Somedays I wonder about the world and it’s obsession with cutesy names. It’s not a cookie, a hoohaw, a bit of string, or a weiner; and not telling kids the right name for things is absurd (It’s a penis and a vulva). I once made the mistake of correcting a young kid about the fact that they had a penis not a noodle.
Kid: Do you want to see my noodle?
Kid: Starts to unzip pants.
Me: That’s a penis and no.
Let’s just say the parents were not too thrilled. Obviously, it’s a parent’s choice to teach their kids about their bodies, but that doesn’t mean it’s right.
You should probably also avoid talking about sex, contraceptives, and sexually transmitted diseases to sensitive parents and their kids.
The parents of the kid should talk about these things. Cough Blush Cough
2. Disagreeing on One of the Major Wars.
Parenting is a minefield of dangerous subjects and choosing a side in any of the major wars is a great way to be yelled at.
- Diapers: Disposable, Reusable, Diapers Service.
- Feeding: Breast or Bottle (Even saying fed is best is controversial.)
- Feeding: Solids vs puree; feeding the child vs baby led weaning.
- Daycare: Daycare or home; School daycare or babysitter
The list could go on for a long time. I mostly try to stay out of it. We do our things, you do yours.
The only thing I will fight you about are Vaccines. I like my children and the immunocompromised in our society to stay alive.
1. Agreeing with the Child.
This will get you in so much trouble. It’s a favourite pastime of Aunts and Uncles.
Don’t agree with the child until you know what the parent is saying. It could be as inconspicuous as what is the best flavour of ice cream or as dangerous as Star Trek vs Star Wars.
Note that even if the child isn’t there, saying that they have a point, or trying to make the parent see that point is a dangerous idea.
The parents are bombarded by the child’s sass and near constant contrariness that they don’t want to think about it. Just leave them alone. The parent will come around in 10-20 years.
In conclusion, it’s hard to not insult, offend, or irke a sensitive parent, but if you avoid talking to them about their child, children, pets, health, schools, or generally anything but the weather… you should be safe.