Just Write: Technology Hates Me and Bullshit Baby Advice

April 10, 2013


Hello Readers! Time for a quick Just Write because Just Write rocks and dangit, things are weirdo lately and I haven’t been around but I WANT to be around. Okay, I’m not even sure if that former sentence made a lick of sense.

What I mean to say is that I know it’s technically a day late for Just Write, but for the past two weeks my website has hated me. I try to write a post, and 99% of the time I get that little spinny icon and then it just stalls/freezes, refusing me access. Pretty sad when your own website is a dickhead *swear jar* to you. I’ve spent hours talking to tech support, and I’m hoping things resolve soon. Otherwise, I’m going to be one cranky chick.

Deep Breath.

Let’s change the subject, shall we?

The other day, I was e-talking to my new bloggy buddy Alison (dudes, she’s hilarious. You should check her out.), and somehow our train of conversation turned to: Horrible Women Who Constantly Give Useless Advice to New Mommies.

You know who they are.

Now, knowing the collective awesomeness of my readers, I’m pretty sure none of you lovelies belong to that club of hyenas, so I’m confident that I can speak freely here.

Who are those sadistic wenches?

Don’t you think new mommies have been through enough already? Think about it: you push another human being out of an impossibly small orifice. You fend off the thug-like visits from the La Leche League Mafia. You have to put ice packs on your nasty bits because they look and feel like Edvard Munch’s The Scream. You stagger into the bathroom for your first shower and discover that even though the baby’s outta there, your stomach looks disturbingly like a Shar-Pei.

That’s a lot to swallow, and that’s the easy part because you’re still in the hotel hospital where other people wash your linens and bring fresh ice for The Scream and offer you nice cold cups of water.

It doesn’t feel like heaven, but it is, which you realize the second you enter your own home. Your vision blurs and there’s a weird roaring in your head and you look down at the little thingamabob in your arms and you cannot believe those nurses trusted you to take this thing home because you have no idea what the fuck *SJ* you are doing.

The thing cries and you have no idea why. The thing eats and shits and vomits at an alarming rate and somebody has to do all of that laundry. The thing does not like the bassinet or the crib or the little vibrating chair or the Baby Bjorn that you shelled out 100 bucks for. The thing is often unhappy and you are The Mommy, dangit– it’s your job to know how to make it happy but you don’t. You don’t and you can’t and you feel this wrenching realization that you’re a failure and a fraud.

Enter the Horrible Hyena Women who Constantly Give Useless Advice to New Mommies.  They mercilessly ring your doorbell, assault you in grocery stores and pharmacies and sidewalks, arrive bearing casseroles. They are also wildly happy to confirm your suspicion that you sucksucksuck at this whole mothering gig.

So they tell you how to do it properly. And because you are on the shakiest, most insecure ground ever, you hang on every word. What they say seems like gospel, and you nod your head earnestly and write down advice on sticky notes lest you forget.

But then it begins to dawn on you that none of the Hyenas seem to agree on these detailed and crucial tricks of the motherhood trade. Your sticky notes pile up and begin to yell at each other: “Let the baby cry it out!” “Your baby cries because it needs you; respond or they’ll lose trust in you!” “Cloth diapers and Gold Bond Powder!” “Powder is toxic to baby butts–Aquaphor is the solution!” “Never supplement with formula.” “Give ’em formula–I did and both of mine went to Yale.”

Someone needs to tell these women to shut their gaping pieholes.

The defining moment for me was when a woman informed me that I was a negligent mother because I wasn’t recording my daughter’s poop schedule in a journal. With precise detail of color and consistency of the stool each time, because that’s crucial information and if you don’t do that, how will you know if that taco you ate for lunch is poisoning your child?

I politely thanked her and hung up the phone. What I really wanted to do was kick the wall and screech into the phone, “Look, you fecal-obsessed weirdo, I just pushed a 4-pound human/alien thingy out of my twat! I am so not up for The Shit Diary.”

Take that, Hyena. I’ll figure this landmine out on my own.

**If you have any tales of bizarre mothering advice, please share!  It’s so interesting what those Nazis tell you to do.**

{ 51 comments… read them below or add one }

SmithShack71 April 10, 2013 at 11:08 am

This is all very true, and with a lot of judgement on top of all of the advice.
Do people still tell women to drink oil to speed up labor? That was always one of the craziest things to me. I would think after drinking a bunch of oil, you’re not going to have a vaginal birth at all. You’re going to throw that kid straight up out of your mouth.



TKW April 10, 2013 at 1:51 pm


Hi! Who are you? I think you’re kinda awesome and I hope you stick around for a bit. Pretty sure you’re younger than me because they bypassed the oil and told me to do squats in the kitchen with two industial-sized cans of tomato sauce in each hand. I think you are onto something here about delivering a baby via vomit. Because truly, all humans have visceral experience with vomiting, many times. But that thing that happens when you give birth? No template.


SmithShack71 April 11, 2013 at 6:17 pm

:) Oh man, pregnant squats. Fist Bump!


Jennifer April 10, 2013 at 12:17 pm

You know, I don’t really remembering anyone giving me crazy, unsolicited advice. Probably because I would have called them a fecal-obsessed weirdo and everyone that knows me knows that. Sometimes it’s good to be the bitch.

PS Alison rocks. Glad you found each other.


TKW April 11, 2013 at 1:04 am

Rock Star Jen,

How do you know all of the of the cool kids in the blog cafeteria? Do they share their Cheetos? I am kinda jealous (not murderously so, and that’s happy news) of your ability to sniff out the good ones.

I was always stuck with Herbie Schroeder in the cafeteria growing up, and he had a slightly disturbing relationship with salami.

Keep on introducing me to these wonderful women…please? Otherwise, I’m stuck with creepy porn site guy who has a veritable cornucopia of items that stick easily into your orifices.

The girl awake at 2am because the hamster is running the Wheel-o-Marathon. Plus, it’s so cold that I pilfered Awesome Stepkid Ro’s Chewbacca coat and wondering if that is a terrible fashion mistake, even at this time of night. xo


TKW April 11, 2013 at 1:08 am

ps: Still on team Hide Arnebya’s Eyeball at BlogHer!


Justine April 10, 2013 at 12:17 pm

Hahahahahahaha. I love you.

The end. :-)


Kel April 10, 2013 at 1:20 pm

Holy hell. You just made me snarf green tea out of my nose. Goddammit, that hurt, but it was worth it. “Fecal-obsessed weirdo”? Best new phrase ever.


Lisa April 10, 2013 at 1:25 pm

My Hyena was actually paid to berate me. I had Freyja in England, so we have nurses and health visitors who visit us prior to and after the birth of our babies. After their coming, we visit on a regular basis until the baby is one, at which point they trust us to head out into the world without accidently losing or killing our offspring.

My nurse for Freyja (who was wonderful by the way) was on vacation and her replacement that week was relatively newly qualified and therefore the Government charts and guidelines were, in her mind, the BIBLE as far as the weight of my child was concerned.

Now my picky eater was actually a very good eater until around 18 months. I breastfed, supplemented with formula when she drank the cow (ie ME) dry, started her on real food at only four months because she was trying to crawl onto my plate and eat things while drooling crazily over my food. All with the agreement of my usual nurse who said, Mom knows best and if she is meeting all her milestones, is happy and relatively in proportion, then its all good.

Enter the Vacation Hyena, who weighs and measures Freyja, asks
“How much milk does she drink on an average day?”, “She’s drinking HOW MUCH!!!!”
“Is she eating pablum yet?” “She’s eating FINGER FOOD!!!!”
“Madam!! Your child is off the scale on the percentile chart for weight! You must stop this at once! You can’t give her that much milk in a day! She shouldn’t be eating finger food at this age! If her weight does not slow down, we shall have to investigate further as you could cause her to become OBESE!!!!”

Did I mention Freyja was 6 MONTHS old at this point? Two weeks later, I go to see my usual nurse, tell her the story, ask if I am killing my child with food. She says, “Did she mention anything about the fact Freyja’s height is also off the chart as well as weight so really she is in proportion, even though she is the size of an average one year old?” “No?” “Was she young? Newly qualified?” “Yeah, don’t worry, these new ones think the Government charts and guidelines are like the Ten Commandments. I’ve been doing this job 30 years. The guidelines and charts changed more times than I could count. Your baby is happy and healthy. If she wasn’t gaining weight or growing, I’d be worried. That young one was talking crap, she’ll learn…”


TKW April 10, 2013 at 1:59 pm

That sounds like complete suckage! Because I had the 4-pound alien baby from Hades, I got yelled at a lot, but I think the “chunky” remarks would really tempt me to shank them.


Arnebya April 10, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Oooooh you’ve found a good one in Alison. Ba-leev dat.

I got random advice about swaddling (the baby needs to feel nestled), feeding (never give “real” food before six months! Ever!), poop, sleep, strollers, you name it. Sometimes I accepted and sometimes I went straight up My baby is not a burrito.


Katybeth April 10, 2013 at 5:19 pm

Everyone and I do mean everyone told us that letting our baby sleep with us was the worst possible parenting mistake we could make. I swear, strangers took one look at me and my new baby and screamed, YOUR A CO-SLEEPER. I had no idea what a c0-sleeper even was, but I was pretty sure it was a miserable thing to be. I tried to mend my evil ways and tried all the suggestions Moms and want-a-be Moms suggested (how did they know?), but I failed…one day I said *swear jar* it and Cole slept with us until about his fifth birthday. I also found a pediatrician who always said to say to me before I left his office, “Mom you are doing a wonderful job.” And since he knew all my parenting flaws his words meant the world to me. I try to quote him often when I meet a new mom or encounter a mom who is pulling her hair out.


TKW April 11, 2013 at 1:14 am


Little Miss 4-pounder needed food every 1 1/2 to 2 hours, so she hung out in our bedroom a lot. In that dorky vibrating recliner seat, but still…whatcha gonna do?


Velva April 10, 2013 at 6:03 pm

I know I did not have a clue as a new parent. I have no doubt that I was offered unsolicited advice on a regular basis. I do my best not to offer new baby advice to anyone. What the hell do I know?

As usual your post made me smile.



Lisa @ The Meaning of Me April 10, 2013 at 7:38 pm

The unsolicited advice from anyone and everyone made me want to cry. So I did. A lot. I was certain I must be the worst mother on the planet. Like Katybeth, we have a fantastic pediatrician who really made us feel like we were all doing just fine – and we came with a ton of questions, issues, and lists of unsolicited advice for him to confirm or deny. Telling us Kidzilla was beautiful and developing perfectly thanks to our good parenting was music to our ears. We have a fantastic baby shit story in our family archives…haven’t told it too often for fear either Kidzilla or the Hub will be mortified. It’s a winner.


Thekitchwitch April 11, 2013 at 7:13 am


You know I won’t rest until you email me the poop story!


Alison April 11, 2013 at 3:18 am

OMG I love you.
“Fecal-obsessed weird” is the best insult ever.
Also, not recording baby’s poop (found peas and tomato skin, maybe).

Still Not A Stalker (okay maybe a little)

PS: Thank you for the shout out!


Alison April 11, 2013 at 3:18 am

OMG I love you.
“Fecal-obsessed weirdo” is the best insult ever.
Also, not recording baby’s poop (found peas and tomato skin, maybe).

Still Not A Stalker (okay maybe a little)

PS: Thank you for the shout out!


Alison April 11, 2013 at 3:20 am

See, I love you so much, I posted the same comment TWICE (well, I corrected weird to weirdo). And here I am, comment #3.

I’m seriously not usually such a knuckle head.


Thekitchwitch April 11, 2013 at 7:15 am

Corn was the big offender in our house. ps: you’re not a knucklehead–something is wonk with my comments–mine aren’t showing up until 2 hours later? WTF?


Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes April 11, 2013 at 4:30 am

Laughing, laughing so hard! The poop journal… oh God I don’t even want to know he she did that… but am imagining all sort of things.
The absolute worst comment I have ever gotten concerned my second pregnancy : when I announced to the world that I was pregnant again while clutching my then 8 month old child a woman had the nerve to tell me I was doing a horrible thing because I would not be able to focus completly on my firstborn and this would cause her grave psychological trauma. She ended her narrative with suggesting I seek out other “options” for the fetus…
I came very close to murder that day.


Thekitchwitch April 11, 2013 at 7:17 am


That woman was stark-raving PSYCHO! How did you not punch her in the eyeball?


Thekitchwitch April 11, 2013 at 7:18 am


Just a normal day in my neighborhood…


Tiffany April 11, 2013 at 5:18 am

A poop journal??? JFC! That’s crazy. Where do you meet these people??? ;)


SuziCate April 11, 2013 at 6:19 am

I knew one of those hyena mommies from hell…she kept a shit diary, too…and a rigid schedule of EVERYTHING! My other friend and I still laugh about some of the things she used to tell of was necessary to good parenting!


Shannon April 11, 2013 at 7:13 am

You are really good at making me laugh.
I don’t remember a lot of advice coming my way. But it was 16 and a half years ago that I had my first baby, so it could be that I’ve forgotten it or blocked it out of my memory, or it could be that I looked young and clueless enough at the time that people thought I was a lost cause.
It all turned out okay. I haven’t broken any of them yet.


Rudri Bhatt Patel @ Being Rudri April 11, 2013 at 11:42 am

Serious question: Have you considered stand-up?

You rock!



Robin April 11, 2013 at 12:04 pm

Kitch, You’re a stitch! Hehehe! Really, you are so funny; it makes me laugh – and laughing is good for me :)

It been so long ago that I don’t really remember all of the stupid things people said about feedings and diapers and what method to follow or whose book to read. But I do remember telling my mother (who always had advice – especially when it came to the food my kids ate) that when we were in my house we would do things my way, and when we were at her house we would do things her way. I have had to repeat that more than a few times.

The lesson I learned is: Do not give advice unless asked!

I tagged onto Rudri because your site kept telling me that I was trying to post a duplicate reply. ????


TKW April 11, 2013 at 4:09 pm


That is such a sweet question. Tried it once and failed miserably. I’m fine on paper but in person, I’m sorta disappointing. Hard realization, believe me.


TKW April 11, 2013 at 4:10 pm


Response below–Wordpress is messing with my site big time. :(


Robin April 11, 2013 at 11:57 am

Kitch, Your a stitch! Hehehe! Really, you are so funny; it makes me laugh – and laughing is good for me :)

It been so long ago that I don’t really remember all of the stupid things people said about feedings and diapers and what method to follow or whose book to read. But I do remember telling my mother (who always had advice – especially when it came to the food my kids ate) that when we were in my house we would do things my way, and when we were at her house we would do things her way. I have had to repeat that more than a few times.

The lesson I learned is: Do not give advice unless asked!


Robin April 11, 2013 at 11:59 am

Kitch, You’re a stitch! Hehehe! Really, you are so funny; it makes me laugh – and laughing is good for me :)

It been so long ago that I don’t really remember all of the stupid things people said about feedings and diapers and what method to follow or whose book to read. But I do remember telling my mother (who always had advice – especially when it came to the food my kids ate) that when we were in my house we would do things my way, and when we were at her house we would do things her way. I have had to repeat that more than a few times.

The lesson I learned is: Do not give advice unless asked!


Marie April 11, 2013 at 12:55 pm

So glad I don’t associate myself with hyenas. For my first kid I read a few books, and had my mom. If it weren’t for mom I’d have gotten a lot less sleep. But the trick is to not doubt yourself, and I didn’t. But of course, for my daughter, the first baby, I ShoweredSoVeryQuicklyWhileSheWatchedFromTheCarSeatAnInchAwayFromTheShowerDoor.
I was afraid to nap too during those first few weeks. The second baby, I was like heh, big sister.. keep an eye on him.


Contemporary Troubadour April 11, 2013 at 2:18 pm

Oh man, you know we’re getting inundated left and right at the moment with advice, Kitch. This was hilariously timely. The poop diary, though, is a new one. I count the wet and soiled diapers only because with a baby with oral motor issues, I have to answer to the doctors — not enough out means not enough in. But color and consistency? Honestly, what new mother has the time?!?


pieridae April 11, 2013 at 8:39 pm

I lol’d through your whole post. It is so true! Most of my annoying advice givers were strangers in stores, and usually about my son’s pacifier, which he gave up around age 2 1/2. You’d think I was the devil, letting my baby *gasp* have a pacifier.


Laura April 11, 2013 at 9:54 pm

Well, you should have twins and see the kind of meddlesome, crap people throw at you. I had to leave my son in the stroller as I was carrying my daughter and delivering an older woman library books through a community program when they were 6 months old. (Yes, I had lost my mind…) She had a lot of steps to her front door and I couldn’t carry two babies and her load of books up the stairs. So, I left him 4 steps below us in the stroller and walked up to give her the books. She turns to me and says, “Oh now, that’s sad. Look at those sad eyes. You should really watch that. He is looking like he wants to be with you and you have her in your arms. HE’LL NEED THERAPY FOR THAT LATER ON. And that’s a direct quote. No lie. You cannot hurt a mother of multiples more if you literally stabbed her directly in her heart…


TKW April 12, 2013 at 6:27 am


I hope you broke that lady’s arm.


Jamie April 11, 2013 at 10:10 pm

I hate advice. Of any kind. Does that make me a bad person??


tracy@sellabitmum April 12, 2013 at 6:17 am

I don’t think I look approachable enough for anyone to try to give me advice. Thank.fucking.god.


TKW April 12, 2013 at 6:22 am


You’re onto something. I should have gotten my lip pierced and dyed my hair blue!


TKW April 12, 2013 at 6:20 am


My little one fiercely held onto her pacifier until her 3rd birthday. You would have thought I was letting her eat arsenic.


Biz April 12, 2013 at 8:14 am

OMG, I totally forgot about those LeLeche ladies – they were insane and nearly freaked out when they walked into the hospital room and saw that I was bottle feeding my newborn. Hannah just wouldn’t latch on, I didn’t give a shit and fed her through a bottle. They told me to keep trying, and finally they got the hint and left.

Fast forward a couple years, I am watching a 20/20 article and a woman was told to only breast feed by these assholes – “the baby will get what it needs!” She believed that, but wasn’t producing enough and the baby slowly deteriorated, got dehydrated, and somehow became paralyzed from the waist down because of it.

I’ll never forget what she said “if only I had given him a bottle none of this would have happened!”

Happy Friday!


TKW April 13, 2013 at 12:11 pm


With Miss M. I had HELLP syndrome and was on powerful meds/steriods for days and days and days. The LLL bullies encouraged me to pump and dump but my kid was in the NICU (for how long, I didn’t know) and I told them to fuck off. :) I’m not pumpin’ and dumpin’, psycho on steroids. Sorry.


Ami April 12, 2013 at 6:18 pm

My milk never came in with my oldest child. No engorging, no leaking, nothing. Since I had grown rather fond of my baby by that point and didn’t want him to starve to death, I decided to keep him alive by using formula. Call me crazy.
Good hell. You should have seen the evil looks I got using a bottle. You’d have thought I was pouring some whisky down his throat with all the glares I got. Boob Nazis are the worst.


TKW April 16, 2013 at 10:51 am


I suffered the same treatment. Why can’t women just be nice to each other about this stuff–don’t they remember how insecure and nutso you feel after giving birth? Just do what works for you, dammit!


Barbara April 14, 2013 at 5:22 am

Looking back, I confess I mothered by the seat of my pants. No doubt lots of advice came my way….but it was pretty good advice. My sister told me to lie to the nurses and tell them I HAD had a bowel movement so they wouldn’t give me an enema. Frankly, that was the best advice I had. (do they still threaten enemas?)


faemom April 14, 2013 at 2:45 pm

I read this days ago and have spent the time trying to remember if I got any crazy advice when they were babies. Nope. Nothing. Which isn’t really surprising because I am able to throw up a don’t-f-ing-get-near-me shield, which kept away anyone who wanted to touch my bulging stomach and apparently granters of well-meaning “advice.” (The shield doesn’t stop crazy people; they just come up and have random conversations with me.)
So no random crazy baby advice. Just now my mom is giving me random child-rearing advice. Her latest: Tell Evan he *HAS TO* play soccer with the other boys at recess and lunch because he *HAS TO* learn to be part of the group. Like horrible advice, I just ignore it because I do not want my sons to group up trying to be part of the herd. Pssht.


sandino April 15, 2013 at 12:29 pm

My advice to new moms is always to smile and nod, then ignore. Do what you think is best, and *that* is the best thing you can do for your baby. What worked for me probably won’t work for you. I am, however, adamant about how a few things are done.
1) NEVER start the car until the baby is buckled into a car seat. Ever. Even on the way home from the hospital.
2) NEVER leave the baby in the car alone while you “run into” a store, even a 7-11. 3) ALWAYS check the back seat when you get out. In fact, ALWAYS put your purse in the back seat next to the car seat, even when the baby isn’t there. It’s just another reminder in this busy world.
4) Hugs and kisses. Lots of hugs and kisses.


Carol Vinson April 16, 2013 at 12:13 pm

Stopping by from Heather’s place . . .

Absolutely hilarious! My favorite for me is the nurse who said let’s get you in a room and check to see if you are really in labor. With my third. After I was at the hospital the day before to have cervidil in order to induce labor early (my babies were all over 9 lbs.) and when not much happened they sent me home saying what few contractions I was having would go away since they cervidil was removed. Within an hour of getting home the contractions came back with a vengence! Apparently when its been almost 10 years between pregnancies your body thinks it’s never been through this type of torture before so once again, hell on earth! I held out until 6:00 the next morning only to have sweet Nancy Nurse say we need to make sure you are in labor as I hold onto the bar in the hallway just to try and remain upright!

And I had two more after this!!


TKW April 18, 2013 at 9:45 am


With your THIRD!?! Dang. I would have poked Nurse Ratched’s eye out with a spoon! Thanks for coming by! I’m in Hell Week but I plan to visit you soon!


denise April 18, 2013 at 4:08 am


Recently, a woman with four children was giving me baby advice. My youngest (and last) is 6. Still scratching my head on that one.


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