It's not often that I do a controversial post like this. Usually if I do, it's about politics (Romney/Gingrich FTW!!!).
Silky and Crunchy are two relatively new terms to me. Crunchy I've known about since I got pregnant with Kenzie. But silky I just learned today. And it made me happy because I never actually knew what "type" of parent to call myself. Not that there should really be a type put to parenting. In all actuality, I feel you're either a good parent, or a lousy one. And these two terms by NO MEANS indicate good or lousy.
Crunchy: Typically "green", home/unmedicated natural birth, NO circumcision, cloth diapering, co-sleeping, home-made organic foods, delayed or NO vaccinations, Homeschooling, NO formula only breast, chemical-free everything, baby wearing, etc etc...
Silky: Hospital/medicated birth, routine circumcisions, Formula feeding, disposable diapers, crib sleeping, vaccinate on schedule, store-bough foods, CIO, etc...
I am a silky mama and I am damn proud of it. Just like a crunchy mom would be proud of what she is doing. But so often, us Silky moms get criticized and made to feel like we are bad parents because in their eyes, we are not doing what is best for our child.
I'm going to tackle a couple of topics that often come up in debates between Silky and Crunchy moms. These are just my personal opinions! My words is not God, so if you are a Crunchy mom and are reading this, you are absolutely free to feel how you want to feel and raise your child how you want! And I also realize that not ALL Crunchy mom feel this way.
Breastfeeding: Crunchy moms feel "breast is best" and if you don't breastfeed you are depriving your child of proper nutrients. I actually agree with this, to an extent. Breast IS best. But not every woman has the means to do so. In my case, I tried breastfeeding. Mackenzie wanted NOTHING to do with my boob. It got to the point where even the Lactation Consultant at the hospital told me to back off and just go for the bottle. After I left the hospital, I continued to try at home. I even tried pumping. I produced NO milk. The most I ever got out after 2 weeks of pumping was 1/2 an oz. Some women produce no milk. Some women have babies who refuse the boob at all costs. Maybe she had a double mastectomy. You don't know. So why look at a woman who is feeding her kid a bottle and automatically assume the worst?
C-sections: Oh my lord. I can't tell you how many times I've watched TV shows like A Baby Story, and One Born Every Minute, and there are women on there who absolutely refuse to have a C-section to the point where the child's life could be in danger. How is THAT good parenting? A person condoning that will tell you "it's selfish of you to just want to get it over with without having to put in the hard work, and it's safer for the child to have a natural birth". Yeah. It's selfish of YOU that you are putting YOUR beliefs before the safety of your child. There is one main goal we are striving towards during labor....Delivery of a HEALTHY baby. What does it matter HOW they come into the world, just as long as they get here at all? Get over it.
Circumcision: This is something I feel very strongly about. Crunchy moms say it's mutilation of the genitals. It's harmful, it's abuse, it hurts them, how could anyone do something sooooo horrible to their precious baby boy? Or that if you are hell-bent on doing it, you should wait until he is old enough to make the decision for himself. Ummmm? OUCH. First of all, they do it as a baby because your baby boy will not remember this. Ever. No matter how hard he tries. Furthermore, the people who seem to be the LOUDEST about their distaste for RIC, are also the ones who have their baby's ears pierced. Go figure. Hygiene is also an issue. Obviously you will teach your Son to pay extra attention down there, but nobody is perfect and it is inevitable that nooks and crannies will be missed allowing bacteria to collect and putting the child at a higher risk for infections. And really? Allowing him to make the choice on his own when he is older? Talk about traumatizing. Now, I don't know...Maybe when they are older the put him under anesthesia or administer a local. But either way, why would you want to remember something like that?
Vaccines: Now this one I will be a little judgey on. People who don't vaccinate piss me off. You don't want to subject your kid to the POSSIBLE and unlikely effects of vaccines, so it's okay for you to put every single person your child comes into contact with at risk for diseases and illnesses that otherwise could have been prevented by getting them vaccinated? It's not just for the child's well being, but for public safety reasons that vaccinations are administered. It's not all about YOU.
Food: The organic thing is cool. If that's what you want to feed your kids, then by all means...Go ahead. Nothing wrong with that. But some people take it too far. I saw someone on a message board I frequent say they took their kid to a birthday party and brought some pineapple chutney for her kid to eat instead of the birthday cake. One of the moms kind of questioned her about it and she handed her a pamphlet on the dangers of red dye # 5. First of all...Who the hell carries around pamphlets on that kind of stuff? And second...It's a piece of cake. Your child is entitled to enjoy a piece of cake now and again. It's not a BFD. It actually pissed me off to read that.
So basically to sum this all up- I just can't stand when parents keep their kids in these little bubbles. And I feel that is what a lot of Crunchy parents do (Again, not ALL). When I was a kid, we got to explore, and be adventurous. We got to eat so much cake that we threw up from too many sweets. And we learned to not do it again. We scraped our knees, we watched cartoons all morning on Saturday's, we ate the super overly-processed frozen kid tv dinners. And we survived. My daughter will too.
So I am proud to say I am a formula feeding, disposable diaper using, whiskey on the gums for teething, vaccinating so YOUR kid doesn't get sick, Silky mama!