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Parents Talk: Advice for a First Time Mom

In this week's Parents Talk, we ask parents to give real world, practical advice for first time parents.

Recently an old friend from college reached out to me on Facebook to catch up on life, shoot the breeze, share stories, etc.

It had been the better part of 10 years since we last seen one another and I was surprised to hear that she only recently married and that she and her new husband were expecting a baby, their first.

What is the best piece of advice you have for first time parents? Tell us in the comments.

Of course, all the kid pictures on my profile scream that I have a little experience with children, so inevitably the questions started flying and gave way to a lively Q & A on Facebook chat.

"Formula or breastfeeding?" "When did your daughter start sleeping through the night?," "What car seat did you buy?" and "Do I need a diaper bag or will a big purse cover it?"

Having been in her shoes, I was more than happy to answer her questions but was a little taken aback when she asked: "What's the best advice anyone ever gave you about having kids?"

I was on the spot. What was the best piece of advice I ever received when our first child was born? I couldn't even recall.

So, I'm throwing it out there to you, parents. What is the best piece of advice you can give to first time parents? Tell us in the comments.

Sara McSweeney May 14, 2012 at 01:23 PM
Sleep whenever you can! The cooking, cleaning and laundry can all wait for 20 or 30 minutes (or an hour) so you can get a power nap.
Jody Gifford May 14, 2012 at 01:49 PM
I agree with Sara but I never believed it until I had more than one child. Looking back, I should have listened instead of thinking I already knew everything. Sleep is the key to being able to manage so many different things at one time. Trust me.
Courtenay Baker-Olinger May 14, 2012 at 02:45 PM
Trust your instincts (unless you instincts tell you to skip the car seat or give your baby soda in a baby bottle). Realize that you're going to make mistakes and that most of the mistakes won't result in you ruining your child. Try not to get caught up in being a better parent than people around you. And always remember that what works for one family may not necessarily work for another -- do what's best for your family.
Devon Murphy-Petersen May 14, 2012 at 03:40 PM
When choosing between playing or reading with your child and the 'to do's' like housework, etc. always choose reading or playing with your child/children. Housework and laundry will always be there but time together won't.
Joyce Milambiling May 15, 2012 at 01:18 PM
I was a first-time mom to a six year old boy adopted from another country. Even though he was potty-trained and ate almost anything, it was a huge adjustment for me, my husband, and my son. I would say it's a god idea to read (carefully selected) parenting books, to a point, but above all trust your instincts and expect to be less than perfect. Love and humor are powerful allies.

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