We had a baby boom of sorts at work recently; I was the last of the group to have a baby. As such, there are a lot of new(ish) parents roaming the corridors.
One of the new hires in IT is also a recent new parent. His twin sons are about three weeks older than Baby C. When we were in a meeting two weeks ago, someone mentioned his boys, and we started talking about our sons. The first question he asked (after “How old is he?”) was, “Is he sleeping through the night?”
(Dedicated readers of my blog know the answer to this, and you also know how painful it is for me to be reminded.)
Well, while I was on the phone having him troubleshoot a problem this afternoon, he asked again about Baby C’s nocturnal habits.
“No,” I said, “he’s not sleeping through the night yet.”
“Oh, you really need to try the cereal in a bottle. That’s how we got our sons to sleep, and we’ve never had a problem.”
“Well, his doctor doesn’t recommend it.”
“Ours didn’t either, but we did it anyway, and it’s been great. We’ve started them on solids, already, too, and they sleep through the night with no problem.”
“I’m not so keen on starting with solids just yet. My husband’s family has some stomach issues; I’d really like to delay or eliminate the baby’s development of those as much as possible.”
“Hm. Well, that makes sense, I guess. Of course, you’re going to hear a lot of advice from a lot of people, and you and your husband should do what you think is best.”
Then a few minutes later…
“What formula do you use?” he asked.
“Oh, he’s exclusively on breast milk.”
“Well, that’s why he’s not sleeping through the night! My wife switched to formula after three months. The boys would wake up every two or three hours to eat. She couldn’t take it anymore.”
“I don’t mind it, really.”
“Really?” Pause. “How long do you plan to breastfeed?”
“Until I’m not producing or he’s decided he’s had enough; whichever comes first.”
“My wife didn’t like doing it.”
“Well, I imagine it’s harder with twins.”
“Formula would probably be easier on you, though.”
“We’re not ready to switch him over just yet. He developed an allergic reaction to something in my diet a few weeks ago, and his doctor said that switching him to formula could potentially make it worse since we haven’t pinpointed the source of the allergy.”
“Yeah. So I’m on a very restricted diet.”
“Oh.” Pause. “So, what aren’t you allowed to eat?”
“A lot of things.” I listed off the bigger items.
“Oh, that’s no good. I would switch him to formula as soon as you can. But you should do what you think is best.”
It’s like the ultimate betrayal. He’s a new parent; he has little ones not much older than Baby C. Surely he has had to deal with as much well-meaning advice as Cute Husband and I have. So, why in the world is he trying to tell me what to do with my son?
Life isn’t fair. (If it were, we’d all have milk and cookies and naptime every day.)