This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month we’re writing about how a co-parent has or has not supported us in our dedication to natural parenting. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.
I have two sons. They each have different fathers.
To say that I witnessed different ends of the parenting spectrum is to put it mildly!
Daniel’s father… I do believe loved Dan as a baby and during the pregnancy, but once reality of being a parent kicked in, he made the choice to turn into an abuser and very bad parent. He has chosen not to be involved in Danny’s life since he was a toddler.
However I try and reflect on the good times (sadly, there are only a few). Just so everyone is aware, posting these photos is very difficult for me and in some ways, I feel like my heart is breaking for my son because I NEVER expected his bio-father to reject him like he has.
The awesomeness that is named… Keith
I never knew it was possible to be supported completely in how I wanted to raise my children. After only being together for two months (yes we moved quickly!) did we discover I was pregnant with Tristan. He suddenly became a father to a 7yr old boy and expecting a baby.
He stepped into the father role right away with Daniel and they are the best of friends. He calls him dad/daddy/real daddy. I sometimes joke that if I didn’t know better, I would swear Danny was biologically his because they have SUCH similar personalities! I am thankful for that though because I could not spend as much time discussing StarWars, Ben10, etc, as they do.
He had zero experience with babies and began to do his own research when I explained I was unbending on certain things such as:
- breastfeeding (and self-weaning!)
- no vaccinations
- no circumcision
- cloth diapering
He would ask questions and I answered to the best of my ability, he would spend hours doing his own research.
I rarely if ever, have to change diaper. Keith changes 95% of the diapers AND does all the diaper laundry. He will make me a grilled cheese at 3am when I am starving (during those growth spurts of Tristan’s, I am STARVING). He supports me in just about everything I do, everything I WANT to do (minus some debate on decorating the house lol).
I still reflect on that time occasionally, what it must have felt like for him to go from being single to having a live-in girlfriend who was pregnant with your first biological baby, and having a 7yr old boy who went through an extremely traumatic living experience for 5months with his bio-dad (who experienced night terrors for MONTHS).
I don’t even know how to express myself in words (that’s a first!) so I shall express myself in photos.
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
- A Thank You to my Husband
Lactating Girl at The Adventures of Lactating Girl thanks her husband for keeping her grounded and giving her unwavering support in the face of discouragement from within and without.
- My Reverse Traditional Husband In the Wild
Paige at Baby Dust Diaries gives us a lesson on how dads in the wild parent their young. Can you guess which male animal actually nurses its young?
- February Carnival of Natural Parenting
TopHat at The Bee in Your Bonnet tells us how the patience of a partner can make a difficult breastfeeding relationship succeed.
- Parenting Together
For Alison at BluebirdMama and her husband, parenting is simply an extension of the way they live.
- If We Had A MIllion Dollars
Melodie at Breastfeeding Moms Unite! and her husband would both agree to be crunchier parents if they had a million dollars to ease the way.
- February Carnival of Natural Parenting: Co-Parents
Dionna at Code Name: Mama has written a letter to her husband, thanking him for his incredible support in every aspect of their natural parenting journey.
- Natural Parenting Fathers
Sarah at Natural Parenting is balancing being all there for her son with being present for her husband.
- Just Wonderful: Love and Partners and Natural Parenting
Zoey at Good Goog let her husband lead her to babywearing and cosleeping.
- All that stuff I don’t get comes so easy to him
The Grumbles is taking this opportunity to say thank you to her husband for his mad parenting skills.
- The Power of Having a Supportive Co-Parent
Chrystal at Happy Mothering and her husband started with vaccinations and moved on from there.
- February Carnival of Natural Parenting: Love and partners
Lauren at Hobo Mama makes do with babbling incoherently about how her husband practices natural parenting in such an effortless fashion, with bonus video.
- Love and Partners
Mrs Green at Little Green Blog shares her husband’s moving account of her birth story, and his testament to the power of a woman.
- labor support…
Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children is thankful that her partner has provided her immeasurable labor support through each of their last three unassisted homebirths (and will again for their upcoming fourth!).
- What co-parent? On prams, routines, ideals, sickness, and finding my way alone.
Ruth at Look Left of the Pleiades describes life without a present co-parent: making new choices and taking care of things herself.
- Parenting With Support
How many people can say that their husband talked them into cloth diapering? Darcel at The Mahogany Way can!
- Co-Parenting Support
Summer at Mama2Mama Tips knows the importance of being supported in the face of criticism.
- Natural Parenting Carnival: Love and Partners
pchanner at A Mom’s Fresh Start has been blessed with an incredibly involved partner. Her husband loves to take part in every aspect of parenting!
- Daddy’s Little Girls
Kate Wicker at Momopoly finds her husband right at home in a tangle of girls.
- How do I love my parenting partner? Let me count the ways.
Sybil at Musings of a Milk Maker is thankful that she and her partner co-parent fluidly and gracefully.
- Interview with a Daddy
NavelgazingBajan brings us a highly amusing peek into her husband’s perspective.
- Being Supported in Natural Parenting
Sarah at OneStarryNight has witnessed both ends of the parenting spectrum, and is grateful she found a father who is comfortable with natural parenting.
- Moments in time: a love letter
Arwyn at Raising My Boychick will make you cry with the beautiful way she describes the complete relationship between father and child.
- Natural parenting converts
Jen at Recovering Procrastinator brought her reluctant husband around to cloth diapers, bed sharing, and time-ins as a discipline method.
- Breastfeeding Father
Amber Strocel at Strocel.com describes how her husband helped her overcome the breastfeeding challenges she encountered with her premature daughter.
- A Natural Parenting Village
Acacia from Art, Body & Soul, in a guest post for Jamie at Suddenly Stay at Home, broadens the term “coparents” to embrace supportive extended family on both sides.
- A Natural Dad
Shana at Tales of Minor Interest doesn’t have a husband who merely supports her
she has a husband just as dedicated to natural parenting as she is.
Jessica at This Is Worthwhile made sure her future husband agreed with her parenting choices early in their dating.
- how we come to parenthood
Michelle at womanseekingmother dances with her husband around the subject of cosleeping.