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Mother to Daughter: I know more than you realize

September 4th, 2010 by Melinda Blau

Over the five years we worked together on our three “Baby Whisperer” books, the late Tracy Hogg and I often marveled at the fact that so many modern mothers had stacks of parenting books on their night tables, went to parenting classes, consulted the Internet and various child-rearing sites when they were confused or worried–but overlooked an important, and often better,  resource:  their own mothers.   Some worried that their mother’s advice might be “out of date.”   (Admittedly, we don’t know how to close that damn stroller, but babies haven’t been similarly modernized!)  Others feared that if they turned to their mothers for advice, they would somehow open the door to endless intrusions.  Still others felt as if asking Mom was a sign of their own incompetence.

Of course, mother/daughter collaborations run the gamut, from women who don’t feel they can function without their mothers to those who believe that Mom has nothing to offer.   In “My Mother, the Parenting Expert,” our latest addition to The Buzz, psychologist Mindy Greenstein, author of the upcoming memoir, The House on Crash Corner, was solidly in the latter category when her son was born.  Daughter of a Holocaust survivor, she had spent most of her childhood fending for herself–and struggling to understand her mother and to be understood.  She couldn’t imagine calling on her mother for anything.  But as is often the case when a young woman joins the Motherhood Union, circumstances forced her to take a second look.

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3 Responses to “Mother to Daughter: I know more than you realize”

  1. Jamie R. says:

    Great post, it is nice to hear this perspective. I am a huge fan of the baby whisperer and my mom. I found that when my son was a newborn, the area where I needed the most help was emotional.

    Although I am sure that my mom did an excellent job raising me, she had to do what was best for her and my dad when I was a baby. Each baby is different and I don’t feel that there is a right and perfect way to do everything. So when I was pregnant with my firstborn, I ran some of my ideas past my mom of how I was planning to handle certain situations, but she really didn’t really say anything either way. I think that she wanted me to be able to feel like I could make the choices I felt I needed to make for my family.

    My mom is and has always been my biggest cheerleader and encourager, and that is something I could never get from any book or child expert. Although I may not ask her first what I should do, I certainly appreciate her input, but what I am the most thankful for his her love.

  2. Melinda Blau says:

    Thanks, Jamie. You know, Tracy Hogg often lamented the fact that more new mothers didn’t turn to their mothers for help. But at the same time, she–like your mother–realized how important it was for a new mother to gain confidence in her own instincts. It sounds like you’ve struck a great balance. Please register for updates, keep in touch, and tell your friends to stop by, too. – Melinda

  3. Luciano says:

    LOVE this so much !! I have always adimerd your mother-daughter relationship. So right your mom ROCKS ! I lost my mom when I was younger than you and her birthday is 1/28 Aquarians must make FANTASTIC mothers !! ((HUGS))

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