An interesting article popped up in my Twitter timeline earlier today, asking the question “is online parenting advice harmful or helpful” (see link below).This got me thinking about all the conflicting advice I have read over the last few months.
In general I am of the opinion that we should take advantage of all the help we can get, God knows being a new parent is terrifying and full of questions and fears! However, it can be really hard to actually know what to pay attention to and what is utter dross.
With this in mind I thought I would share some of my tips for how I try to identify good info from nonsense. Hopefully it will be some help…
(I am well aware of the irony of me joining the legions of advice givers, and the fact this blog actually fails to meet most of my own criteria and is therefore self defeating!)
- References: who directed you to the information? Was it someone you trust, someone you have received good advice from before? If so, then it is probably worth considering. However, if this is from a totally random source you are well within your rights to be a bit skeptical…
- What is the source? Is this written by a respected, established author, or just some random bloke on the internet (there goes the irony klaxon!!!) Think about who wrote it and what experience they have that makes them suitable to advise on what they are talking about.
- Ask on Twitter: If in doubt, ask twitter to help you… People are always willing to give advice, and if you get lots of different answers to your question (as you invariably will) you can see what is most common and this will probably be the most appropriate.
- Go with your gut: trust your instincts and do what you believe is right – it usually is
- Don’t worry: we all have fears and moments of panic… you will be OK!