Friday, April 25, 2014

Mama Birds and Free Range Pooping...or why you shouldn't take advice from celebrities....

It is happening again you guys. Yet another celebrity, unsatisfied with the level of fame that whatever it is that they are known for has garnered them, has become a self-proclaimed parenting expert.

Let us all rejoice.

I'm being sarcastic, but you knew that. 

I hope you knew that.

I always find it terribly interesting that so many of these celebrities who write these books about parenting usually do it when they have had one child for a few years. Because every seasoned parent totally knows everything after doing this for a couple years, right?

Again with the sarcasm.

Of course they don't know everything. None of us do. The people who actually have some kind of credential or training that would to some degree allow them to actually claim they know everything still don't know everything. The people like me who've parented several different kids with several different conditions still don't know everything. Even people who raised entirely functional adults don't know everything.

And you sure as shit haven't figured it all out when you have one three year old. 

Speaking of shit, I'll get to that in a bit. Literally. There will be poop discussions below, and if that is the kind of thing that makes you uncomfortable, just stop reading now, because it's pretty nasty, this poop issue I will soon speak of.

Before we get there, though, I wanted to address my real issue with this latest incarnation of parental wisdom, this one written (okay, like, it was totally dictated in part and probably actually written by someone else) by Alicia Silverstone. My bad. I had to throw in some obnoxious Clueless type dialogue, since that is why she's famous and all.

Oh, wait. She shook her ass on the hood of Aerosmith's car too. That's right.

My real beef with this book is the fact that she talks about health care decisions and maternal mental health conditions as though she has any goddamn idea what she's talking about. She is another celeb who rants about the dangers of vaccines and talks about how her unvaccinated kid is healthy so obviously it's working out just fine. 

Which is totally fine. For now. For her. Until it's not.

Bangs head on wall.

There are plenty of legitimate concerns that parents have when it comes to vaccines, but people writing books with no scientific background that proclaim they've skipped all shots and their kids are fine so far aren't just possibly endangering their kids, they are endangering the kids of whoever reads their books and follows their so-called advice. I'm not even going to rehash all the society level issues involved here. 

It's not just that, though, that chaps my ass. Even worse are her musings about post partum depression, and how it's less likely to happen to new mothers that live "kindly" whatever that is supposed to mean. She's not a mental health professional, she apparently hasn't suffered from post partum depression, she doesn't know what the hell she is talking about and yet she's doing it. 

She's saying all these things as though anything about living kindly is going to have a damn thing to do with how maternal hormones affect a mother's brain in the postpartum period. 

It would make more sense if she was jumping on a couch all batshit crazy the way Tom Cruise was around the time he claimed to be an expert about PPD. 

Okay, it wouldn't make more sense, but it would be much more entertaining.

Now that we've established that being an actress with one child who is "healthy and unvaccinated" and who has never had to deal with PPD isn't qualified to be giving out advice to anyone about either topic, let's talk about some of the other things in this book of hers.

The book, that, by the way, I'm not linking on purpose. If you really want to go find it, there's a search bar up top. I'm not about to send her any traffic. 


She's talked in the past about pre-chewing food for her son and then spitting it into his mouth. Like a mama bird. 

There are apparently even videos of this. Again, not linking, because ewwwwww.

This poor child and the things he will be picked on for when he gets just a little bit older....

For the love. Why anyone would take advice from someone who feeds their child like this is beyond me. If your kid can't chew the food you want him to eat, that generally means he shouldn't be eating it yet. Logic is amazing, isn't it?

She also encourages parents to potty train their children using her kindness technique, part of which involves free range pooping, which is exactly what it sounds like. Literally, let the kid run around pantsless and poop in the yard. Like a dog. 

I'm all for pantslessness, don't get me wrong, but I'm not sending my kid out back to work for number two. 

Aside from the whole ick factor, you have to wonder what planet she lives on. I mean, does she clean it up??? I hope she cleans it up. I actually assume she doesn't do it herself, because she's probably far too glamorous to scoop anyone's does her gardener have to do it? Does she tell them what it is? Do her neighbors know there is human feces on the lawn next door?

The free range pooping goes along with her other training techniques, which seem to mostly involve watching your kid for signs of impending pooping. So you're supposed to sit around, wait for the grimacing to begin, then plop the kid on the pot, cheer wildly and pat yourself on the back. Some people start doing it as early as 6 months, long before babies are even walking.

I have a newsflash. Ready for this one???

That's not potty training. It's mommy training. 

If the kid can't even physically get to a toilet and you are the one putting them there, who is really being trained here?'s not the kid.

I have better things to do than worry all day long about whether my kid is on the verge of poo, then rushing him to the potty just to applaud the fact that I have nothing better to do than to wait for this to happen. 

I've trained four kids to poop in actual toilets. She has a kid who poops on the grass. 

Which book do you want to read, hers or mine?

Seriously though, these books are ridiculous, and the idea that they fly off the shelves into the eager hands of new parents is a little bit terrifying. Talk to your pediatrician, talk to the nurses, talk to your parents, talk to your friends. Talk to literally anyone else in the known universe before you start taking advice from a woman who chews up her kid's food and spits it into his mouth.

As if.


  1. I don't think being a celebrity makes you less of an expert on parroting, it just doesn't make you one. Personally, when I want to know about parenting, I ask a parent or a pediatrician. I'd never look to a celeb for anything, especially one that spits her little bird's mouth. xo


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