That's Mazzy and me on the left when she was just a few weeks old. I'm including that photo partly because of Shell's Rockin' the Baby link-up and partly because you have no idea how many times people asked me if the baby could breathe while she was in the sling. My standard answer? "No. I prefer it that way." (Answer said in my head while silently seething.)
Also, the sling was a hand-me down from a friend and because it was blue, people were SHOCKED to find out my baby was a girl. As if Mazzy was going to grow a goatee and talk like James Earl Jones if I didn't invest in a hot pink carrier ASAP.
Which brings me to my 3rd COMMENT COMPETITION. A few weeks ago, I wrote a post called "Stranger Knows Best" in which I asked you all to tell me "the worst thing a stranger has said to you regarding your parenting or pregnancy" and many of your responses made me want to mow down that stranger with my car. Now I will be putting my picks for the ten most offensive comments to a vote. (Do you love these as much as I do?)
A lot of people took their entry as an opportunity to talk about their mother or mother-in-law. So you got automatically disqualified. We'll address that topic another time.
As for the rest of you, it was incredibly hard to narrow it down to just ten. In the end, I weighed both the intrusive nature of the individual comments against the diversity of the comments as a whole. Meaning— there might have been two horrifically awesome sunscreen comments but I picked one and gave the other slot to a comment about socks.
Sorry. This is the way the world works.
TOP TEN FINALISTS FOR "THE WORST UNSOLICITED PARENTING ADVICE OR COMMENTARY"
Kristin (from What She Said):
In response to a facebook comment about my 18-month-old daughter's penchant for self-induced gagging, an acquaintance told me I needed to teach her a lesson in respect by either 1) starving her into submission, or 2) disrespecting something she loves in front of her. Which caused me to have this crazy image of holding down her beloved Lambie, while my husband kicked it mob-beatdown-style as my daughter sat off to the side weeping.
When I was preggo with baby one and did not know the gender, I was told that I couldn't possibly be having a girl as girls are tiny delicate things and I was just far too large.
As I was loading my 14-month-old daughter into her stroller in the parking lot of Target, this woman stops her car, rolls down the window, and proceeds to lecture me on how hot the sun is and how she really hopes I put sunscreen on her. Oh, really? That giant, flaming yellow ball in the sky is hot? And they make a product to protect skin from its harmful rays? Thanks for that awesome, totally new information.
On a cold-ish day last year, I'd given up the battle to keep socks/shoes on my then ten month-old. Because retrieving them from the ground and putting them back on every frigging two minutes was not my favorite activity. There was a group of women in the supermarket who tut-tutted over my daughter's bare feet in her stroller. And then one of them told me I should be tying the socks around her ankles with string. After all, who needs circulation to their feet?
My worst comment was from a neighbor while I was still pregnant with my first. I was a young mom and I had known this woman for years. When she came to visit one day, she asked, "So when will you be putting the baby up for adoption?"
I was in a ridiculously long line at the post office with my 6 month old when the man behind me said "You take lots of pictures right? Don't forget about videos." THEN he launched into an entire statistic filled lecture explaining that if I were to insist on immunizing my child that video tapes of his "natural" behavior following the shots were crucial and could be used as evidence against the doctors when it turns out my child has autism. WTF!
Alexandra (from Good Day, Regular People):
Many times I've been asked if I'll babysit since I'm such a good nanny to my kids. Unlike me, my kids are blue-eyed and green-eyed. When I ask why they think I'm the nanny and not their mom, they answer, "I thought I heard you speak to them in Spanish." YUP.
When my daughter was about a year, this woman came up to me on the playground to congratulate me on my pregnancy. After telling her I wasn't pregnant, she had enough guts to reply "Are you sure?"
When I was pregnant the first time, an old man in a convenience store treated me to a breastfeeding tutorial while we stood in line. I thought we got through it okay until I was leaving and he made sure to holler after me "Don't forget to use water based lubricant on your nipples!"
Second pregnancy. On bedrest at 22 weeks. Braved an engagement party after gaining 60lbs and a woman walked up to me, put her unsolicited hands on my huge belly and then threw her hands up in the air and screamed "BOOM!!" followed by hysterical laughter.
There you have it. Tough competition, right? (You can read all 74 entries here.) Now it's time to vote for your favorite. Meaning, the comment that would most likely make you hide inside your house 'til the kids went off to college.
Winner of "The Worst Unsolicited Piece of Parenting Advice" will get an adorable set of personalized note cards from Sugar & Spice Studios (pictured left). Note cards are handmade by Andrea, mother of 1 year-old Avery and 3 year-old Grant, and can be used to send that horrifyingly intrusive stranger a "thank you but no thank you" sentiment.
(My next comment competition will involve "hot mess" moments and you can enter here. As an added bonus, it's also a giveaway for an awesome Petunia Pickle Bottom bag.)
Winner will be announced Friday, the 22nd. If you are in THE TOP TEN, all campaigning is totally legal. Go for it!