The BEST parent insight I got – from mums who know

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parent insight - best parenting advice from experienced mums who've been through it all

When you have a baby the whole world and his wife will give you parenting advice. Much of it is just not for you or even a bit annoying but in amongst it all there are some pearls of wisdom that can help you along your way. We asked mums for the best parent insight they were given that made a difference.

Perhaps they will help you too?

Babies

 

parent insight - best parenting advice from experienced mums who've been through it all

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It’s just a phase

This is my mantra, whenever I’m in the trenches. Whether it’s colic, teething or toddler tantrums I remind myself it’s just a phase and it won’t last forever. I sometimes mutter it out loud. It helps me to remind myself that the really tough bits won’t last forever and if I can just keep going then I’ll get through. Holly

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Lower your expectations

One of my mum friends actually said this joking around. She was laughing about having only got dressed at 2pm the day before but that it was fine because since having a baby she coped by lowering her expectations. But actually that turned out to be the best advice ever. I aimed low each day and if me and my baby achieved more than both being fed and dressed then it was a bonus. It made me less stressed. Katie

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The best things to buy for a baby are muslin squares

They are just brilliant for everything. I used muslins to mop up baby spit-up, as bibs, as a comfort blanket even as a makeshift sun hat one day. Carry them wherever you go! Iona

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You’re not the only mum pacing the floor with a crying baby at 2am

Not advice really but it made me feel better and less alone. Jenny

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Sleep when the baby sleeps

I remember I was so annoyed at this and was thinking ‘you got any idea how little would get done if I slept every time the baby closed her eyes?’ Thinking back I did get a lot done during her nap times but during her longer sleeps I was so exhausted I would have to lie down. And it helped…I needed some rest after all the awake time during the night! Lori

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Try to get out of the house every day

I remember feeling so cooped up in my flat with the baby. We didn’t leave the room for weeks at a time after she was born. Later though I managed to get out, just for quick walks and it made such a different. Everything felt that bit easier when we got back home. Maddie

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Don’t worry if other mums do things differently

Some breastfeed, some bottle feed, some co-sleep, some do baby led weaning. We all do things differently and that’s OK. Don’t stress about it, just do what works for you. Nicky

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Babies love white noise

A mum at a baby group was telling us how her baby went to sleep really easily when she played white noise on an app on her phone. I tried it that night and it worked! Best tip ever. Hannah

Toddlers

 

parent insight - best parenting advice from experienced mums who've been through it all

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Get in the photos with kids

After I had my baby my phone was soon chock full of  photos of my baby and my baby with dad, nan, aunty Susan. But I was hardly in any of them. One day my child will want to look back on all the memories and so will I. Get in the photos, Mamas. Sanghita

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Buy a gro-clock

My toddler used to get up and come through to wake me up at 5am or even earlier. It was exhausting. I read an article about Gro-clocks, bought one and it was one of the best things I ever did. The clock had a blue light and a moon picture when my toddler was sleeping and a countdown to a yellow screen with the sun rising and little stars that went out one by one, set to the time he could get out of bed. He used to watch and wait each morning before he got up and woke me. No more dawn starts. It was like magic. Eilidh

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Don’t wish her life away

I spent so long wishing time away. I couldn’t wait until she could walk or could feed herself. It was my mum who told me to start just enjoying the moments because, before I knew it, time would have flown by. Sam

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Look at how much food they eat in a day not at each meal

My little boy was a fussy eater and I used to get so stressed. My health visitor told me to look at what he ate over a day or even a week instead of stressing about each meal and it was really good advice. Alex

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If something is a battle, they’re probably not ready

It could be weaning, potty training, sleeping through the night…we’ve all had something we’ve struggled with. If it’s a battle then stop, wait and try again later. Siobhan

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He’ll do it when he’s ready

So true. It made me stop worrying so much. When I was despairing about potty training and the fact that my son showed zero signs of getting the hang of it my Dad also told me ‘No one walks down the aisle in nappies’. Wise words. Lauren

Teenagers

 

parent insight - best parenting advice from experienced mums who've been through it all

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Pick your battles

My mum reminded me that I don’t have to enter into every argument you’re invited into. I tried to brush off the smaller things and only react to the bigger issues. Otherwise me and my teen probably would have been fighting all day. Susan

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You don’t have to try and fix everything

This was absolutely the best advice i have been given as a mum of teens. When your teenagers are sad, angry or stressed, they don’t want you to fix things or to start offering suggestions or to tell them about how you felt the same way once upon a time. What they really want is just for you to stop and listen. They just want you to care. Harpreet

Mums

 

parent insight - best parenting advice from experienced mums who've been through it all

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It’s OK not to be OK

Being a mum is really hard. It’s worse if you feel you are rubbish at it or that you have to hide the fact that you’re struggling. Be kind to yourself and get loads of hugs! Sally

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Keep on keeping on

In the tough bits just concentrate on making it through today because tomorrow you get to start over. Put one foot in front of the other and just keep at it. Nicola

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There’s no such thing as a perfect parent

No one is perfect and that means it’s OK if you’re not perfect either. All you can do is your best. Being good enough is good enough. Cali

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Happy mums make happy babies

So don’t forget to look after yourself too. Alison

See our article 18 parenting lessons I’ve learned in 18 years as a parent for more advice from a mum who’s been through it all.