Interview with a Daddy
Welcome to the February Carnival of Natural Parenting: Love and partners!
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month we’re writing about how a co-parent has or has not supported us in our dedication to natural parenting. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.
When I first heard of the theme for this month’s Carnival of Natural parenting, I thought, “Why not go to the source?” What follows is a transcription of a conversation that I had with the hubby, C, on natural parenting. I think it’s a fairly accurate representation of our dynamic. Please bear in mind that this took place right before bedtime.
NB: Thank you very much for agreeing to be interviewed by me. Do you know why I’m interviewing you?
C: No, I do not.
NB: Do you care?
C: (laughs) Not really.
NB: Alright. Well, in case you didn’t know, I’m interviewing you for my blog. Ok? Now, I have a question for you. Have you ever heard of the term “Natural Parenting?”
NB: If you had to guess, what would you think it was?
C: (laughs) I don’t know – parenting the natural way.
NB: What’s the natural way?
C: I haven’t the slightest idea. I dunno!
NB: Ok, well, do you think that we are natural parents?
C: I don’t know.
NB: Well. how would you describe our parenting style?
C: I don’t know. You’d have to find out what natural parenting is first in order for you to have something to compare it to.
NB: Ok, well let me give you a little bit of a background. Natural parenting, like you guessed, is about parenting the natural way. The people who generally do natural parenting do things like use cloth diapers, co-sleep, babywear, breastfeed – those types of things. You think we fall into that category?
C: I guess so.
NB: So, you have described me as a hippie. Is that accurate?
C: (laughs) Yes. You’re a…how did I describe it again? You’re a black, feminist hippie.
NB: Do you agree that makes me a perfect candidate for natural parenting?
C: (laughs) Yes. Hippies do that type of thing.
NB: Ok, so seeing as I’m a a hippie and I’m a natural candidate for natural parenting, how do you feel about the stuff that we do in terms of natural parenting?
C: (makes sound indicating “I dunno”) It’s “Whatever, man.”
NB: Ok, how do you feel about cloth diapers?
C: It saves money, I guess.
NB: Do you mind doing the pins and the laundry and stuff?
C: No, I don’t mind at all.
NB: What did you think when I first brought it up?
C: I don’t remember.
NB: How about breastfeeding? What do you think about that?
C: Hey, I guess it’s better than formula…you say.
NB: What do you think is better about breastfeeding than formula?
C; I don’t know. Whatever you tell me.
NB: (laughs) Do you think I tell you the truth?
C: (laughs) I guess you do.
NB: So your way of handling these things is to just to go along with what I tell you, right?
NB: Alright! Sounds good to me! Um, so the babywearing, is that something you had come into contact with before we had the baby?
C: What the heck is babywearing?
NB: You know, with the sling…the wrap!
C: Oh, no, I’ve seen it before.
NB: Did you think it was kinda crazy?
C: No, seen it before.
NB: So what did you think when I went out and bought a wrap for the baby and started wearing him around instead of getting him a stroller?
C: (yawn) I kinda figured you’d get tired of carrying him around once he gets bigger.
NB: Has that been shown to be true?
C: He ain’t that big yet.
NB: (laughs) What did you think when I put the wrap on you and had you walk around with him in Ikea?
C: I dunno. Better than carrying him in my arms, I guess.
NB: Are you converting to babywearing now?
C: You gotta find me a cooler babycarrier.
NB: What’s wrong with the one we’ve got?
C: It’s not black.
NB: Ok, typical male. Alright, well, how about co-sleeping? What do you think of co-sleeping?
C: What’s co-sleeping?
NB: Well, we sleep in the bed and the baby shares the bed with us.
C: As long as I don’t roll over and crush him, I guess he’s fine.
NB: Have you done that yet?
C: (laughs) I rolled over on him but I didn’t crush him yet.
NB: What do you mean you rolled over on him???? When did you roll over on the baby?
C: Well, I rolled over on his arm a few times. I felt the arm so I rolled back over.
NB: So essentially, you woke up.
NB: So it’s working?
C: But he did fall off the bed though.
NB: Yeah, I already told them he fell off the bed.
NB: Was that your fault?
NB: You sure?
C: (laughs) Maybe so.
NB: What do you mean “Maybe so?” Did you push him off the bed?
C: (laughs) I didn’t push him off the bed.
NB: Then how’s it your fault?
C: I wasn’t paying as much attention. I was asleep and he was next to me and I heard a “boomp!” and I looked and he was on the floor.
NB: This is sounding kinda fishy.
C: Hey, I was asleep.
NB: What’s that guilty look on your face?
C: That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
NB: Alright. Well, anyways. So, seeing as these are my crazy hippie parenting things…stop nodding your head… that you seem to be following, and you seem to be following without question, is there anything you draw the line at?
C: Hmmm, I don’t know.
NB: What, we’ll cross that bridge when we get there?
C: Something like that.
NB: So how about, uh, we do baby-led weaning?
C: What the heck is that?
NB: Exactly! Just nod your head and say “Yeah, we’ll do it.”
C: What is it?
NB: It’s not feeding the baby purees. It’s starting out with um, you know, table foods, I guess. Oh, how about baby sign language?
C: What about it?
NB: Well, aren’t you gonna help me with the baby sign language?
C: I guess.
NB: You’re not very responsive in this interview.
C: I’m as responsible as you’re gonna get.
NB: I said responsive, not responsible!
C: Well, this is about as much as you’re going to get.
NB: Anyways, So how would you say you help me or support me in my quest to be a natural parent?
C: (yawn) I guess I support you. How about that?
C: I don’t know…being a supportive husband. How about that?
NB: Ok, you have to tell people how you’re a supportive husband. I have to make you look good in this too, you know.
C: Hold on, you’re gonna air this?
NB: No, I’m not gonna air it. I’m going to type it up. What’d you think was the point?
C: I dunno, I though you were going to play it back and just listen or something.
NB: I said it was for my blog!
C: What’s that little…
NB: You are not turning off the recorder! Stay away from this.
C: I was just looking at the little needle go back and forth.
NB: Anyways, so how are you a supportive parent?
C: I just answered that question.
NB: By talking about a needle?
C: (yawn) I support you, how about that?
NB: Ok, let’s get more specific. What specific things do you do to support natural parenting?
C: By going along with the flow.
NB: You’re not helpful.
C: That’s about as helpful as you’re gonna get right now.
(Lots of editing here because the interview devolves pretty quickly.)
C: You’re running out of tape.
NB: There is no tape. It’s digital.
C: Are we done yet?
NB: Ok, what do you think of parenting overall?
C: I guess.
NB: You’re a horrible interviewee!
C: Thank you! I practice hard at this!
NB: I help you with your blog!
C: Yes, you do. Thank you very much!
NB: Help me with mine!
C: I am!
(More interview de-evolution)
NB: Any last words? Before I go typing this up? What last words do you have so that my readers will have an accurate picture of the type of dad you are?
C: A very responsible dad.
NB: That lets his baby roll off the bed onto the floor.
C: Well, you dropped him.
NB: Shut up!
Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:
- A Thank You to my Husband — Lactating Girl at The Adventures of Lactating Girl thanks her husband for keeping her grounded and giving her unwavering support in the face of discouragement from within and without. (@lactatinggirl)
- My Reverse Traditional Husband In the Wild — Paige at Baby Dust Diaries gives us a lesson on how dads in the wild parent their young. Can you guess which male animal actually nurses its young? (@babydust)
- February Carnival of Natural Parenting — TopHat at The Bee in Your Bonnet tells us how the patience of a partner can make a difficult breastfeeding relationship succeed. (@TopHat8855)
- Parenting Together — For Alison at BluebirdMama and her husband, parenting is simply an extension of the way they live. (@childbearing)
- If We Had A MIllion Dollars — Melodie at Breastfeeding Moms Unite! and her husband would both agree to be crunchier parents if they had a million dollars to ease the way. (@bfmom)
- February Carnival of Natural Parenting: Co-Parents — Dionna at Code Name: Mama has written a letter to her husband, thanking him for his incredible support in every aspect of their natural parenting journey. (@CodeNameMama)
- Natural Parenting Fathers — Sarah at Natural Parenting is balancing being all there for her son with being present for her husband. (@considereden)
- Just Wonderful: Love and Partners and Natural Parenting — Zoey at Good Goog let her husband lead her to babywearing and cosleeping. (@zoeyspeak)
- All that stuff I don’t get comes so easy to him — The Grumbles is taking this opportunity to say thank you to her husband for his mad parenting skills. (@thegrumbles)
- The Power of Having a Supportive Co-Parent — Chrystal at Happy Mothering and her husband started with vaccinations and moved on from there. (@HappyMothering)
- February Carnival of Natural Parenting: Love and partners — Lauren at Hobo Mama makes do with babbling incoherently about how her husband practices natural parenting in such an effortless fashion, with bonus video. (@Hobo_Mama)
- Love and Partners — Mrs Green at Little Green Blog shares her husband’s moving account of her birth story, and his testament to the power of a woman. (@myzerowaste)
- labor support… — Mandy at Living Peacefully with Children is thankful that her partner has provided her immeasurable labor support through each of their last three unassisted homebirths (and will again for their upcoming fourth!).
- What co-parent? On prams, routines, ideals, sickness, and finding my way alone. — Ruth at Look Left of the Pleiades describes life without a present co-parent: making new choices and taking care of things herself. (@brightravenmum)
- Parenting With Support — How many people can say that their husband talked them into cloth diapering? Darcel at The Mahogany Way can! (@MahoganyWayMama)
- Co-Parenting Support — Summer at Mama2Mama Tips knows the importance of being supported in the face of criticism. (@mama2mamatips)
- Natural Parenting Carnival: Love and Partners — pchanner at A Mom’s Fresh Start has been blessed with an incredibly involved partner. Her husband loves to take part in every aspect of parenting! (@pchanner)
- Daddy’s Little Girls — Kate Wicker at Momopoly finds her husband right at home in a tangle of girls. (@Momopoly)
- How do I love my parenting partner? Let me count the ways. — Sybil at Musings of a Milk Maker is thankful that she and her partner co-parent fluidly and gracefully. (@mamamilkers)
- Interview with a Daddy — NavelgazingBajan brings us a highly amusing peek into her husband’s perspective.
- Being Supported in Natural Parenting — Sarah at OneStarryNight has witnessed both ends of the parenting spectrum, and is grateful she found a father who is comfortable with natural parenting. (@starrymom)
- Moments in time: a love letter — Arwyn at Raising My Boychick will make you cry with the beautiful way she describes the complete relationship between father and child. (@RaisingBoychick)
- Natural parenting converts — Jen at Recovering Procrastinator brought her reluctant husband around to cloth diapers, bed sharing, and time-ins as a discipline method. (@jenwestpfahl)
- Breastfeeding Father — Amber Strocel at Strocel.com describes how her husband helped her overcome the breastfeeding challenges she encountered with her premature daughter. (@AmberStrocel)
- A Natural Parenting Village — Acacia from Art, Body & Soul, in a guest post for Jamie at Suddenly Stay at Home, broadens the term “coparents” to embrace supportive extended family on both sides. (@SuddnlyStyAtHme)
- A Natural Dad — Shana at Tales of Minor Interest doesn’t have a husband who merely supports her — she has a husband just as dedicated to natural parenting as she is.
- Love and Support From My (sometimes pantsless) Man — Joni Rae at Tales of a Kitchen Witch Momma describes life with the sometimes bumbling but always lovable Pantsless Man. (@kitchenwitch)
- G-O-T-E-A-M! — Jessica at This Is Worthwhile made sure her future husband agreed with her parenting choices early in their dating. (@tisworthwhile)
- how we come to parenthood — Michelle at womanseekingmother dances with her husband around the subject of cosleeping. (@seekingmother)