Tuesday, October 27, 2015

The 3 C's I Won't Discuss Online

Recently a story broke about a baby who died in Ontario as a result of a routine circumcision. It is tragic, and a reminder that all surgery comes with risks. The article, no matter where it was posted, came with a barrage of heated comments, both justifying and attacking the procedure. 

These comments put a spotlight on something I have been thinking about for some time: There are 3 C's in parenting that I will not discuss online. No matter how tempting, I refuse to contribute to them. 

The 1st C: Circumcision
I have a son. I had to make a choice to either do, or not do this procedure. I did a ton of research on circumcision, read countless articles and comments about it, and I have a very one sided opinion. But I won't tell you what it is online. I won't comment on any article about circumcision, no matter how bad I want to get my opinion across to those who disagree.

The 2nd C: Co-Sleeping
It seems there are two types of parents, those who love co-sleeping, and those who can't imagine co-sleeping. It's such a hot topic that even our new Prime Minister's co-sleeping habits were speculated upon. But here's the thing: People who co-sleep are very defensive about it. I think it's probably because they feel very judged, because people who don't co-sleep are pretty judgy about it. 

The 3rd C: Cry-It-Out
It's interesting that the name of my blog is actually a topic I won't get into. I used the title Cry It Out Mom to describe my own personal feelings as a new mom, rather than the actual Ferber Method that is such a controversial topic. I have done an immense amount of reading on sleep training, and this method may be one of the most heated debates online. I don't just mean in the parenting world, I mean on the entire interwebs. Just read some of the comments on a cry it out article from Scary Mommy. The name calling is atrocious, and that is just one article of thousands. 

So why won't I contribute to these topics? I certainly have very strong opinions about every single one. If you cared to learn my thoughts I'd be glad to go out for coffee and discuss them in person, and even have a good old fashioned debate if it came down to it. But I will not post anything online about these issues, no matter how easy it would be to get a reaction, and even get publicity for my blog or online presence. 

Why? Because there is no point. There is no changing someone's stance on any of these three issues. You believe in one side or the other, and no matter what I say you are not going to have a revelation that changes your opinion. These topics are so strongly debated online that I can not contribute anything that isn't already being said. If you care at all about these issues you have already done your research and heard everything both sides have to say. 

In my opinion, the 3 C's are important issues that we should all care about. However, in trying to persuade others, their online defenders have muddied their meaning and lost the impact of experience and science, with name calling and public shaming. I choose to refrain from contributing to it.

- Genevieve

Click here for the Canadian Pediatric Society's stance on circumcision. 
Click here for information about what the Public Health Agency of Canada says about safe sleep for your baby.

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