Baby Bellyaching – January 2011

What better way to feel better about pregnancy than to whine about parenting! Baby Bellyaching is my monthly bitch-fest about the modern commercial baby care that’s pushed in mainstream parenting magazines. (Don’t miss last month’s!)

Special Note: Other than this note, Baby Bellyaching is exempt from any sort of disclaimers, examination of privilege, or acknowledging people’s different reasons and situations. This is just a space for me to bitch.

This month I got American Baby (Jan 2011).

Sticker Shock: In “Baby Booty”, American Baby suggests a Moses basket for your newborn, which they say you can use to hold playthings when ou outgrows it. How much is their suggestion going to set you back? $140. Because that’s what I’ve been looking for all my life. A $140 toy box. Also on the list – a $200 bouncy seat. Are you kidding me?!

Breeding Fear: To prevent preeclampsia, you’re supposed to lose some weight prior to getting pregnant. Oops! Even if I assume that advice to lose-weight is worthwhile (which I don’t), it’s a little late for that!

Also there might be problems with your baby’s eyes. A quick hit paragraph lists 3 potential serious problems (TUMOR!). You might also want to buy a tiny sign for your kid’s stroller that warns people to wash their hands before touching ou. Wait a minute. Why is your baby in a stroller? Strangers can’t touch ou if ou’s wrapped up in a Moby. And you need a dehumidifier to keep baby healthy, no, wait! They breed bacteria! Ohnoz! Whatever will you do? Not reading parenting magazines will probably go a long way!

Then there’s the whole article on baby-proofing. There’s probably good advice in here, but I can’t find it because I’m too distracted by Strangulation! Falling! Crushing! Suffocating! Slipping! Poisoning! Cutting! Burning! Overdosing! Drowning! Stabbing! Electrocution!

Overpriced Advice: (Otherwise known as “Why they didn’t hire me to answer these questions.”)

  • “How can I get anywhere on time when my 18-month-old insists on dressing himself?” What is your problem? Where are you in such a hurry to get to? You have seriously never heard of setting your alarm 10 minutes earlier?
  • “Our 13-month-old is able to say some words and sing, but when we ask her to do it, she clams up. Can we coax her? Grandpa is visiting soon.” Toss her a fish or two. It’s been working for performing seals for ages.

Captain Obvious: There’s a whole article on how to play with your baby. Because apparently you’re too detached from the world to know that peekaboo is a good game for babies. Also you need to be reminded that if your baby “starts crying, he wants to stop.” Uh, okay.

The Other Half: ADS!

This month, Health/Beauty/Cleaning was the winner with 14 ADS. This is the category otherwise known as “The world is scary and/or you (and your baby) need to be fixed!”) One of these is Dr. Robert Sears’s cord blood ad which pisses me off, because it looks like an advice column. Some people are going to think it’s the other Dr. Sears and that this is advice rather than an advertisement. There were also four whole pages in here (half ads) on how to love/fix your post-pregnancy hair. Because when I’ve got a newborn, the big thing on my mind is going to be why my hair isn’t shiny! Wait, that’s never what’s on my mind.

Inappropriate/Inferior Food/Supplies: 6 ADS. One Similac ad claimed that “nothing less is acceptable” than feeding high-quality nutrition to babies. Well, I guess that means you’ll be breastfeeding then. Odd that Similac would agree. Ha!

Diapers/Stuff: 3 ADS. One Pampers ad boasts “blanket-like softness”. You know what else has “blanket-like softness”? Actual cloth!

Parent Replacement Items: 2 ADS. It’s kind of surprising that this one was so light. This was the big category last month.

Misc. non-bothersome stuff: 1 AD.

I’ve already got my February BabyTalk in the mail, but you have to wait until next month to hear about it!