Miscarriage, circumcision, inoculations, pacifiers, and bed sharing. Got a question about one of these topics? Stay away from forums.
It’s a shame really, with freedom of speech finding the perfect home in online forums (a good thing, I’m not a proponent of censorship). While I think your primary source of information about anything medical should be your Pediatrician or family doctor, sometimes it is nice to have a conversation with other parents. When the Wee Baby T was on the way we asked our Pediatrician about circumcision. His response was “well that’s entirely up to you” which didn’t really give us clear direction. This lack of true guidance led us to an online forum, where I found ‘good ideas’ were the ideas held by the most people, or at least the people who are committed enough to reply most vigorously, and that’s not always the best voice.
Many forums ban these discussions entirely with a statement along the lines of “we are pro-(insert topic here), all conversations contrary to this stance will be removed”. Sometimes there is medical evidence to support one side or another meaning any discussion is irrelevant – i.e. vaccinations, however with some topics such as pacifiers there is no right or wrong answer. Yes, it is challenging to get your children to stop using pacifiers. Yes, the wrong pacifier can cause issues with teeth not being lined up correctly. On the other hand it will soothe your screaming child, help them sleep, and there is evidence that giving a newborn a pacifier when putting them down to sleep can prevent SIDS and choking (link, because I find this fascinating).
It is unfortunate that people will start arguments with someone who is clearly struggling to understand a topic, or is facing a tough decision. At the end of the day, an informed decision is always the right one, and you understand your family better than anyone else. You and I are parents – we do what’s right for our children. That’s our job and we do it better than anyone else. We don’t need validation.
That said, here are some Canadian forums that I have found useful, friendly, and supportive for any other topics you may want to discuss:
General pregnancy, baby, and family resource: http://www.babycenter.ca/community
Dad’s corner: http://www.whattoexpect.com/forums/dads-corner.html
Good luck out there.