I know a lot of you may feel one way or another about certain parenting practices, and I want to specify that I do NOT believe there is a single right way to be a parent (anymore). Other than loving your child, there is no single thing you should or shouldn't do to be a "good parent."
How I used to think:
Co-sleeping - I always rolled my eyes at the idea of co-sleeping. I felt like there was a lack of boundaries when allowing your child to invade the space that should be between you and your husband. Get your kid into a bed of his own. You have control, not your child.
Baby wearing - I used to cringe at the idea of having a person attached to me all day. I thought it created overly-attached children (and parents) and totally limited the adult's activities because you have a baby stuck to you all day. Most of my misconceptions were about spoiling and coddling.
Pacifiers - I always knew I would use one, but I also thought I could just say "stop, that's enough, we're done with pacifiers now."
Bottles - Same. I always knew I would use them, but when I would see a three-year-old using a bottle, I'd think, "gosh, parents, you should be more in control of that. Stop letting your kid be so dependant on something that's for babies."
Strict scheduling vs. baby's time - I always thought I'd have total control over baby's schedule, and I could just force them to nap/eat/change diaper when I wanted them to.
Co-sleeping - Now that my own baby is on the way, co-sleeping seems less ridiculous. It's more convenient for nursing because they're already right next to you. You can pull them close when they stir and meet their needs immediately. Some families get way better rest this way. However, I still take issue with the boundaries thing. If I want some personal time with my husband, I shouldn't have to go in the guest room with him, or tiptoe around the child who's already asleep in our bed. Maybe allow co-sleeping only as needed, but not 100% of the time? I don't know.
Baby wearing - I can't wait to have a baby on me all day! I'll be able to easily meet his needs as soon as he fusses, plus I'll get lots of love and bonding. Conrad is also excited for baby wearing - especially skin time for daddy and baby (I mean, seriously! Look at those pictures! He totally loves holding babies). And unlike what I previously thought, I'll actually be freer to do whatever I need to do because wearing him on my chest will free my hands, and I won't have to run to tend to him and drop what I'm doing every time he cries.
Pacifiers - I'm totally going to use them. I think they're great soothers and the kid will show you when he's ready to give it up. However, I will also teach that there are appropriate times for them. If my kid is older and still wants a pacifier, maybe the rule will only be at night. And he'll have to take it out if he wants to speak. No talking through it.
Bottles - As the baby gets older, he will hopefully transition seamlessly into using sippy cups. I would say yes to using them as the kid gets older, but it's pretty bad for their teeth in the long run. But I will absolutely give my baby a bottle when he's tiny (I'm still on the fence about breastfeeding).
Strict scheduling vs. Baby's time - There are pros and cons to both. Strict scheduling is good because your kid has consistency. You know when you can plan certain things and when you need to be home for a nap. However, you don't have a lot of flexibility. If your kid is only able to sleep in his crib, you pretty much have to be home at nap time. With baby's time, you are more at the mercy of your kid. They nap when they want, no matter where you are. You feed them when they need it, no matter where you are. This is good because your kid is more flexible, but you really have to prepare for all scenarios, since your kid's schedule isn't exactly consistent. Not sure which one I'll use, but I'm leaning toward baby's time.
The only aspect I'm still kind of on the fence about is nursing. What other parenting practices are there? What do you guys think about attachment parenting? I'd love to hear your suggestions for any practices I forgot about!
Don't forget to leave your questions for me here!