I have some questions I’d like to turn over to the general public of parents out there.  I’m hoping you all can lend some experience, wisdom, insight, stories or even shared rumors.  This is a quest, you see.  I am perfectly happy to throw my hands in the air and proclaim, shit, I don’t know what I’m doing, please help me.  (And as the parenting books tend to err on the side of lots of caution, sometimes they just aren’t helpful.)

First question… or really, situation.  In my parenting book it mentions that right around 12 months of age, give or take, “your child may start refusing food to see your reaction”. OK, well.  It seems we’ve speeded up that process by giving our child amoxicillin.  Chance sees the feeder spoon all filled up with pink goo, gets an evasive look in his eye and immediately dons the “clam mouth” (that’s the jaw and lips clamped shut expression).  My parenting book also says that at his age, 8-12 months, he still has a “short memory”.  Yeah, right. This kid knows what the medicine looks like and then he’ll hold onto his grudge for a good while after, sometimes even refusing his bottle – apparently on principle.  I really hate to treat my child like the cat and pressure open his little jaw by squeezing his cheeks, but sometimes you just do what you gotta do.  Plus, the guilt trips he’s giving out are surprisingly effective.  So, any advice out there to make this process easier?

Second question.  Our son already has a security blanket.  He really loves it and he will comfort himself to sleep if he’s got it with him.  So… when is it OK to let your child sleep with a blanket/security object?  Now, don’t despise me… I’m not letting him sleep with it yet.  (Well, except for his day naps, because I’m awake and there to check on him.)  He’s currently 9 ½ months.  He has not once buried his face in it to a degree where I thought he was restricting his air flow; he just likes to hold onto it and make little sucking faces towards its general direction.  (It’s so cute!  But SIDS still freaks me out.)

What do you all think?               – the weirdgirl

P.S. I actually wanted to post these questions last night, but I was having the WORST Internet problems!  What’s up with that?

P.P.S.  I’m also looking for a good developmental milestone book for kids; any recommendations?  One with good behavioral advice?