New research from C&G Babyclub – an expert online resource that offers mums and mums-to-be advice and support, reveals that well-meaning family and strangers are bombarding pregnant women with advice and personal questions that often make them feel uncomfortable.
Over two-thirds admitted their personal space was invaded while pregnant, with people touching their bump without permission (26%) and comments about the size and shape of their bump (24%) being the top two things that made pregnant women most uncomfortable.
Well-meaning advice and opinions continue when baby is born with almost all mums (93%) receiving un-prompted advice on how best to care for their baby. One third of mums shared that they receive un-asked for parenting advice several times a week, with one fifth receiving unwanted advice at least once a week.
C&G Babyclub reveals that well-meaning family members are the number one source of unasked for advice, though surprisingly one in four mums reveal that advice comes from strangers such as a random passer-by on the street or in a shop.
This tidal wave of advice can cause confusion and stress for mums who want to do the very best for their baby. The research indicates that eight in ten mums feel confused and stressed by the advice they receive – especially as it can be often conflicting. Never or always wake a sleeping baby comes out on top when it comes to conflicting advice (28%). This is followed closely by “let your baby cry as it is good for their lungs” (26%).
The volume of advice and confusing mixed messages can contribute to the pressure mums already put on themselves to do everything right – both during pregnancy and after baby arrives. This is reflected in C&G Babyclub’s research results, which show that the majority of mums (82%) feel immense pressure to be perfect and to do everything perfectly for their baby. Commenting on the research, Mum of 2, soon to be 3- Helen Plass said;
“It can be so overwhelming trying to navigate the well-meaning advice that comes from every direction and source when you are pregnant or caring for a new baby. Lack of sleep and wanting to get everything right, particularly as a first time mum, can add to stress levels and make you feel confused and frustrated. Pick one or two trusted sources for advice and go with those when you are in doubt, and often listening to your own mum can be really useful to remember in these moments and that what matters most is your love for your baby, everything else will naturally fall into place when you focus on this.”