The Perfect Conflict-Free Way to Handle Unwanted Advice

by Madison Bess

The Perfect Conflict-Free Way to Handle Unwanted Advice

two babies and woman sitting on sofa while holding baby and watching on tablet

Often times the endless stream of unwanted advice from a mother-in-law, sister or anyone can be frustrating and tiresome. You love them obviously, but how do you get them to stop and respect you and your baby?

People who care about you and your baby are bonded in a special way that often times invites their “guidance.” By knowing that, most of the time this counsel is coming from a place of love. This may give you a reason to handle these situations gently. Find a way to leave feelings unhurt while also finding a solution.

At the end of the day, it is your baby and you will raise your baby how you think it best. That being said, most of the time, it’s not worth starting confrontation with someone who thinks they have your best interest at heart. We have complied several conflict-free ways to respond to unwanted advice.

  1. Listen first
    It’s very easy as a mother to feel criticized. When someone is sharing what they feel, often times they are not judging you but trying to share valuable insight. It is natural to get defensive, but try to listen and you may learn something.

  2. Pick your battles
    Remember to set boundaries when it matters. Don’t compromise on issues that are important to you and the wellbeing of your baby. However, if your MIL insists on a certain outfit you dislike while she is visiting, go ahead and let her have this win.

  3. Ignore
    The best way to respond is politely and then go about your business as usual. This is best when you know you won’t be able to change the other person’s mind. Smile, and agree to something non-committal, such as, “Wow, I have never thought about that before.” Then simply ignore and move onto the next conversation.

  4. Stay away from those topics
    If you know your friends and family feel strongly about a topic you don’t agree with, don’t bring it up. For example, if someone feels you should feed you baby a certain way, don’t complain that your baby won’t eat anything. It’s better to leave those venting sessions to a good listener.

  5. Agree
    When discussing different baby topics, focus on the things you agree with and talk about those.

  6. Be confident
    Read books and different articles to help you feel more confident in what you are doing for your baby. The more you know, the more you will feel comfortable about how you are raising your baby.

  7. Educate the person
    Often times our MIL or mothers are outdated on information. Share with them what you have learned and refer to a book or an article you have read. This might help them to have a more open mind.

  8. Assign responsibility to a doctor
    People are more likely to accept a point of view if it is validated by a doctor or professional. It’s also nice to have books around written by doctors just for this instance.

  9. Speak vaguely
    It is easy to avoid confrontation with an ambiguous response. For example, if your mother-in-law asks if you are feeding solids yet, answer with something like, “We’ve considered starting soon.”

  10. Ask for advice when you need it
    Your friends and family who have had children are likely to know a thing or two. This is a great time to discuss topics you all can agree on and even ask for advice.

  11. Always be honest
    It’s always been the best policy. If you can do it nicely and at an appropriate time most people will understand. Let them know you understand that they love you and your baby, but ultimately it is up to you and how comfortable you are with your parenting.

  12. Find friends with common-ground
    There are so many support groups you can join! By finding people who raise their children the same way as you will give you confidence in the times you need.

Thanks for reading our blog today! Please comment below if you have any more insight!

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