Unsolicited advice is one of the most complained about parts of parenting. As soon as you announce you are pregnant, it seems the most random people feel the need to give you wisdom. Whether you want it or not. The advice comes from lots of sources, even people who aren’t parents.
In general – it helps to keep in mind two things 1) Most people are honestly just trying to relate, so don’t take the advice personally 2) Feel free to disregard most of it just as people making conversation.
A lot of it is honestly just that – people making conversation and trying to relate. You’ll find flashes of wisdom in with a lot of useless information. It’s a process of sifting through to find out what works for you in your situation now.
And that’s just it – your parents are probably going to have some wisdom, at the same time your likely in your twenties-forties which puts their parenting a generation ago. They didn’t deal with the Internet, iPhones and technology when you were growing up. Some things are universal, some are not. Listen when it makes sense to, and let it go when it doesn’t.
Parents closer in age and life will be the same. If you work and they are stay at home parents, the advice they give may not be as useful to you as it is to someone else. Different backgrounds, beliefs etc. can all limit how useful someone else’s advice is to you. That’s okay. You are under no obligation to take someone else’s advice if it doesn’t apply to you in your situation.
Knowing when and how to filter is usually the most challenging part with unsolicited advice. Most people are simply saying that “I hear you, I remember it being hard, this is how I handled/am handling it.” You are under no obligation to handle it the same way. You are free to take a bit and alter it however it best works for you.
There are also some parents who give advice and believe their way is best for everyone. Know these parents are often insecure. Don’t take it personally.
So what do you do with all the unsolicited advice? Honestly, whatever you want to – use it, forget it, alter it, stir it in with lots of other ideas – whatever you want. Just don’t take it personally.