What's your definition of AP? — The Bump
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What's your definition of AP?

The responses to GTKY below have me wondering. ?We have a lot of the same things in common, as well as a lot of differences. ?

1. Here's your first challenge:?Give your one sentence answer to the question "what is AP?"

2. Is there anything you do that is really just "liberal" or "crunchy" or "progressive" parenting, and not AP, based on your definition?

3. Is there anyone here who is not ""liberal" or "crunchy" or "progressive" who is still an AP practitioner?

I'm curious whether the things we consider AP have a lot to do with general lifestyles and life outlooks (which is completely fine, of course.)?

Too much for one post??

Re: What's your definition of AP?

  • 1)  Although it doesn't do a good job of giving a complete answer I've often thought of AP as "child led parenting".


    2)   i don't think so,  what we do is pretty on point with the sears definition and "8 principles"  It does seem as though cloth diapering is often associated with AP and I personally think thats a little more "liberal" then AP.  I personally don't CD ( but would consider it if there was a diaper service in our area) and give major kudos to those who do cd


    3)  I joke with dh all the time about this.  My politics are about as right wing conservative (think Ann Coulter) as you can get.  but some of the websites/blogs i find myself on reading about AP are the polar opposite


    I honestly knew the basic way i wanted to raise my children before i was a teenager.  my parents (God love them) did some things that i would never ever do with ds.  I knew that i would not be spanking (or using physical discipline) before i started middle school.  my parents were married for most of my child hood but got divorced when i was 13. my dad passed away from cancer when i was 14.  my mom stayed at home until my parents divorced but was more concerned with her soap operas then she was with being a mom.  i knew that i wanted my children to know that they were the most important thing to me and i didnt always get that from my parents.  so i suppose that some of my decision to AP was made up way before i knew what AP was and the decision was affected by general life experiences.

    Sorry i'm  a  bit of a rambler but i hope i answered this completely (and i'm a little sleep deprived so i hope it all makes sense)

  • 1. I'd say it's child led parenting; for me it is also about listening to my instincts instead of feeling like I have to go against them to achieve "norms" (like using CIO so baby will STTN).

    2.  I think CDing, not circumcising and changes to the vax schedule are more "alternative" than AP, but may APers do them.

    3.  I'm definitely liberal, but I've found that APers fall on both ends of the political spectrum.  Interestingly most AP mamas I've talked to identify strongly one way or the other as opposed to identifying as moderate or middle of the road.  Not sure what to make of that, but it's very interesting!

  • 1.  I think of it as "gentle" parenting or responsive parenting.

    2.  I agree that CD is not AP.  (We do it, though.)  Also, I always sort of think of natural/gentle birth as AP, even though it's not parenting.  Sort of seemed like the first act I did as an AP.  (Totally not necessary, though, and I am not making any judgment about it.  There's lots of room for birth choices, and people are all in different circumstances.)

    3.  You both raise really good points about folks on both ends of the spectrum.  I'm personally pretty liberal.

    1. Not sure I can do this in ONE sentence... lol!  I agree w/pp's that it's child led parenting, but I would also add to that: I think it's following natural, biological instincts.
    2. We are a pretty liberal, crunchy, progressive household, so yeah, I guess the CDing would fall into that category.  We also eat a lot of local and/or organic foods.  I'm sure there's more, but I'm blanking at the moment...
    3. I'd say we lean to the liberal side, but DH is more moderate than me.

    I liked what the pp said about knowing what kind of parent she would be when she was very young.  Like her, I knew that I would stay home for as long as possible w/my child (children).  I do have to put Evie in daycare in a little over a month, so I totally don't want it to sound like I have anything against moms who work outside of the home.  But it was something that was important to me for as long as I can remember.

  • 1. I like to think of AP as instinctive parenting, in the sense that I go with what feels best for my child. And AP just feels like the best choice for us.

    2. Not at the moment - we circumcised DS (not my preference, but it was a major deal for DH), we do not CD, and DS has had all his vaccines on the standard schedule. We're definitely in the gentle discipline arena, but we have awhile to go before that's an issue.

    3. I am way crunchy, so definitely not me ;) DH is not as hippy (his word choice!) as I am.

  • 1. What is AP? - I agree with PP - Gentle, instinctual, baby/child led parenting.

    2. "Liberal", "Crunchy", "Progressive" - I agree that CDing is more liberal then AP and so is leaving our DS intact (although I feel that is tied to gentle parenting and respect for the child). I also feel that not giving vaccines is more crunchy then AP. We choice to give DS vaccines, however I respect every parents right to decide this issue for themselves.

    3. I tend to be fairly progressive/liberal/crunchy on many issues. I basically fall along the lines of live your life and I will live mine and that we need to support our community.

  • 1. To me being an AP is primarily about being respectful of the whole family, not just the grown ups.  Dr. Sears put the 8 tenants of AP out there which is (again, to me) a great starting point but ultimately it's parenting using your instincts.

    2. I think a lot of things that most people consider AP are actually more "alternative" - vaccinations, CD, delaying solids/BLW, etc.  There's a lot of crossover (obviously) between AP and alternative parenting choices.  I think a lot of people turn to AP groups for support in those decisions because you can pick up pretty much any mainstream parenting publication to learn about why vaccinations are awesome and how you can buy Gerber baby food for $.50 off a jar.  Support for people who make different decisions is harder to find.

    3. I'm pretty liberal :-)

  • 1.  Gentle, responsive, intuitive parenting. 

    2.  The example that sticks out to me is not vaxing.  It seems to be a a very Waldorf thing to me.  And most Waldorf families are quite crunchy.  (They have to be, I guess.)

    3.  Well, I'm definitely not conservative...  ;)

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  • 1. "What is AP?"

    To me, AP is putting your baby's needs before your own.  Implementing eat/sleep schedules, sleep-training, dropping naps, etc. are, in my mind, examples of putting your own needs ahead of baby's:  molding baby to suit your lifestyle.  I don't agree with those choices - at least at this young age.

    2. Is there anything you do that is really just "liberal" or "crunchy" or "progressive" parenting, and not AP, based on your definition?

    Yes - CDing, organic foods, vaccination choices.  These are all health-/environment-related and I see AP as more emotional-/mental-health related, although there are undoubtedly countless physical benefits.

    3.  Is there anyone here who is not ""liberal" or "crunchy" or "progressive" who is still an AP practitioner?

    Not me.  I'm pretty liberal/progressive.  I don't know about crunchy.

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  • 1. "What is AP?"

    To me, it's instinctive/intuitional (is that even a word?) parenting.  Doing what feels right (to me anyway), lines up with the principles of AP.

    2. Is there anything you do that is really just "liberal" or "crunchy" or "progressive" parenting, and not AP, based on your definition?

    Yep---we left DS intact at birth (though he will have to be circ'd at a later date, to repair his hypospadias), we delayed the Hep B vaccine and we're planning on following a modified vaccine schedule, and when the time comes, we'll be feeding organic foods.  I don't CD, but only because it's not practical for my current living situation (in an apartment, w/o my own washer/dryer).  I use all-natural/organic (and often hand crafted) soaps/lotions etc. for DS.  To me, these are more lifestyle choices than parenting decisions.

    3.  Is there anyone here who is not ""liberal" or "crunchy" or "progressive" who is still an AP practitioner?

    I'm about at liberal as you can get.  My SO is a little more conservative than I am, but not much.

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