Back in the day, if you were a parent interested in PARENTING, you got a copy of Dr. Spock and that was that. In recent years, though, many parents have striven to raise their children outside of the purview of "experts," "science," and "public health concerns." Here are some of the most intriguing new trends that will enlighten and inspire you...
Car seats are confining, psychologically traumatizing, and highly carcinogenic, yet millions of terrible parents are fooled by Big Car Seat into using them anyway in the name of "safety." But increasing numbers of parents—better, smarter parents—are reclaiming their car with car hammocks.
Hammocks have been used for centuries in myriad non-Western cultures for babies and adults alike, so it makes sense to bring this ancient technology into our 21st century lives. By hanging a car hammock from the ceiling of your Prius, your child will be gently* rocked with the natural movement of the car, which mimics the sensation of being in the womb and helps them sleep more soundly. Its loose-weave, hemp rope technology is specially designed for safety, and will surely withstand the impact of even the most serious collision**.
"I hated the idea of strapping my child to a chair like some kind of criminal," says car hammock inventor, Delilah Marquis-Urbanowicz. "The car hammock is a simple, healthy, and completely logical alternative to toxic car seats."
Surely the benefits of coconut oil cannot be overstated. That's why better, smarter parents everywhere are "coconuting."
"Coconuting is when you choose to eschew clothing all together and dress your baby entirely in coconut oil," says Professor Meadow DeWitt-Buchanan-Schermerhorn. "In addition to being inhibiting and sex negative, clothing is full of toxins and negative energy." Coconuting advocates claim that babies slathered in coconut oil instead of dressed in clothes are calmer and happier. "I mean, you really don't need clothes. That's a myth perpetuated by Big Clothing," DeWitt-Buchanan-Schermerhorn continues. "Alarmists and sheeple like to go on about 'hypothermia' and 'the propensity to constantly drop your extremely slippery child,' but let me tell you: I used to be just like you, okay. I am ashamed to say that I clothed my oldest child, and he is way, way more screwed up than the baby I had who died of exposure last winter after I accidentally dropped her in that frozen lake."
Do you make your baby's food out of locally sourced, non-GMO, organic, fair trade, sustainable fruits, vegetables, and grains***? Well good for you: that's a great start. But parents who truly care about their infants have taken it a step further: making specially formulated air for their children.
"Look, it doesn't make sense of you to go through all the effort of making sure only pure elements enter your child if you're going to overlook air," says Dr. Jonah Markoff- von Bisenschlepp-Kurtz of the Institue for Clean Air and Dolphins on LSD Studies. "Sure, it's kind of important, I guess, to work for legislation and practices that will make the air better for the entire planet... but then everyone benefits, and that's just communism. What is really crucial is that smarter, better parents give their children the competitive advantage of bespoke air while the rest of those pathetic neanderthals are breathing in toxins."
Too busy to get into DIY air? No problem: handcrafted air, harvested from the tops of the Himmalayas and the Amazon River basin, are available through a number of companies (like Mouth Breathers and Aire) starting at $89.95 per oxygen tank.
Though swaddling fell out of fashion for a while there, it became clear relatively quickly that that was a mistake. Throughout history, swaddling was used as a way to calm and warm fussy infants... but now that it's soooooooo mainstream, better, smarter parents have moved on to Boa Constrictor Swaddling. "Boa Constrictor Swaddling was used by the Fäké tribe of the Andes for thousands of years," says Darren Bertucci-Tsugawa-Lester-Feng, who promotes BCS at his chiropractic practice in Portland. "That's totally a real tribe, by the way, but you won't find them in any books or census. But for real: like... I've met them. They made me a shaman."
In traditional swaddling involves tightly wrapping a child in a thin blanket. BSC, on the other hand, involves placing an infant in the coils of a boa constrictor ("Burmese Pythons work the best," says Bertucci-Tsugawa-Lester-Feng). It is said that the intense pressure of the 100% organic python instantly relaxes the baby and encourages them to sleep through the night sooner than their regularly swaddled peers.
"I don't see how one can be expected to raise a truly well-balanced child except through pack parenting," declares Nancy Larsen-Smythe-Rodriguez de Flores-Jackson-BananafannafoFackson. Nancy is one of an increasing number of better, smarter parents who have found parenting inspiration from an unlikely source: wolves. Pack Parents (who largely refer to themselves as DMs or "den mothers" on online forums) forgo the luxuries of modern life—medical treatment, houses, clothing, language—and take up life as though they themselves were wolves.
"If you'd have told me 5 years ago I would be a DM—running around naked in the woods behind the strip mall with my family and catching rabbits in my teeth for dinner—I would have thought you were crazy!" Nancy laughs. "But you know, it makes perfect sense: this is how man was meant to live... as wolves. When my children have to battle one another for supremacy in the pack: that's real leadership building, you know?" Nancy says that her parenting methods have paid off: her daughter Nayveigh has been admitted to Oberlin for the fall.
**I mean... probably, right?
***but, like, the weird, difficult to pronounce grains that most people haven't heard of yet. Wheat and rice don't count.