Most first-time parents know the stressful nature of developmental milestones. Those pesky little reminders that your kid is behind and “should” be doing something (rolling over, crawling, walking, etc.) when they reach a certain age.
With developmental milestones in the back of most parents’ heads, it’s hard not to play the comparison game with other parents, start doom scrolling, and feeling like a failure because you feel like your kid is “behind.”
One mom of twins says that many developmental milestones are kind of bullsh*t after explaining the differences between her toddler twins.
“Do you want to know what’s crazy about childhood development? I have twin toddlers. They’re three and a half years old and I’m a stay at home mom,” Alison begins. “So … we are home together every single day. They experience the same conversations, TV shows, activities, like they experience everything the same.”
She then uses her hands to show where each child is developmentally.
“One is here,” she says while holding her hand high up while taking her other hand down. “…and one is here.”
Alison goes on to explain just how different her twins are when it comes to their development despite being raised identically.
“One was potty trained a year ago. One is just now learning. One can talk in full sentences and use proper like tense words like before, after, yesterday — words like that to say a full sentence. The other one is just now learning how to put two and three words together to communicate their wants and needs,” she said.
Her twins literally “do the same things every single day” and yet one is “ahead” of the other when it comes to reaching developmental milestones. This is why, Alison believes, parents need to chill out when it comes to most differences in reaching developmental milestones.
“So, please stop putting so much pressure on yourself and I’m gonna be perfectly honest with you. They all grow up and like their own things. They all grow up and become potty trained. They all grow up and start sleep through the night,” she says.
And while we’re at it, stop putting pressure on the kids too. No one is having fun when all we’re worried about is if they’re walking, talking, etc. at a certain age.
Alison also notes that by freaking out over milestones, the joy is sucked out of those magical baby years. There is quite literally nothing cuter than an 18-month-old who says “lellow” instead of “yellow” and you might miss it if you’re concerned over the pronunciation.
“Stop putting so much pressure on yourself because it quite literally takes away from the enjoyment of parenthood and makes you feel like you’re on a ticking time clock with a checklist with your own child,” she concluded.
Milestones are important. They are worth paying attention to, of course. They exist for a reason and they help put into place certain guidelines for parents who may be worried about their child truly missing some important steps in the development process. Milestone management can help a parent figure out is there is something to be concerned about and help them act on it quickly.
However, there is also a fine-line between keeping an eye on something and totally ruining the experience of parenthood because your kid’s a couple months late on sitting up or their pincer grasp. Moms need to stop judging others and themselves because kids grow and learn at their own paces. We’re just along for the ride.