Tani du Toit.
Tani du Toit.

Lexicon for new mums

ACCORDING to the fascinating world of acronyms women get to learn when they have babies, I am an AP, sometimes HM, with a DD who is EBF. My DH and I happily CS and we often BS.

For those of you waiting to give birth and not yet accustomed to OB, VB, CS and VBAC, I suggest you look them up as you will use and hear them for a few weeks yet after bub is born. As for the birth, OMG is about to take on a whole new meaning. Good luck.

So, new mum, grab a pen and note these down so you can quickly refer to it while reading baby websites and forums. No longer do you have to nod in agreement pretending you know exactly what FF or EBF means when a midwife makes notes or another mum starts chatting away at mother's group.

I list the acronyms I have come across the most. Please note, I have not consulted linguists for confirmation, I have figured it out myself. I am tired, so it’s possible I am wrong so by all means, set me straight if you know better.

BLW: Baby-led weaning. This is when mum follows baby's (or toddler's) cue as to when he or she is ready to be weaned.

EBF: Exclusively Breastfed baby.
FF: Formula Fed baby.
DD: Darling Daughter.
LO: Little One
DH: When in good mood, this refers to Darling Husband or Darling Hubby. When in bad mood, Darling is replaced with Dastardly.
MIL: No, this is not Mother I Like. Quite the opposite. It's Mother In Law.
DS: Darling Son.
SAHM: Stay At Home Mum.
HM: Hippie Mummy. Refers to a mother whose baby is most likely to wear cloth nappies and in stead of barrier cream, natural powder is used because, you guessed it, it's as good for baby's bum as it is for the environment.
BW: Baby Wearing. A fancy way of saying baby is carried most of the time, in a sling or on the hip.
AP: Attachment Parenting. A phrase coined by American paediatrician William Sears, whose website is actually well worth the read. Basically refers to sensitive and emotionally available parents help the child to form a secure attachment style to foster a child's socio-emotional development and well-being.
AP2: (Not to be confused with aforementioned): Accidental Parenting. Yep, it exists. For example, you hear baby cry and rush to their side, pick them up, check their nappy, offer a bottle or breastfeed. Turns out, baby was dreaming and in your over-zealous concern you've accidentally parented baby into waking up. Whoops.
CIO: Crying It Out. This usually happens at bed time where parents leave their babies to cry and cry … and cry and cry … until they fall asleep. In our home, this subject is listed ahead of dinner table taboos politics, sex and religion.
CC: Controlled Crying. This is similar to CIO but parents don't actually leave the baby to CIO, they control it by being close to the baby while they're CIO-ing. Again to be avoided if you want to finish your dinner. Ever.
CS: Co-sleeping. Your baby sleeps with you in your room, usually in a cot or bassinet.
BS: Bed Sharing - with baby. And a whole lot of BS to a lot of people who you will share this information with. Not a popular custom in western society and sure to get the "rod for your own back" response, often. Think about keeping this one to yourself if you don't want to go home and CIO yourself. More about this vexed subject in a later blog.

By the way, the term let-down is actually a positive thing in our world. It's the reflex by which your milk starts to flow as you BF.

Hopefully you can find yourself somewhere in our lexicon. I just realised, after years of practice, I now hold a degree in MIL psychology. LOL!

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