When I was pregnant with my first child, I constantly read baby books to ensure I was primed for motherhood. At one of my check-ups, a nurse saw me reading and chuckled. "You're wasting your time," she said. "Babies don't read those books. They do what they want." Parents often put a lot of pressure on their babies and themselves to reach developmental milestones according to the expert's timelines. But how important is it that things go according to schedule? If you're worried about your baby keeping up with the Joneses, you should know the developmental milestones your baby doesn't have to hit on time.
Parenting experts, family members, and even your friends' social media pages can leave you feeling inadequate if your baby isn't developing at the same rate. However, you may not need to worry. When it comes to baby's development, what's considered "normal" in the United States doesn't always hold true in the rest of the world. As The Huffington Post mentioned, many milestones are influenced by culture rather than a universal timeline.
Milestone charts are meant to be used as a guide rather than an absolute. Not only is each child unique, environmental factors may also play a role in your baby's development. As WebMD mentioned, a baby's delay may be due to factors such as premature birth or parental influence.For example, if you don't allow your baby to spend time on the floor, she won't have the opportunity to learn how to crawl. So give yourself and your baby a break and let things happen naturally. If you are concerned about your baby not hitting several milestones or being well outside of the recommended window, it's best to consult your doctor.