I love learning about different cultures. Especially now that I am a mom, I have an interest in learning about parenting in other cultures. I travel a lot for work and always make time to talk to local people about their experiences in their home countries. When I had the opportunity to read and review Stuff Dutch Moms Like by Colleen Geske, I was excited to learn more about parenting in another part of the world, especially to see how it is similar and/or different from what I know as an American mom and what I read about the French culture in the book Growing Up Bebe.
Disclosure: I received Stuff Dutch Moms Like at no cost in exchange for my honest review. Affiliate links are included, which means if you make a purchase I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. I only write about products I love. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.
Stuff Dutch Moms Like is a great book to add to your reading list if you are pregnant or a new mom. The book is about Dutch parenting based on Colleen’s experience as a Canadian native who gave birth to two children in the Netherlands. It’s a quick and easy read. It took me about 2.5 hours to read from cover to cover (while I was on a plane that appropriately served me a Dutch snack!) It is split into sections with chapters on pregnancy and birth, motherhood, and parenting.
The pregnancy and birth section goes into detail about the different choices women have during pregnancy. These are choices that are available in the US, but I didn’t really learn about until later in my pregnancy so I didn’t look seriously into them. Dutch moms are known for drug-free home births. While this might not be the route I would take, it is still interesting to read the reasons why Dutch women believe in these methods.
The motherhood section is about work-life balance and why Dutch moms are generally happier. I was surprised to learn that Dutch moms only get 16-weeks of maternity leave. That is much better than what we get in the US, but I thought it would be higher as many of the other European countries. However, part-time work and flexible work schedules are more common in The Netherlands which probably helps!
The parenting section talks about the Dutch perspective on popular parenting topics for new parents such as sleep, routine, and helicopter parenting. I love reading about the different ways that moms from different countries tackle these topics. I found the Dutch parenting style to be a more laid back parenting style that is all about a consistent routine. The Dutch value self-care and believe a happier mother creates happier children. That is something I think we could use more in the US.
I found Stuff Dutch Moms Like to be a well-rounded view of Dutch parenting from many perspectives. Each chapter opened with Colleen’s experience on the subject and then detailed the philosophy or reasoning behind the subject. She included lots of anecdotes from Dutch natives who are raising children in The Netherlands and abroad as well as other foreigners’ opinions of raising children in The Netherlands. I truly enjoyed reading the quotes of other moms. It’s fun to get in the minds of moms from other countries to see how they think and their perceptions of the way we do things.
I think that new parents can take some advice from the way the Dutch parent and incorporate it into their own parenting style. I bookmarked a lot of pages (especially in the pregnancy section) for things I would like to consider for any future pregnancies. This would make a great baby shower or new mom gift. It is available to purchase on Amazon. To learn more about Colleen you can check out her website here.
Have you learned any parenting lessons from other cultures? Share them in the comments!