J's birthmom posted a message for me the other day, and in it she said J is the age where he needs to start wearing those white, hard-soled shoes so that his feet "won't get messed up." (He's 9 months old.) I have heard that kids really don't need shoes until 2, but what do I know? I'm a first-time mom. He's got a lot of shoes, but none of those hard-soled ones. Are they indeed supposed to start wearing those at a certain age? And is it any different for black babies/kids? I had a black friend once tell me that black people are more prone to being flat-footed. I don't know if that's true, and if so, if it has anything to do with the hard-soled shoe issue or not! Thoughts?
And oh, what the heck, I'll use this as an excuse to post a picture of J! Those of you who remember his adoption story, can you believe he's this old/big now??
J is adorable!
As far as shoes go, the folks at Stride Rite only sell flexible soled shoes for kids that age. I tried hard to get a non flexible pair for my guy because it is what the ortho suggested (he has hyper motility issues and needed the extra support) and they really don't make them anywhere that I could find. The ortho we saw said that flexible soles or no shoes is best for typically developing babies so I'd vote no on hard soled shoes for J. (My sons are Latino, so no clue if it is something that is done more in black culture or if it makes any difference either...)
I am not a big believer in hard soled shoes until after a child is walking AND running well and even then only when the foot needs to be protected. Across the street from us we have a Mom who has done triathlons for years. My kids are shoes less most of the summer when we are outside. So am I. She always exclaims over and over again how my children have the most amazing running form she's ever seen. Their Dr has commented that they have phenomenal posture for such little boys. They are about 6-12 months ahead of most gross motor skills. Being barefoot is a very natural way to learn walking, running and other gross motor skills.
Thanks all. I kind of thought no on the hard-soled shoes, but certainly wanted to check.
On another note (probably should create another thread for this, I'm sure it's a big issue for others too), what do you do with suggestions from birthmoms when it's not actually what's best for the child? Just side-step the issue and not say much, or say you're doing it differently and why, or what?
I would ignore it. There are definitely things our birthmother does with her other children that I would NEVER do with I am just ignoring anything I don't agree with.
I like what eagles had to say about the bmom issue" "thanks, I'll check with his pediatrician". Gets you off the hook for the time being, hopefully long enough to get her to forget that conversation. :eyebrows:
As for the shoes, soft-soled. Those little feet need to grasp and flex when learning to walk. Hard soled are more for older walkers, who will be running and playing outside. :) We have Robeez for Cam, love them!
The hard soled baby shoes are old time. As a Black mother of 3 kids, I purchased baby Nike, and looked for good quality "flexible" soled shoes for my walking toddler, nothing stiff for the feet. Prior to that it was soft material baby type shoes (Robeez, or Baby Deer) or socks, bare feet in the house. I have not noticed, nor was aware that Blacks were more prone to being flat foot.
I have read that babies need soft shoes or no shoes when learning to walk. Obviously no shoes is for indoors at home where it's toasty warm :) I'm a big fan of the Robeez that have soft soles, and they're cute too.
Great photo!!
Thanks again all! I will indeed follow your advice. And I have to look into Robeez - never heard of them. Nickchris - thanks for letting me know about the flat-foot issue. Has been nagging me a bit.
On another note (probably should create another thread for this, I'm sure it's a big issue for others too), what do you do with suggestions from birthmoms when it's not actually what's best for the child? Just side-step the issue and not say much, or say you're doing it differently and why, or what?
This whole thread reminds me of my last visit, J was just about 7 months, and was crawling over to things and pulling himself up. He had been wearing socks but then it was clear he started slipping a little so his Dads took them off. Then later his Grandma started asking why he was barefoot and wasn't wearing socks and shoes. And his Dad said something like "Our occupational therapist told us kids have problems feeling the floor in shoes, it will take them longer to walk." That sort of shut her down.
I don't think an over-opinionated bmom is any different than an over-opinionated grandma, and this approach definitely worked. I think telling her why they were doing it differently at least showed her they listened to her advice but they had a different opinion, in this instance I think ignoring it would have made her feel like they weren't listening and she would have kept saying it, this way she knew they heard her, and just disagreed (and it didn't hurt that there was an expert backing them up ;)
OMG, J is HUGE! And so cute.
I agree with the others, barefoot or soft soled shoes until they are running around outside a lot and in danger of glass or whatever. Robeez-style are so cute. Target has their version and Etsy sellers have some adorable ones too. We used those as house shoes/slippers even when my kids started wearing regular shoes. Pedipeds are cute too:
[url=] Pediped Originals Zach: Shoes[/url]
My son's bmom will sometimes give us advice but I just nod and say ok. She's a teenager and not even really raising her other child so I honestly cannot take her advice seriously but I listen respectfully.
I go with stride rite :) they have excellent shoes period
as for when kids should wear shoes...I don't give a hoot, I personally can't stand to see bare feet outside of the home so I'm a big sock/shoe fan since birth, but that's just me and that's a Cuban thing so do what you think is best....
I always change shoes 2-3 months though and have the stride rite people measure her feet, there's never problems when I do that :) As 3 people have told me, if you splurge on anything do so on good shoes :) he's a cutie :)
I don't think it's an ethnic thing so much as a regional thing. Isn't J's birth mom from Georgia? My sister and I were born in Kentucky, and my mom as a new parent far from home and family was taking lots of advice from her more experienced friends there. It was absolutely the standard to wear the hard-soled, white high-tops from about six months to age three.
Now granted, this was over thirty years ago; but when we moved back home to the West Coast and she took my sister, who was three, to the shoe store, the salesman wanted to know what was wrong with my sister's feet. No one out here wore those shoes unless there was an orthopedic problem. But in Kentucky, everyone would have thought she was neglectful if she had let us run around without them.
Good luck finessing the request from J's birth mom. That's a hard spot to be in. But I totally agree with everyone who said soft-soled / no shoes are best for most little feet.
Thanks for that reply! Never occurred to me that it might be a regional thing. Yes, J's birth mom is from GA.
Soft soled shoes made up of clothes or woollen should be chosen for babies till 2 years .
After 2 years ,when baby starts walking outside home then hard soled shoes are best to wear .I got a new [URL=""]converse all star[/URL] shoe pair for my baby girl .