Evolutionary Parenting: Where History and Science Meet Parenting

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Our society – heck, all societies – have their ideas about how to raise children.  I can go to a bookstore here in Vancouver and find hundreds of books on parenting.  From sleep to feeding to schedules to discipline to all-around philosophies based on someone’s observations of the world, you name it, it’s probably there.  The question I have to ask is: What good does it do us? … [Read more...]

My Problems with RIE

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Many people subscribe to the RIE theory of raising children espoused most famously by Magda Gerber, currently popularized by individuals like Janet Lansbury.  Standing for “Resources for Infant Educarers”, RIE is a philosophy that focuses on respect of a child as an independent person that we must observe in order to gain our own awareness of them.   I don’t know enough about … [Read more...]

Does The Thought Count?

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I remember reading somewhere that a doctor said that he never worried about parents who were reading all the books on parenting out there, that so long as they were actively seeking sources, he knew they cared enough that the children would turn out fine.  As much as I want to agree with the sentiment, it’s something I’ve struggled with.  For example, I have met parents who … [Read more...]

The Problem with the One-Size Fits All Solution

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I suppose this could be the shortest post I ever write if I left it simply as, “The problem with the one-size fits all solution is that... it doesn’t work!” That’s it.  As clear as it can get.  If you’re comfortable with that, you can sign off now.  If not, let’s talk about it a little more, shall we? When you pick up a book by an “expert” telling you how to get your baby … [Read more...]

5 Tips for Dealing with a Crying Baby

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I don’t know a person who doesn’t hate the sound of a crying baby.  It can elicit feelings of helplessness, anger, frustration, and sadness.  At times, we are utterly incapable of effectively stopping the crying which compounds these feelings even more.  One of the biggest concerns in our society is something called “Shaken Baby Syndrome” whereby parents feel so helpless and … [Read more...]

Lucky

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One of the things I hate is when others use the term 'lucky' with reference to one’s kids.  It’s something I hear a lot of because I have a 'good' baby, but it frustrates me because I am not just lucky, just as a woman with a baby who is always inconsolable without medical reason isn't just unlucky.  I have a high-needs child who I have been able to respond to using practices … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Friends and Foes in a Baby’s Mind

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By Varda Meyers Epstein Would you do or say things in the presence of your baby that you’d never do or say around your best friend? When is a baby old enough to understand a marital spat or an intimate discussion between parents? At what age does your infant morph from a cute and cuddly bundle to the third person in the room; the onlooker who forces you to defer certain … [Read more...]

Lies and Damn Lies: Babies Cry for No Reason

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There are lots of things that parents are told today that drive me nuts.  Ranging from the ridiculous notion that leaving a baby to cry will teach them self-soothing (it may get them to be quiet and sleep, but it is definitely not self-soothing) to the equally wrong idea that we need to teach our kids they aren’t the centre of the universe by ignoring them, these ideas centre … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Happy

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By Mama Bean “What right have you got to be happy, anyway?” I felt like I’d been struck by lightening; my whole body froze.  I could feel my teeth clench together as my jaw clamped shut.  I could not utter another word. I had dared to confide my teenage angst in someone who should have known better than to shame and belittle me.  I had dipped my toe into a pool of hope … [Read more...]

What Children Don’t “Need” Can Still Help Them

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By Tracy Cassels “Your baby is now old enough that s/he doesn’t need to feed during the night.” “Your child doesn’t need to sleep in your room or in your bed.” “Your baby doesn’t need to be held this much.” “Your child doesn’t need to still be breastfeeding.” Sound familiar?  In today’s society parents are often given the unsolicited advice about what their child “doesn’t … [Read more...]