Evolution, Crying, and the Fallacy of a Different Environment

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“Parents used to have to stop their baby crying because if they didn’t, they’d all be eaten by wild animals, but we don’t live in that world anymore so isn’t that a rather outdated way of looking at parenting?” ~ Too many people to count, often in attempts to justify leaving children to cry I have heard the above mentioned time and time and time again.  In our efforts to make … [Read more...]

Lucky

Lucky

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...]

“Fake” Crying in Infancy

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By Tracy Cassels A new article out of Japan suggests babies between seven months and a year engage in a “fake cry” to obtain attention.  The article[1] examined two babies longitudinally for six months and analyzed 102 crying episodes total while also having the mothers report on each of these crying episodes.  Based on these analyses, the researcher – Dr. Nakayama – felt … [Read more...]

When Your Infant’s Sleep Isn’t Normal

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By Tracy G. Cassels In today’s Western society, more often than not parents believe their child should be sleeping in ways that are just not biologically normal.  They expect babies to sleep through the night by 12 weeks, to no longer need to be rocked to sleep or nursed to sleep, and so on.  And of course we all know that there are people out to make money who promote these … [Read more...]

“Is She Okay?”: Or Are We Sabotaging Our Children’s Empathy?

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By Tracy G. Cassels I don’t believe I have ever met an individual who didn’t want their child to grow up to be empathic.  It’s just standard for parents to want their children to care about others’ well-being and put that care into practice.  We spend ample time discussing with other parents how to do this, we read books, we start programs in schools, we model the behaviours … [Read more...]

When I’m Not So Fun to Be Around

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By Tracy G. Cassels After having a crappy day myself and shutting myself in the bedroom because I was ready to scream at everyone and throw whatever I could find out the window, I had to write this.  So… how many of these can you relate to? When I’m tired, I get really crabby and snap at people. When I’m hungry, I get angry and can yell at those I love. When things aren't … [Read more...]

Slate Gets on the Cry-it-Out Bandwagon

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It was to my utter dismay to be led to yet another article touting the benefits of crying-it-out (CIO) and admonishing those who speak out against it.  However, it was even more distressing to read an article that so blatantly attacked researchers and held up research that has been openly criticized as "bad science" as evidence supporting CIO.  But I’m jumping ahead.  Let me … [Read more...]

Do No Harm?

Difficult Baby Banner

By Tracy G. Cassels I regularly post against cry-it-out (CIO) or controlled crying (CC).  It should be no surprise it’s a practice I really don’t like, mostly because I believe the evidence we have suggests it is not great for babies (even if they do recover, though not all do) and add to that it’s often ineffective.  Whenever I post these though, you can bet I get more than … [Read more...]

The Effects of Parental Stress: SRCD Research

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By Tracy G. Cassels This second piece covering some of the newest research out there in child development will focus on what I have encountered to date on the effects of parental stress on a variety of outcomes.  We all generally know that too much parental stress can be negative for everyone in the family, but let’s look at some of the specifics on how this … [Read more...]

Kids in Cars

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By Tracy G. Cassels Today I shared the story of a NZ mom who left her sleeping infant in the car while she did some grocery shopping.  My own point of view is this:  I would not do this because the thought of my child waking up with me gone and crying for me and me not being there is something I could never do.  It’s why we co-sleep, it’s why I babywear (well, wore, she … [Read more...]