Friday, July 18, 2008

Ezzo ahoy!

I've obtained a copy of Babywise at the consignment store, and I'm reading the Preface. So far I'm seeing two themes. First, the focus is on results, results, results. And for them "results" means the baby sleeping all night long without any parental intervention, and the mother being well rested. No mention so far of meeting baby's needs, fostering empathy and closeness, or listening to one's mothering instincts. The other focus is on how they are right and everyone else is wrong. La Leche League gets called out specifically, and the tone seems to be, "Go ahead, look at what those other methods get you" - any mother who is stressed or tired, and any child that has any behavioral hiccup must be the result of inferior baby training methods.

For me, the biggest problem will probably be differences in basic assumptions. They assume that babies should sleep all night without any intervention, and that tired parents are the greatest problem to be avoided. I assume that babies are primates who are wired to need parental intervention quite often when young, and that this intervention brings benefits. It also becomes less frequent, on average, as the baby matures, and the key at the beginning is finding strategies to deal with the need for intervention, rather than trying to extinguish the baby's calls for help.

We'll see - I imagine that there will be a substantial amount of advice that I find perfectly reasonable (for instance, I believe the Ezzos promote a pattern of sleep-wake-eat rather than eat-sleep-wake, which coincidentally seems to serve my baby well). But in a way that may make the poor advice more dangerous.

Chapter 1 will be dissected soon . . .

1 comment:

TulipGirl said...

In what year was the copy you have published?