Monday, October 27, 2008

Debates

Even though I prefer not to debate Babywise, there have been some debates. Here they are:

  • TulipGirl said...
    Do you think BW will work for all moms/babies? If not, what are some early signs you would have a mother look for to determine whether or not BW is "working" for her baby?
    November 24, 2007 10:25 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    I think BW will work for any parent who wants it to work. If BW is right for you, your family, your baby, and your personality, you can make it work. Consistency is key, along with dedication. I think BW will work for any baby whose parents are committed to it, willing to make sacrifices in their own lives to get it working, and are consistent with it. If you think it isn't working for your baby, you need to evaluate if it is what you want to do. If it is, recommit and stick with it. If it isn't, try something else.
    December 19, 2007 2:35 PM
  • TulipGirl said...
    In an exchange with Anne Marie Ezzo in a BW support group, she said that Babywise isn't supposed to be teaching "Cry It Out." Why do you think that most BW mothers take from the book the need to CIO, if that's not what the authors intend?
    November 25, 2007 11:04 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    I can see why she would stay away from a CIO stance because of the negative connotations connected to such an acronym; however, to say BW does not tell you you need to let your baby cry is false. It says that some crying is necessary and that it won't hurt your baby and that you shouldn't let the crying deter you from what is best for your baby. I would have to see her exact comments to know exactly what she said. BW does say to let your baby cry for naps.
    December 19, 2007 2:39 PM
    TulipGirl said...
    So, the author states that she does not teach cry-it-out, but the mothers who read it take away that message. I wonder what other areas of miscommunication arise from the book?Crying is a reality for infants. However, it is not medically accurate to say that crying "won't hurt" your baby, because crying can be harmful in brain development. Google around crying and cortisol. What Babywise leads parents to believe in crying and other areas is contrary to what is factually known about infant brain development and infant growth.That raises two concerns I have--first, authors intent being different from the message parents get; and second, a lack of solid understanding of infant growth and development by the authors.Grace and peace,
    January 27, 2008 9:29 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    First of all, "she" is not the author of On Becoming Babywise. Rather than speculate and wonder what she said and what the context is, I will ask her. Second of all, please don't be patronizing. I have read from the American Academy of Pediatrics (in a published book) that babies need to cry for a certain amount of time each day. I have said I started BW with my son late (9 weeks). He cried far less in a 24 hour period after we started than he did before we started BW. And if I may be permitted some indulgence, he is about the smartest, cutest, happiest little 2.5 year old boy you will ever see. I have taken your advice and Googled the information you suggested. I have to say that I am unconvinced. I find the studies to be quite inconclusive and in need of further research. To say crying is bad for your baby and raises stress levels of course would worry parents, especially those of babies who have reflux or are colicky. So what do those moms do? No worries, twice as much crying for a colicky baby is not twice as stressful. Um...what? Wouldn't that necessitate further looking into it? Does that mean that only X amount of crying is stressful and after that it is no longer stressful, or are colicky babies just superior at handling stress? Also, there are different reasons babies cry. Perhaps more crying in a colicky baby isn't more stressful because the baby isn't crying out of a real NEED. Perhaps the stress came, for example, when baby was crying because he was hungry. Research would have to be done to define what the cry was for and what the stress levels were at the time. Of course, studies on infants are hard to come by because of obvious ethical issues.You also have to be careful about what you read online. The internet can be a great resource, but there aren't the same requirements to publish something online as there are to publish something in a book or journal. I have conducted studies and published them in journals. I know what it takes. I, obviously, have published stuff online, not only this blog but on websites. The reviews are no where comparable. If you ever read something online and want to know more about it, it is wise to go to a book or journal, and preferably right to the source. Go to that study. Any good study will include the limitations and possible misrepresentations of the study. It will include what those conducting the study wanted to find, their hypothesis. It will describe the procedures used to come to the conclusions. The best kind of study is a double-blind.
    January 27, 2008 2:21 PM
    TulipGirl said...
    I haven't been patronizing. I respect you as a mother. I am concerned that you have only two very small children and are writing very authoritively and widely giving advice about something that has mixed results for many parents.Anne Marie Ezzo is the co-author of "Preparation for Parenting," the precursor of "On Becoming Babywise." And I'm quite well-aware of the importance of non-biased, double-blind, peer-reviewed, journal-published studies. Which ones have you found that back up the eat-wake-sleep routine? About a decade ago when I was first using BW, I found one out of Finland(?) that. . . with a stretch. . . could support it. Other than that. . . well. . . As to cortisol and colic. . . it's a difficult issue. The theory is non-comforted crying bathes the brain in more cortisol than comforted crying. Like you said, it isn't clear cut. However, being cavalier about uncomforted infant crying--when more research is needed--really does a disservice to mothers and their babies.
    January 27, 2008 4:56 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    When you are in the middle of something and experiencing it, it is often the best time to write about it. I write from my experience. I write what I have found to be true. I don't make things up. I practice what I recommend. If I were looking back on something that happened 5 years ago, I wouldn't remember it as well. You remember things as better than they were. I say you are patronizing because you are asking questions disguised with concern, and already have a concrete, formed opinion. It is passive-aggressive. I much prefer the straight-forward statements. You aren't looking for information, you are looking to either change my mind or perhaps even try to discredit me in some way. I don't claim to be more than I am. I am a mother of two children. I do Babywise. Right now. I have a lot of experience. I had to problem solve on my own and learned a lot because of it. I wish to pass some of what I have learned on to others--why keep it to myself? Why should I allow all commentary on the internet on Babywise to remain negative? I have a positive experience, and have every right to share that. Apparently the fact that I only have two small children is of little concert to Gary Ezzo since he as asked me to contribute to Growingkids.org. I don't make this stuff up. I have nothing to gain in any way from writing it. It only takes time. But I am happy to help other mothers. Perhaps fewer problems would arise if mothers had support and knew how to get support than if all they could find online was BW bashing.
    January 27, 2008 5:14 PM
  • TulipGirl said...
    "Every negative comment I knew to be false because it wasn't true with my children."Your perception of your experience with two very young children is positive--but that doesn't negate the negative experience other parents have had with their children. I used BW (even facilitated the classes!) I definitely understood it and implemented it with flexibility and common sense. And later I realized that the percieved benefits were far outweighed by the downfalls for our family. I understand that at this point you believe BW to be only good. Can you understand that for other parents it has not been good? And. . . btw. . . You've presented a straw-man myth to debunk--those who raise concerns about Babywise aren't misrepresenting it as "Feed Your Newborn on a 3 Hour Schedule No Matter What--Even if He is Hungry Sooner."There is a place online where parents come together to discuss the pros and cons of Ezzo parenting, and you are welcome to register and join in the conversation! http://www.awareparent.netGrace and peace,
    January 27, 2008 9:23 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    no, I didn't present a straw man myth. I presented a myth that I read online. It is passed around on the internet and through word of mouth. I have even had moms who decided to start BW ask "now, I feed him every three hours, even if he is hungry sooner, right?" It is a common misconception. I wrote about it because it is something I have read, something I have heard, and something I have been asked. I am not exaggerating it in any way. And I have never said BW is the end all, only way to raise a child. Is it the way I choose? Yes. Is it the way that is best for my family? Yes. This blog is created for those who are doing Babywise and need a positive resource online. For some reason, there are people out there who put a lot of time and energy into what I would call "bashing" Babywise. This blog is here to give people some positive information if they want to do Babywise. It is not intended to "talk people into it." My target audience is moms who are already doing Babywise.There are a lot of ways to raise a child. I wasn't raised on BW. My husband wasn't. We both turned out just fine. I am not interested in trying to talk people into raising children a certain way or to tell them that other ways are "wrong" or bad. I believe the majority of parents out there have their children's best interest at heart and and trying to do what they believe to be the best thing for them. I can't tell them what that is. Only they can.I appreciate your invitation, but like I said, I am not looking to persuade people to do anything. I think people need to read and research for themselves. I am happy to answer any questions I can. And while I do love to debate in general (I did it in college and was #1 at my university), "debating" babywise has no appeal to me. Quite frankly, people who oppose BW seem to only want to bash on it. I find that a waste of my time. They would want to talk me out of it, it isn't going to happen, and anything positive I had to say would be discounted. I would rather continue to spend my efforts in writing helpful posts for this blog.
    January 27, 2008 1:50 PM
    TulipGirl said...
    You stated you don't believe the negative stories. . . well. . . That's pretty dismissive of other parents' experiences. In a previous comment you wrote, "I think BW will work for any parent who wants it to work. If BW is right for you, your family, your baby, and your personality, you can make it work. Consistency is key, along with dedication. I think BW will work for any baby whose parents are comitted to it, willing to make sacrifices in their own lives to get it working, and are consistent with it."I totally believe that you don't think that BW is the only way to parent. I do have concerns, however, that within the BW paradigm, parents may have difficulty evaluating when it isn't "working" and catching that early. And to be honest--sometimes it DOESN'T work--even when parents really want it to work. Due to some of the medical misinformation in BW, the pattern of an individual baby's growth, and decision-making within the BW framework--sometimes BW can be detrimental to the health of a baby. I think ALL moms need encouragement! (So, good for you!) But in your desire to encourage mothers as they are implementing BW, please do so with eyes wide open, being aware of the problems SOME mothers and babies have. Wouldn't you rather help a mother catch problems early, rather than becoming another "failed" Babywise statistic?
    January 27, 2008 4:35 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    The things I have read that I don't believe and am referring to are statements like, "if you do babywise, your baby WILL become dehydrated, experience failure to thrive, and even die" (emphasis added). I didn't make that up--that is something online I read when I googled Babywise. It is not a correct statement. I know it to not be true because I have two living, breathing children who are growing steadily and have never been hospitalized or anything close to it. And I honestly think any mom who has a baby get to that point (dehydration or failure to thrive) was ignoring hunger cues from her baby, whether intentionally or not. A mom cannot do Babywise if she isn't going to accept the fact that growth spurts happen and baby will get off schedule at those times. She cannot do babywise if she cannot recognize hunger in her child. That is why I say, just like Babywise does, to always feed your baby when baby is hungry. If you think it isn't a growth spurt, but baby is hungry, you still feed him. Then you investigate and problem solve. Is there a milk supply issue? Is baby not taking a full feeding and therefore getting hungry sooner? Whatever the reason, you feed baby first. Lest you think it this is not supported in Babywise,"If your baby is hungry, feed him or her. If the child routinely shows signs of hunger before the next scheduled feeding, then find out why, RATHER THAN letting the baby cry it out. Your baby's routine is to serve you and your baby, not the reverse" (emphasis added, p. 145).And I would point out that failure to thrive can happen on any system. A good friend of mine currently is breastfeeding her second child, a 2 month old. She does demand feeding, basically attachment parenting. This is the proclaimed "only way" you can feed a baby successfully while nursing (despite mothers like me who do otherwise). The baby has lost a pound in the last two weeks. Her pedi has said she is failing to thrive and that baby needs to be on a schedule because she doesn't demand to be fed. She will go 5-6 hours in the day between feedings before mom will finally think she should get her up. She was told at the hospital by La Leche League to do demand feeding and everything would be fine. "Baby knows when she is hungry." She demand-fed her first without problems. She is an experienced mom, and she still had problems.So a baby experiencing failure to thrive can happen under any parenting philosophy, especially if mom doesn't use her common sense and step in. If you are demand feeding a baby, you still shouldn't let a newborn go longer than a few hours between feedings. If you are feeding a baby on a schedule and baby wants to eat before it is time, then you should feed him. It is a simple solution to potential problems.
    January 27, 2008 5:01 PM
    Nanny4Two said...
    i don't think this is the place for tulipgirl to get people to go to the website she mentioned. i mean most of us are babywise alumni, and most of us agree with what gary ezzo wrote in that book and are happy with the success we found with the book.i for one am not going to bash mr.ezzo when i nanny for 2 children under the age of 3, and there both perfect.
    January 29, 2008 6:12 AM
  • kindra said...
    Oh I appreciate your defense of BW so much! As a mom of a happy, healthy 6 month BW baby girl, I am so sick of BW bashing! I love that you have this blog here to help us other mom's out in the way of advice and questions. I gave up on looking for a BW question and answer forum, because like you said as soon as you Google it, all you find is how terrible it is. So again, thank you.
    February 7, 2008 1:03 AM
  • TulipGirl said...
    My experience has been that within the eat/wake/sleep cycle, when baby is due for a nap sometimes mom has trouble seeing hunger cues. When a baby is going through a growth spurt, even if a 3 hour or so eat/wake/sleep routine was fine before can need to be modified. But if a mom isn't attuned to seeing hunger cues out of "cycle" hunger cues can be interpreted as tired cues. As always--babies require alert moms!When I experienced this and was babywising, a Contact Mom recommended to me that I try an eat/wake/eat/sleep cycle. It helped my son get the additional calories he needed during that growth spurt, led to better naps, and didn't throw our lives out-of-sync.
    January 27, 2008 9:09 AM
    TheOzz said...
    Valerie, Thanks for contributing to GrowingKids.org. I hope you continue with more.A word of CAUTION on the advise from Tulipgirl (aka Alexandra Bush). She is an outspoken critic of Babywise. She authors or contributes to several web sites that openly criticize Babywise and the authors.
    January 27, 2008 8:59 PM
    Nanny4Two said...
    I want to thank you for writing such a imfortaive blog about YOUR experinace w/ babywise.I have to agree w/ the man above, I don't take critism too well, and I feel like tulipgirl is coming down on moms who use babywise.I don't feel bad about the mom of the kids I nanny using this wonderful book.This is our experiance tulipgirl, not everybody elses.
    January 29, 2008 6:07 AM
    TulipGirl said...
    I honestly believe the spirit of my comment has been misunderstood. I was sharing a way to adapt Babywise advice that I learned from a GFI contact mom when I was still using the Ezzos' material with my third child. (I used it with my first three children.) Since I didn't see it offered in the article, I thought I would offer it as something else totry in the event that naps are not going well. I only wish I hadreceived that advice earlier as it was a very helpful adaptation and may help to explain why my third child did better with Babywise than my first two. I would hope that this piece of advice -- which came from inside the GFI camp -- would not be judged according to what Hank doesn't like about me, but on its own merits, to help those mothers and babies who might benefit from it.We are mothers together. . . sharing our experiences. We do need to both give and receive encouragement.Grace and peace,
    January 29, 2008 6:23 PM
    TheOzz said...
    It is true that the spirit of Tulipgirl's comments could be misunderstood. Yes, there are things about Tulipgirl that I do not like, and those things are based on the fact that she has shown no desire to help people do anything but get away from Babywise. She has failed to be up front and straight forward about her position on Babywise here in these comments. She leaves comments like the ones here as if she is so innocently trying to help people with Babywise, but Tulipgirl fails to mention that she is one of the most aggressive and outspoken critics of Babywise on the entire Internet. This is in my humble opinion based on observations of her tactics in recent years. Example Tulipgirl comment from another blog*:"Tulipgirl:Like you, I regret using Babywise, too. I know that mamas who use it are well-intentioned and love their babies, but it is such lousy, lousy advice and so often hurts the mom and baby." This is one very small example to Tulipgirl's underlying position on Babywise. It is a completely unfounded and unproven statement. The italics portion of this comment links to an article authored by Alexandra Bush (aka Tulipgirl) titled Confessions of a Failed Babywiser*. Don't take my word for who the person is behind the Tulipgirl disguise, just do a whois on her domain name. My point here it to make sure that Tulipgirl's comments are put into perspective. Please base your judgement of her advise on the context of her opinion of Babywise in general. Most folks come to blogs like this one to get encouragement and advice and do not wish to be deceived. The advise Tulipgirl gave here may have come from a Contact Mom at some point in history, but that information is somewhere between five and nine years old based on when her third son was born in 1999* and when she posted the article mentioned above in 2003*. The requirements to become a contact mom have been refined since then. Based on Tulipgirl's comments, there must have been some contact moms back in the day that were giving out advise that went against the principles taught in Babywise and Preperation for Parenting. That is unfortunate and should have been easily recognized by her given her self proclaimed experience with Babywise. Throwing out terms like "contact mom" and GFI camp does not automatically validate the information as being supported by the principles taught in Babywise. The eat/wake/eat/sleep advise given here by Tulipgirl is not endorsed by GFI.* Links to sources provided by email upon request.Hank Osborne (aka TheOzz)hank.osborne@hoei.comGrowingKids.orghoei.com
    January 29, 2008 9:42 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Hank, Thanks for checking in and keeping us informed. It is nice to have someone watching over and making sure information stays accurate!
    January 30, 2008 6:58 PM

Reader Comments/Thanks/Success Stories:

  • Don and Denise Sullivan said...
    Very interesting post! My sister-in-law began using GKGW (same as BabyWise) after her 1st child was born. Her 4 kids are now ages 8-17 and they are living testimonies that the principles behind this work. Her children are not followers..they are leaders. They excel academically and artistically. They are respectful, thoughtful, able to follow instructions and yet make intelligent decisions for themselves. Their parents have always been a united front in parenting and the kids grew up with an equal amount of love and discipline. These kids were not forced into a mold. They were taught respect and boundaries and at the same time, their parents encouraged their individual personalities, talents and ideas. We are using the same techniques found in GKGW/Toddlerwise and we CONSTANTLY receive compliments on how well behaved he is in public. He is very independent and strong willed and we make an effort to allow his creative and individual mind to develop as he's growing while at the same time teaching him to respect boundaries and others. And it's not just the Babywise series that talk about this...Super Nanny has similar principles. I see too many parents who do not practice consistency or do not have a spouse who supports these concepts and too quickly give up. Then they wonder why it didn't work. I know MANY families who have told me that the Babywise techniques do work (both Christian and non-Christian).
    October 28, 2008 12:26 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks Denise! Good examples.
    November 1, 2008 4:01 PM
  • The Traveling Turtle said...
    Thank you so much for this post! I am so tired of reading all the negative stuff out there about BW and was thrilled to find your blog! You are such a wonderful source of FOUNDED information and I really appreciate your advice. As a mom to an 8 month old BW baby, I can tell you that it WORKS if you want it to work (just as you stated). If you give up and throw in the towel after half heartedly trying it, then you will not have the outcome that many, many others do. Thank you again! I am so glad this is here for mom's like me to reference!
    October 28, 2008 6:04 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks Traveling Turtle! It is good to hear good experiences from people.
    November 1, 2008 4:02 PM
  • Robinson Family said...
    All the negative comments about BW really hurts my heart! Not because of disagreeing with it, but the attitude of the statements. I used and am currently using all the GKGW books and our child is a DELIGHT! We constantly get comments on what a JOY he is, how laid back, and bright he is. On another note, if you don't like, don't use it! Simple! But don't belittle those that do or believe we're ill informed. The Ezzos are loving Christian mentors that are beautiful people. Hurtful comments are unjust.
    October 28, 2008 8:35 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    Robinson Family, I agree. It is perfectly acceptable for people to not use Babywise and even to disagree with it. But to acuse parents of the aweful things they are acused of is simply baffling. It is so off the mark, that I can only shake my head.
    November 1, 2008 4:03 PM
  • Susan and Ethan Peterson said...
    Thank you for posting this. I too have been involved in a debate about BW, and am so happy to see this written words. THere is so much negative out there about it, and I just don't understand. My choice to follow BW is my husband and my personal choice. It has worked so wonderfully for our family. I couldn't ask for a better parenting style for us. I would never bash someone elses parenting style, which is why I can not understand why people feel the need o bash babywise. Check with your grandparents, they will tell you that having a baby on a schedule is an age old principal. It is sad that people feel the need to bash something they clearly do not understand. Keep up the great work!Susan
    October 28, 2008 9:21 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks Susan! It is strange how much people like to bash BW. There are always people out there anxious to bash on things that they don't understand.
    November 3, 2008 11:17 AM
  • Julia said...
    wow! thanks for sharing that. All i have to say is that I'm sure ANY parenting style will work depending on the type of person/parent you are. For us, Babywise was a success! Our girl thrived, grew, is a GREAT sleeper and very well-behaved. I think your blog is a great resource for those of us out there that do use BW... and if you choose NOT to use BW or disagree with it, then find something else that works for you! No one is pushing their beliefs on anyone here... just offering advice and tips!
    October 28, 2008 9:32 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    Yes Julia, so true.
    November 3, 2008 11:18 AM
  • Amanda said...
    Thanks for getting a post like this up here, it's nice to read some stuff in support of Babywise. I agree with Susan & Ethan Peterson, my MIL is the one who suggested the book to me and both she and everyone else in my & my husband's family sees it as common sense parenting very similar to the way they parented, even though it was not called anything in particular. In previous generations, it was simply called parenting.
    October 28, 2008 12:34 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Amanda, I agree. I find it to simply be common sense.
    November 3, 2008 11:18 AM
  • Lucie said...
    I second, third and fourth everything that has been said above. I CIO with my daughter (who is now 4.5) but was not a die hard follower of Babywise. When I was pregnant with my son, who is now 2 months, I decided early on that we were going to start Babywise from the get go. the principles I did follow worked so well for my daughter when she was started at 8 months-- who is now an extremely intelligent, articulate, child who sleeps through the night very independently, gets up and down to go potty by herself and then puts herself right back to sleep without even waking us up-- I knew if I started even earlier with my son the results should be even more maginified. My 2 month old is not sleeping through the night quite yet but is doing veyr well with Babywise. He is learning to self-soothe and is a happy, content, laid-back baby! We couldn't be happier!!!Thanks for the positive thoughtsand feedback of Babywise! I am now a true believer and follower!
    October 28, 2008 1:37 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Lucie, thanks for your comments. I agree with you; you can start BW at any time with success, but the earlier you start, the more magnified the benefits.
    November 3, 2008 11:20 AM
  • mommytoisabella said...
    I just got done reading "The Shaping of a Christian Family" by Elisabeth Elliot. I found many of the principles that her parents used in raising 6 Godly children were very similar to the principles that are written the "Wise" books. I agree to what the pp said "in previous generations, it was simply called parenting." Valerie, you are doing a wonderful job! Continue to stay strong in the midst of the criticism you may face at times. You are a "God Sent."
    October 28, 2008 1:49 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks MommytoIsabella!
    November 3, 2008 11:20 AM
  • Shawn said...
    Valerie,I appreciate your attempt to get information out and have dialogue. (I Think GKGW parents are some of the most intellectually honest people in the world) I would give a word of caution. Tuligirl is not interested in a "debate". She and the group that she runs with has a very specific agenda and that is to defame the Ezzo's. Her blog as well as her husband's blog leave intellectual critique in the dust and make fun of my friends personally (the Ezzo's) and questions their character. Just my two cents.Thanks for your blog my wife and I recommend it often, but to be quite honest we don't want to have to filter through the tulipgirl mis-truth's here too. Thanks Valerie!Shawn WoodProud Daddy of a GKGW almost 3 year old and a new BW on the way!
    October 28, 2008 7:15 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks Shawn. Tulipgirl hasn't been around for quite some time; I think she is gone :)
    November 3, 2008 11:30 AM
  • Tim and Jamie Edwards said...
    My husband and I decided to do babywise when we saw how well behaved a friends 4 year old child was. We asked the 'secret' they led us to BW. We read up and it totally fit our personality. I needed help once my son was born to put the schedule into something practical and googled BW and found your blog. It has been HUGE help to me. I have recommended it to every parent who asks me BW questions. Thank you for helping those of us who do BW. I think there are a lot of great ways to parent a child and I choose not to bash their choices and am not sure why people with failed attempts at doing BW choose to bash those of us to use it. My son is 10 months old. He has slept through the night since 8 weeks. I have had many times of trouble shooting nap issues etc. With out baby wise I would have thought interrupted naps were normal. Baby wise helped me learn my child better. It helped me to better meet his needs. I have never had a problem with breastfeeding. People often ask what we do to make our son so happy. I know in part he has great genes that make him a calm baby, but also in part his needs have been met through the BW principles.Thanks for being an advocate
    Jamie
    October 28, 2008 8:25 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Jamie, Thanks for your success story!
    November 3, 2008 11:31 AM
  • Kristy said...
    I am so thankful for your wonderful blog. I am a true believer in BW and I have seen the positive results with close family members, friends and my own! It sounds to me as if tulipgirl is almost arguing with herself. She clearly doesn't understand that the CIO method only lasts for a few short weeks (if that)! And after that, you no longer have a crying baby! You have a happy, cheerful, smiling baby when you put them in their crib AND when you get them up! So, it seems the crying and cortisol theory doesn't stand true. My friends that didn't do BW, have WAY fussier babies than true BW babies. Love the blog! Keep posting! :)
    October 28, 2008 10:29 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks Kristy!
    November 3, 2008 11:32 AM
  • Cathy said...
    I just wanted to take this opportunity to say "Thank you" for this blog. I have 4 BW kids, the youngest being 3 months old. Even this "experienced" mommy can use some encouragement!I wanted to weigh in on the cortisol issue. I do happen to believe in this theory (and I do acknowledge it is just a theory.) My first son was very busy and high-strung as a baby--still is for that matter. He was a very poor sleeper and cried a lot. Most of the time it was an "I can't wind down" type of cry, but occasionally it would escalate into a "this is really stressing me out" cry. If I let him cry long in this mode, the rest of his day was very messed up. Almost every cry went immediately to stress mode. It was a long day for all of us. I learned to quickly recognize when he was getting stressed and help to calm him down. I share this just to make the distinction that there is "crying" and "stressful crying." I believe stressful crying is really only present if baby's needs aren't being met (i.e. not being fed when hungry) or is in need of Mom or Dad's help, as in the case of our son. And I'm still a firm believer in the BW principles.
    October 29, 2008 7:46 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Cathy, Thanks for your thoughts. CIO is an interesting term because it means different things to different people. For BW babies, CIO doesn't mean you put baby in bed and he stays there to cry no matter what. It is parent directed, so a stressed-out cry definitely should be attended to by the parent.
    November 3, 2008 11:34 AM
  • Cindy Markovcy said...
    I just wanted to say that I have been using Babywise methods since my baby was 5 weeks old; I've found your blog VERY useful and I am so glad to see positive support for other BW moms. Thank you for sharing all that you do and making this a safe place to visit and get helpful answers!
    October 30, 2008 10:38 AM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks Cindy! You are welcome!
    November 3, 2008 11:34 AM
  • Kristi said...
    I stumbled upon this blog just like I did the book. My good friend and I were pregnant at the same time, and she had On Becoming Babywise on her coffee table. I picked it up, started reading, and it seemed almost too good to be true. It was like I had written the first chapter myself, our parenting philosophies were so similar. Grateful to find a way to translate my philosophy into practice I read my friend's copy of Babywise in two days, and then got my own copy to refer to. After my twins were born I used BW the best I could. It was hard, especially with so many people around who wanted me to feed my babies every time they cried, not every time they were hungry. People couldn't believe I would wake up a sleeping baby to eat and that I would let a baby cry when going down for a nap.I admit that despite how perfectly BW fit with my parenting style, I was not fully committed. I only did things part way, and I didn't remember some of the important points. It just seemed too hard. When my boys were 4 weeks old, I reread a few chapters and was inspired to try a little harder. The magical dream of babies sleeping through the night seemed impossible, but I thought "it can't hurt, and the pay off would be huge for our whole family!" That's when I found your blog. Again it happened almost on accident. I was just searching for information on BW and there you were. I read a few posts on things I had been wondering, and I felt re-inspired. So I made a schedule and some goals for myself to stick to it, and we tried it for real.Now my twin boys are 9 weeks old. Just three nights ago they have started to sleep through the night (7 hours), although they haven't both done it on the same night. (I'm hoping that magic day is today). I am nursing my twins, and they are definitely thriving. They both weighed just over 5 pounds at birth, and they weighed in at about 11 pounds each at their 2 month check-up. They only get formula once a week at church because frankly we don't all three fit in the mother's room. Plus it is nice that they practice drinking from a bottle. I definitely have enough milk for both my babies. Our twins are also very happy babies.Everyone tells me I am lucky to have such great, easy babies. I do believe I am lucky. I was lucky that I read On Becoming Babywise. I was lucky that I stumbled on your blog. But my babies being "easy babies," I don't believe that is luck. I believe it is good parenting. We have worked so hard to help these precious babies have the best start they can, and I think that BW has given us confidence and sanity in a seemingly overwhelming situation. (Our twins were a surprise at our 20 week ultrasound).I'm not sure if BW is the only way to parent. I mean successful, happy people were raised before this book was written. These are our first (and second) babies, and we have not tried any other way. But my brother and sister-in-law just had their third baby a week after our twins were born. They are definitely attachment parenting believers, and they are demand feeding their little boy. He eats for less than 5 minutes about every half an hour, and he spends most of his day crying unless he is being held. He also won't sleep unless his mom is holding him. My brother tells me that "eventually all babies learn that they would rather be held all the time," and that he "feels bad for babies whose parents don't hold them." Contrast that with our twins. They sleep in their cribs, rarely cry, play and smile and coo, and they eat and nap on a flexible schedule. I do hold my babies. All the time. But I get to hold happy babies who play with me and not crying babies who can't be calmed. BW may not be the only way, but it has definitely worked for our family.I have been wanting to thank you for a while now for helping us and our babies. I am sure that I would have had a nervous breakdown from lack of sleep if I didn't have you and bw to help me. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Please keep writing.I also want to encourage those with twins and other multiples that this can work for you. It was hard. It's still hard. But I honestly can't imagine what I would do if I were trying to nurse two babies on demand.
    October 30, 2008 7:13 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    Thanks for your story Kristi! I think BW would be essential to my sanity if I had twins :) I appreciate your success story.
    November 3, 2008 11:37 AM
  • MarthaStuart said...
    I just wanted to say "Thank You" for all your great work on this blog. It has helped me so much as I parent. My son is now 9 weeks old and we have used Babywise since birth. He is the happiest baby who goes down for naps without crying and slept through the night (9-9.5 hours) since 8 weeks old. My sister has three children (ages 3, 2, & 7months) and successfully implemented Babywise with all of her children.My husband and I actually are able to have time together. Thanks so much for your encouragement!
    November 1, 2008 4:43 PM
    Plowmanators said...
    MarthaStuart, Thanks! I am glad you have had success.
    November 3, 2008 11:39 AM

5 comments:

Summer said...

Valerie, i am super impressed you left this debate on your blog. i think some people might have erased such lengthy, critical comments against the very heart of this blog, but you didnt. you did a great job "defending" your position and i actually really enjoyed reading it.
i have no idea if BW is the "only" way, but i will just briefly share that i am a new mom, to one (currently) 19 week daughter. after a week of being home, she began shrieking and wailing to no end. i had read baby wise during my pregnancy and fully remembered the feeding every 3 hr schedule and eat/wake/sleep cycle, but thats about it. we moved around the time of my daughter's birth and i misplaced the book. despite having any guidance to refer to, my daughter began sleeping thru the night for 6-7 hrs per night at around 4-5 weeks. i believe this was largely due to me waking her up to eat thru out the day, as the book discusses. its soooo tempting to let a baby sleep! i would not have done that had it not been for BW, and i am grateful.
however, my naps were total chaos and i did not remember the part about babywise saying crying before naps is normal and the baby should be put down to sleep when its time, with no props, and let the child cry and go to sleep. unfortunately, i did the total opposite and only found your blog as all the comforts i was TRYING to offer my child were not working and she had the hardest time ever sleeping for her daytime naps, and cried quite a bit after 6pm to 10, 11 or 12am at times. thats when i googled babywise (still hadnt found my book) and found this blog. Thank You God!!!! Valerie, because of your encouragement and guidance from your comments and also this blog, my DD began STTN 8-9 hrs at 10-11 weeks and then 11-12 hrs at only 14 weeks old- without even a dreamfeed (at her preference, not mine!) today she has been STTN for a solid 12 hrs for over a month, and my friends and coworkers say "you are so lucky to have an easy baby". yeah, lucky to have found babywise!!! as a first time mom with NO EXPERIENCE AT ALL, if i can do it anyone can, if you stick with it. who knows how many ppl read these old posts but i couldnt help leaving the story of my success with BW in case anyone else like me is reading your whole blog in their spare time!!!
BTW, i do look forward to the later BW books because there truly is a great deal more to raising children than just sleeping thru the night, but raising a rested child has just GOT to make it easier!!
Thank you a million times,
Summer and baby Savannah

Summer said...

Valerie, i am super impressed you left this debate on your blog. i think some people might have erased such lengthy, critical comments against the very heart of this blog, but you didnt. you did a great job "defending" your position and i actually really enjoyed reading it.
i have no idea if BW is the "only" way, but i will just briefly share that i am a new mom, to one (currently) 19 week daughter. after a week of being home, she began shrieking and wailing to no end. i had read baby wise during my pregnancy and fully remembered the feeding every 3 hr schedule and eat/wake/sleep cycle, but thats about it. we moved around the time of my daughter's birth and i misplaced the book. despite not having any guidance to refer to, my daughter began sleeping thru the night for 6-7 hrs per night at around 4-5 weeks. i believe this was largely due to me waking her up to eat thru out the day, as the book discusses. its soooo tempting to let a baby sleep! i would not have done that had it not been for BW, and i am grateful.
however, my naps were total chaos and i did not remember the part about babywise saying crying before naps is normal and the baby should be put down to sleep when its time, with no props, and let the child cry and go to sleep. unfortunately, i did the total opposite and only found your blog as all the comforts i was TRYING to offer my child were not working and she had the hardest time ever sleeping for her daytime naps, and cried quite a bit after 6pm to 10, 11 or 12am at times. thats when i googled babywise (still hadnt found my book) and found this blog. Thank You God!!!! Valerie, because of your encouragement and guidance from your comments and also this blog, my DD began STTN 8-9 hrs at 10-11 weeks and then 11-12 hrs at only 14 weeks old- without even a dreamfeed (at her preference, not mine!) today she has been STTN for a solid 12 hrs for over a month, and my friends and coworkers say "you are so lucky to have an easy baby". yeah, lucky to have found babywise!!! as a first time mom with NO EXPERIENCE AT ALL, if i can do it anyone can, if you stick with it. who knows how many ppl read these old posts but i couldnt help leaving the story of my success with BW in case anyone else like me is reading your whole blog in their spare time!!!
BTW, i do look forward to the later BW books because there truly is a great deal more to raising children than just sleeping thru the night, but raising a rested child has just GOT to make it easier!!
Thank you a million times,
Summer and baby Savannah

Plowmanators said...

Thank you for your comments Summer! Very well said.

Aubrey Jane said...

I have been referencing your blog for months and hadn't gotten around to reading this debate but I really needed to read this discussion today. We started using BW when our son was about 6 weeks old and have found a lot of success with it. He is a very bright, happy baby at 8 months and we adore him! Unfortunately, we got REALLY off track over the Holiday when we were away from our environment and off-schedule for over 2 weeks. We basically did whatever worked to accommodate the various activities, schedules and a house full of 13 people. Now that we are back home, it has been hard getting on track again. I started questioning my resolve but I really didn't feel good about throwing in the towel and forgetting about Baby Wise. Today I re-read a post I did when our son was still a newborn on our success with BW and also came to your blog to find the encouragement that I always find here! BW has worked for our family and although it may take a week or so to get back on track, I know that it is worth it! Thank you again for sacrificing the time you do to provide this resource.
-Aubrey McLaughlin

Plowmanators said...

So glad to help Aubrey!

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