Natural Parenting — Infant Bonding

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Forward Facing Strollers Stress Babies 10

 A recent study confirms what those of use who practice intuitive and attachment parenting already know; forward facing strollers stress babies and inhibits their social and language development. It sometimes makes me wonder about the ability of mainstream culture to empathize at all with babies. According to the CNN report last Friday: " The research found that children not facing the person pushing them were significantly less likely to talk, laugh and interact with their parents. Based on a study of 2,722 parents and children, the study by Dundee University's School of Psychology calls into question the designs of many of the world's most popular baby strollers. "Our experimental study showed that, simply by turning the buggy around, parents' rate of talking to their baby doubled," said developmental psychologist Suzanne Zeedyk, who led the research. Zeedyk's study, published by British charity National Literacy Trust, included an experiment in which 20 babies were wheeled in buggies for a mile, spending half the trip facing their parents and the other half facing away, Parents using face-to-face strollers were more likely to talk to their children, who were less likely to exhibit signs of stress, the study said. "Our data suggests that for many babies today, life in a buggy is emotionally impoverished and possibly stressful," Zeedyk said. "Stressed babies grow into anxious adults." The study found that 62 percent of all children observed traveled in forward-facing prams. For children between the ages of one and two, the figure was 86 percent." We should not need a study to tell us that babies want to be close to their caregivers, and all the items of mainstream parenting are designed make our lives more "convenient" but they also detach us from our children, both physically and emotionally. Attachment parenting advocates already know this and this is precisely why we wear our babies. Eye contact, closeness, conversation and communication leads to happier, healthier babies and parents. Of course, if you are think babywearing is too primitive or might hurt your back, you can always drop $500 or $1,000 on a nice rear facing stroller system like Bugaboo or Orbit. Read more at CNN.com Image Source: Flickr.com

The Motrin Mom Videos 6

For those of you who are not aware of the controversy, Motrin put out an online "ad" which in all likelihood was simply a publicity stunt, which basically mocked babywearing. The ad would appeal to more mainstream parents who have a preference for strollers and a more detached parenting styles, but feel compelled to make an attempt at babywearing because so many celebrities are doing it and many major retailers now carry slings and carriers and somebody, somewhere is wearing a baby every where you look. The fact is, however that babywearing has very real psychological and physiological benefits for both baby and mom and that is precisely why it has grown in popularity, rather than simply being a "trend". It is an offensive ad but as they say, there is no such thing as bad press, right? I know I will never buy a Motrin product. Check out this great post on the Motrin/babywearing issue and then watch the original video and a couple of great comeback videos that started twitter and the blogosphere afire a few days ago: The original Motrin moms anti-babywearing video that caused all the ruckus:

The best comeback of all: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TpqpAGLS2t4

Elimination Communication EC Video 1

This is a great EC video that clearly shows how EC is not only more hygienic and respectful but it is an opportunity for attachment and bonding that you just don't get when simply cleaning up baby's bottom after the fact. EC is also a great opportunity for dad to bond with baby particularly if mom is breastfeeding exclusively as this video clearly shows. Changing diapers is yucky and many dads will shy away from the task but who doesn't want to spend time cuddling and singing to their cooing baby? Yes, it takes time, but time with babies is fleeting and EC gives you a chance to maximize it .

Breastfeeding Celebrity 3

[caption id="attachment_6795" align="alignleft" width="490"]Angelina Jolie Breastfeeding Angelina Jolie Breastfeeding[/caption] We love to see a breastfeeding celebrity because it does an amazing job of normalizing breastfeeding for everyone that sees it. No celebrity is more spotlighted than Angelina Jolie and it is simply delightful that she shared this picture with us and hopefully inspires her legions of followers to toss the artificial baby food and give breastmilk a try.

Nursing Toddlers: How Old Is Too Old? 0

 Nursing babies are a beautiful sight. Many mothers fall in love with their children as they watch them suckle and drift contentedly off to sleep. Babies are happiest while in their mother's arms. While few would argue that nursing babies are adorable, what's to be done with a toddler who stomps their foot in defiance and demands to be nursed right now? How old is too old to be breast fed? Choosing to breastfeed your baby may have been a simple decision but determining when to wean a child can be difficult. When many mothers begin to breastfeed their babies, they assume that weaning will occur naturally. For some breast fed babies, the transition from the breast to the cup comes with a fight. Nursing babies who have a difficult time adjusting to life away from the breast may be objecting to more than just weaning. Some breast fed babies crave the physical closeness of nursing more than breast milk. Determining if this is true for your child can help make the transition easier for both mother and child. Continuing to hold your child during feedings can help reduce the shock of weaning for a sensitive child. While the appropriate age to wean a child is not set in stone, it is culturally acceptable in America to nurse a child for the first twelve months even though it is preposterous to assume that the benefits of breastfeeding suddenly end at 12 months of age.. Once solid foods are introduced into the child's diet and they begin to walk, American customs call for the weaning of the child. Some breast feeding women choose to extend this period of nursing, sometimes until the child leaves for kindergarten. While many of them wean their babies shortly before returning to the workforce, some continue to pump breast milk and bottle feed their babies for several years. The choice really is up to each woman and many choose to ignore social norms. Breast feeding women can even choose to keep their extended breastfeeding a secret by storing breast milk in the refrigerator disguised as cow's milk or formula. When a mother decides to stop breastfeeding, she can feel a sense of loss and sadness as a chapter of her baby's life comes to a close. Sensing this unhappiness in the mother, a child can exhibit fussiness and tantrums during a mother's attempts to stop breastfeeding. Before attempting to stop breastfeeding, a nursing mother must come to grips with any unresolved feelings she may be experiencing about weaning her child. Mothers who choose to formula feed a nursing infant can be in for a fight unless the transition is made slowly. Abruptly springing a formula feed schedule in place of breast feeding sessions can be traumatic to nursing babies. The bottle should be introduced slowly and be filled with 100% breast milk at first. Formula can be slowly added to subsequent bottles of breast milk until the child is completely weaned from the breast. Gradually substitute a breast feeding session with a bottle feeding session over a period of several weeks if possible. Once a child is accustomed to the 100% formula feed schedule, the mother should continue to provide physical interaction with the baby during bottle feeding sessions to continue bonding and provide intense social interaction for the child. Nursing toddlers can transition smoothly to the bottle or sippy cup if a nursing mother is emotionally prepared to wean her baby. Armed with a few facts, mothers can help nursing babies adjust smoothly to being away from the breast. Not all nursing babies will be pleasant to nurse as they grow to be nursing toddlers. Each woman must decide for herself when her child needs to stop breastfeeding. by Mike Selvon About the Author: Breast feeding is an important aspect of your new born baby. Mike Selvon's portal has more information about nursing babies. Visit our portal and leave a comment at our breastfeeding blog. Buy the book: Mothering Your Nursing Toddler[affiliate link] Image Source: http://flickr.com/photos/mikebaird/2257231978/