A comprehensive baby care book features information on treatment of illnesses and infant nutritional requirements, and focuses on a baby's five needs: eating, sleeping, development, health, and comfort.
Another thing that bothers me, and I know some here disagree, but Sears takes the hard-line on nursing, childbirth, attachment parenting and nutrition, but I feel that he wimps out when it comes to forming an opinion on daycare vs. at-home mothers. If you're going to express your opinion on everything else, why not this? (By the way, many mothers who stay at home do it because they believe it's the right thing for their child, and end up scrimping and saving, and NOT because they have loads of cash from their husbands' income!)
This is the bottom line: my advice is actually to buy this book. For me, the medical information was and is invaluable. Unlike a lot of these other reviewers, however, I never felt like a "bad parent" for not doing everything Dr. Sears recommended. I feel extremely secure in my abilities and instincts as a mother, so I really didn't care if I got the feeling that Sears would think I was doing my child a disservice just because he always slept in his own crib. If you can ignore this kind of thing too, I think you will find this book to be a great resource in other ways. One thing he says in this book is absoultely true, even applied to his own advice: if it doesn't feel right, DON'T DO IT! Remember that when you read this book, and don't be intimidated by the AP style if it's not for you.
As a researcher trained to evaluate medical studies, I look carefully at any advice that starts with "Studies show..." Does attachment parenting reduce the probability of developing depression later in life? In fact, we do not fully know for sure what causes most mental illnesses, criminal behavior, or even colic. It is true that a child abused or neglected child may have a higher probability of having emotional problems later in life --- but there is a big difference between neglect and putting your baby in a crib or stroller.
My field is not child development, but judging by the number of books on babies we need more research on how different parenting styles in loving, two-parent homes affect children (schedule vs. no schedule etc). But this is difficult. One of the reasons is that it is hard to do really good research on babies or to 'randomize' babies to one intervention or another, and there are so many factors involved.
The second weakness of this book is that, like many baby books (see also 'The Happiest Baby on the Block),' it portrays childrearing in other countries as being more natural, without backing up this claim.
Are mothers in more 'traditional' cultures more connected to their babies?Read more ›
I'll start with the good
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