Monday, July 09, 2007

For some reason, I can't put a title in the heading box.
Ok...more shout outs from the map! (Just so everyone knows, I basically look at the last thirty (or so) locations and pick a few that are interesting to me.)
Bucuresti, Romania - Awesome. Romania will forever be linked with gymnastics in my mind.
Nokia, Finland - Well, call me ignorant...I thought Nokia was only the name of a phone manufacturer. :) Hi!
Wongun, Australia - Australia has the coolest names for cities! You can't say the names of many towns in Australia without smiling.
Johannesburg, South Africa - One of the places I would love to visit someday,...but, it would entail flying over water and that's just-not-going-to-happen. LOL
Tucson, AZ, United States - Oddly enough, I have never been to Tucson. I've been everywhere else in Arizona, but not Tucson. *passes you an iced beverage*
Limington, ME, United States - Maine. Is it cool there? If so, I'm coming to visit.

Okay, onto tonight's topic: The Ezzo Method. This is more commonly referred to as the "Babywise" method. And, in my opinion, that has to be the most mislabeled method ever. For those who may not know, "Babywise" is the Christian parenting philosophy that a lot of conservative theists adhere to in America. My perspective might be skewed because I think there's a disproportionate number of Ezzo followers in Bakersfield,... your mileage may vary and I recognize that not all theists buy into this.
That said...the basics of Babywise; I think it's best summed up by one of the titles handed to new parents in the program - "Growing Kids God's Way".
Here's Gary Ezzo's person site.

The goal of early infancy is to get that baby to sleep through the night as fast as possible. While the Ezzos have backed off of their early philosophy (that the baby was manipulating the parent by crying at night and should be taught it's place), they still maintain that most "attached" parents, particularly those who co-sleep or breastfeed, are "teaching their child to suppress a cry and not evaluate the cry." I find this a bit silly; because, in early infancy, the baby's needs are really not that complicated: hold me, feed me, change me, love me. If I respond to my infant's needs, I don't think it's "giving in" to them. But, the Ezzos maintain that responding to a baby's nighttime cries is a bad habit.

"Here is the good news. Babies under the parent-directed feeding plan tend to cry less in the long run than babies who are demand fed. Why? Infants on a routine grow confident and secure in that routine. Their lives have order, and they learn the lesson of flexibility early in life. They settle into regular and predictable rhythms of activity, develop greater tolerance to frustration, and learn to use modes of communication other than crying. These babies expresses themselves with happy sounds such as cooing and by excited body motions such as bouncing. These are additional modes of “baby talk.”
The what? The "parent directed feeding plan"? I'm sorry. That sounds a bit too much like a diet. I just don't see a six week old hatching a plan to screw mommy by crying when he's hungry. I think the six week old cries because they are hungry and that's their means of communication. OF COURSE they don't cry as often, it's simple psychology: if you ignore a child's request for help, they will eventually stop communicating.
Ugh...just browse around the site if you get bored. There's some scary justification for neglect.
This site lists the concerns that professionals have with the Ezzo method.
Here's a critique on "Growing Kids God's Way", specifically.
This might help you guys realize where John (in the comments of the last few entries) is coming from.

Today is P-Daddy and my anniversary. :) Wooohooo.

54 comments:

Poodles Rule said...

Happy anniversary.

Maggie Rosethorn said...

Happy, happy anniversary Pmomma, and many more to you and Pdaddy.

I parented my children the way you do, and now they are almost adults (19 and 17) they are fun, independent, intelligent people who love me and their father, do very well in school (without any drugs, BTW). I very rarely spanked, and usually let the consequences of the deed be the punishment. So my children have what is important, self-imposed discipline, and will be confident, self-supporting adults in the world.

Hugs to you and all the possums!

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

Happy Annivesary - ours was on the 4th (easy to remember). Though she has already forgotten once ;)

Jess Wundrun said...

When my 6 yo was a toddler I checked out a parenting book from the library that advocated spanking.

It said that spanking must not be done in the heat of anger, but postponed until later when the parent was calm.

I tried this method just once. Somehow waiting to beat your child until you are calm felt a little sick.

Turns out the author of said book was one Dr. James Dobson.

The day care lady told me to throw away my books. I did. (I had already read Babywise. Feh.)

Janet said...

Happy Anniversary!

The Music Won't Stop said...

Happy Anniversary!

An old friend of mine gave me "Growing Kids Gods Way" when my son was born. My husband and I both agreed it was pretty sickening, and when I brought it up to my OB/GYN at one of our final appointments, she went so far as to say it was borderline abuse and potentially dangerous.

We finished the book anyway, and I compared what it said to what my doctors and the pediatricians and countless infant and child-development books recommended (I was thousands of miles from any family and had no close friends with children at the time, so books were what I had to rely on). Much of what the Ezzos suggest is horribly ignorant and I'm frightened that people actually accept their methods.

Even my conservative relatives found the Babywise method unnecessary and cruel.

AlisonM said...

Happy Anniversary, and many more!

I got a laugh right here: Infants on a routine grow confident and secure in that routine. Their lives have order, and they learn the lesson of flexibility early in life.

Inflexibility teaches them flexibility? Nice way of saying that kids learn to obey like little slaves from day one.

I took bits and pieces from T. Berry Brazelton and Penelope Leach and mixed it up with advice from other parents with happy kids and experimentation. I did have to let my oldest cry herself back to sleep for a few days, because she'd gotten into the habit of nursing to fall asleep, and I just couldn't function like that, getting up every hour or two. It killed me the first night, not so much the second, the third the crying lasted a minute at the most. The kid sleeps like a log now at 14. Other than that, I planned around the kids' schedule - no shopping during naptime, for example. They learned enough about compromise without having to deal with hunger, exhaustion, or lack of affection. Sheesh.

I never spanked, either, and I've never had to discipline in public (except for one supermarket incident which resulted in Daddy taking her out to the car to wait) or embarass the kids. They've turned out to be fine young ladies. Now, this is not to say that I haven't wanted to do those things to OTHER peoples' kids on occasion. Heh.

Riker said...

Happy Anniversary!

Oh, And Nokia is a Finnish phone company. Watch 'Transformers' if you don't believe me :-p

I plan to raise my children on the Ouzo Method - when their crying gets to be too much for me to handle, I drink ouzo until I lighten up a bit. When they get older, they can have some too :)

Russ said...

Happy Anniversary, PMomma.

On my sister-in-law's anniversary a couple of weeks ago, I was honored to preside over the bride and groom's 100 percent supernatural-free renewal of vows. The ceremony was conducted on an arched wooden bridge with family and friends witnessing from the water's edge. My daughter played Vivaldi's Four seasons and Jesu Joy of Man's Desiring on flute, delighting everyone, and blue skies and a gentle sun softly crooned a soothing duet.

But, lest we be left with the mistaken impression that we can press even the tiniest sliver of mankind and nature into solemn service for the ten minutes of our choosing, one young nephew threw rocks at fish while he dodged the outstretched arms of would-be restrainers; the wedding party twice had to make way for a pair of bulky playful labs; and, a redtailed hawk, dangling its still-writhing rabbit at us, stole the show as it reminded us that we were not the only ones preparing for a feast. As I said, 100 percent supernatural-free.

To me it was a deeply satisfying moment in time where life playing itself out before us turned what we had hoped for into so much more. On this special day of yours, PMomma, that is my wish for you and PDaddy.

My sister-in-law actually made me think of you, PMomma, in a recent follow-up to the ceremony. She is a lover of nature and she relishes her sense of awe and wonder as she takes it in. She so enjoyed and was so moved by the words from the ceremony - she allowed me an entirely free hand in that matter, and so she had not heard them in advance - that she bought a poster and hired a calligrapher to blend the words with the magnificent setting depicted. She showed me the finished poster this past weekend. I was reminded of you because the poster featured the California Redwoods. A bit of the text she particularly liked was highlighted. It said: let every act of affection, however, subtle, a hug, a kiss, a supportive hand on the shoulder, be a symbolic reaffirmation of the commitment vowed here.

All the best on your special day, PMomma.

Berlzebub said...

Happy anniversary, P-Momma!

elianara said...

Happy Anniversary!

And yes, Nokia is a town in Finland, it is also a rubber boot manufacturer, and a mobile phone company :)

Hei!

ESCartist said...

I had never heard of babywise (My wife and I are still a few years from that leap), but your post inspired me to do a little research.

http://www.thecrashpad.com/blogs/index.php/jenn?cat=26

Scroll down a bit to the March 16th entry.

It appears that Mr. Perfect Children himself has been utterly disowned and cut off by both of his children, at least according to this blog...

Might be something amusing to bring up next time one of the babywise mothers gets into self-righteous mode.

Bob Kowalski said...

The Ezzo Method of Infant Torture illustrates one of the Dawkins' justifications for blaming moderates for a religion's wackos: Call some piece of nincompoopery "Biblical" and many Christians will believe it. And the ones that know better will be unsure of themselves and keep quiet. Or maybe they're afraid of the crazies.

The fundamental imperative of loving childrearing is to give the child a sense of self-confidence. This means helping them to learn to find a place of love and safety within themselves. Following this thought, Christians look to God and Jesus as their source of comfort, safety, self-confidence, etc., meaning from outside themselves.

The Ezzo Method almost guarantees needy, uncertain, fearful, authority-dependent personalities. Children need love, attention, the feeling that their parents are devoted to them. Consequently, if they don't get the love & security that they need, they will crassly manipulate their surroundings. Parents qua parents have their own needs as well. The Ezzo method is for the convenience of the parents. Especially parents who feel their authority is dependent on their ability to punish.

So, yeah I guess you can see how it would seem "obvious" to people who aren't used to thinking very hard that infants manipulate. But so do parents. Calling Ezzo "Biblical" just glosses over the unequal distribution of power in the parent child relationship.

Ryan said...

Happy Anniversary

Ginny said...

First off, happy anniversary! Russell and I had one only days ago.

Second, this book is horrid. I first heard about it when I was pregnant with Ben and on a mothering message board. The book is nothing more than child abuse lessons.

Ginny said...

Happy Annivesary - ours was on the 4th

Sean ours was on the 5th lol.

mama_nomad said...

ezzo=barf-o-rama

this is so timely b/c i just had a great friend visit who informed me that they just abandoned AP parenting completey b/c she was sick of the whinng and now are doing some smack-training ("but never in anger!"--seems like a very very fine line to cross to me.) it totally rocked my boat b/c she is one of these people who are very informed and is so f*ing confident and is *usually* right. so here her kids are all polite and full of fear and mine were all worked up and whiney. i was at a loss. i was like "well good luck to ya!" i don't doubt these physical-punishment-based methods get great short-term results, it's the long-term relationship (with the parent and with the self) that i fear suffers.

and at what point to children get to be treated like equals? if my husband smacked me b/c i didn't clean the bedroom, you can bet i'd be resentful, humiliated, and downright POed. where is the love, trust, and patience? do we really suck this bad at communication and relationships to have to "train 'em when they're young" to just avoid feelings altogether? *shiver*


happy day to you--so glad i found your blog!

Saurian200 said...

P-Momma,

Happy Anniversary.

Sorry, I ran out of exclamation points and won't get any more untill next month. ;)

Ugh...just browse around the site if you get bored.

No thanks. I've read a lot of cheesy horror stories recently and I'd like to try something different.

john said...

ow can you criticize the Ezzo method when you do not follow it? I'm frustrated by your lack of tolerance for difference. Ezzo is working fine for Ari and us. Spanking can be done with love. If Amy gets out of line we deal with her by walking away and then coming back to explain that she is being spanked because she did something wrong and needs punishing. We never hit out of anger. The Ezzos go out of their way to say that you should not spank when angry. The Ezzos are getting rotten feedback because some people take the book too seriously. Why are you against it? You talk a lot of stuff for having not much to say.

Ariel and Owen are close to the same age and we both know two year olds need spanks occasionally. It is effective and gets their attention. Can you talk a two year old out of running into the parking lot? Do you do that before or after they get hit by a car? A swat on the butt will stick with them.

May God shine upon you on your anniversary and may his light find a way to your heart. Does your husband know about this blog? You never say.
JOHN R

john said...

I don't want my daughter called Amy anymore. Call her by her name.

Atheist in a mini van. said...

Let's see if I can knock out multiple responses in a half-hour (when the food we ordered in is supposed to come. YUM!).

Thank you to those who wished us a Happy Anniversary. :) *warm fuzzies*


Maggie said...I very rarely spanked, and usually let the consequences of the deed be the punishment. So my children have what is important, self-imposed discipline, and will be confident, self-supporting adults in the world.

Word.


Jess said...I tried this method just once. Somehow waiting to beat your child until you are calm felt a little sick.

*nods furiously in agreement*

Alison said...Inflexibility teaches them flexibility? Nice way of saying that kids learn to obey like little slaves from day one.

That was my thought, too.


Riker said...I plan to raise my children on the Ouzo Method - when their crying gets to be too much for me to handle, I drink ouzo until I lighten up a bit. When they get older, they can have some too :)
OPA! Hehehehe. Love it.


Russ said...To me it was a deeply satisfying moment in time where life playing itself out before us turned what we had hoped for into so much more. On this special day of yours, PMomma, that is my wish for you and PDaddy
Awww. Thanks, Russ. And, as usual, your post is amazing and inspiring.


It appears that Mr. Perfect Children himself has been utterly disowned and cut off by both of his children, at least according to this blog...
Very interesting!


Bob said...The Ezzo Method of Infant Torture illustrates one of the Dawkins' justifications for blaming moderates for a religion's wackos...
LOL... even funnier when you take the first letter of each and get an acronym of EMIT.


Ginny said...Second, this book is horrid. I first heard about it when I was pregnant with Ben and on a mothering message board. The book is nothing more than child abuse lessons.
Lesson 1: Ignoring your baby.

Mama Nomad said... if my husband smacked me b/c i didn't clean the bedroom, you can bet i'd be resentful, humiliated, and downright POed.
Have you not seen the newest trend in Christian marriage? Oh yes. There's a whole "philosophy" about how women/wives need to be spanked by their husbands to remember that they should be submissive. Ooooh. That's my next blog topic.

And...now on to John.
(H)ow can you criticize the Ezzo method when you do not follow it? I'm frustrated by your lack of tolerance for difference.
I can criticize it in much the same way I criticize those who stand behind torturing innocent civilians during a battle. You don't have to participate in the torture to know that it's wrong.

Ezzo is working fine for Ari and us. Spanking can be done with love.
Maybe between two consenting adults with a safe word,...
Hitting your children is abuse.

If Amy gets out of line we deal with her by walking away and then coming back to explain that she is being spanked because she did something wrong and needs punishing.
For someone who claims to be a psychologist, you're really friggin' ignorant about child development. Two year olds are still pretty self-oriented. And, their sense of object permanence, with regard to conceptual emotions (anger, fear, etc.,.) is still developing. Two year olds rarely carry a grudge because they're not emotionally mature enough to do so. So, when you go off to "calm down", your daughter is very likely forgetting about the incident. You come back into the room and spank her. I guarantee you that, in her head, she's going, "What the fuck just happened? I was just playing with my toys and "WHACK!""

And, btw...how long is long enough to calm down?


We never hit out of anger.
Most people don't hit their children out of anger. They hit their children out of frustration and loss of control.

The Ezzos are getting rotten feedback because some people take the book too seriously. Why are you against it? You talk a lot of stuff for having not much to say.

I'm against it because it's horrible (in my opinion) to institute practices that teach a child to ignore their bodies cues. It's equally horrible to tell mothers, especially new mothers, that they should ignore their instincts and that they'll be failures if they dare challenge the Great and Powerful Ezzo.

Ariel and Owen are close to the same age and we both know two year olds need spanks occasionally.
No. We most certainly do not share that knowledge.

It is effective and gets their attention. Can you talk a two year old out of running into the parking lot? Do you do that before or after they get hit by a car? A swat on the butt will stick with them.

You know what else is effective? Showing them that you love them so much that you want to protect them from harm. I can't talk a two year old out of being impulsive, but I *can* take every necessary precaution to make sure that that child does not run into the middle of the parking lot until they are old enough to understand the consequences of being squashed. I can make sure that I'm holding their hand or have them securely in a stroller. I can bring the consequence to their level and say, "When cars hit people it gives people boo boos. It would take lots of bandaids to fix them."

Children are not stupid. All of my kids can look at my face and deduce that I'm upset or happy, fearful or comfortable, angry or at peace...etc.,. Interestingly enough, I rarely have to even raise my voice with the little ones. And, when I do shout a loud and effective - "NO! We DO NOT do that.", they tend to listen. If you yell or spank all of the time, why would you imagine that being spanked and yelled at would be any more impressive than day-to-day spankings and scoldings?

I don't want my daughter called Amy anymore. Call her by her name.
I was trying to protect her identity a bit. My apologies.

And, yes...the hubby knows about the blog. Maybe he'll spank me for it later? Mwa ha ha!

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

Oooh Johny boy.


Does PMomma hide this blog from her husband? Does she dare to do something without consulting him? Does she fail to ask permission of him?

Why don't you rack off to Saudi Arabia where they like your kind of parenting and treatment of women.

Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

First and foremost: Happy Anniversary!
May you have many more.

The Ezzo method: There are a lot of really nasty practices--like wiping out whole cities, impaling people who worship Baal Peor, etc.--that are in the Bible.

However, there is no discussion of how a mother should care for her infant anywhere in the Bible.
The Ezzo's are making this up--or stretching because they are actually ignorant of the culture in the Bronze Age middle east.

Context is everything.

And I really hope these people do not run into any worshippers of Baal Peor--it could get really, really ugly.

By the way--my 22 year old was fed on demand, and slept through the night at 4 months, when she discovered the joy of grabbing mashed potatoes off my plate. She was never spanked. We decided that she must be hungry and started her on cereal and applesauce.

And she is a bright, joyous, self-disciplined young woman who will be graduating with honors in Chemistry. One semester early.

I guess my parenting techniques--a mix of advice from my mother, Jane Goodall and Jean Leidloff (the Continuum Concept) did not hurt her a bit.

And neither did early and comprehensive sex education. And continuous instruction in the theory of evolution.

Maybe she's just a good kid ;)

The Music Won't Stop said...

"Can you talk a two year old out of running into the parking lot?"


Does no one hold their kids' hands anymore!? Good grief.

Atheist in a mini van. said...

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...
Oooh Johny boy.


Does PMomma hide this blog from her husband? Does she dare to do something without consulting him? Does she fail to ask permission of him?

Why don't you rack off to Saudi Arabia where they like your kind of parenting and treatment of women.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!! Oh come on, Sean. You know that even the Saudis are going- "he got his degree from where?"

What is it with the screwed up male dominant, passive-agressive, Christian bullshit? John, does your wife REALLY have to get permission to live?

elisheva said...Maybe she's just a good kid ;)
Without God? Never. ;)
And... I have to say, I always found it to be hysterical when my kids just "decided" to swipe food off my plate (to a certain age...after one it was kind of rude). I'd be nursing them and a little hand would just reach out and grab some taters'. And, it's always comedic to watch a baby try to get the food to their mouth. LOL Ahhhhh...good times, good memories. You're not helping my lust for all things baby.

Cogito said...

Happy Anniversary!

And thanks for sticking it to the Ezzos - it just can't be done often or loud enough. While I may disagree with many choices people make as parents, I have to say few things actually make me feel like vomiting like Babywise does.

Just a couple things - a new baby's stomach is the size of a marble! You cannot withhold feeding for hours at a time - it is starvation, pure and simple. Now, some babies may have bigger or stretchier stomachs, or naturally get into a routine similar to the Babywise suggestions. That's no reason to recommend the method! Not to mention it is frequently death to breastfeeding, which requires cued feeding and response to cluster feedings that accompany growth spurts, in order to build supply.

And I bet the Ezzo'd babies do stop crying much - because they learn it is futile, no one cares about their needs, and no one will come help them. That hardly seems a healthy psychological foundation.

Also, note that in some cultures, babies are not known to really cry, because they are constantly held/worn/slept with, and their mothers are attuned to their needs so that mild fussing is all the escalation the baby needs to do.

This seems much more humane, and I think it is also in tune with what mothers feel intuitively. Moms don't seem to feel internal discomfort when they pick up their babies, nurse them, love on them, and help them get to sleep. But I frequently hear/read about mothers agonizing over letting their babies cry "because the experts say so."

Finally, it really puts my panties in a bunch when people justify spanking by invoking their own parental laziness: "I HAVE to spank her, so she knows not to run into traffic!!!" No, you as a parent have the responsibility to control the environment of your children, stay near them, and observe them closely, until they have the neurological capability to assess risk and control their impulses. That certainly isn't true at two years of age. But I guess it's easier to smack them and yell at them for running into the street than to invest the effort to prevent it happening like the adult you're supposed to be!

Anonymous said...

Lynn's Daughter here...not anonymous, I promise! This reminds me also of "Dare to disclipline," in which Dobson exorted good christians to never, ever, spare the rod. Because, kids should never feel that they are too important, right?

Milo Johnson said...

I've been having the same problem. Click around on the word "Title:" next to the title field and eventually you'll find a "sweet spot" that gives you a cursor there. Sometimes it doesn't seem to work until you fill in the text box for the post itself.

AlisonM said...

Of course, if the biblical instruction to spare the rod, spoil the child doesn't work out, you can always take them to the gates of the city and stone them to death.

You know, you'd think that children of non-spanking parents would have been killed by one thing or another before they reached puberty, to judge by John and his ilk. No, John, you hold their hands. You take advantage of teaching moments (a squished squirrel in the road really registers on a young mind as a reason to stay away from the street, I found.) You teach them the consequences. You talk to them, read to them, snuggle them, and spend more time reinforcing good behavior and habits than punishing bad ones. Then they learn to behave because there are more benefits from that than from misbehaving. Plus, they don't fear you, so when they enter an age where they're confronted with moral dilemmas, they come to you to talk, instead of hiding from you. I know that's what mine do. I don't have a moment of worry that my kids will be sneaking out of the house or doing anything dangerous or illegal or having sex in cars, etc., because they're not afraid of me and know I will love them and help them no matter what. I also know that we've had many heart-to-heart talks, and our consequence-based discipline has taught them to think beyond the moment and consider effects on themselves and others, which has given them a far more concrete moral sense than "My dad would KILL me if I did that!"

john said...

I can criticize it in much the same way I criticize those who stand behind torturing innocent civilians during a battle. You don't have to participate in the torture to know that it's wrong.

Babywise is not torture. I have the psychological definition of torture in front of me and this does not apply. Ari is not hurt by our spanks. I think she will thank us later for caring enough to discipline her.

Hitting your children is abuse.

No it isn't. Hitting and spanking are not the same.

For someone who claims to be a psychologist, you're really friggin' ignorant about child development.
Are you attacking my character and credentials? I took two classes on child and family development. I am a parent.

Two year olds are still pretty self-oriented.
Yes they are and that is against God. Even the smallest baby should be taught that they need to put God first in their lives and delay gratification. Selfishness is destroying our world.

And, btw...how long is long enough to calm down?
When God comes to your heart you will know.

I'm against it because it's horrible (in my opinion) to institute practices that teach a child to ignore their bodies cues.
You are saying that we should allow our kids to indulge their every desire. If they want to masturbate in public that's okay? What if it's their desire to hit another child? Little children are bad at control and they need adults to help them learn self control.

Possummomma you are guided by the flesh. Darwin is your god. Let your kids swing from trees and do as their body desires. After all self control is abuse, right? I don't know why I'm wasting my time on you.

Jess Wundrun said...

two year olds are against god? then I'm for two year olds!!!

The Music Won't Stop said...

"Are you attacking my character and credentials? I took two classes on child and family development. I am a parent."


What credentials? Just because you say it's so doesn't make it so. Saying you don't have to prove anything is a very popular and overused cop-out for cowards blowing smoke.

And only two? I had to take more than that to get my ART degree, and more on top when I got my teaching certification.

Chris said...

I took 3 classes on psychology while earning my degree. From a real university, I might add, not a diploma mill. I guess that makes me more an expert in psychology than you are on child and family development.

Oh yeah, and I took 3 classes in anthropology, as well. I guess that makes me an an expert in that field, too.

Oh, and 5 classes in art. I'm an artist!

Oh wait, now I remember...a couple classes is just enough time to cover the introduction to a particular field. An expert, it does not make. Not even close. I can look at freshmen in my field, Embedded Systems Engineering, who have already taken up to 12 classes on the subject. They know nothing, compared to any of us graduating seniors. And I'm just going for my BS, which is just the beginning for anybody in a field like psychology.

TulipGrrl said...

Happy anniversary! Always a joy to mark milestones in our lives. . .

I've got to say, I was completely cracking up at the Ouzo vs. Ezzo methods. *eg*


I do want to point out (respectfully, to the athiests/agnostics amongst us) that the most vocal and consistent critics of Gary Ezzo, Babywise, and his parenting "philosophies" have been Christians. His teachings have been pointed out to be faulty, Biblically. Ezzo has faced church discipline for both his teachings and his failure to be accountable for his words and actions. And, his BW "parent directed feeding" has been criticized for not being consistent with God's creation and what we know about infant growth, development, breastfeeding, sleep, etc.

(Yup, this is a pet issue of mine. . .)

ESCartist said...

tulipgirl -
out of curiosity, are you the same from tulipgirl.com? (A site I came across in my research).

I certainly had noticed that some of the most poignant and powerful criticism of the ezzo method was coming from communities with faith.

John-
Your assertion that 'two classes on child and family development' somehow qualifies as anything but the most minimal of qualifications is a testament to your utter lack of concept of 'expertise', not that you possess any. I have degrees in Neuro and Computer science, and still I had to take no fewer than three university-level full semester courses on child development (both biological and psychological), simply as a 'related discipline', and that is simply par the course for someone with my education.

The Ezzo method is like driving with children on the dashboard of your car. Certainly some, if not many children will survive, but that makes it no less insane/inhumane. It flies against both every rational study _AND_ every emotional instinct human's possess- Undermining millions of years of Human instinct in the name of a _very_ poorly scripturally supported, male-created theoretical conception on the nature of the parent-child relationship. Furthermore, for evidence of the strained parent-child relationship it creates, look no further than the man who created it, whose 'humble and respectful' children have since disowned and utterly cut him out of their life. Is this the relationship you want with your children?

If your going to take advice on parenting, at least take it from an individual who has managed an outcome that you would like to emulate.

(And, may I say, if your dignity and self-worth in life is dictated by your need to assert your authority over the smallest and most vulnerable members in it, that _REALLY_ doesn't portray your own sense of self-respect and authority in a particularly positive light.

Anyway, rant mode off.

(oh, and P-momma- sorry I missed it, but happy anniversary!).

-Scott (San Mateo, CA.)

Aerik said...

HAPPY FRIGGIN ANNIVERSARY!

Poodles Rule said...

John said:
Possummomma you are guided by the flesh. Darwin is your god. Let your kids swing from trees and do as their body desires. After all self control is abuse, right? I don't know why I'm wasting my time on you.

I don't either, and not to speak for PM, but I be she doesn't either. Perhaps this is good-bye?!
Personally I think you are here not because you think you can change anyones opinions or minds, but because you are questioning your beliefs. That's ok, one day you just might see the truth.

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

John,

I took 7 classes in Psychology froma reputable University and I'm not a Psychologist's Asshole if you'll pardon the expression.

To gain admittance as a practicing psycologist required a double major plus a masters ie 6 years of full time training with a majority of classes in Psychology.

You were either:

a)Lying and big noting yourself
b)Ignorant
c)Sadly misled by your "educational" facility.

According to your bible, isn't a) a sin.

So don't cast any more stones at PM, you have a huge freakin' log in your eye and you might hit something else.

floridamom said...

Pmomma said:
Two year olds are still pretty self-oriented.

And John replied:
Yes they are and that is against God. Even the smallest baby should be taught that they need to put God first in their lives

See John? It's true we are all born atheists. We have to be indoctrinated into the idea of an invisible sky daddy.

rachel said...

I feel compelled to comment, even though it may be an unpopular opinion.

I have read Ezzo's "On Becoming Babywise" (but not the "Growing Kids..."). My first daughter was terribly difficult as a newborn; cried constantly, slept in fits and spurts, never slept more than a half hour at a time during the night. She'd be awake crying and crying at night and no amount of nursing, rocking, carrying would calm her. It was a miserable and exhausting first few months and I began to question whether I had made the right decision to become a parent at all!

I don't remember exactly how, but she ended up falling into a certain nursing/sleeping schedule and withing a day or two began to sleep at night - 8 hours of glorious sleep!!! After the first night of this, I was determined to replicate the day before to hopefully reproduce the same results at night and it worked... from then on.

A short time after, someone gave me a copy of Ezzo's "Babywise" and I read it from cover to cover, amazed at how my infant was in fact sleeping, apparently as a result of following the routines suggested. I didn't follow any rigid feeding schedules, but did follow the nurse/wake/sleep routines with much success. Because of this success, I used the same routines with my younger two children, too. They've always been terrific nappers and never resisted naps or bedtimes - although the littler ones continued to nurse at least once at night well beyond a year of age (I could live with that).

I remember very little reference to xianity in the book, and I remember it being very pro-breastfeeding. I liked the structure and predictability, and so did my daughter - she still (at age 7) does better with routines. That's her personality. So I think there is something to be said for the structure and predictabilty of Ezzo's methods. It can be helpful when used reasonably. I also really agree with the idea of teaching delayed gratification to children (not newborns!).

I think the important thing to remember is that parents' must use common sense in parenting children of any age. Read all you can, but take pieces from each text and from your experiences that work for you and your kids. What works for my baby might not work for another and vice versa. Some kids - and moms - are really laid back and thrive on flexibilty, some may need the routines and predictability.

That's my opinion of Ezzo. I still think John's a kook.

John R said...

"God, I know that I am a sinner. I know that I deserve the consequences of my sin. However, I am trusting in Jesus Christ as my Savior. I believe that His death and resurrection provided for my forgiveness. I trust in Jesus and Jesus alone as my personal Lord and Savior. Thank you Lord, for saving me and forgiving me! Amen!"
Say this.

Saurian200 said...

John,

"God, I know that I am a sinner. I know that I deserve the consequences of my sin. However, I am trusting in Jesus Christ as my Savior. I believe that His death and resurrection provided for my forgiveness. I trust in Jesus and Jesus alone as my personal Lord and Savior. Thank you Lord, for saving me and forgiving me! Amen!"
Say this.


I didn't hear a "please". Who do you think you are barking orders like that.For someone who claims to be humble you really aren't.

Now about this order you gave. Does God want us to actually mean it when we say it? If that's the case neither I nor most of the people here could do that becasue that isn't what we believe. Untill we are given reason to believe these things we can't say that.

Or, does God just want us to say regardless? You know, does he want us to lie?

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

John say this:

I reject god. I have wasted much of my life in prayer and the lecturing of others on being a good christian. I resolve now to do good works and serve others without appealing to a figment of my imagination.

erin said...

I find Babywise to be utterly frightening. My doula told stories of moms who would call her sobbing because the baby wouldn't stop crying, yet when she'd come over and suggest feeding, they'd look at the clock and tell her that, no, it wasn't time yet.
Yet despite the fact that Babywise basically advocates starving your newborn, I can't count the number of people who tried to recommend it to us when I was pregnant. Amazingly enough, by following my own slightly modified version of attachment parenting, Luke started sleeping through the night at 2 months, set his OWN schedule much like one recommended by Ezzo (only gentler), and is happy, healthy, and growing like a weed. Funny what a little love and nurturing will do for a child.

erin said...

Oh, and happy late anniversary!

TulipGrrl said...

Scott, yup, one and the same.

Rachel, most people who understand child development to advocate rhythym and routine for children. (Think Waldorf, Montessori, etc. . .) It sounds as if with your little ones, you observed their routine first, and found Ezzo later. *grin*

One of the things I find disturbing about Ezzo's teachings is the hyper-focus on artificial timing of eating and sleeping and ignoring integrating rhythm in the rest of life. (Not saying you do that--but Ezzo's books do. . .)

And, I must strongly protest that Babywise is pro-breastfeeding. It is rife with breastfeeding misinformation, it is common for BF /BW moms to lose their milk supply, especially around 4-6 months, and it elevates the eat/wake/sleep cycle over breastfeeding. The test for milk supply? Completely faulty. It's good that you didn't have breastfeeding problems linked to BW. However, in general, BW is not a book that is supportive of successful breastfeeding. Even Ezzo acknowledges that.

ESCartist said...

Ok John, I'll bite:

God, I know I am a sinner and I know I deserve the consequences of my sin. However, I will trust in Jesus Christ as my Savior. I believe that His death and resurrection provided for my forgiveness. I will trust in Jesus alone as my personal Lord and Savior. Thank you Lord, for saving and forgiving me! Amen!

I'll see your sinners prayer and raise you the Lord's Prayer:

Our father who art in heaven, hollowed by thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory forever and ever, amen.

Both Typed out, and hell, I even spoke them for the fun of it...

*crickets chirp*

You see John, those feels you get when you say those words is not shared by the rest of us. I see them for what they are, words and passage interesting for their historical context and impact on society...

(Your not the first to have me say the sinners prayer, and I always oblige... I find the act somewhat amusing and silly- like a nursery rhyme).

The amusing thing in your case is that you fail at even the most basic followings taught by the namesake of your faith. You buy into babywise not because it has any basis an scripture, but because it appeals to your proud, chauvinistic view of what scripture "should" say, not the words actually printed in the book.

I have many friends of deep faith whom I respect, because at the very least, they do their damnedest to hold the scripture of Christ to the letter... they understand that they accept it on faith alone, and understand that part of accepting it is truly living by it, rather than merely picking and choosing the pieces they like and pretending the rest doesn't apply. These are people who live humble lives as teachers, cooks in soup-kitchens... who dedicate any income that does not directly pay for their room and board to giving to the homeless and less fortunate, _KNOWING_ that their money is being squandered and wasted- but not caring, for they feel it is their place to love these strangers unconditionally.

These are the members of faith who I cannot help but admire and respect, despite our differing beliefs. You... you are just a child in a mans body, using your pharisitical holy pride as a crutch (perhaps to overcome damage done to you by authoritarian parents, who knows;)) You are not a Christian, in the Christ sense of the word. You are a hypocritical pharisee, prideful and angry _despite_ proclaiming a doctrine which demands the opposite.

And no warm feeling or brainwashed rationalization can change that.

Atheist in a mini van. said...

Nicely put, Escartist. :)
John has decided that e-mailing me is a better route. He claims that he won't be commenting anymore. We'll see, I suppose.

Saurian200 said...

P-Momma,

John has decided that e-mailing me is a better route. He claims that he won't be commenting anymore.

So much for wanting to help us poor miserable sinners.

I think this storngly supports my belief that he wasn't trying to help anyone, he just wanted to prop up his own ego.

Sean the Blogonaut F.C.D. said...

PM,

I will miss the gutless wonder.

Chris said...

Don't worry. I've seen this happen a number of times on other blogs / forums on this subject. The fundy-of-the-moment gets tired of direct question avoidance and repeated requests for backing up claims, and says they'll leave. A few days later, though, they come back for whatever reason, changing nothing in how they act.

Queen Pickle said...

@ John:
Why are you posting here or emailing anyway? To save our souls? You gave it a shot; it's obvious no one here is interested. Cut your losses and move on.

Right now, you could be helping at a soup kitchen. You could be picking up litter along the side of the road. You could be volunteering at any number of organizations to help the underpriveledged. You don't even need to 'witness' to anyone, just lead by example. But no, I guess it's easier to sit in the comfort of a chair in your home, office or the local library and harrass those that have no interest in what you have to offer. We ain't buyin'.

And I know I've said this before, but it bears repeating: John, God called. He wants to see you in his office. He says you are making him look bad.

alaskamommy said...

My husband and I are Christians, so I know that you and I have a different approach to life on alot of things, but let me say I think that we agree about Ezzo. My daughter is 3 and my son 17 months, and well meaning folks said we needed to read Babywise before our daughter was born. Yeah, I read it. After seeing my sister and sister in law deal very well with co-sleeping, nursing on demand, etc and having great kids and being very loving, I thought, wow this Ezzo guy has a few things wrong here. Turns out he has only an honorary degree, not a real one, and his wife is a nurse. Um, yeah, like 3 decades ago! Some friends really follow this book/way of life, and don't seem super happy as parents. Sorry, we really like it when our kids want to snuggle in bed! It's not wrong!!! I read another blog mom's litmus test for parenting - it needs to be universally true, eg do all babies around the world get put on a schedule? no. Do all babies "have" to have their own place for sleeping? No. Do all babies have to stay awake after feeding? Uh, NO! Anyhow, I'd also like to say that just b/c Ezzo calls it "God's Way" does not mean that all Christians believe that title. God has wonderful things in the Bible to say about parenting, and how He relates to us as a loving father, and the Bible even talks about breast feeding and co sleeping. GASP!