Mambera, without meaning to offend my fellow ECers. I dont read EC boards. I got fed up with the general attitude of most of the posts. None of the EC boards I have read resonated with how EC fits in with our family. (now I havent read the MDC one- I havent had any interest to) But I found that the people who had difficulties either misunderstood the concept or were making there own difficulities. What I mean by that is that it was their approach that was causing them frustrations not the actual EC.
We're pretty hardcore about EC, but that said I dont have any expectations of what it will be. I have said in a previous reply, for me it is about meeting my child's needs for what they tell me they need. NOT about 'potty training'. This is where a lot of new ECers get mixed up I feel. For me it has nothing to do with the actual thing (pee) just like burping my baby has nothing to do milk. I EC because she has a need and is uncomfortable, peeing is what meets that need. I burp her because her belly is hurting and she is uncomfortable and burping meets that need. I dont have some underlying desire to get her gas-free earlier than her peers
The majority of post I have read on every EC forum/group etc I have been on have been about "catches" and "misses". Ie. "We are having so many misses" or similar. That to me has nothing to do with EC. If I expected to have my newborn pee and poop exclusively in the toilet then I would be setting myself up for frustration! Its never gonna happen.
I find that too many ECers on the board see it as failure if the baby pees in their diaper and success if they 'catch' it before. I do not look at EC that way even remotely. I see it as failure if my baby screams for half an hour because I have missed that they are trying to signal me, then if they scream again for half an hour because they're wet and I havent bothered to check (not that those would happen- unless I didnt know about EC, but...) I see it as success if my child is telling me something and I meet that need. Even if that need is that they need milk more than the toilet and so they feed and pee in the meantime and I change the diaper once wet.
Am I making sense?
I hesitate to say you can get EC wrong, but honestly it seems to me a lot of people approach it the wrong way. As 'early potty learning' instead of just listening to your child. Some things I have seen a lot on EC boards which irk me the wrong way are:
-Sitting the child on the potty for more than 30 seconds (especially if they have signalled they dont need to go)- even if they are happy to do this they dont need to go, this is trying to 'catch' a wee on the potty. Its for you, not for them.
-Feeling bad/guilty/disheartened/like a failure if you dont catch every single wee. EC is not about how much or how little they pee on the toilet. Its about *connection* and needs being met.
-*Constantly* offering the potty to the detriment of everything else. Even when they havent signalled, are getting annoyed/upset by the offering and dont need to go. If its consuming your attention to the exclusion of other important things, like playing
, you've gone to far.
I hope I am explaining this properly. But I find even some ECers seem to have the wrong idea about the purpose of EC.
I expected my newborn to pee often in her nappy. So my expectation was met. If I had expected EC to 'catch' them all, I would have been disappointed.
I expect that as my child grows she learns to trust that I will respond to her signals and therefore signal me more clearly. That expectation is met. If I expected her to learn how to signal perfectly at half hour intervals, and to never be distracted, nor signal when it was impossible for me to take her then I would be disappointed.
I expect that she will let me know when she needs to go and respect her negative signals if I misinterpret a cue. If I expected her to pee just because *I* thought she hadnt in a while and needed to, I would have been disappointed.
But there is no winning and losing in EC as I see it. If I am responding to her needs as quickly and diligently as I can then there's really nothing to get wrong. And there's nothing to be disappointed about because I dont have any false expectations about what EC means. But if there is an end goal for me, or if I see my child weeing in a nappy as a failure, or if I start to place any kind of agenda on my child, then I have deviated from EC and moved into early toilet training. And early toilet training is damaging for the child and your relationship with them. EC is the opposite. It strengthens the bond and brings joy to our relationship.