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Workshop #5 - Baby’s Early Years; Crying, Night Waking, and Attachment Parenting - Page 2

post #21 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by ricemom3 View Post
Arwyn, WOW, your postapoluza was incredible.
I feel that I've gleened some much wisdom just from your posts.
Aww, thanks! I'm really just repeating wisdom I've picked up from hanging out here (and with some amazing parents in real life, and reading approximately a thousand books ) over the past several years. I feel really lucky I'm able to share it again now.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ricemom3 View Post
I do have a question about how to help my teenagers understand better what they should do to really connect with their little brother (btw, he's 13 mos). They will both be leaving the house in the next few years and I want to make sure he has connections and memories with them. DS#1 seems more intuned with ds#2, I think it's because he knows he will be graduating this year and going to college, so he wants to get as much time in as possible. I just want to suggest things to help that.
Babywearing! Like I said, anyone can babywear, and it's such a huge bonding experience. Have your teens wear your little one, especially when they're doing interesting things like working in the yard, going to a store you normally don't shop at, going to places you normally don't go (skate parks? not while skating, obviously, but to watch), or even just walking around the neighbourhood or doing chores. Whether on the back, the front, or hip, babywearing provides such an excellent opportunity for both physical and emotional closeness, and is simply an amazing foundation for a relationship, whether with parents, siblings, grandparents, babysitters, whatever.

Obviously you can't force this, without breaking the very relationship you seek to create, but often times siblings find it a fun thing to do, if it's introduced in the right way. They get to do something a little weird, a little cool, that maybe looks a little dangerous or at least daring, and can learn an unusual new skill. It's worth a try, at least.
post #22 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by ricemom3 View Post
I also would love to hear someone talk more to the concept of us keeping who we are, maintaining hobbies or other intests without feeling guilty. (Big problem for me)
I remember my mom saying that in college (before I was married) was my season for *me* I could do what I wanted when I wanted, and basically live a very selfish life. Now that I've got kids they do take up a lot of time and energy and attention. Of course I also have a spouse who needs time and attention, and I've got a house to clean and meals to cook and a dog to walk...I don't have so much time for me anymore. BUT, if I totally neglect myself, I end up with nothing left to give. It can be hard to find the happy medium, but I have learned to not feel guilty about taking some me time. I have a knitting circle that I go to one night a week. For a while I walked the dog with a neighbor so we chatted while we walked. Before we moved I went to a once-a-week playgroup where I could talk with other moms, and we had a monthly book club too. I allow myself nap time for computer time (and with a newborn it's nursing time on the computer too, ). I have realized what things "fill me up" and I do a little something pretty much every day, because it helps keep me going, and makes sure that I have something to keep giving.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Arwyn View Post
Have your teens wear your little one, especially when they're doing interesting things like working in the yard, going to a store you normally don't shop at, going to places you normally don't go (skate parks? not while skating, obviously, but to watch), or even just walking around the neighbourhood or doing chores. ...
Obviously you can't force this, without breaking the very relationship you seek to create, but often times siblings find it a fun thing to do, if it's introduced in the right way. They get to do something a little weird, a little cool, that maybe looks a little dangerous or at least daring, and can learn an unusual new skill. It's worth a try, at least.
As an oldest child who was well into my teens when the last few were born... :
I heard somewhere the 'you love who you serve' and I have repeatedly found this to be true. When I married DH and adopted my first son he had a lot of anger issues about me--he wanted daddy (DH is his bio dad and had been a single parent since DS was 5m old). This 3yo would throw tantrums and yell "I hate you" and "I want daddy" and so on. He couldn't understand this new person who was changing so many things in his life...let me tell you it's hard to love a kid who tells you he hates you (particularly when you never got to see his cute innocent baby stage) But I also knew we were in this for the long haul so I set about learning to love him and earn his love too...I discovered that the best thing to do was to serve him. I made extra efforts to make his favorite foods for lunch, take him to parks, play games with him, read him his favorite stories, etc. I know that's a bit of a tangent, but the same principle applies to teens and much-younger siblings--if they care for them, they will connect with them. Obviously you don't want to make them resent the little one by asking them to change every diaper or carry the kiddo everywhere, but asking them to help with things (different things) on a regular basis will help them develop a loving relationship.
BTW, I would not ever assume that they are available to babysit...if you want teen sibling to babysit the little one, then hire them as you would anyone else--schedule it in advance, and pay them something for their work. I think a LOT of teens resent little siblings because they have to babysit all the time and it impairs their own social life, you know? But most teens would rather babysit their own sibling than someone elses kids if they got treated the same (ie, scheduled and paid). Don't take the teens for granted--respect them and that respect and love will filter down.
post #23 of 46
For me, attachment parenting is the most instinctive, easiest way to interact with my babe. All the other ways seem ridiculously complicated -- elaborate sleep rituals, fancy gear, sterilizing bottles, hours listening to them scream. Attachment parenting, for me, is so intuitive. It really feel right. I'm glad we can give ourselves permission to listen to our instincts with our babies.
I use the "benign neglect" interaction frequently. My little one is perfectly content riding in the sling close to mama or daddy, watching the world go by. If a group of friends are sitting around the table, he'll quietly observe the conversation for ages, taking in the rhythms of adult interaction. When we're outside, his whole body relaxes as he experiences the breeze, the smells, the sights and the sounds of the outdoors. He's gathering information about the world and he doesn't need batteries and flashing lights to do it.
AP, to me, means interacting with my child as though he's a human, not an inconvenient object. It's a little bit of an interesting realization that your baby is a real person. And like any other person, you build a relationship and get to know each other. I feel like I know my son so well, and AP helped me do that.
I work full time, but DS came to the office with me for the first five or six months. He still comes with me one day a week, and now he's with a babysitter three days a week, along with her four year old niece. They're both great. When the babysitter puts DS in a sling, the little girl puts her baby doll in the sling too. I go over to nurse a couple of times a day. I do sometimes think about going freelance, working from home, and spending more time with my boy. I'm thinking about it more and more seriously.
Oh, and cosleeping is the best. It makes nighttimes totally painless. He does go to sleep in his crib, but we move him to the bed when we go to sleep. When he wakes in the night, there's no crying, no screaming, no trips down the hall. He just sort of gropes around for a midnight snack, and I barely wake up. It's true that if you want to avoid being a sleep deprived zombie with a newborn, you need to breastfeed and co-sleep.
post #24 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by thomrho View Post
How do others maintain good friendships, hobbies, and interests while practicing attachment parenting?
Honestly, I don't know the answer - it is something that I really really struggle with actually.

I wanted to mention that dr. sears and the attachment parenting website both say that mother self-care is a vital part of AP - you have to take care of and nurture yourself to be able to give to others, including your children. So I would say that you really need to make maintaining good friendships, hobbies and interests a part of your AP practice. I'm still working at that though and haven't gotten there yet.

Co-sleeping with two kids (one who won't go to bed before we do) and SAHMing means that I have virtually no time without my dc.

I thought I'd also add that my sister says her parenting philosophy is "do what works" and for me that sums up AP: baby-wearing, co-sleeping etc. tend to be what babies like. But I also like that it means adjusting your approach for your family and for each of your children.
post #25 of 46
I have a new baby coming in about 6 weeks and my 18 month old is very attached. If I sit on the couch he must be holding/hugging me or sitting on my lap. I love it. He's so adorable. I also need to carry him places just b/c of his age and b/c he wants to be although he is getting a tad better about walking and holding my hand. He also sleeps with us some nights and needs to be held by me when he is sleeping.

But, I'm worried about how I'll still do this with him when the new baby comes. I don't think that he will at all be ready for 'giving me up or sharing.'

I know that some things fall into place and I can just see how it goes but I'm curious if some other mothers experienced children less than 2 years apart and what the experience was like for them to care for a newborn and still AP the older toddler.

Wearing two slings is not an option for me. I actually can't wear a sling, I need a wrap that goes over both shoulders b/c I have a neck & shoulder problem that can be easily re-injured.
post #26 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by janasmama View Post
I'm not one for leaving my DC with babysitters and we've never left them overnight before so I don't get very much time away by myself or with DH.

My sister told me once that after a woman has a baby it takes about 7 years for her to regain her 'self.'

I guess making my kids be my main interest helps to feel like I am doing what I love. I love the age that dd is getting to (4). I feel like we can do so many more things with her, have some friendly little talks, etc.
Janasmama, you really gave me a new outlook by typing that! I've wanted to be a mommy ever since I could push my doll in her stroller when I was a little girl. Now I'm a mommy and it's nothing that I expected... It's so hard!! Although, I find gets easier every day. She is 11 months old now and so much fun.
Unfortunately, I have things going on in my life right now that aren't so fun. And, as far as attachement parenting goes, it's very hands on and sometimes I feel like I'm just making things harder for myself. However, I have an amazing baby and receive nothing but positive comments about her and my parenting so I know my efforts are paying off.
She is my main interest and I am doing what I love. That is the perspective I'm going to view my life as mommy from now on so thanks!
post #27 of 46
I am probably THE most selfish mother here. My son sits in a chair all day while I get distracted on the Internet - which makes us both cranky, annoyed with each other, and generally frustrated. I wish I could learn to just *turn it OFF*, but even when my husband turned off the internet while he was at work, I found ways to ignore my baby. I can't believe I'm admitting this. Please don't kill me. I am trying to develop more of a relationship with him - I can't help but feel maybe I'm afraid to trust myself.

I don't feel like a mother - I honestly sometimes feel too young to be one (I am 21) and so much like a kid myself. My birth was extremely impersonal (emergency C-section, didn't see son till he was 3 days old) and I wonder if that has had an impact on how I view myself and how I view my son. I also wonder if I am so afraid to screw him up that I don't want to have anything to do with him. I do love the little guy, but I have a hard time doing what I feel a mother should do.

I am getting really good at picking up on his cues however - of course, I judge myself by how well DH can pick up on them And Toby and I both love babywearing, especially now that I have a mei tai!
post #28 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisis View Post
I am probably THE most selfish mother here. My son sits in a chair all day while I get distracted on the Internet - which makes us both cranky, annoyed with each other, and generally frustrated. I wish I could learn to just *turn it OFF*, but even when my husband turned off the internet while he was at work, I found ways to ignore my baby. I can't believe I'm admitting this. Please don't kill me. I am trying to develop more of a relationship with him - I can't help but feel maybe I'm afraid to trust myself.

I don't feel like a mother - I honestly sometimes feel too young to be one (I am 21) and so much like a kid myself. My birth was extremely impersonal (emergency C-section, didn't see son till he was 3 days old) and I wonder if that has had an impact on how I view myself and how I view my son. I also wonder if I am so afraid to screw him up that I don't want to have anything to do with him. I do love the little guy, but I have a hard time doing what I feel a mother should do.


Do you have some toys that you like to play with? I'm kind of a kid myself because I was robbed of my own childhood so I find it easy to 'play' or 'pretend.'

When I feel like I'm not spending enough time with my little ones I always look for a toy set that I like to play with. This helps me interact with them in a way that they enjoy. If you don't have any, look around on the internet and find something that you would buy if you were a kid. Even if your child wouldn't ordinarily like it, at this age they will just because you do.

Then when we give them this attention, our babies cry a lot less which can help is feel less resentment towards them and in turn that brings us closer, enabling us to do the things that we know we should do as mothers.
post #29 of 46
My problem is that I have a split personality. We adopted our first child and I definitely did not AP with him -- I took a much more authoritarian approach and am now having problems doing AP with him bc of this pattern I have set. Now that we have the baby, who I started AP from the beginning, I am seeing ways of breaking this pattern with my older child and using more AP, but it is a constant struggle -- so easy to fall back into what I've always done -- while it just comes naturally for me with the baby.
Any suggestions on how to change to AP with an older child would be welcome.
post #30 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisis View Post
I am probably THE most selfish mother here. My son sits in a chair all day while I get distracted on the Internet - which makes us both cranky, annoyed with each other, and generally frustrated. I wish I could learn to just *turn it OFF*, but even when my husband turned off the internet while he was at work, I found ways to ignore my baby. I can't believe I'm admitting this. Please don't kill me. I am trying to develop more of a relationship with him - I can't help but feel maybe I'm afraid to trust myself.

I feel like this somedays, too. The internet is addicting. I've found myself thinking "Couldn't you just stop fussing so I could finish reading about how to be a responsive parent?" Then I realize how ridiculous I'm being. None of us is perfect.


I don't feel like a mother - I honestly sometimes feel too young to be one (I am 21) and so much like a kid myself. My birth was extremely impersonal (emergency C-section, didn't see son till he was 3 days old) and I wonder if that has had an impact on how I view myself and how I view my son. I also wonder if I am so afraid to screw him up that I don't want to have anything to do with him. I do love the little guy, but I have a hard time doing what I feel a mother should do.

I know you've probably heard this before, but you are the best mother for your child. Look at all the great things you're doing as mother -- just by reading this I can give you a couple.

First, and most importantly, you are looking for ways to be the best mother you can be. You're not making excuses, you're analyzing you are, where you are, and where you want to go. As your son grows up he'll learn from you modeling this type of behavior.

Second, you got off to a rough start with C-section and you're trying to build up a bond with your son through babywearing -- that's awesome! It can be hard to get past a difficult birth and you're taking steps to do it. I'm sure you're doing lots of other great things as well, so give yourself some credit.

Also, young moms can be fantastic moms! I haven't been there, but I've met some amazing young mamas.


I am getting really good at picking up on his cues however - of course, I judge myself by how well DH can pick up on them And Toby and I both love babywearing, especially now that I have a mei tai!
You're only going to get better at picking up on his cues I know I've learned a lot! I'm still not always super great at figuring out what she wants right away, but we always get there. Using AP ideas helps me to feel that even if I don't get it right the first time, my daughter trusts that I'll get there eventually. I think that AP gives me a bit of leeway to make mistakes because underneath there's the bond that I've been building with my daughter little by little. One frustrating day (or week, because I know I've had one!!) won't destroy the bond that we've formed.

On a totally different note, I hope I didn't totally mess up the quotes. I've never done it before so I hope it works!
post #31 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by thomrho View Post
I am really struggling with having balance in my life as a mother. What has worked for others? What helps you cope and feel more fulfilled?
Balance is hard to find! As much as I'd love to SAH with my little one, I think WOH helps me to find my balance and continue to define myself as Susannah, not *solely* as Keagan's mom. Keeping in touch with friends (mostly online) and taking some time to myself after he is asleep at night helps as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by *MamaJen* View Post
It's true that if you want to avoid being a sleep deprived zombie with a newborn, you need to breastfeed and co-sleep.
My little will be 3 in November and I feel like I am just starting to *not* feel like a sleep deprived zombie in the last few months. He was EBF until a year and we still BF and co-sleep.

Quote:
Originally Posted by janasmama View Post
Wearing two slings is not an option for me. I actually can't wear a sling, I need a wrap that goes over both shoulders b/c I have a neck & shoulder problem that can be easily re-injured.
I've carried one babe in an Ergo and another in a wrap. What about doing something like that if you are wanting to carry both?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisis View Post
I don't feel like a mother - I honestly sometimes feel too young to be one (I am 21) and so much like a kid myself. My birth was extremely impersonal (emergency C-section, didn't see son till he was 3 days old) and I wonder if that has had an impact on how I view myself and how I view my son. I also wonder if I am so afraid to screw him up that I don't want to have anything to do with him. I do love the little guy, but I have a hard time doing what I feel a mother should do.
I'd be willing to bet that your birth experience could have something to do with it. Do you think it is possible you have postpartum depression?
post #32 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by janasmama View Post


Do you have some toys that you like to play with? I'm kind of a kid myself because I was robbed of my own childhood so I find it easy to 'play' or 'pretend.'

When I feel like I'm not spending enough time with my little ones I always look for a toy set that I like to play with. This helps me interact with them in a way that they enjoy. If you don't have any, look around on the internet and find something that you would buy if you were a kid. Even if your child wouldn't ordinarily like it, at this age they will just because you do.

Then when we give them this attention, our babies cry a lot less which can help is feel less resentment towards them and in turn that brings us closer, enabling us to do the things that we know we should do as mothers.
Sweet I am totally breaking out my Star Wars toys now. But seriously, thanks for the suggestion. I have been thinking about it and think we're going to start reading more books together. I love to read and want my son to as well, so we'll see what happens. Heaven knows we have enough books around here

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pippi L. View Post
The internet is addicting. I've found myself thinking "Couldn't you just stop fussing so I could finish reading about how to be a responsive parent?" Then I realize how ridiculous I'm being. None of us is perfect.
This is EXACTLY what it's like. Thank God I'm not the only one!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Susannah M View Post
I'd be willing to bet that your birth experience could have something to do with it. Do you think it is possible you have postpartum depression?
Absolutely. I have my first counseling appointment in about 3 weeks, and am currently on anti-depressants. Hopefully the counseling will help - I have a feeling there's a lot of issues I need to resolve with some professional help
post #33 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisis View Post
Sweet I am totally breaking out my Star Wars toys now.
That's funny. My DH still has his star wars figurines from back in the 70's. It's really fun to have a reason to be a child again...sometimes that is what I love about being with my children the most. It's like a free ticket to be silly.
post #34 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by Krisis View Post
Absolutely. I have my first counseling appointment in about 3 weeks, and am currently on anti-depressants. Hopefully the counseling will help - I have a feeling there's a lot of issues I need to resolve with some professional help
I hope it is helpful for you.
post #35 of 46
I'm a little nervous about night waking with my little one coming soon.

Although my DS wakes at night he goes right back to sleep and DH gets up to bring him to bed with us often. Obviously DH can't nurse the baby though.

The last two pregnancies I've been a wreck for the nighttime hours...bf'ing makes me frustrated in the early weeks when I'm very tired too because I almost always have a hard time getting the baby latched during the night. I have to have a lamp on.

I really want it to be different this time. I'm not sure if it is hormones or something that I really can have control over.

Has anyone experienced very troublesome times during nighttime waking with a newborn to have a better experience with a subsequent baby? If so, what do you think it is that made the better experience?

Also, I was reading an article about bedsharing it mentioned that co-sleeping advocates recommend parents don't bed share with an infant and other children in the bed. My ds still sleeps with us at some point during the night.

Have any of you slept with a newborn and a toddler at the same time?
post #36 of 46
Quote:
Originally Posted by ShwarmaQueen View Post
I wish I had the option of not leaving DD with a stranger while I had to work, but it wasn't financially feasable. How can I make leaving DC with a child care provider to work fit into AP?
I see my mod sister Arwyn already answered this in great detail but as a working Mama, I wanted to add my own 5 cents. I have 2 kids, a 16 yo ds and a 3 yo dd, and for the most part I have always worked. In fact not working wasn't even as option when I had my son since trying to love off $300 in public assistance was virtually impossible. That said I do beleive you can create rythyms and routines that create deeper connection, when I was a single Mom with my son, weekends were are time to connect, at 16 he still remembers many of the things we did rather fondly.

With my 3 yo, I was able to SAH for her first year and I ended up taking on an adjunct teaching position that was pt, right now I work from home and while we use pt childcare this setup does allow me ample time with her. As far as childcare, while finding an AP style provider is not aways an option, you can find a childcare provider who is respectful of your parenting style.

In choosing to work, I don't beleive for a moment that it means you cannot practice AP style parenting, in fact I feel AP makes working easier in some ways. Admittely I don't get much done as far as things as housework or things like that but there is always time for that later.
post #37 of 46
Quote:
Also, I was reading an article about bedsharing it mentioned that co-sleeping advocates recommend parents don't bed share with an infant and other children in the bed. My ds still sleeps with us at some point during the night.

Have any of you slept with a newborn and a toddler at the same time?
DD1 was 26mo when dd2 arrived... the reasoning given for the guideline is that toddlers don't have the same sort of body awareness that adults do. They can and do roll out of the bed, they flail around, they squirm back and forth across the bed, and can be tough to wake... not good things if you have a tiny/can't move much babe in there too.

Our solution looked pretty silly but it worked for us... basically we pushed dd1's toddler bed up against the side of the "big" bed, which created a bit of a "lip" since the big bed was a few inches taller than the toddler bed. On the other side we put the arm's reach co-sleeper so there would be a bit more space available for dd2 if necessary. And we swapped the order in the bed so that it went dd1 - dh - me - new babe. DD1 could wiggle all she wanted but there was enough space that dd2 wasn't going to get squished.

As dd2 got bigger we rearranged everything and even got a different bed, but we're only just starting to let dd1 and dd2 sleep together "on their own" without dh or I in the bed too. (dd1 is a pretty aggressive sleeper, and she has sent dh to the ER twice in her sleep so I'm not taking any chances with dd2). If your older kiddo is a gentler sleeper or if there will be an adult between them I probably wouldn't worry.

Breastfeeding/new babe sleeping- I had a hard time when dd1 was new but I didn't have the same sort of nightwaking problems with dd2. I think I was more relaxed (about breastfeeding & cosleeping) and that helped, but I think mostly the difference was dd2's early personality. She was sleepier and calmer than dd1 had been, she took her time nursing and just fell back asleep most of the time. And dd1 rarely woke up even when dd2 was upset so I almost never had to juggle both girls at night.

I know that doesn't really help, but maybe you'll have a cozy sleeper this time too?
post #38 of 46
Amen to a cozy sleeper! I'll take one of those this time...

I've actually been laying awake at night thinking about how sleep is going to work for us b/c DH can sometimes get irritable about not having his room in the bed. but mostly b/c DS wants to cuddle me.

Anyways, I did get a mini-cosleeper and there is just enough room for it between the bed and the wall...it's mainly there for if someone (besides me) rolls off the bed. But, I was thinking...maybe this baby will sleep in there. :

Then I was was reminded of was when we were first-time parents....

I felt like I wasn't getting very good sleep with newborn DD1 in arms so I pulled the port-a-crib in with the bassinet attached and put her in there. Ugh, my sleep was even worse. I remember feeling like my eyelids were glued to my eyebrows while my eyes tried to focus on her in the darkness through the mesh port-a-crib to make sure she was okay.

After about 10 minutes of that I was like forget it, and put her back in my arms to sleep.

My sleep may not have been perfect but my blood pressure was.
post #39 of 46


Our co-sleeper was mostly an "extra roomy bed rail" too. The times when either girls actually slept in it my arm would go numb because I'd keep my hand on their bellies. But it was nice to know that there was that little extra space if necessary, and it made night time diaper changes easier since everything (including a flat space) was close to hand.

Actually, we were trying to sell our house right around the time dd2 arrived and our "master" bedroom was soooo full of beds our agent was a bit worried (the toddler bed, adult bed, co sleeper took up almost the entire wall, you could just squeeze between the wall and toddler bed and that was it!)
post #40 of 46
I am looking for more information
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