Babywise?

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LawrenceU

Puritan Board Doctor
I know this will cause some folks to go into fits of apoplexy, but I think that many of the principles in Babywise are very good. Of course, common sense must be used in parenting. I don't recommend the rest of Ezzo's stuff, by the way.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Yes, I've met some Babywise nazis who are militant about it. But it seems that if a baby is crying, this usually means it is not trying to spite you but usually needs something legit.
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
I have seen abuses from people who listened to the Ezzo's. I even saw spanking an infant. It made me furious, confused, and saddened all at the same time when I saw it. I hadn't heard of the Ezzo's yet and that was my introduction to them. It was a baby who was just a crier in its early months. I didn't even know how to respond. Now that might have been an abberration to their teaching but it wasn't the last time nor the only family that practiced it.
 

Mindaboo

Puritan Board Graduate
We used it with a couple of our children. There are some people who are really rigid about it. I wasn't and the book was clear that you have to take your situation into consideration. I did like the idea of scheduling my babies, and my third child did very well with it. My youngest...didn't do any good. She was just needy. It's a topic I took a lot of heat for with different people. It's a hot topic. I personally don't think there is anything wrong with letting a baby cry after every other avenue has been exhausted. I would feed, change, hold, and when nothing else worked I would let them cry for a little while. I used the parts of the book that fit with my personality and threw out what I didn't like.

---------- Post added at 10:46 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:32 AM ----------

I even saw spanking an infant.
I don't remember reading that in their book or being promoted in the book.
 

Kim G

Puritan Board Junior
I think it depends on the how the parent implements the advice. Tired or angry or lazy or OCD parents could really harm their child if following the book, so I would never recommend Babywise for that reason. My son was a screamer, waking up every hour at night. He also wouldn't follow a schedule during the day, taking five 40-minute naps every couple of hours. I pretty much stayed up holding him all night and existed on a three-hour nap during the day while my husband watched him. Come to find out 6 months later, he had acid reflux the whole time and had a burning esophagus. Ezzo would have had me ignore him since I couldn't find anything wrong with him. Nothing takes the place of parental common sense and grace rather than "law" toward your child.

Children are all different, and books like Babywise dangle a magic carrot in front of tired parents saying, "if you follow my advice, your child will inevitably be a perfect sleeper, a perfect feeder, and everyone will envy you."
 

FenderPriest

Puritan Board Junior
As Lawrence said, Babywise + grace + common sense is the best combo. We used it primarily to get Owen into a good schedule that had him sleeping through the night very early on, and to give some sanity to our family. I think it's the perspective of training your baby to be a part of a functioning family verses orienting your family around an untrained baby that's most helpful. Application and needs will change from family to family.
 

Mindaboo

Puritan Board Graduate
As Lawrence said, Babywise + grace + common sense is the best combo. We used it primarily to get Owen into a good schedule that had him sleeping through the night very early on, and to give some sanity to our family. I think it's the perspective of training your baby to be a part of a functioning family verses orienting your family around an untrained baby that's most helpful. Application and needs will change from family to family.
That's what I got out of it. I really liked the idea of scheduled feedings. It helped me organize my day and function. I had two babies a year apart, four kids under 7, and was homeschooling full time. I liked the idea that naps were at the same time everyday, feedings were predictable for me and my babies, and they did well with that. By eight weeks my third child did sleep through the night. My youngest did not sleep through the night for the first year of life. We did the same routine with them both.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
From wickipedia:

The infant-rearing research the Ezzos conducted was performed by GFI and not published or subject to peer review.[2] In training the infant to follow the book's recommended eating and sleeping schedule, it was expected that at certain times the infant would be left alone to cry when hungry or wakeful. The book justified the act of leaving a baby to cry alone by comparing that choice to the crucifixion of Jesus: "Praise God that the Father did not intervene when His Son cried out on the cross."[4]

Sounds wacky to me.
 

Rufus

Puritan Board Junior
From wickipedia:

The infant-rearing research the Ezzos conducted was performed by GFI and not published or subject to peer review.[2] In training the infant to follow the book's recommended eating and sleeping schedule, it was expected that at certain times the infant would be left alone to cry when hungry or wakeful. The book justified the act of leaving a baby to cry alone by comparing that choice to the crucifixion of Jesus: "Praise God that the Father did not intervene when His Son cried out on the cross."[4]

Sounds wacky to me.
:ditto:
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Okay, I've read up more on Mr. Ezzo and Babywise and he sounds like a quack who has been under church discipline numerous times and his method sounds unhealthy for children.

So much for the Magic Key to get our newborn to sleep.
 

Jack K

Puritan Board Professor
Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child

We followed this with both our kids, with overall good results. It has some similarities to Baby Wise, but without the "Christian" wackyness. I suspect, though, that no system works with absolutely every baby. Babies are people too, and people differ.
 

Romans922

Puritan Board Professor
The reader of Ezzo's books will be led to believe that there is significant professional training and experience, and yet there exists no professional background, not even anything in the areas of child development, medicine, or breastfeeding support.

I am against Babywise, I think the methods are unwise, unprofitable, and not good for the health and well-being of the child.
 

JBaldwin

Puritan Board Post-Graduate
I looked at Babywise for about 5 minutes and chucked it. While I do believe giving a child a schedule is a good thing, if my second child had been on a rigid eating schedule, she would have died of starvation. She burned up (and still does) calories so fast that she needed to eat every two to three hours during the day for the first several years of her life. Even now, she eats full regular meals and "grazes" the rest of the day, and she stays slim and trim.

On the issue of naps...I had one child (after age on) who woke up regularly after only one 30-45 minute nap which she took in the afternoon, but she would sleep through the night. For a while, I tried making her go back to sleep only to discover that when she did go back to sleep, she was up all night long. I finally allowed the shorter naps so we could sleep at night.

The point is, every child is different, and you need to use some common sense with them.
 

PointyHaired Calvinist

Puritan Board Sophomore
We're on our fourth Babywise baby, if that mean anything. It has worked great for us, and works for those who actually pay attention to it (even Ezzo talks about using common sense - "when a baby is hungry, feed her!") A lot of the "wacky" folks don't really follow the method, but do their own thing and blame/credit Babywise. He is NOT in favor of a rigid, strict schedule that is never deviated from, but people hate him because he is against demand feeding and attachment parenting.

Also, to blame Gary Ezzo for the use of corporal punishment on an infant is slander and a violation of the 9th commandment. He is against it prior to the age of two at least, if not later.

People will do their own weird thing, and then find someone to hang their hat on. Also, people on the other side will demonize the man for stuff he never said or promoted. Now Michael Pearl, despite some nuggets is a Pelagian, KJVO nut.

Here are some pro-Ezzo resources, to balance out the hostility.
*On the Record: Gary Ezzo

*EzzoTruth
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Jonathan,

Considering that Mr. Ezzo has received church discipline for being divisive, dishonest and authoritarian from more than one church, any sort of wackiness would be better left to the originator of the views and not its adherants. From what I am reading now (with growing alarm), it is not deviations from the method that are the problem, but the method itself (unless one uses substantial common sense and ameliorates some of the rigidness of Mr Ezzo's system).
 

PuritanCovenanter

Moderator
Staff member
Jonathan. Reread what I wrote.
Now that might have been an abberration to their teaching but it wasn't the last time nor the only family that practiced it.
There are many problems that have been pointed out here already with some of their methods. In fact you can do a nice search on the board and hear many other stories and rebuttals of their methods.

I don't think the Ezzo's were martyrs who were persecuted for doing things the correct way. They were criticized for good reasons most of the time. If I am not mistaken I can post a whole slew of criticism and solid evidence that reveals problematic tlhings that came to fruition because of the Ezzo's distinctive methods.

Let me ask you this Jonathan. Is there a disciplinary function that should be enforced upon a baby that is only a month old because he or she is not living up to expectations?
 

Zenas

Snow Miser
No corporal punishment below the age of two? Does anyone else follow this general rule? I find it insane.
 

PointyHaired Calvinist

Puritan Board Sophomore
My point is that Ezzo does not push for "infant corporal punishment" like people claim he does, or associate him with. We've run into this a lot from people who criticize Babywise and our parenting.

And let me also say my accusation about the 9th commandment was not directed at anyone in particular, and I apologize that I was not clearer on this. Mr. Snyder was not intended as my target, and I offer this apology to him and the board.

Like it or not, even a broken clock (assuming Ezzo is one) is right 2x a day, and our kids have done VERY well with the basic principles of Babywise. They are patient, healthy, and happy children, and Babywise is a tool (one of many) that my wife and I have used to help bring them up this way. If it doesn't work for you, don't use it, but we're not going to throw out something that has reaped such benefits, unless convicted there is sin in the method.
 

Kim G

Puritan Board Junior
Disciplining doesn't have to mean corporal punishment. My son is two, we've never spanked, he's extremely strong-willed, and yet he obeys me. I received compliments from three doctors just last week for my son's good behavior while at their offices. Just saying, people CAN discipline without spanking.
 

Mindaboo

Puritan Board Graduate
Just saying, people CAN discipline without spanking.
Yes, they can. But we can also discipline with spanking. I have a child who is more compliant that I rarely spank. I have another child who needs to be spanked when she misbehaves. As soon as I spank her she repents and becomes a joy to be around. I think children differ in the way they need discipline.

My children were not harmed by following the principles in Babywise. It doesn't make me a bad mom for using the book.

My daughter crawled out of her crib regularly when she was one. Often she got into a lot of trouble. I sat outside of her bedroom and as soon as she started I'd go in and swat her on the rearend. It wasn't abuse. It was training. There is a difference.
 

he beholds

Puritan Board Doctor
We did Babywise for our first baby. He slept through the night at seven weeks.
We did more of a Baby Whisperer for Baby Two. (Put down while awake. Pick right up when crying. Put right back down once soothed. Don't rock baby to sleep. Don't hold baby to sleep. Rinse and repeat ad nauseum.) She slept through the night at seven weeks.
We did nada for Baby Three. I held him every night, picked him up when crying, etc. He slept through the night at seven weeks.
However, doing more of nada with Baby Four has not been so perfect, so far. She is two months old and not regularly sleeping through the night. But she's delicious, so it's ok.
I liked Babywise, because as a new mom I was clueless, but I am glad that I didn't need it after I got used to babies. I don't like it. It makes me feel mean. I am NOT saying that I actually was mean, nor are any other parents who let their babies cry it out, but it made me feel guilty. I think I still feel guilty about letting my first cry it out so much, and he's five! I have enough to feel guilty about, so ditching Babywise was easy.
 

Zenas

Snow Miser
Our son slept through the night at 4 days old. It differs from child to child. What I think is important is consistency and sticking to a schedule.
 
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