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The Fussy Baby Book: Parenting Your High-Need Child From Birth to Age Five [Paperback]

William Sears , Martha Sears
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)

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Paperback, 7 Oct 1999 --  

Book Description

7 Oct 1999
Describes the characteristics of a high-need baby, suggests ways to soothe a fussy child, and discusses nutrition, discipline, and communication.

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The Fussy Baby Book: Parenting Your High-Need Child From Birth to Age Five + The Baby Sleep Book: How to Help Your Baby to Sleep and Have a Restful Night + The Good Behaviour Book: How to Have a Better-Behaved Child from Birth to Age Ten
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Product details

  • Paperback: 237 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown & Company; First Edition edition (7 Oct 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316779164
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316779166
  • Product Dimensions: 19.7 x 2 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,122,453 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description


Praise for The Baby Book:

'Encyclopaedic, clear, modern and engaging… Among the best parenting books out there.' Junior

‘This is a timeless way of raising babies.’
Steve Biddulph (author of Raising Boys)

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

William Sears, M.D, and Martha Sears, R.N., are the paediatric experts on whom American parents increasingly rely for advice and information on all aspects of pregnancy, birth, childcare, and family nutrition. Dr. Sears was trained at Harvard Medical School's Children's Hospital and Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children, the largest children's hospital in the world. He has practices paediatrics for more than thirty years. Martha Sears is a registered nurse, certified childbirth educator, and breast feeding consultant.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
SITTING IN THE HIGH SCHOOL auditorium one spring evening, we proudly watched our seventeen-year-old daughter, Hayden, take her bows following the school's production of Oklahoma! She'd played the role of Ado Annie wonderfully, yet it was the Hayden we saw after the curtain call who warmed our hearts the most. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
16 of 16 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This book is a MUST have for colicky and high need babies. Everyone I know with high need children have this and its the #1 recommended book on the subject, with #2 being "The Spirited Child" which is for slightly older children and up. High needs babies are defined by Dr. Sears, really the best authority on the subject, as intense, hyperactive, draining, feeds frequently, demanding, awakens frequently, unsatisfied, unpredictable, supersensitive, unable to be put down, uncuddly (oh sooo true!), not a self-soother, and seperation sensitive. He also says most babies ARE high needs in one area or another, but highneeds babies are high needs in almost ALL departments. Remember though, that your high needs child may have many of the traits, but not all. Each child expresses their high needs traits in their own way and the behavior is manifested individually. There are also high need FAQs online. But they will not give you 1/100th of the valuable information and validation you will recieve from this book -- its a GODSEND. ;)
p.s. The only reason there aren't more reviews here I think is that high needs kids are so high-maintenance we never have the time or energy to do anything but sleep and eat. LOL ;)
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42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's ok to cuddle your baby 5 Aug 2006
After friends recommended reading Gina Ford and Tracy Hogg, I tried getting my baby into a routine, applied the methods for sleeping and feeding but found, after a very stressful couple of months, that my baby wasn't sleeping through, nor taking daytime naps (20 minutes if I was lucky), nor conforming to much of a routine. If the techniques don't work, both these authors stress that the parent must be doing something wrong. I ended up guiltily doing what I really wanted to; carrying the baby in a sling a lot; bringing her into bed with me; feeding her when she indicated she was hungry. But I felt that I had failed.

Then I stumbled across the askdrsears website and felt vindicated. I subsequently bought some of William and Martha Sear's books. What a relief it's been to discover an approach to caring for your baby that isn't centred on training the baby to fit into your life. They advocate a very nurturing, baby-focused approach that acknowledges that your baby will turn your world upside down but hey, it's a baby. It's not going to last long and, most importantly, babies are helpless, dependent and are instinctively afraid to be alone and away from their mothers. You can't spoil a tiny baby by cuddling too much but you can do them a lot of harm by not cuddling them enough.

This book addresses the problems that parents of particularly demanding babies might face - exactly the sort of babies who, like mine, respond very badly to being 'trained'. There are lots of tips for bonding with your baby, getting her settled and to sleep but be warned, these are very counter to what you might have read elsewhere in that the Sears do advocate doing whatever works for you, even if this results in 'bad' sleep associations such as only falling asleep when nursing or being cuddled.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book made me feel better about my child! 3 Jan 1999
By A Customer
I bought this book after feeling angry and disappointed that my son's temperament did not match up with what is considered normal in most parenting books. I kept wondering what I was doing wrong to make him so cranky all the time. After I bought the Searses book, I felt so much better. It describes all sorts of personality traits common to high need babies, but instead of making them seem like a curse, the authors show how these traits are beneficial for the child now and later in life. If you are at your wits end because you feel like you can never put your baby down without him/her crying or that your baby wants to nurse all the time-get this book. You will feel so much better.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Fussy Baby book 20 May 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was excellent for my daughter who has a very high need baby, possible due to his nature, but more likely due to the very difficult birth he sustained. I found it astonishing that other people and so called baby experts can lump babies into one category and expect them all to behave the same. Advice such as 'leave to cry' etc was so unhelpful and felt completely wrong for a tiny scrap who'd spent the first weeks of life on intensive care with minimal contact with mum, poked and prodded with needles stuck into him at regular intervals, he needed close physical and emotional contact for many months when he came home. And it paid off, at 8 months he is happy, secure and progressing well. He still needs close contact but can now be put down without becoming hysterical. Mums should follow their instincts and not the so called experts who undermine a mothers self belief in what her child needs. Gina Ford should be thrown on a bonfire of all her stupid ignorant books!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Resource for Tired Parents 13 Nov 1998
By A Customer
Wow! I couldn't believe my eyes when I first read this book--it was if someone else had written a book about my very own son. After many tearful, exhausting days and nights of trying to force my son to fit into the mold of the "average child" that is portrayed in just about every parenting book and manual on the market, I inhaled a deep breath of fresh air by reading this insightful and empathetic book. The Searses candidly share their first personal experience with a high-need child: their own fourth-born child, a daughter, born after three easy sons. It was comforting to discover that I was not a bad parent--but that my son was just in high-need (and high demand!) of what all babies need and thrive on--holding, rocking, nursing, patience, etc. To put the theme of this book in one sentence: Parenting is not a nightmare if you accept your child the way he is and follow your instincts.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for when the other books don't work
Sears knows what he's talking about and says the things you felt were true despite what everyone else says and gives you confidence to parent
Published 9 months ago by ms Gabriel Luketina
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book. Really informative for parents
Really informative book, lost of advices and suggestions, although our little daughter has not had classic colics we think is a high need girl as Sears defines this kind aof... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Full of great practical advice - a new parents must have
Bought this book after reading the Sears Attachment Parenting book which I found really really good. I love the Sears work. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Aussiebell79
5.0 out of 5 stars Totally changed the way we parent
I am a first time mum of twins and have one really laid back baby and one high needs, demanding baby and thought I was pandering to a manipulative son by responding every time he... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Suke
3.0 out of 5 stars Just go on the website
I've found Dr Sears principles really useful when it comes to parenting my child and whilst the principles of parenting a high need child are really useful I found that this book... Read more
Published 15 months ago by Rachael Squires
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended not only for parents of fussy babies
I am a first-time parent and I bought this book when I realised that my son is more alert and more active than other babies born around the same time. Read more
Published 15 months ago by magsylpi
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute lifesaver
Well, I'm five weeks into parenting what is turning out to be a very high need baby. I have been tearing my hairout with frustration and blaming myself for my baby not being able... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Katylou
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what we needed.
We recently bought the fussy baby book on recommendation from a friend. It has set our minds at ease to confirm that we are not going insane and that our little baby is just like... Read more
Published on 17 Oct 2011 by G Roux
2.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't tell you what to do if usual attachment parenting stuff isn't...
First of all, if you already have The Baby Book you won't find anything practical in here that isn't in there, although there is more psychological advice on dealing with fussy... Read more
Published on 23 April 2011 by Juliette
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful helpful book
I have read this book again and again, first with a "fussy" baby, then toddler, and now with a new baby. Full of insight and compassion for both baby and parents. Read more
Published on 16 Nov 2009 by Gilly
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