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on 14 May 2013
I find that while reading this book, there's so many mums I want to read bits out to - the psychology of children is flawless in my opinion (and I have a psychology degree) so it really helps to understand where our little people are coming from. Sears comes across as completely non-judgmental which really helps if you feel you've made mistakes before when looking after children, be it your own, your siblings when you were younger or other people's children. When my firstborn came along 2 years ago, I was recommended the baby whisperer books, and although I tried to stick with it for a whole 3 months, it felt unnatural to me to leave my baby sobbing while bent over him patting him on the back for ages. I was confused and upset when my baby didn't conform to what the baby whisperer said. The difference with this book is that I always feel calmer about a situation once I've read Sears thoughts on something that I'm having trouble with (fussiness or clinginess to pick one example). There's also a great section on working as a parent while maintaining your attachment - which they know a lot about since there's not much maternity leave or care provided to mothers in the States much past 6 weeks.

The sections are based around the 7 Baby Bs:
1) Birth Bonding: how the beginnings affect early attachment.
2) Breastfeeding: how it helps in getting to know your baby, what they call 'Baby Reading'.
3) Baby Wearing: research clearly shows how children who are carried fuss less and they are so content that they spend a lot of time in quiet alertness, learning a lot about their environment. They just seem so much calmer too.
4) Bed Sharing: the benefits of bed sharing for mothers and babies. The fact is that most babies sleep best when they are close to their parents. Personally, we have co-slept with our baby since I fell asleep breastfeeding one night and realised the next morning how well we had all slept! Sears is again non-judgmental about whichever way you decide to sleep.
5) Belief in baby's cries: "a baby's cry is a baby's language" ie they communicate through crying - they have different cries for different emotions, which you pick up the more time you spend with your baby. Babies don't cry to manipulate, they cry to alert you to their needs. "The more sensitively you respond, the more baby learns to trust his parents and his ability to communicate".
6) Balance and Boundaries: about balancing your own needs with those of your baby and the rest of your family. Because it's extremely important to not "neglect your own needs and those of your marriage"
7) Beware of baby trainers: "This restrained style of baby care, which we dub baby training is based upon the misguided assumptions that babies cry to manipulate, not to communicate, and that a baby's cry is an inconvenient habit that must be broken to help baby fit more conveniently into an adult environment...a distance can develop between baby and parent - just the opposite of what happens with attachment parenting"

The overall theme of the book is for you to learn to rely on your own instincts and decide for yourself how best to parent your own child.

When reading this book, I realised that I'd been parenting the exact same way without realising there was a name for what I did! To me, I was just doing what naturally came to me. Attachment parenting is a natural way to parent, and this book helps to explain it in detail in a helpful way, without coming across as patronising or judgmental. It makes me want to get all their other parenting books and also buy their books for other mummies I know!
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on 14 April 2015
This book tells you what you already know deep down in your heart. Get this book before baby trainers get you. It was like music to me ear - everything I would've done following my intuition stands there, scientifically proved.
If I can add one word of criticism, it would be about baby carrying. The authors can't say enough good things about it but my daughter is a living proof that not every baby loves being in a baby carrier. When she was 1 - 2 months old she was screaming her head off regardless of being carried or laid down to bed. Now at the age of 5 months she does accept it but doesn't love it and she can stay calm only as long as I keep on moving. The story presented by the authors about sitting in a restaurant and enjoying a dinner with a baby in a sling sounds like a fairy tale to me.
However my experience only confirms the overall message from the book: every baby comes into this world with its own personality and our job is to adjust our world to this little person, not the other way around.
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on 4 May 2015
What an amazing book, i am planning my first baby and this book has opened up a world of possibilities that are basically common sense but seems to be so far away from what most people practice. Its nice to know that the writers are both medically qualified and parents with children that are all different. I don't like all the boxes everywhere and had to go back every now and then to make sure i got everything but i enjoyed it over all. I have noticed that a few people are slightly offended by the very traditional Husband and Wife dynamic of the book but you have to remember that this is written from very honest experience and so i don't believe this is a bad thing. I would highly recommended this book to any parents or parents to be even if just to open their mind to different possibilities.
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on 20 January 2018
This book is just wonderful. It gave us a clear idea how to best tend to our child and simultaneously relieved a lot of fear and insecurity we felt before. It also helps your wallet by showing you all the things available in the market that an infant/toddler absolutely does not need.
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on 8 April 2014
My partner and I were following our instincts when raising our son, which seemed to relate to the Attachment Parenting style. To me, a lot of this book is common sense, but it's great to see the benefits that can be reaped from parenting in such a way. I have also found it useful when trying to explain my parenting choices to relatives who don't understand my methods and have followed conventional parenting practices themselves. A good read, I would recommend to anyone who is interested in attachment parenting or even just interested in breastfeeding - as much of this book suggests things that make the breastfeeding journey less of a challenge and more rewarding :)
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on 30 October 2015
Clear and very easy to read (picking up and putting down and carrying on from where you left off...very useful if you're busy with a young baby!) it's useful to be able to read various quotations from parents having followed the method. I was genuinely skeptical of the AP method before buying this book, but it makes a lot of sense and seems to have converted me.
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on 29 April 2015
Feels more like an advertisement for the rest of the series than a guide-book. There are useful sections, but there is a lot of repeated material, which is unfortunate for a book that is already pretty slim.
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on 18 June 2015
A great help when facing the child rearing ideals of the sixties your surroundings at some point will impose on you, your partner and your (first) child. Nevertheless, the ideals in this book cannot be taken too litterary if a mother is to avoid total burnout.
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on 14 January 2016
Brilliant!
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on 19 October 2014
excellent book, very easy to read and full of amazing advice
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