Shortly after I had my first I binge watched a show I found on Youtube called “Bringing up Baby“. The show follows six couples through the first three months of their baby’s life and has experts guide them through bringing them up using three distinct methods.
- Method 1: the 50’s baby – parents are the boss, babies are manipulative, schedule is key
- Method 2: the 60’s baby – mother knows best, every baby is different and forced schedules don’t work for new babies, need a balance between discipline and free range
- Method 3: the 70’s baby – attachment/”tribal” rearing
I remember when I first watched the show it really made an impression on me. Especially method one. This method is extremely harsh and unrealistic. With this method there was lots of crying, very little touching (“she can only have 10 minutes of cuddling”), and overly regimented. What this method promises is a baby who sleeps through the night early and freedom for the parents.
The second method resonated with me the most. It speaks to doing what you think is best and relying on your instincts. It’s a much more relaxed approach to parenting with no schedule. These babies get showered with love, cosleep (in cribs next to the bed), and feed on demand. It’s designed to take the stress out of the first few months with a baby.
The third method is one that I have kind of fallen into. It involves constant contact with the baby (babywearing, bed sharing, breastfeeding on demand) and claims that babies who are not held develop a sense of “wrongness” (whatever that means!). It promises a stronger attachment and a sense of security and self confidence.
All of these methods are a little over the top. The experts see no grey area and believe that their way is the right way. I don’t agree that there is one right way to bring up babies, but I did agree with some bits of each method – which most people do.
I’m rewatching the show right now and I’m interested to see how much my perspective has changed having gone through the whole ‘bring up baby’ before.