What Everyone Needs to Know About Infants

What Everyone Needs to Know About Infants

n today’s post, we will continue to look at how understanding child development—even at a rudimentary level, can help us interact with children well. Last month we looked at the needs and tasks of children aged four to 12. This month we will look at infants, from birth to age four. Most of the information I am reporting here came from three sources. 1) The book Living From the Heart Jesus Gave You has short maturity charts that are quick and easy to read. 2) Jim Wilder’s book, The Complete Guide to Living with Men, which has sadly become harder to find. 3)The work of psychiatrist Allan Schore, and 4) The Growing Child Newsletters [i] which I used in raising my own children; and 5) My own personal experience. 

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I Love You Enough to Correct You

I Love You Enough to Correct You

This month’s blogger is Jen Coursey who with her husband Chris run Thrive Today and the week long Thrive training program. Sam and I have done all three levels and found it life changing. The Courseys have two young boys, ages seven and nine. Jen often blogs about parenting. I love this particular blog because it demonstrates an aspect of healthy parenting that we rarely see, namely suffering with our children when we have to say no to them. One of the keys to great parenting, I believe is to empathize with what our child is feeling, while NOT GIVING IN! I hope you will enjoy this as much as I did!

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Boys at Risk

Boys at Risk

I find the work of Allan N. Schore, M.D. riveting, both because he is brilliant but also because he pulls together a vast quantity of scientific literature from a wide range of fields to come up with his conclusions. This is a huge deal in the world of science. Most scientists labor away in their specific fields, which is why we find so much disagreement from one field to another. Each one is looking at a different part of the elephant!

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The Happiest Baby on the Block Can Be Your Baby

The Happiest Baby on the Block Can Be Your Baby

The Happiest Baby on the Block can be your baby! When I look back on my life, one of the hardest yet most joyful seasons was when my babies were getting me up at night. The look in their eyes that said, "Mommy you are my world," delighted my heart but the sleep deprivation was brutal. One night as I paced the floor holding my sleepless baby, a horrible recurring thought kept popping into my brain: Toss her into the swimming pool. She won’t make a sound! Then you can go back to sleep! Arggghhh, I would moan as my heart beat fast with terror, Oh Lord, help me. Then it would cycle through my weary brain again . . .

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Attachment 101

Attachment 101

God made us to attach to him and to others. Isn’t that amazing? If we don’t learn how to attach to God, how to trust in his love, care and provision the world can be an anxious place. If we don’t learn to attach to safe families around us either biological or spiritual, we will find something to cling to. It could be sugar, or performance, or cocaine. Our attachment style forms during our first 1000 days of life, from the moment of conception to our second birthday. During those same 1000 days, our brain grows. In the womb we grow our brain stem and the lower levels of our right hemisphere . . .

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The Social Needs of Babies

The Social Needs of Babies

What? you may be thinking. Is Betsy going to tell us that babies like to party and need a Facebook page? No. Not that. But they are social. Get this: according to Beatrice Beebe, Ph.D. babies begin seeking social interaction when they are only ten seconds old! In a world where parents are primarily concerned with their children’s physical (can he walk yet?) and cognitive (can he read yet?) development, I find the idea that babies have social needs absolutely fascinating. Studies show that meeting a baby’s social and emotional needs impacts their mental health not just during their childhood but for their entire life span . . .

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What Babies Need

What Babies Need

Babies need parents who delight in them, understand the stages of child development, and are fully mature. Let me unpack this a bit. When we are glad to be with our children, when we delight in them the way God delights in us, it builds joy. A baby‘s brain grows primarily during the first two years of life in response to joyful and peaceful interactions with his or her mother, or primary caregiver . . .

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