Parent Vs. Child Led

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Rosie - posted on 08/07/2010

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i think i'm in the middle, but i lean more towards parent led. when they were ity babies i fed on demand, they bedshared when they were less than a month. but i did use CIO, and i did try to get them sleeping less during the day and more at night, i took their binkies away when i wanted to, i took their bottles away when i wanted to.
when it comes to potty training i refuse to push my children too hard. i let them give me cues, and then i push, and if they still don't want it, i give up for a little and then start over again. however my son has recently been trained during the day, and he is scared of automatic toilets. sometimes thats the only option so i have had to FORCE him to go while screaming his head off. i felt bad, but i had to. and well, now he's not afraid of them anymore! now on to porta potties!!

i don't really think there's much negative to either method, unless you go to extremes either way. if you use CIO and let your kid cry for hours-that's too extreme. if you bedshare and your kid is still in your bed at age 8, there's a problem. i saw recently on here someone saying that she likes sleeping with her kids, and it works for her family. thing is that her husband doesn't sleep with them, he sleeps in a seperate room. to me that's a problem. she obviously doesn't see it that way, but i do wonder what her husband thinks about the whole thing. and i'm not trying to demean her, i just can't wrap my mind around kicking your husband out of your bed for the chance to sleep with your kids. i think there are extremes to both.

Sharon - posted on 08/06/2010

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I'm really very boring today. I agree with laura again.

I watched my kids for clues and took it from there.

So what do you do if on the first day of school - your kid changes his or her mind? True child led - you would go back home.

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C. - posted on 08/09/2010

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I apologize. I never saw where she posted he had reflux. That does make a difference.

Charlie - posted on 08/09/2010

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yeah i get that but Emma has mentioned his reflux before i assumed he sleeps elevated :D

Stifler's - posted on 08/09/2010

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And I have to stand there the whole time watching him. He has a screaming fit if I try to hold him and feed him but he's hungry and will drink it all if I let him have it. It's so weird..

Stifler's - posted on 08/09/2010

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He sleeps with his torso up because he has reflux. I don't just let him lie down and drink it.

C. - posted on 08/09/2010

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Loureen, her baby is only 6 months old. He is most likely not able to sit upright enough to drink a bottle w/o having to lay back. And she also said she doesn't hold him when he drinks it. Which led me to believe that he just lays there and drinks the bottle, hence the whole 'choking hazard' thing.

C. - posted on 08/09/2010

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Her baby is laying down.. IE: His head is most likely not propped up like it would be if she were holding him or had him in a highchair that reclines slightly. That is where the choking hazard would come in, b/c he is fully reclined, causing the milk to go down the wrong way.

Stifler's - posted on 08/09/2010

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He only eats in bed at night, or else he screams and carries on and refuses to drink his bottle. I'd rather him have his bottle in bed than not have one.

Jessica - posted on 08/09/2010

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... She just said she stands there and holds the food for him, so how is that more of a choking hazard than feeding him at any other time?

C. - posted on 08/09/2010

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I'm not sure that letting your child get in a habit of only eating in bed is a good idea, Emma. Not only will it be harder to teach them differently as they get older b/c they are used to only eating in bed, but it is also a choking hazard.

Stifler's - posted on 08/09/2010

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My kid doesn't have food in bed unless I stand there holding it then take it away when he's done, but he has no teeth. He refuses to drink it if I hold him, it's weird.

Jessica - posted on 08/09/2010

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"But 1) that happens if you let your baby go to sleep with a bottle, 2) you don't brush their teeth and I don't think that small amount of time is going to affect how their teeth come in."

Exactly! At a year or shortly before, he was still getting two bottles a day... before bed and in the morning. Again, as a comfort thing, and we're fine with that for a little while longer. But we switched the night time bottle to before his bath, and then we'd make sure to brush his teeth after. Its bad for their teeth when they go to bed with a bottle of milk/juice because the sugar sits on their teeth all night. But anyway we made sure not to do that. So, yeah, I don't see the big deal!

Stifler's - posted on 08/08/2010

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My kid is 6 months lol he doesn't even have any teeth. I just give him bottles with milk because he's been trying to hold the bottle since 11 weeks but just drops it and now he only holds it properly at night when he's asleep (weird). When he actually starts holding the thing properly I might give it to him in a sippy cup lol.

Nikki - posted on 08/08/2010

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Child led, I have always waited for my sons cues to when he is ready and its worked out perfectly so farm, I found pressuring him to do anything only led to his refusal altogether, hes pretty good at letting me know when he is ready

C. - posted on 08/08/2010

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Something to do with causing them to rot and something about how a spout is wider and flatter, not round (like the nipple on a bottle). But 1) that happens if you let your baby go to sleep with a bottle, 2) you don't brush their teeth and I don't think that small amount of time is going to affect how their teeth come in.

Stifler's - posted on 08/08/2010

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How is it going to affect their teeth! HAHAHA. They drink out of it not suck on it all day!

C. - posted on 08/08/2010

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Emma, we used to have our son on WIC b/c my husband wasn't making enough.. The WIC office told us to wean off the bottle and onto a sippy cup by the 7th month. I think that's ridiculous. They're still an infant! I think no later than a year, really, but 6 or 7 months?? Really?? All for the sake of their teeth?? My son was about 10.5 months when he went off the bottle and his teeth are perfectly straight!

Stifler's - posted on 08/08/2010

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I know right. you're supposed to breastfeed until they're 2 according to WHO, do your nipples turn into a sippy cup or something?

Jessica - posted on 08/08/2010

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Sippy cups are developmentally necessary at 6 months?? Well shit lol... Kieran wasn't using one regularly until closer to a year. And he's developing just fine! We weren't in a hurry to cut out bottles by a year either- he was still pretty attached to them at that point. He still gets one every morning (13 months) but I don't think that will last too much longer since he isn't very interested anymore.

Stifler's - posted on 08/08/2010

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I agree with Sarah too he took naps whenever I saw him rubbing his eyes not when I decided that he must nap after 1 hour of being awake.

Stifler's - posted on 08/08/2010

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I agree with both. When Logan was really young mum told me that we don't eat every 3 hours so why should he have to wait when he's hungry. So I just fed him whenever he was obviously hungry and if he wasn't I'd still offer him a feed after 3 1/2 hours. But I put him in the cot at 10 weeks because I couldn't stand him being so loud in his sleep and it didn't make a difference to his sleep. I read some other thread on here about weaning your kid from a bottle to a sippy cup at 6 months and how it's developmentally necessary and was like WTF.

Sarah - posted on 08/08/2010

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I was more child led in the first few months of their lives. I fed them on demand, but I kept a record of when they had a bottle and how much they took so that I could pre-empt when they would need feeding and then as they got a little older, I could start tailoring it to a more "normal" schedule.

Naps were totally child led. Bedtime wasn't so much. When they were teeny it was, but again as they got older it became what I decided.

I won't keep writing out every example! lol. Basically, I guess I'm a bit of both. When they were say, under 6 months, it was mainly child led. After that, not so much. Although I would never force them to potty train for example if they were obviously not ready for it. I think there's times when you have to realise that they're they'll only be ready when THEY'RE ready, and other times when they have to realise that WE know best. :)

Lyndsay - posted on 08/07/2010

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Hm, I guess I'm more of a parent-led person. My son was on an eating schedule from the very beginning, mostly because he was premature and I had to teach him how to suck while we were in the hospital, and they put me on a schedule of 2oz every 2hrs. When I went home, I just carried on like that until it eventually became 3oz/3hrs, then 4oz/4hrs, and then I upped the formula from there but kept it at 4 hour increments. He slept through the night at 6 weeks and has been a wonderful eater ever since then, so its worked for me.

As for the potty training thing, we're still sort of there. I started introducing the potty around 15 months but I didn't really push him until he seemed more ready, which was about 2. He's almost 3 now and he's mostly trained, except for at night.

Jessica - posted on 08/07/2010

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I agree with what Dana just said... I think a lot of people are actually somewhere in the middle without realizing it. I consider myself to be in the middle, I guess, though I've always thought I leaned more towards child-led. Because I've always based everything I do off his cues. Fed on demand, but when I noticed that started to be every 2 hours or so, I followed that while still keeping his cues in mind. We never did CIO- the most we did was move him to his own room at 5 months when it stopped being beneficial for both of us, and started to do a bedtime routine of bath and nursing. He started sleeping through the night on his own. When I weaned him it was at least 80% because he didn't seem to want to anymore, and my supply was dwindling fast (he was 8.5 months old). Solid food same thing- we introduced rice cereal around 4 months but totally went at his pace- never pushed it. I don't know, to me child-led is basing what you do off their cues. I think any decent parent is going to do that to some extent. It seems like true parent-led would be not allowing any room for the child to have a "say"- totally letting them CIO, forcing them to eat solids even if they aren't showing signs of being ready, ignoring hunger cues and only feeding them on a strict schedule... that's pretty messed up if you ask me, and I don't think *most* parents actually do that, even if they consider themselves parent-led.

Valerie - posted on 08/07/2010

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I think a lot depends on the child. Some babies do well in a structured schedule while others don't, making trying to establish one a constant struggle. Some babies are just more high-maintenance than others - they're little people, after all...

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Aura - " I didn't realize that some people actually wait until their child says something!"

In MOST cases I don't think that's the case....I think most people probably fall into the middle somewhere without even realizing it and the people who actually wait for their child to say, "mommy, I don't want to have a bottle anymore" are the extreme or the exception. I think most of us, without even giving it much thought, in some way encourage weaning.

[deleted account]

I lean more towards child led. It works for us because, believe it or not, it makes life so much easier. I get less crying and fussing and much more flexibility. I take her cues and figure it out, I thought that was child led, I didn't realize that some people actually wait until their child says something!

It was sort of half and half for breastfeeding. She was starting to bite and draw blood at six months, so I figured it was time to wean, but she didn't so much as cry when she no longer got the breast. She was weaned by 7 months and I can't figure out if it was my choice or hers, lol. I feel that taking her hungry cues are better than a schedule because I don't want to teach her to eat when she isn't hungry, that's a bad habit. Sleeping was great for us. We co sleep but are able to go out late with her because she falls asleep whenever she is tired. A schedule would make it hard for us.

It works for us, but not for everyone, lol. We're just nuts!

Shelley - posted on 08/07/2010

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I am parent led and have found it to work with both my daughters. Both schedual fed and slept through the night (8hrs) from 8 weeks in their own cot in their own room. i never co slept because neither would stay still long enough for me to get to sleep. I use the cio method but i have to say neither of them ever cried longer than 10 minutes 3 days in a row. if they had have gone longer than that i would have gone and settled them. If they did cry and i thought they were hungry i of course would feed them. i breastfed and began weaning both at 12 months(don't offer don't refuse method) and off totally by 15 months. Dummy's were removed at 6 months when they started solids. Both were in a bed at 15 months and my eldest was toilet trained by 2 both appear to be happy well adjusted and very loved little girls i can leave them if i need to i can also take them anywhere i've had very few tantrums and none (touch wood) in public. Both have reached every developemental milestone at or before the suggested time.
This method suited my personality i like structure, routine and organisation. i do the same things at the same time most days having said that i can be flexible when necisary.
It was important that i parented this way with my first as she was premmie and wouldn't wake for feeds ect and with my seccond she was thought to have a disorder by which she didn't feel pain and actually did not cry at all untill after she was 7 months and cried because she wasn't able to get where she wanted to go(frustration not pain). to this day she has not cried for any needles, falls or knocks about from her older sister.
We all bring to the table different qualities, personalities and life experiences.
Did i take time out to hold my babies yes so much of the time. Did i put them down for a certain amount of mat time, play pen time and now room time so that they would learn to play on their own while i did what i needed to do yes.
This method worked for me and my husband and we are happy with the results.
The down sides:
doesn't always suit what the extended family would like us to do eg bed times ect.
Alot of reasearch and thinking ahead about what we should be doing when and planning how we go about teaching or putting that into place.

Becky - posted on 08/06/2010

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I lean more towards child-led, but I'm definitely not completely child-led. Like Laura said, I follow my childrens' cues, as far as meals, naps, daily activities, etc. go. We have general meal/nap/bedtimes, but I don't force them to eat at 12:00 on the dot if they're not hungry yet, nor do I make them wait if they're hungry before that.
As for potty-training, we haven't done that yet! I'm not necessarily waiting for my son to say, okay, I'm done with diapers, but I am waiting for him to not cry when I suggest he sit on the potty! I did parent-led weaning with my oldest, only because I was pregnant again and couldn't keep up anymore. With my youngest, we're not weaning yet. I don't know whether it'll be child-led or parent-led. I want to try for number 3 in a few months, so we shall see how things go.
There are times when my kids do have to conform to my schedule or do what I say we're doing. I don't give up what I need/want completely for them. But, I'm not about forcing them to conform to the lifestyle I want to lead either, if it doesn't meet their needs.

[deleted account]

By the definitions Sara provided in the original post, I fall somewhere in between. That's all I have right now....time for bed! I'll be back...

Tara - posted on 08/06/2010

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My kids don't go to school ;)
I'm not totally child led. Again it's balance. I'm good enough.
I parent instinctively. If my gut says it's no good, than it doesn't happen. Worked for the last 17 years pretty good.
:)Tara

[deleted account]

Both.

When my girls were little it was pretty much entirely parent led. It really had to be in order to survive twins... at least for us. My son is more child led, but parent encouraged.... if that makes any sense.

Isobel - posted on 08/06/2010

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and for the record...I know some women who would disagree that you are child led...I know women who have waited patiently for the child to say..."I don't want a diaper" or "I don't want to breastfeed".

Isobel - posted on 08/06/2010

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my comments go for just about any type of weaning...I just used potty training as an example.

Tara - posted on 08/06/2010

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Not sure if your post was intended for me or for the thread on potty training???
Anyhow, to add, when it came to potty training I also watched for signs they were ready and then provided the tools, encouragement and support needed for success. I didn't wait for them to tell me "I want to be potty trained now."

Isobel - posted on 08/06/2010

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I think that as a parent, I watched for signs that they were ready, not for them to wake up one morning and say "I don't want a diaper anymore". There's a happy medium out there...we don't have to choose between forcing a baby to toilet train on their 2nd birthday, and we don't have to send our children to school with diapers.

Tara - posted on 08/06/2010

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I agree 100% with child led. In countries where families practice a natural more instinctive style of parenting, babies cry on average less than 5 minutes a day. As well, in cultures where co sleeping and baby wearing is the norm parents report not having issues with sleeping, ability to start and maintain a healthy breastfeeding relationship. Some studies also show this style of parenting can lead to earlier learning in many areas such as social skills including the ability to "read" other people's body language etc. this is due to the close consistent contact of baby and caregiver.

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