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Jacob Woods

Jacob Woods
Jacob is gay. He eats, breathes, and sleeps lgbtqia issues. He is a psychology major currrently working to educate the simpletons. He attends college in the Twin Cities Minnesota.

Monday, August 8

I'm 20, I know nothing!

 The following are comments I received in regards to Baby Walkers and Electronic Things.

"Yes some walkers are bad, the ones they climb themselves up onto are good cuz they are just like pushing a cart, and the ones they sit in are not meant to teach them how to walk at all. they are a form of entertainment for the child while the parent is busy doing dishes or homework or cleaning in general, this form of entertainment gives the child a small amount of mobility, but does not allow them through any doorways, so the parent can leave doorways open and prevent the child from getting into things. as for the rockers, they are a godsend. Yes holding the child is far better for the child BUT rocking a child is extremely time consuming and when you have a baby, you figure out every way you can to put the baby down ad clean house or do homework or other things. rocking I have found is best reserved for night time."

"Strange post. I'm guessing you're not a parent, haven't been around babies much, and certainly haven't been kept awake all night nursing one. Yeah, homosexuality is OK, and so are baby walkers, swinging cradles, and all the other "annoying" devices found at baby stores around the country. You know why? Because it's hard effing work being a 24/7 parent with an infant who sleeps maybe 20 or 30 minutes at a time, wakes up at 10, 1, 3, and 5 am for feedings, and still manage to work full-time. Sitting in a walker all the time does limit development, but babies learning to walk are at high risk for accidents and it's simply not feasible to keep an eye on the little cruiser at all times. There may be other children, meals and cleaning to deal with, work to do, blogs to post, you get the idea. Baby walkers are like little play pens that keep the kiddo safe while the toddler is being cleaned up after just having an accident (toddlers do have them, you know). Basically, try on some curiosity about how and why people might use such devices before placing judgment."

Yep, you're right, I don't have nipples with milk! (I'm teasing. Don't take offense to that.) The problem with my original post is I did not approach the counterarguments for the positive uses of such devices. The counterarguments laid out here are clear. There is a time and convenience issue as well as a safety concern. And much of what is said could fall into the current predicament many American parents of today's 21st century find themselves in. And I feel, many don't realize it. I will approach both counterarguments and I will end by pointing out the the predicament I just mentioned. I will not approach the I don't have boobs or children argument because that is ad hominen and it is false logic for argument.

Time and convenience I feel is a valid benefit for electronic baby rockers and baby walkers. In today's high speed society, sure, having a place to put a kid for a couple of minutes is surely beneficial. Plus with homework and work, a baby rocker is a great quick fix for crying baby. They can save a lot of time, and provide what is referred to as a God send.

However, I can not find any research on self rocking baby cradles. So, my argument against the use of such devices is based on current information we have about emotional bonding. Attachment theory, the theory of close relationships developed by Bowlby and Ainsworth and grounded in ethological theory, (with psychoanalytic theory and cognitive theory): stating that close emotional bonds such as parent-child attachments are biologically based and contribute to species survival. (Life-Span Human Development G-2) Or better put by Wikipedia - "Parental responses lead to the development of patterns of attachment; these, in turn, lead to internal working models which will guide the individual's perceptions, emotions, thoughts and expectations in later relationships." I feel this all is loosely connected to what was found with the Rhesus monkeys.

To any degree, I am very skeptical of such devices regardless of their potential benefits to busy parents. I am worried for the future generation of socially inept children who fail at bonding with others potentially due to overuse, or extensive use of such devices. What exactly that entails, is probably not yet available, however, that is why you have people like me, who research such things. Who knows, psychologists may find that baby walkers and electronic cradles are actually beneficial to emotional bonding for some crazy reason. But I do not see any reason to hypothesize such outcomes. And the research on walkers meant for walking are clear!

Now I must address the safety argument. I am going to do so briefly so I can get to my primary concern. Sure, little monsters run around, and these devices can provide stability for children. But this is was frightens me, ". . . but babies learning to walk are at high risk for accidents and it's simply not feasible to keep an eye on the little cruiser at all times." My question to parents who have come to believe this is, when did having a cradle and play pen become a primary more suitable eye on a child than one's own parent? Though there are so many more things I would like to approach, I will state it simply, sure, I have never been a primary caretaker of a child, but I did watch my nephew for six weeks this summer. I worked in the evenings or on naps. And when I was cooking I sat my nephew on the counter and he "helped" me cook. He was right next to me watching me cook, if anything, he was learning how to cook. Or the basic "schema" of the process. When I had to write while he was awake, I shut doors and put a baby gate across the entrance to the basement. I gave him crayons and he colored while I was writing. Sometimes, he would ask for juice, so I quit writing and gave him juice.

That leads me to my last point and summary. Americans live in a world where the television is on eight hours a day average. Both parents are working and attending school and still manage to have children. Which is fine, that is one of the great luxuries of life! But, when school, work, sleep, and adult play become more important or more time consuming than care taking for a child, there should be a concern for the emotional and social intelligence for the next generation of kids. And I think this is the predicament Americans are finding themselves in. Parent and child bonding I feel is losing it's importance, and more and more, other people become responsible for caretaking, and with today's technology, inanimate things like telivisions, baby walkers, and electronic cradle things replace responsibilities of the parent.

(I do not think that I am a superior caretaker nor do I intend for this blog post to offend today's parents. I am a twenty year old gay guy! I know nothing about parenting, cough!)


naturgesetz said...

Well, it seems that I can't get a comment to post on your latest posts unless I use my Facebook identity, rather than my Blogger identity. I want to keep the two separate, so, regretfully, I'm going to have to refrain from commenting on any of your posts after this one unless you give me the option of using my blogger identity.

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