Thursday, April 12, 2012

Book Review: The Other Baby Book

The Other Baby Book Virtual Tour
When I became pregnant with our first baby, I spent hours reading mainstream baby books.  It was frustrating.  The information seemed to be pure conflict--advocating conflict with our baby (leaving her to cry, weaning from the breast by nine months), even conflict with other chapters of their own book (don't wean before a year, you can't spoil a baby).  Most of all, it conflicted with my heart.  Much of the advice seemed fear based, and instead of feeling empowered, reading those books left me full of doubts. 

Reading The Other Baby Book was a lovely breath of fresh air!  It is full of up-to-date info on everything from birth to breastfeeding to starting solids and other first year topics.  Even as a mom of four, I found new and interesting info on elimination communication, cloth diapers and baby led solids. That is important.  But I also enjoyed reading it.  Because what new mom has time to wade through a book that is a chore to read?

The tone is neither condescending or cheesy--it is just what you would expect if you had curled up on the couch with a cup of coffee and a dear friend.  It is funny and down to earth, but also full of excellent references and solid information.  The excerpts from some of my favorite authors (Jan Hunt, Alfie Kohn, Naomi Aldort and more) were a delight as well as a wonderful intro for further reading, and the real-life voices of Megan and Miriam set it apart as moms who have been there, not just researchers who have compiled data in a lab or library.

My only quibblette (too tiny to be a real quibble) with the book is that I wished the section on vaccination had been a little stronger in support and info for those who choose not to vax.  That said, it was still better than the mainstream baby books I have read, and I recognize the many difficulties it could present.  Also, although it does offer some information on infant development, it does not have any "what your baby should be able to do at x months" sections.

There are a lot of excellent things to say about this book, but for me, the greatest was that reading it brought a sense of peace.  As a follower of Christ, I believe that one of the greatest reminders from the Bible is that whatever we do to the smallest of these, we are doing to Jesus.  That flies right in the face of advice to schedule feedings, leave our babies to cry alone, or to imagine evil intent behind their attempts to communicate.

The Other Baby Book uses research and common sense to support the convictions of my heart to treat my babies as I would want to be treated.  Reading it filled me with peace and a sense of freedom to listen to my spirit as I mother my children.  It is a wonderful thing to find that science and love come together and say the same thing!  This is a baby book that I look forward to sharing with my new mom friends, knowing that it will be a source of wisdom and peace for their families.

The book is excellent, but make sure you check out all the other ways to link up with these fabulous moms!

Twitter: @otherbabybook

Disclosure:  I received a complimentary copy for review purposes.  My opinions are sincere and honestly presented in the review.


ashley @ twentysixcats said...

Is this a specifically Christian/religious book? (I'm thinking of friends who would be interested but probably turned off by anything Christian.)

dulce de leche said...

Ashley, there are no religious references in the book at all. :)