How books fail you

Posted on September 9, 2012

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I’m a lover of books. But books have their limitations. 

Before I had my son, I read several books on how to get him to sleep through the night. Here was some of the advice given in the top-sellers: 

1. Don’t rock your baby to sleep every night. He will always expect it and not be able to put himself to sleep. 

2. Rock your baby to sleep every night. It will give him a sense of psychology safety and he’ll be a better adjusted human being. 

3. If your baby wakes up, let him cry. He needs to learn self-soothing skills to be an independent human being. Eventually, he will teach himself to go back to sleep by himself. 

4. When you baby cries, attend to him immediately. Ignoring him will result in long-term psychological damage and trust issues. 

This does not include all of the conflicting advice my pediatrician also gave me about getting my son to sleep. So who was right? 

None of them, really. Not only does my son’s needs differ from those of other babies, but his needs differ day by day. 

You can’t depend on a book-which is written for a large, general audience-to give you the individualized help and guidance you need when it comes to something incredibly important in your life. Sure, some of the advice may help, but books will always fall short because they can’t possibly take into account your individual, ever-changing needs.

Your instinct and intuition will always be your best advisors. 

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