Thursday, August 3, 2017

Beyond the Sling by Mayim Bialik

Beyond the Sling: A Real-Life Guide to Raising Confident, Loving Children the Attachment Parenting WayBeyond the Sling: A Real-Life Guide to Raising Confident, Loving Children the Attachment Parenting Way by Mayim Bialik
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I like Mayim Bialik so I really wanted to like this book. I believe in some of the attachment principals, though my kids sleep in their own beds in their own rooms, they seem mostly content with it. When my kids were babies, I did pretty much take the approach that "their wants are their needs" and they're developing well now.

But there were some serious problems with this book. Most notably, she casually mentioned she decided not to vaccinate her children. This is a problem. Unlike most other parenting decisions vaccination is not a decision that affects just you and your family, it's a societal issue because many vaccines work through herd immunity, especially for the immune-compromised children. So for example, her unvaccinated children could infect a child with cancer that isn't able to get the vaccines while fighting cancer. Also, she is a scientist, so we have to assume she based this on some relevant information the rest of us somehow missed? Way to implant doubt without actually providing something to back it up. As it happens, I looked into an entire class about vaccines when I had kids, with a lot of the relevant research and studies provided. It made clear to me the need for vaccinating and vaccinating according to the doctor-specified schedule.

Also, elimination communication sounds totally unnecessary. Potty training is not a huge deal that you need to suffer for years over it.

Finally, we see a little bit of how she viewed her marriage at the time the book was written and it did seem reasonable healthy based on her description, but then they got divorced the same year this book came out. Obviously, a lot of people treat divorce as private, but when you're writing a parenting book/ memoir it does seem especially relevant. Were there other things going on that she didn't share? Or did the marriage end specifically because of differences or problems arising from attachment parenting?

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