247 of 268 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Breath of Fresh Air
As first time parents, my wife and I were both frustrated and overwhelmed by the conflicting advice that we received even before our daughter was released from the hospital.
In between the feedings and diaper changes during the first few days at home, I read Secrets of the Baby Whisperer, which was given to us by a family friend. Finally, there was a sane voice of...
Published on February 14, 2002 by NotBobVila
995 of 1,140 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Bad breastfeeding advice
There is a lot to like about this book (even though constantly being called "luv" did get old by about page 3)... in many parts there *is* very good advice. Tracy Hogg claims a middle-of-the-road approach to parenting a newborn and I agree with many of her ideas. She does not advocate letting babies cry and communicates overall the belief that parents should...
Published on February 2, 2001
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45 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The only way to fly...,
This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Paperback)As a mom who read MANY different baby books (including those recommended by my OB, my OB friends, other mothers, pediatricians, etc), this one was the most helpful to me. The chapter on interpreting cries was very helpful as was the gentle feeding guidance. As a mom who had a GREAT deal of difficulty with breastfeeding, despite extensive effort, Tracy was a voice of sanity that I needed. Breastfeeding IS best, but she also helps those of us who had trouble. Easy to pick up and read at any stage in the first year, but especially helpful in the first few months.
The problem that I seem to find in reading others' reviews is that they disagreed with one or two points in the book and discarded the whole thing. I got a great deal out of this book, and also got advice that I utilized from other books. I am not an advocate of "cry it out" and found that sticking to a basic routine (that was flexible when needed!) made my house a whole lot more sane. Did I follow EVERY bit of advice? No - because it didn't work for me. Use your head and take what you can in the way of advice - trying to be a perfectionist and doing everything that ANYONE tells you is crazy. There is such a thing as moderation, which is what I appreciated about this book.
40 of 45 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars This book led to 6 weeks of heartache and frustration!,
This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Hardcover)I am a first time mother and faithfully read dozens of books before my child was born. "The Baby Whisperer" was one book that was recommended by a friend and I read it with a highlighter in hand. The information in this book led to six weeks of intense frustration and many tears during the first weeks of life with my baby. I followed the single sided breast feeding method she recommends and I now have a daughter who is severely underweight (she is six weeks and is only 6.5 lbs), my milk supply has dimished to nearly nothing, and I'm now having to supplement with formula to remedy all of this mess. Also, the EASY method is a joke. I tried that for all of 24 hours and realized it was impossible to regiment a newborn like that. Newborns have no biological clock nor any circadian sleep rhythms yet--therefore EASY would never work on a typical newborn. I strongly discourage anyone from supporting this woman's harmful ideas--I regret reading this book and it is now where it should have been six weeks ago: IN THE GARBAGE!
53 of 61 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but don't believe the hype!,
By A Customer
This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Hardcover)We bought this book because we saw Tracy Hogg on Dateline NBC and I really fell for it. Of course every parent wants their baby to be happy, understand them better and meet their needs. I thought this book would provide some "Secret" but I was sorely disappointed. I don't think that most parents will be able to "fix" their child in 3 days as she claims.
This book makes you feel if you have not followed her advice from day 1, you've already ingrained bad habits in your child through "Accidental Parenting" and that now you have to undo all your negative reinforcements. Reading this book was not exactly great for my self-esteem because according to Tracy we have been doing everything wrong for 6 weeks, like demand feeding and rocking our baby to calm her. We bought all the things she said were "bad" for your child, like the bouncy seat and swing. I feel that some of these "props," as she calls them, do work for many parents and shouldn't be completely banned.
I think you need to really think about her advice and whether it can apply to your child. It's not a bad book, but I think you need to take it in context with other parenting books and take just the bits that work for you.
Just a note -- the audio tape is murder. We bought both the book and the tape, and if you think "luv" gets old in the book, just listen to her say it numerous times in the tape! I actually had to turn the tape off because her voice and accent were getting too annoying.
74 of 87 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars lack of good feeding information,
By A Customer
This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Hardcover)At first I thought I would love this book. Someone who talked about respecting our precious babies! Tracy does have good ideas and some good theories.
However I was disappointed in the lack of good feeding information. I have read just about everything on breastfeeding and have begun to see some trends in factual information, unfortunately this book does not have that kind of information.
An example of outdated breastfeeding information: ((Page 105) First day [breastfed] whenever baby wants 5 minutes on each side Second day every 2 hours 10 minutes on each side Third day every 2 hours 15 minutes on each side Fourth day every 2 to 3 hours - 40 minutes maximum)
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has a statement on breastfeeding that states just the opposite. Saying that newborn infants should breastfeed unrestricted and on-request during the first days of life (not an exact quote).
I also spoke to an Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultant(IBCLC) about this structured feeding technique. She said that not only is it unnecessary but it also teaches mom to read the clock not the baby. Also it can interfere with the initiation of the mothers milk supply to restrict early feedings.
I am just wondering how Ms. Hogg can know more than the 34,000 Pediatrician of the AAP or the members of the IBCLC?
Please read this book with a grain of salt!
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Some good - some bad.,
This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Paperback)I agree with a lot of the previous reviews in that this EASY system is more difficult to implement before 2 months of age because newborns like to sleep after fedding. At about 1.5 - 2 months, my baby (textbook/spirited - halfway between both according to Tracy's test) naturally woke up after feedings. This book has pro's and cons:
28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Some good ideas for busy parents, but only as a supplement.,
For example, in the section on breast feeding, she judges the benefits of breast feeding as "overstated". She gives passing acknowledgment of current research on the benefits of breast feeding, but serves up the platitude "but modern formulas are chock full of nutrients" as sufficient reason to choose formula feeding, thereby diminishing the overwhelming consensus of research from around the world. She even calls the recent preference for breast feeding a fad, forgetting that formulas were invented within the last century while breast feeding has been around for a few million years. While the decision to breast-feed is extremely personal (and there are many good reasons to opt for formula feeding), I believe that a parent should at least be given all available information in order to make an educated decision. If you buy this book, make sure you also purchase an established parenting classic, such as "Dr. Spock's Baby and Child Care" by Benjamin Spock, "The Baby Book" by William and Martha Sears, or "Caring for Your Baby and Young Child" by the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Her parenting approach can be illustrated by the example of infant sleep. The standard espoused by many current parenting classics is to progressively let the baby cry it out (the Ferber method). Dr. Sears offers the controversial opposite proposal of bringing the baby to bed with the parents. Miss Hogg labels both approaches as extreme, calling the Furber method "cruel" and coming close to outright labeling Dr. Sears as a fad. Perhaps Dr. Sears' methods are a fad, but at least he backs up his recommendations by citing scientific research regarding benefits to the infant -- research that Miss Hogg conveniently omits and, therefore, does not attempt to dispute. In fact, she takes considerable effort throughout the book to pejoratively label Dr. Sears' style as "Kangaroo" parenting (her quotes), but she never makes clear what is so negative about Kangaroos. Miss Hogg offers a compromise approach to infant sleep. In conjunction with setting up a daily routine, she suggests that you lay the infant down in her crib just as her eyelids are getting heavy. If the infant begins fussing or crying, offer comforts such as soothing talk or the touch of a hand, but do not pick up the infant. Unlike most parenting classics -- which tend to offer suggestions but encourage the parents to do whatever works -- Miss Hogg offers no alternatives and actually suggests that if these methods do not work, it is due to the parents' faulty execution of these methods. Some of the other reader reviews here suggest what can happen with this inflexibility.
Miss Hogg's recommendations regarding the establishment of a routine are the central focus of her book and her suggestions are well written, if rather conventional upon deeper inspection. She explicitly formalizes in more accessible terms what other parenting classics already preach in more general terms.
Generally, this book is geared towards parents who have great demands on their time and cannot afford the full-time parenting approach endorsed by most other books. The back cover hints at this: testimonials from people such as Greg Germann (star of "Ally McBeal") and Dana Walden (president of Twentieth Century Fox Television), but no endorsements from health care professionals. I believe that crafting a parenting philosophy is a personal and complex process, and a parent is entitled to make an informed decision. Although this book offers some good suggestions, it is not a reference-quality book with which to base such a difficult decision.
69 of 82 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Mama knows BETTER than this,
By A Customer
96 of 117 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Return to the dark ages of baby care,
The author believes that all baby parenting fits in cute acronyms (E.A.S.Y. and S.L.O.W.) and formulae. This is going to cause a lot of new parents guilt and grief.
My suspicion is that someone cooked up this extremely clever title (playing on the hot "Horse Whisperer" book, movie, and concept) and then built a book around it.
Great title. Terrible book. Remember, PARENTS are their babies' "whisperers." They know their babies best.
Katie Allison Granju
Author, "Attachment Parenting:Instinctive Care for Your Baby and Young Child" and mother of three young children
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Read with caution,
This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Paperback)I read this book when I was pregnant with my first child and I wonder if it did more harm than good. The book is filled with useful advice for new parents, but it caused me a *lot* of stress because my daughter simply did not fit into any of Tracy's categories and would not conform to EASY no matter how hard I tried. I ended up being very frustrated because Tracy made it sound like it should all be so easy, but it was not in our case! My daughter was simply a "high maintenance" baby until about 9-12 months of age, when she became a sweet toddler.
After reading numerous other books, especially about fussiness and sleeping, by authors like Sears, Ferber, Weissbluth, and Mindell, I realized that any baby book is mostly someone's best opinion. If you read enough, you will find advice given by any one of these "experts" which contradicts with at least one other author. So whom do you believe? Ultimately you can try many different suggestions and find what works best for you. With my second child I am a lot more relaxed, knowing that I can follow my own intuition and not try to conform him to a method or book. I also now realize that babies go through stages all the time, and just when you think you have a certain area taken care of, they progress into something new.
I think baby books are good in giving new parents principles, but in the end, trust your own instincts and listen to your baby, rather than trying to fit the baby into a box. Probably Tracy's best advice in this book is at the end, when she reminds parents that the baby stage is just a "blip" on the radar screen of life. This is so true--enjoy your baby as much as you can instead of stressing over perfect parenting, because that stage is over so quickly!
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The only behavioral-type baby book I needed,
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This review is from: Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby (Mass Market Paperback)I skimmed a few other newborn advice books, and found them too extreme. Tracy Hogg's approach (if not voice, "luv") was the most in tune with my natural instincts about parenting - that babies prefer a routine (not a schedule) - and gives you practical advice on how to set a course for your baby. My experience is that when I get a little off-course with my now 6-month old twin boys, I skim the appropriate chapter in the book and we all get back on track. My twins both had different personalities - one is an Angel or a Textbook baby, and the other is more of a Touchy baby - and her techniques are working for both of the babies. Within eight weeks of bringing my premature sons home from NICU, they were sleeping for 6-hour stretches at night, and within 12 weeks they started sleeping 10-12 hours at night, all because of the tips that I gleaned from this book. Learning to distinguish my babies' cries and responding appropriately has critical to my success. I recommend this book to all my new mother friends.
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Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby by Melinda Blau (Mass Market Paperback - July 26, 2005)