I’ve been planning for a while to post about Babwise – a series of books by Gary Ezzo that uses biblical teachings to recommend a parenting style guaranteed to create obedient children. I honestly just got so pissed trying to write something I decided to give up. Following these parenting guidelines is criminal in my opinion. And don’t tell me “it works!” Lots of things “work.” Beating your kids with a belt will “make them listen” – that doesn’t make it right. Parenting isn’t about what works today – it is about what works to make your child flourish into a well-rounded adult.
There is plenty of information about the damage that Babywise methods can do. I think some people (and even some churches) hand this book out with good intentions. If you have been given this book PLEASE DO SOME RESEARCH FIRST. The long-term damage to your child is not worth the unquestioning sycophants that this method will produce.
Where to start:
- Babywise recommends scheduled “parent-centered” feeding which has been tied to dehydration and failure to thrive .
- To Ezzo crying, even in a 2 month old, is a child manipulating you and you should resist. Allowing an infant to cry for an hour or more when waiting for the “next” scheduled feeding. What really makes me mad about this (besides the obvious neglectfulness in the face of research to the contrary) is the way he manipulates the bible to support it: “Praise God that the Father did not intervene when His Son cried out on the cross (Mt. 27:46). If He had stopped the process, there would be no redemption for us today.” Speechless. I think I’m going to throw up.
- He recommends “biblical chastisement” with a … not kidding here … a “biblical rod.” Described as being a wide strip of rubber tubing, a thin razor strap, or a large hot glue gun glue stick. He starts this at 18 months. People, if you are going to Home Depot to buy a device specifically to beat your toddler – I don’t care how softly – you are being abusive.
- And don’t think this is a little pat on the hand – Ezzo defines his chastisement as “inflicting pain with controlled force to amend an inner attitude.” The rod is described as “a somewhat flexible instrument (that) stings without inflicting bone or muscle damage…if there is no pain, then the instrument is probably too light or too flexible.” At what point does your parenting decisions begin to include discussions of bone or muscle damage? I’m against spanking but I thought that those who are for it used it to “get attention” or even “scare” not specifically to inflict pain. *gag*
If you try this I’m sure your children will be obedient as they flinch from your touch and rarely smile. Before you consider this method of abuse parenting – please read everything at this site.
Edited to add: Quotes are from Ezzo’s book Growing Kids God’s Way. Babywise is the title of two of his books and is generally used to describe this parenting style.