Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 07-12-2018

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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2 AT HOME / ENTERTAINMENT JULY 12-18, 2018 | VALLEY BREEZE LIVING EDITION Psychologists have overly complicated toilet training Strolling through my go-to grocery store the other day, I happened down the baby products aisle where I spied packages of toilet-training pants featuring pictures of happy children who looked at least 3, some as old as 5. The first question that came to mind: Why would a 5-year- old who is continuing to eliminate on himself be happy? Perhaps a spokesperson for the unnamed man- ufacturer of said diabolical apparel will answer that question for me. In the mid-1950s, a study done by researchers from Harvard, Stanford, Yale and Princeton determined that close to 90 percent of 24-month-old American children were accident- free and had been for at least one month. That means 9 out of 10 children were completely toilet trained by no later than 23 months. And then, in the 1960s, along came the Mr. Rogers of pediatrics, Dr. T. Berry Brazelton, who claimed, with- out a shred of scientifically-obtained evidence, that the attempt to toilet train a child under age 24 months requires "force" and is therefore psy- chologically damaging. In addition, Brazelton fabricated a wholly fictitious set of 10 or so behavioral "readiness signs" that he insisted be present before toilet training is attempted. Mind you, the only readiness sign to which mothers in the pre-psychological parenting era (pre-1960s) paid attention was their own readiness to stop changing and washing diapers. Almost instant- ly, Brazelton's "child-centered" approach to toilet training became the gold standard in the pediatric community. As pediatricians began advising mothers to hold off train- ing until 30 to 36 months lest they wreak psychological havoc on their kids, a process that had taken 3 days to a week, on average, began taking months, even years. Likewise, moth- ers went from being fairly noncha- lant about the entire affair to being toilet-training basket cases. The problem rapidly expanded to the point where some psychologists began specializing in toilet training. In Charlotte, N.C., in the 1970s, a psychologist advertised an in-home toilet training service. Yes, he would come to someone's home and either toilet train the child in question or walk the parents through the pro- cess. Books on how to toilet train began to proliferate. (I even wrote one in which I simply described how it was done before Brazelton threw his monkey wrench into the matter.) After all, where children are concerned, there is nothing new under the sun (despite propaganda to the contrary). Do parents need specialized pro- fessional training to properly teach children to feed themselves? No, they do not. Thankfully, no one with capital letters after his or her name has ever claimed that improper spoon training will begin a child's descent into psychological pandemo- nium, even criminality. Perhaps it's only a matter of time. There must be a market there, somewhere. After all, there are several similari- ties between spoon training and toi- let training. First, they both involve the digestive system. Second, they both involve messes. Third, said messes must be taken care of by parents (or nannies, as the case may be). Surely someone smarter than myself can make a case for waiting to teach children to feed themselves Traditional Parenting JOHN ROSEMOND Continues on next page Eat Drink RI presents HeritageFest 2018 Live Jazz Brunch EAST PROVIDENCE – On Sunday, July 15, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m., Eat Drink RI is sponsoring the first Live Jazz Brunch featuring the New Providence Big Band at East Providence HeritageFest 2018. This 38th Annual HeritageFest takes place at Pierce Memorial Field in East Providence this weekend, July 13-15. Details can be found at epheritage- days.com. Six local food businesses will pre- pare brunch specialties to enjoy during the show. Vendors include Borealis Coffee Roasters, The Burgundian: Coffee & Waffles, Gastros, GottaQ Smokehouse BBQ, Incred-A-Bowl and SoulFull. Mimosas will also be served. The concert is free and open to the public. Food and drink from these vendors is available for purchase dur- ing the show. Step back in time and enjoy the blaring horns, romantic melodies, and foot stomping rhythms of the New Providence Big Band, a 17-piece swing band, featuring the tones of Katie Kleyla. Kleyla is an East Providence native and has worked with Eat Drink RI for several years, co-producing some of the region's best culinary events. Visit https://eatdrinkri.com . IN BRIEF

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