Welcome to 2013.
Babies who cry self-soothe! The dubious claims from research “proving” that crying babies will self-soothe when left to cry might not be accurate, or perhaps just the media looking for a sound bite that will make a headline. Apparently it was taken from a press release.
Several themes stand out here – the role of the press, and the quality of research and how it is interpreted. The press wants to sell news so has to make it as eye catching as it can. It is a business which is necessary in keeping bad behaviour in check, but takes liberties with the truth to sell news.
Research is a tricky subject. It is deemed to have a kind of truth because it has to quote and reference itself to other pieces of research. Research has to fill a space that is not occupied by another piece of research but has to relate to other research!? It has to define itself as qualitative, quantitative, or observational. This research was an observational study of sleeping patterns of babies.
Research has a way of being used to back up an already held point of view. Like people when we have a point of view which has been constructed over the years, and we bend the research or evidence to uphold this point of view. Even if there is a lot of evidence to disprove the point of view, if the point of view suits us or is key to our view of the world it is maintained against the evidence.
To be able to have flexible relationships to what we believe in is a challenge. To be able to think relationally is helpful. In other words what a person might say to you might be in relation to them not you. For example if someone says you are angry and they do not like it: this might be to do with the speaker’s issues about anger: not you. An appreciation of whatever is said to you, and what is said by you is about them and you. Not the other way around!
To apply this to the above article: what are the newspapers saying in choosing this topic as a headline? Is it shocking? Does it catch the eye? Is it news worthy? Perhaps because it is emotive: it’s about babies.
Strangely if animals or people were left to cry this might be perceived as cruel? But for babies this is ok?
Perhaps it is back to an Anglo-Saxon mentality? Let babies fend for themselves! They will have to fend themselves in the capitalist model? Let them get some early practice in!
Copyright Adrian Scott North London Counsellor Blog 2013
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Disclaimer: This weblog is the view of the writer and for general information only.
This article is designed to provoke argument and critique.