Customer Reviews for

Secrets of the Baby Whisperer: How to Calm, Connect, and Communicate with Your Baby

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

best advice

A fantastic book, a must for all mothers. Great advice on sleep, lactation, crying etc. Authors are not anti-breast feeding at all. No where in the book is that implied. They do empasize that bottle feeding moms should not be ashamed.

posted by Anonymous on November 14, 2006

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Most Helpful Critical Review

11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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 do...
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 respect their babies as the tiny people they are. Overall, there is a lot of comforting stuff in here.

But I have issues with some of her specific advice. First, I find that she's judgmental about attachment parenting in general. I'm no die-hard attachment parent, but I'm no rigid-scheduler either and I totally disagree with her belief that demand feeding, cosleeping and the like teaches a baby bad habits or does not effectively meet their needs. She presumes that if AP doesn't work for some, then it will not work for all and is therefore not even worth trying because you'll end up with a baby with bad habits to break down the road. My experiences with flexibility vs. scheduled routine have been quite different. Gentle transitions from three completely attached newborns to independent individuals without parent-imposed schedules (it's been much more symbiotic than the method Hogg proposes) have worked quite well in our household. While my style may not be right for everyone, it certainly *can* work, something that Hogg fails to recognize. (She believes the 'family bed gives parents short-shrift' without acknowledging that it actually *works* for many.)

Then there is the breastfeeding advice. I am disappointed to see someone who calls herself a lactation consultant try to make such a strong case for formula feeding over breastfeeding. As a mom who has both bottlefed and breastfed (and is still breastfeeding), I agree with Hogg that guilt or judgment has NO place in this decision, but I also feel that she has done a great disservice to moms and babies by understating some very important advantages and benefits of breastfeeding. She explains that 'one can make a good case for either formula-feeding or breastfeeding.' Unfortunately, she never does get around to making the case for breastfeeding.

In this same section, entitled 'Making the Choice,' Hogg has a sidebar on Feeding Fashions. In this small box, where I presume she's trying to show that while breastfeeding is currently 'all the rage,' the tide may turn out of its favor in later years as has happened in the past. (It's not clear here whether she's saying therefore don't choose breastfeeding just because it's a modern day 'fad' or that if you decide to formula feed against popular opinion, know that 25 years from now it will probably be 'the thing to do' just like it was 25 years ago? I don't get it.) She also says here, 'As this book is being written, scientists are experimenting with the notion of genetically altering cows to produce human breast milk [yuk]. If that happens, perhaps in the future everyone will tout cow's milk. In fact, a 1999 article in the Journal of Nutrition suggests 'that it may ultimately be possible to design formulas better able to meet the needs of individual infants than the milk available from the mother's breast.''

Okay, that is fascinating information, but how should it impact any mother's decision *today*? Feed your baby formula now because in the future it might actually be the best choice!? (A statement in itself which is worthy of an opposing dissertation - there are more advantages to breastfeeding than the mere composition of the fluid.)

Later, in the breastfeeding section, she specifically discourages demand feeding - advice which is direct opposition to breastfeeding recommendations endorsed by the majority of professional lactation consultants and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Hogg has a schedule all charted out for new parents, beginning with day one, which becomes increasing less flexible over a three day period, until you're stuck on that

posted by Anonymous on February 11, 2001

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2001

    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 respect their babies as the tiny people they are. Overall, there is a lot of comforting stuff in here. <p> But I have issues with some of her specific advice. First, I find that she's judgmental about attachment parenting in general. I'm no die-hard attachment parent, but I'm no rigid-scheduler either and I totally disagree with her belief that demand feeding, cosleeping and the like teaches a baby bad habits or does not effectively meet their needs. She presumes that if AP doesn't work for some, then it will not work for all and is therefore not even worth trying because you'll end up with a baby with bad habits to break down the road. My experiences with flexibility vs. scheduled routine have been quite different. Gentle transitions from three completely attached newborns to independent individuals without parent-imposed schedules (it's been much more symbiotic than the method Hogg proposes) have worked quite well in our household. While my style may not be right for everyone, it certainly *can* work, something that Hogg fails to recognize. (She believes the 'family bed gives parents short-shrift' without acknowledging that it actually *works* for many.) <p> Then there is the breastfeeding advice. I am disappointed to see someone who calls herself a lactation consultant try to make such a strong case for formula feeding over breastfeeding. As a mom who has both bottlefed and breastfed (and is still breastfeeding), I agree with Hogg that guilt or judgment has NO place in this decision, but I also feel that she has done a great disservice to moms and babies by understating some very important advantages and benefits of breastfeeding. She explains that 'one can make a good case for either formula-feeding or breastfeeding.' Unfortunately, she never does get around to making the case for breastfeeding. <p> In this same section, entitled 'Making the Choice,' Hogg has a sidebar on Feeding Fashions. In this small box, where I presume she's trying to show that while breastfeeding is currently 'all the rage,' the tide may turn out of its favor in later years as has happened in the past. (It's not clear here whether she's saying therefore don't choose breastfeeding just because it's a modern day 'fad' or that if you decide to formula feed against popular opinion, know that 25 years from now it will probably be 'the thing to do' just like it was 25 years ago? I don't get it.) She also says here, 'As this book is being written, scientists are experimenting with the notion of genetically altering cows to produce human breast milk [yuk]. If that happens, perhaps in the future everyone will tout cow's milk. In fact, a 1999 article in the Journal of Nutrition suggests 'that it may ultimately be possible to design formulas better able to meet the needs of individual infants than the milk available from the mother's breast.'' <p> Okay, that is fascinating information, but how should it impact any mother's decision *today*? Feed your baby formula now because in the future it might actually be the best choice!? (A statement in itself which is worthy of an opposing dissertation - there are more advantages to breastfeeding than the mere composition of the fluid.) <p> Later, in the breastfeeding section, she specifically discourages demand feeding - advice which is direct opposition to breastfeeding recommendations endorsed by the majority of professional lactation consultants and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Hogg has a schedule all charted out for new parents, beginning with day one, which becomes increasing less flexible over a three day period, until you're stuck on that

    11 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 2, 2006

    THIS BOOK GIVES TERRIBLE ADVICE

    How can a woman who claims to be a lactation consultant be so AGAINST breastfeeding. She comes across as arrogant and judgemental towards those of us who choose to breastfeed rather than formula feed. As a physician, I would highly discourage readers in following this author's advice which is mainly geared for 'hollywood' celebrities...not the general public. As a mother, I think her literary advice is 'hoggwash'.

    5 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 14, 2010

    DRMed

    This ebook is DRMed and therefore cannot be read on your computer. This is counterproductive because you cannot read the entire troubleshooting tips. Even in the smallest font in the smallest size...they are cut off and when you go to the next page...it's blank.

    3 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 30, 2008

    some helpful pointers, but a lot of self-contradictions and illogical ideas

    Once you get over the rather patronizing tone of the writing (being called 'ducky' and 'luv' every other page is a little tiresome), there are some gems of insight here, however, I found the EASY method to be completely off. <BR/><BR/>According to this, your child should Eat, have some Activity, then Sleep, (then it's time for You). However, according to this schedule, your baby's cycle is to sleep, then eat, meaning that the baby is always going to wake up hungry, and you're likely to miss the telltale signs of hunger before the baby cries unless you're standing over the crib watching the baby sleep all the time. <BR/><BR/>Also, you're putting the baby to sleep on a less-than-full stomach, which doesn't make a lot of sense, considering this is your baby's natural biorhythym, particulary if you're breastfeeding, since the baby will have just received a sleep-inducing dose of oxytocin. <BR/><BR/>She uses the western cultural model to support this cycle, where adults do not have a rest period after eating, however, in most parts of the world, including southern europe, it is still common to have a nap or significant rest period after lunch, the largest meal of the day. <BR/><BR/>Also, if you will be sending your child to preschool, keep in mind that most centers follow a model of having naptime right after lunch, so you may be setting your infant up for a pattern of eating and sleeping that will be in conflict with a childcare/preschool setting. <BR/><BR/>In general, I think this book has a lot to offer, but I would advise parents to investigate other philosophies/methods before adopting all of the advise offered here.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2006

    best advice

    A fantastic book, a must for all mothers. Great advice on sleep, lactation, crying etc. Authors are not anti-breast feeding at all. No where in the book is that implied. They do empasize that bottle feeding moms should not be ashamed.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 2, 2012

    Reviewed by a New Daddy

    As a new and young father, I am very curious about who my baby is and what I am supposed to do to help her. This book was a wonderful read. I appreciate that the author's programs are rooted in fertile reasoning. While this book (along with most parenting books) was written to a maternal audience, as a father, I found the content very informative and effective. I plan on reading the author's other books as a result.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 1, 2011

    I really recommend this book

    This is a great book for new Moms. I do recommend you read it before your baby comes. I also think that a hard copy would be better than the nook version. I have the nook version and it seems to be missing part of the graphs. The advice is great though. It made me feel alot better about the job I am doing.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 22, 2010

    Good if you want your baby to be on a structured routine and you're willing to be highly disciplined about it...

    I found that this book had some relavent pieces of parenting advice (such as creating a log to track your baby's various activities) but overall the advice felt somewhat rigid. I tried to maintain an open and objective outlook throughout my reading of the book but kept getting the sense that the author was promoting too much of a structured routine for my taste and sometimes came across as a bit overbearing.
    For me, the book "Happiest Baby on the Block" by Harvey Karp was much more relavent.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2004

    Baby slept through the night!

    Bought the book when my dear son was 7.5 months old and still woke up 3-4 times a night. After applying her bizarre sounding 'pick up/put down' technique for about 2 weeks--baby has slept through the night ever since! he just turned 9 months. Yay! She's a little condescending at times, particularly toward American mothers, but it worked!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2003

    Wonderful Book for First Time Grandparents

    Enjoyed reading this book, so many insights and helpful to relate to our bundle of joy. Respect and listening then responding are key points. Have had no luck finding the cassettes or CD recommended, A Child's Gift of Lullabies. Are they available in the northwest.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2002

    Good starter book

    Good book with lots of good information. I recommend the book to new moms. But if you're looking for help solving sleep problems, I suggest 'Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child'.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 13, 2002

    No answers for better SLEEP

    I had heard that this was a good book to find out how to get your baby to sleep through the night, but it really isn't about sleep at all - just a few pages. As a mother of three, much of the rest was common sense, although sometimes too much so: very much the author's opinions (not always meshing with mine). I don't like that she presents herself as against breastfeeding, having choice is good but discounting science (which she does repeatedly) to justify choice is not. If you are looking for a book on SLEEP though, this isn't it.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 30, 2002

    Not based on fact or science

    The author was a baby nurse (whose own children were tended by someone else) She has advice about everything but little of it is founded on fact -- she actually says that scientific research is 'propaganda'. I was looking for mainly ideas on how to calm my baby and help her sleep better, but mainly found ways to take better care of myself without regard to my baby¿s needs, which is an odd approach for a parent to take. I found several books that do a better job of combining research and common sense: The No-Cry Sleep Solution and Our Baby: The First Year.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 12, 2002

    I HATED Breastfeeding

    OK, OK, there, I said it. I hated nursing. My son was miserable and starving all of the time and would only fall asleep while nursing. So he was tired all of the time too. And so was I. Tracy Hogg's book was the only one out there which didn't make me feel like a horrible parent for switching him to formula at 3 weeks old. The last thing a new mother needs is more guilt. Reading Dr Sears' book, which told me I should breastfeed my son until he goes to college, have him sleep in my bed until he asks for his own (uh, hello, I know of NO child who 'asks' for his own bed) and carrying my 25 lb son around in a sling until he is old enough to walk did nothing but make me feel like the decisions I had made were wrong. I bottle fed my son and he sleeps in his own crib. I have a very happy little boy and I am loving being a mom. And it was Tracy Hogg's book that helped along the way. This is a must read!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2001

    Red Eyes and Tired Will Buy Anything

    As Americans, we will buy anything that promises a good night's sleep - especially for a new mom and dad. Don't read to much into the advice of the book or you will consider everything else you've read not worth a cent. I too agree, the breast feeding info is not up to snuff. Many working moms breast feed - pumping and freezing ahead of time is the key.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2001

    Bad advice, dangerous errors of information

    Odd that a nurse from England should feel that she knows more about babies¿ nutritional health than the 55,000 doctors who make up the American Academy of Pediatrics and the medical professionals of 191 nations who make up the World Health Organization ¿ she calls their information ¿huge propaganda campaigns.¿ (And what they hope to gain from this she doesn¿t say.) She refers to the research findings on the importance and value of breastmilk ¿statistical numwhack.¿ She goes on to say ¿If a woman is concerned about her body image, it might not be best for her to breastfeed¿ for fear of ¿irreversible physiological changes¿ to the shape of their breasts. (Ms. Hogg, I have breastfed four babies and my breasts are just fine, thank you.) She further advocates strict schedules to make the baby fit into YOUR busy life, and that taking care of yourself is the top priority. I found her writing often offensive, such as when she advises not ¿to thrust a pacifier or a boob in Baby¿s mouth to silence her.¿ Ms. Hogg¿s book focuses on the selfish lifestyles of the Hollywood types to which she sells her services for upwards of $1,000 a day. The endorsements on the book cover are from actors and screenwriters and the President of 20th Century Fox Televison. (No wonder she gets spots on TV talk shows, it's not based on the book's information.) This book is definitely NOT for the general public. I am deeply saddened to know that some innocent parents of babies will read this book and follow the poorly researched advice. Look elsewhere, parents, there are many other wonderful books that will give you accurate information about babies.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2001

    Take everything with a grain of salt

    I like most first time mothers want to read as much information as possible to help me with my new little miracle. I am thankful for finding Tracy's book when my baby was 4 months old and not sooner. Although her EASY and Slow methods give you some insight as to how to listen and observe your babies needs, her advice on sleeping and breastfeeding is somewhat confusing, contracted and very rigid. She talks about giving your baby independence and therefore if you 'hold your baby longer than necessary' all your doing is creating trouble for later. Well last time I checked, babies grow up and if we can't cuddle, nuzzle and hold our babies now, when can we? Also the idea of cosleeping, not putting a baby in their crib when they are asleep and letting your baby sleep anywhere BUT their own bedroom is a little overplayed. She seems to foster the notion that if things are not done to her example then things will never work out for the parents. I feel if it works for you...do it. As for breastfeeding, I am surprised to hear her say that for woman who want to maintain their figure, don't breastfeed....very disappointing. Take everything that you read here with a grain of salt. Don't let Tracy's advice make you think your doing something wrong. Remember, she is after all a mother too.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2001

    No Go!

    This is bascially a no-go book for my family of 6 children including new twins. It's simply goofy as my kids would say - to believe that seasoned parents would take this book seriously. The breastfeeding advice is off the wall in telling us not to switch breast and other such nonsense. My size and quanity of breast and milk just about put me in the hospital for clogged milk ducts by not switching often enough. The book has to be read by a watchful eye in regards to a new parent and mom. The critics who have such wonderful reviews are full of cow patties and should be ashamed of the publicity it has received. 'Your Baby and Child' gives much better workable solutions for baby and mother.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2013

    Highly recommend!!

    One of the best baby books I've read! Helped me better understand my baby.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2012

    Highly Recommend

    I have read this book a few times and have used Tracy's methods with all four of my children. My oldest is 6 and my youngest is 4 months old. Her method of eating, playing, and sleeping is fantastic. My oldest has always done this and continued in pre-school and kindergarten with the same method that both a private and public school use in my area. I did not read this book for lactation advice or to decide between nursing and bottle feeding. I used an actual lactation consultant or on-line advice from the la leche league especially since this book was published in 2002- much has changed from then even. I took this book as a guideline to help my children get on a schedule, sleep through the night and allow for me time. The silent night feeding she suggests is great- it has allowed me to get 4 hours of solid sleep which has been super valuable to me. I think the key is that this is a guideline and she has experience which has worked for many families. Every child is different and being flexible is also key, but I have learned that following her tips has been great for all my children.

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