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Should you let your baby cry at night?

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Discover the answer from psychologist Héloïse Junier in the video :

When a baby cries, it’s an alarm signal, a sign of stress,” says Héloïse Junier, psychologist and author of the book The sleep of the toddler (Dunod). The human baby is the most dependent mammal in the entire animal kingdom: crying is a way of approaching the adult”. Admittedly, it works: “anthropologically, we adults are made to approach a crying baby and soothe it”.

It is important to go to a crying baby

“The fact of systematically responding, as far as possible, to. Systematically responding as much as possible to a baby’s cries serves two functions,” the psychologist explains. It calms their little brain under stress and creates a secure attachment, which is important for their development and future relationships.”

Thus, to respond to a child’s cry by holding him in your arms is to teach him that he can count on the adult. In your arms, the child calms down: he secretes oxytocin, the attachment hormone, which reduces his stress level and lowers his heart and respiratory rate and his blood pressure. Therefore, being held in your arms is a great relief for the baby.

But only if you feel you can

“Each year, between 120 and 240 infants arrive in emergency rooms as victims of Shaken Baby Syndrome,” recalls the psychologist, who insists that this figure is undoubtedly much higher in reality because it is easy to hide the real reason that leads to the ER. “Baby crying is one of the main causes of mistreatment and death in infants under one year of age.”

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So be careful if you have to take care of a child and the child cries a lot or often, especially at night. Listen to yourself and be aware of your limits. “If you are tired, if you feel you can’t comfort your child, if it’s complicated for you at that moment, put the baby down safely and leave the room,” advises Héloïse Junier.

What if I let him cry?

There is no scientific consensus on the effects of not responding to an infant’s cry on its long-term development. It is known, however, that “when the secretion of Cortisol is too high or too intense, over regular periods of time, it generates chronic stress in the child.” Stress is neurotoxic, too much stress could have “an impact on certain areas of the brain and on the neuroplasticity of the brain.”

A 2012 New Zealand study showed that a baby who receives no response when he cries ends up not doing so after a few days. However, his cortisol level will remain high because he has not been reassured: “It no longer appears, but he is still stressed,” summarizes the psychologist. In addition, he has integrated the notion of learned helplessness and is in a passive position.

Further information.

If I come too often, will he become fussy?

“There is no risk! A whim has no scientific meaning, it is cultural: we consider that the other person’s reaction is unjustified. If the emotion is there, the way we see its expression does not change anything at the neurobiological level. What we call a tantrum is usually an emotional explosion: the child cries uncontrollably. This is normal, his brain is not mature. But in reality, no one controls his tears because they are secreted by the autonomic nervous system.

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Watch Héloïse Junier’s explanations on video.

More information:

Sleep in young children
Héloïse Junier
Editions Dunod

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Family / Couple

Breath play or erotic suffocation, a dangerous sexual practice

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It is sexual behavior that is controversial. the breathing game which literally means “breath play”, is a form of erotic asphyxiation practiced during sexual intercourse. But its dangerousness is often overlooked.

What is the breathing game?

ends sexual arousal”, defines the English version of Wikipedia. In practice, “erotic asphyxia” consists ofchoking your partner in the middle of a sexual act. However, playing with your breath can be very dangerous, even deadly. “May result in accidental death by suffocation,” the definition says.

However, despite the risk of injury or fainting, this practice has many adherents. A study conducted in 2021 among 4,000 American students indicates that 26.5% of those surveyed had drowned during their last sexual encounter. Another study carried out the same year on other students reveals more worrying figures: 58% of them have already been suffocated by a partner.

L’suffocation erotic it is also very popular in BSDM circles. A french website dedicated to this type of sexual practices, explains that this restriction of breathing is “practiced in different ways: hanging, suffocation, placing the head in a plastic bag or strangulation,” reports an article in female earth.

A sexual practice that can be deadly

Very risky, the breathing game was popularized by the porn industry, making it an act in its own right, especially in sexual relations marked by domination. But in reality, the consequences of this sexual practice can be fatal. Too much pressure on the larynx can cause death.

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Although there are no official figures on the number of deaths caused by this practice, Grace Millane, a 22-year-old woman, died from it in 2018. Police found traces of strangulation that could correspond to a “four to five minute” suffocation. His partner, Jesse Kempton, was convicted of femicide and sentenced to life in prison. The defense had confided “that the young woman had accidentally died at the end of a sexual game that had gone wrong, a version that had been categorically rejected by the jury,” he recalls. paris party.

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Couple: what your position on the sofa says about your relationship

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the posture adopted by couples when they sit on a sofait’s a window into your relationship status. This is the conclusion of a study conducted by Georgina Barnett, a British psychologist, on 2,000 cohabiting couples. “Tell me how you’re sitting, I’ll tell you if everything is fine in your relationship,” says the specialist in an interview with Stylish Maternity.

Sitting next to each other: a sign of imbalance?

While most couples tend to sit on the couch together, there are some pretty subtle signs that it can be signs of relationship problems. When the partners occupy only one corner of the bench and are too close together, this is synonymous with imbalance in your relationship. “The comfortable person in the corner takes up the space, is confident, and has power in the relationship. The other, on the other hand, seems less confident. He is looking for contact and reassurance, ”explains Georgina Barnett.

However, there is a nuance when they sit more in the center of the sofa, maintaining physical contact, such as a hand on the thigh or another. “Couples established in this way have trust your relationship and therefore can afford personal space. It is a mixture of intimacy and freedom”, analyzes the psychologist. But although in love, the latter no longer experience the passion of the first days, according to the expert.

When the position on the sofa heralds a crisis

According to the psychologist, time is serious in the event that the two partners are sitting at two different ends. “It’s even worse if her legs are crossed in opposite directions,” she says. This posture is generally a sign of a Tension in the couple. It can also be a sign that something was left unsaid or resentment, according to Georgina Barnett.

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And contrary to what one might think, if the partners are based on different bases, distanced from each other, it does not necessarily mean that they are in crisis. can only be couples comfortable enough with each other to have their own space. Although this study is based on a fairly large sample, its conclusions must be taken with caution.

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The Relationship Escalator: Are You Following This Conventional Love Pattern?

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Dating, formalizing your relationship, living together, getting married and having children. Many people perceive this life path map as the ultimate blueprint. This diagram has a name: the relationship escalator. The goal of those who take it is to peak by aging together, after checking a certain number of boxes.

What is a “relationship escalator”?

This expression designates a love pattern widespread, but increasingly questioned within society. The Urban DictionaryThe bible of slang and popular expressions defines the relationship ladder as “the societal expectation that a romantic relationship should automatically follow a set of stages and lead to marriage, parenthood, and home ownership.”

Amy Gahran, author of Off the Relationship Escalator, Uncommon Love and Life, was the first to mention this concept. She explains that this notion is “a standard by which most people assess whether an intimate relationship that develops is meaningful, serious, good, healthy, committed, or worth pursuing or maintaining.” In other words, the escalator of the relationship denotes ME’set of beliefs that perceive the most conventional pattern of love as the most rewarding and valued. This concept is made up of several steps that can vary depending on the culture. But they generally follow this timeline:

• Flirt for a few weeks/months

• Becoming sexually and emotionally exclusive

• Introduce your partner to loved ones

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• Live together

• Get married or settle down

• Acquire real estate

• Have children

• Get old together

A satisfactory relational schema if it is not imposed

There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking this kind of path of love if it makes us happy. Instead, what can be problematic is imposing it on others as an absolute norm and the only valid model. Pointing fingers at this practice is also a way of denouncing the constant pressure on singles and couples who do not formalize their civil unions.

Gabrielle Smith, an author and poet who is very sensitive to issues related to sexuality and romantic relationships, analyzes this practice in an article by granist “The relationship escalator is designed for heterosexual relationships between singles and preferably for relationships within a two-income middle-class household. Many people are not part of this demographic, and those who are still feel the pressure it brings. »

If this mandate can affect all genders, it is particularly intense when it comes to heterosexual women. “Society makes you think it’s easy to get married, have children, or combine finances. But the reality for many is that it is neither possible nor smart”, concludes Gabrielle Smith.

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