Tuesday, May 6, 2008

What Did Not Work For Me: Ezzo Parenting

Works For Me Wednesday is doing a reverse today. Shannon is asking us to share what does not work with us or did not work with us. Since I am on a Mothers Day Theme this two week in my blog, I thought I'd share something that didn't work for me as a mom. You guessed it: Ezzo Parenting.

I felt compelled to share this here to let "new mothers" or "expecting mothers" know that the principles taught in the books written by the Ezzo's are not for everyone. In fact, there are only a few parents I know who were successful at using it. Yes, I know a couple who raised their 7 kids using the Ezzo way, and yes they are healthy, polite kids... but my point is, it is not for everyone. Certainly didn't work for me.

The problem with the Ezzo parenting is that they labeled it "God's Way" when in fact, there really is no direct connection to God's way on this kind of parenting. And that's what I don't like about it. One of their book/series is titled "Growing Kids Gods' Way" and many young Christian parents are persuaded to believe that this is indeed God's way, like the "only way". The truth is, it is not, it's not the only way, not the best way for everyone. It tends to be "controlling" and "militaristic" as far as I am concern. It laid a lot of guilt on me, as a young mom who couldn't let my infant cry for a long period of time. Yes, I watched the "Preparation For Parenting video", I read their book, I tried to follow it, but in the end my mother instinct told me to nurture my child and not be stressed out by wanting to follow what the Ezzo is teaching.

I won't deal with the details of Ezzo parenting because all you have to do is Google Ezzo Parenting and you'll get tons of info on this (they authored many books including Babywise, etc.). My point in sharing is to encourage young moms to nurture their child ... and if you're a Christian mom and wants to know what God's word says about raising kids... read the Bible directly and ask the Holy Spirit to lead you as you raise your child.

For more tips of "what doesn't work", visit Rocks In My Dryer.

20 comments:

Tracee said...

Not that big of a fan of the Growing Kids Gods Way dogma either.

As if there is only one way to raise kids and the Ezzo way got specially sanctioned as "God's Way". Whatever.

Julie said...

Oh. My. Gosh. A (childless) friend gave me this when my son was born. I read through it promptly put it away. I knew it was wrong for me even before I tried any of it. I ended up giving it to child development specialist who had heard of the program but didn't know much about it. I agree. It was too miliatrist for me.

Rocks In My Dryer said...

Amen, and amen.

Jessica said...

Glad to hear of another mommy who had a similar experience! Here's a link to my post on Ezzo: http://theblehmblog.blogspot.com/2007/03/sleep-jen-is-hosting-parenting-choices.html

Gypsy said...

Good on you for posting this. I really detest Ezzo's approach, and I particularly detest his use of the religious aspect to guilt people into parenting a certain way. I have a wonderful old book by William Sears The Ministry of Parenting Your Baby, which provides great biblical support for attachment parenting.

Kelsey Smith said...

Your so right Ezzo is not for everyone at all and I have a huge problem with the fact that it is said to be the only one that works. I have the same problem with NGJ ministries.

Now saying that i dont agree with everything I do use some of the Ezzo methods and NGJ methods and they have worked for me but your right they are not for everyone.

Lady Why said...

That is so true! I wasn't introduced to them until I already had two children but I knew immediately that they didn't 'fit' with my parenting style.

Katrina said...

Your advice to read the Bible and rely on the Holy Spirit is simply wonderful, Liza. Thanks. :)

Lisa said...

Yes, the Bible is where we should go first! A book that was helpful for us and uses scripture is Shepherding A Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp.

Pam said...

Great perspective, Liza. Always return to Scripture.

This book basically put me under an already performance-laden mountain of guilt and nearly crippled me when I tried and failed their method with our second child who was having none of their method of scheduling.

Great to get the word out before other mommies are confused and guilt-ridden by "God's Way". God's way is found in His Word, not Gary Ezzo's books.

A, B & C said...

Thank you for saying this! A girlfriend who knew I was religious gave me Baby.wise when I was pregnant. I was concerned with the content, since it went against everything I had read about establishing successful breastfeeding.

My daughter and I did just fine on a demand-feeding schedule and she started sleeping through the night at just 10 weeks. I read a study claiming that newborns being nursed and held all the time trust their parents constancy more, and are able to sleep through the night sooner.

As for my friend who gave me this book? Her son still doesn't sleep through the night and he's almost 3!

jenny from mommin' it up! said...

Great Advice!! Coldn't have said it better myself!!

Tara said...

We did the prep for parenting stuff with our first. We decided that instead of "Ezzo-ing" our children we would "K-last name" our children. We took bits and pieces from many different sources, compiled them all together and have turned our four beautiful, independent, loving and respectful children. And THAT works for us!

Sister Honey Bunch said...

I looked at those when my son was younger. Not my style of parenting thank you. Great tip.

The Daileys said...

It is so refreshing to hear someone call a spade a spade. Thank you. I think that as parents we can rely on the Bible and not have to filter it through the personality of a tralslator all the time. A very conservative church in my area offered Growing Kids Gods Way and it got way out of hand in that if you didn't go you were considered an overly permissive and "doormat" type of parent whose children were going to run your home one day. I have to say that I am actually quite a boundary oriented parent, but the tone of that curriulum offended me and had the "speak only when you're spoken to" type of controlling style to it. I don't see that tone anywhere in the Bible and certainly not in the way GOd deals with HIS children. I too fell in love with Shpherding a Child's Heart by Ted Tripp which accurately portrays our role as training children to stand before the Lord in obedience that springs up from the core of our hearts and gets to root issues in our children's hearts as well as our own.

Oops... I wrote a novel. Sorry, but I'm passionate about this stuff too- way to go!

Cammie said...

Yes! I think it is so silly when one decides that everyones parenting problems can be resolved in one book. God created too many people for there to be only ONE way. You are so right we must seek the Lord and read his Word to find the right way for our individual kids. Thanks for posting this = )

Daiquiri said...

AMEN. As if new parents need more reasons to feel guilty! I'm certainly not going to be made to feel guilty for not NOT following my instincts when my baby cries! Crazy!

Anonymous said...

I guess I will be the salmon swimming upstream on this one.

First, let me say I agree wholeheartedly that the Bible should be your first resource for parenting.

Second, I don't think there is just one way or one style of parenting that works for everyone. I think we can all agree on that.

However, I have implemented most of what I have learned from Babywise series of books quite successfully. I ignored what didn't work for me/fit our lifestyle. I have to say that it has worked well for me so far.

I'm a big fan of their potty training book and my daughter was potty trained in 1 day just like the book promised.

Edi said...

My sister used the book w/great success so I was eager to try it when my first came along. It was so frustrating to me b/c I was doing everything right and yet my daughter wasn't doing what she was "supposed" to do!

Well - with number 2 child I relaxed. I realized that I liked the idea of a schedule and some other basic ideas from the book but I wasn't going to be legalistic about it and things worked out ok.

But see I followed the book more closely for #1 and it was a disaster b/c you know the baby didn't know how to read so she didn't know what she needed to do :) I think it has more to do with the child's personality from day one - as to whether or not a "program" is gonna turn out like it's "supposed to".

So I say go with what works for you. A little schedule, no schedule, somewhere in between. Babies and their parents are so different you can't expect to have identical results.

Tricia said...

I know this is an old post...I found it off of ezzo.info. And I wanted to say thank you for speaking out, especially in a blog carnival as popular as What Works for Me Wednesday. I pray that your post has encouraged many to really research Ezzo.