RIE Diaper Changes
Let’s face it, whether it’s with a newborn or whether you’re working with a toddler, diaper changing is hard and isn’t always a pleasant experience for both you and your little one. This was something that my partner struggled with a lot in our son’s earliest years, and so we had to look at different solutions to tackle this particularly messy task. Our solution was RIE diaper changes, and this is something we’ll dive into in the following content.
So, like many other parents, some tasks are just best to be avoided by one particular parent if they have a troublesome time with it and it can be beneficial to trade certain tasks that you’re more comfortable in doing. This can eventually become difficult however as the two of you are constantly trading off tasks and at some point disputes you arise when one parent believes the other isn’t putting in equal amounts of effort to raising your child.
The Philosophy of RIE
This had become the case in my own relationship, and so I consulted some of my mommy friends on the best action to take. It was because of this that we discovered RIE Parenting – a parenting philosophy coined by Magda Gerber back in the 70s that is becoming more widespread and practised in modern life. RIE, which stands for Resources for Infant Educarers, is essentially a style of parenting that focuses on involving your child in their own caregiving as much as possible. Treating them as an independent, dignified individual rather than a small person that you’re in control of at all times. Giving respect to your little one in matters of their caregiving has huge benefits for the bond between parent and child over the long run and can relieve stress in many activities, including diaper changing for both parties.
RIE Diaper Changes
So, now we move naturally to RIE diaper changes and the benefits it’s had in our own parenting journey. Whenever it’s time to change, I take a deep breath and a few seconds to relax and essentially get myself into a mindful zone about what’s about to take place, and how I’d like the experience to go for both me and my son. I’ll initiate the process in a calm manner, constantly talking to Levi in a soothing tone whilst narrating what I’m doing and why. I don’t make sudden movements, move too fast, speak in any way other than a calming tone and I always make sure to listen out for cues from him to understand how he’s feeling. After all, RIE diaper changes are about the two of you and trying to form an understanding between each other as two human beings.
RIE diaper changes have allowed my and especially my partner’s relationship with changing time an entirely different experience. It used to be that my partner would overcompensate in other tasks such as bedtime and getting our son settled because he would want to avoid changing time. Now it creates an equal balance in tasks between us both as RIE diaper changing has allowed him to go into it with an open mind and no pressure on himself. RIE in general is something we’re both creating a larger amount of room for in our lives and parenting journeys and I couldn’t thank my friends enough for recommending it.
It’s important to remember, that even if your little one cannot understand your words, it’s the tone and body language you exercise that they do have a level of understanding of. Sometimes, especially in public, it can feel odd to speak so directly to your child, but this is something that is becoming more and more widely accepted by parenting experts and something can all be open-minded about. There will be some that do not agree and feel the parent is the out-and-out boss and that until the child is 18 they’re in their authority, but I assure you, from personal experience and the growing research that’s going into RIE – your relationship with your child will be stronger if you treat them with respect from the early days. For more RIE content, visit bellecarney.com/category/parenting