What car is screaming I'm rich
Relaxed handling of baby cries
The baby is finally here. And everything is very different from what I expected. Instead of slumbering happily, sucking on mum's breast with relish and pleasing the parents with grateful chuckles, the child whines, cries and screams in a continuous loop. The little creature brings its parents out of sleep and nerves. The screaming attacks lead to deep insecurity of the parents, who want to do everything right and see themselves fail every day.
Screaming is the child's freedom of expression, says the German psychologist and body psychotherapist Thomas Harms. The baby dissolves states of tension by crying. If the child is no longer able to get out of this storm of excitement, one speaks of a cry baby, of "early childhood regulatory disorders". What is meant by this is that the very sensitive little people are not yet able to process stimuli.
With his method of "emotional first aid", which is based on the findings of body psychotherapy, neurophysiologist, attachment and dream research, Harms enables paths to a loving dialogue between baby and parents. 95 percent of parents suspect that the causes of the crying are physical needs or complaints such as hunger, wet diaper, pain. However, physical problems are only diagnosed in five percent of cases.
Mood is transmitted
What's the point of screaming? Babies are sensing beings, "mood transmission experts," says Thomas Harms. You need peace and security, protection from the hustle and bustle, comprehensive security. Our very accelerated time is not keeping up with the baby's pace, Harms said. Because: "Babies are very conservative." Too much stimulation could be the cause of the screaming, but also too little security.
By screaming, "the world language of all babies, babies tell their story", the therapist knows. Stories about stress during pregnancy or terrifying experiences during childbirth, about separation. "Shouting is an imperative, the challenge is to decipher these messages."
With the Emotional First Aid method, trained therapists help parents to establish a connection between themselves and the baby. The path leads through a relaxed body, through breathing, "this indicator of our inner constitution". Emotions such as rejection, annoyance, aggression show up in shallow, pressed breathing that focuses on the chest cavity. This tension blocks contact with the child, the baby reacts with desperate screams. Parents try to distract themselves and the child with hectic movements. The unrest only gets bigger.
Concentrated abdominal breathing
Harms recommends calm, concentrated abdominal breathing as first aid. Mother or father "connect with their body", feel themselves. The abdominal wall arches towards the baby, the broken connection is restored through physical contact. "The parents become a center of attraction and immediately receive feedback. The child relaxes. It takes over the parents' security." Thomas Harms: "Parents who experience this bonding are extremely happy because they are no longer strangers to their baby."
Helping parents in difficult situations is also the task of society, which often does not notice the suffering of parents, says Harms. After all, in the first three years of life the basis for later relationships would be created.
Support is provided by scream clinics in Vienna, Upper Austria, Salzburg and Tyrol. Individual midwives and therapists in Austria already work according to the method of emotional first aid. In Vorarlberg, the IG Birth Culture a-z, an interdisciplinary women's initiative, has set itself the goal of bringing pregnancy and childbirth "to the center of society" through educational work. The response to the events is great. (Jutta Berger, January 26, 2019)
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