The Secret Language of Babies in Practice – Part 2

Despite listening to the “sounds” made by babies from The Secret Language of Babies, I’m afraid that I am no closer to understanding Gareth.  We’re still operating on the elimination process for identifying his needs.  To be quite honest, I’m not entirely sure if Gareth is even attempting to communicate with me using the Secret Language.

Several times, Gareth would fuss without really making any noise – definitely no “neh” sounds (I was listening very carefully for it) – but when I picked him up, he was display the “root reflex”.  One time, he even tried to latch on to my breast through my t-shirt! 

I also hear a lot of “mmmugh” sounds which usually translate to the need to burp or it may be from his efforts to poop.  His face usually turns red from exertion and he writhes as if he’s trying to break free from his swaddle.

There were also times when he would be generally upset for no particular reason I could determine – he was not hungry, not needing to burp, not needing to poop or even to change his diaper, yet he was upset.  After picking him up and carrying him around the house with me, he would settle down again.  So what would that be classified under?  “I’m bored”?

Sometimes, when he’s fussy for no apparent reason, I find that wearing him in a baby carrier around the house seems to do the trick.  He’ll fall back to sleep quite easily after that.  Again, I could detect no specific sound to indicate that was what he wanted.  I think it is largely the motion that he enjoys and partly the comfort of being snuggled up against a warm body. 

Ever since Gareth was born, I have noticed that motion often calms him.  When they were moving us from the labour ward back to the normal ward, I noticed that whenever we were stationary, Gareth would start to fuss.  The moment we were in motion again, he would quieten.  When he was in the hospital crib and I couldn’t get to him, all I had to do was rock the crib and it would be enough to soothe him.

Gareth loves movement.  Do all babies crave movement as much as he does?  While it might not be classified as a need – diaper change, hunger, need to be held – it is still a desire that a baby might express.  However, since, for babies, all desires are needs, then which sound would this be lumped with?  Or is this another example of how the theory of the “The Secret Language of Babies” falls short?

It might be because I’m just tone deaf or simply not intuitive enough, but I guess the Secret Language of Babies hasn’t worked for us.  Nevertheless, it wasworth a try.  I believe that anything that might help us understand our children always warants a closer look.  At the very least, it might present a helpful solution.  Nothing is lost even if it doesn’t.  This is just my experience with “The Secret Language of Babies”.  It has worked well for other families so you might still find it worth a try with your baby.

Published by Shen-Li

SHEN-LI LEE is the author of “Brainchild: Secrets to Unlocking Your Child’s Potential”. She is also the founder of (a website on parenting, education, child development) and (a website on Right Brain Education, cognitive development, and maximising potentials). In her spare time, she blogs on Forty, Fit & Fed, and Back to Basics.

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