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June 12, 2005



my partner and i made a big effort to avoid making a big deal out of falling over. of course, if our son is really hurt, then we make a fuss of him, but then, we know that he'll only cry if he really IS hurt, and i've seen him take a lot of ground shaking falls (once i watched him come careening out of a bedroom and run top speed, smack, into the back of a couch, only to get up and shake himself off and run away somewhere else. a completely unrelated woman in the lounge turned around, looked at me, and went 'OH. MY. GOD. I CANT BELIVE I JUST SAW THAT HAPPEN.') so i think that a lot of his comming to find us when hes fallen like that is just reassurance that we're THERE. on the flipside i have a nephew that was a preemie baby, so naturally he got a bit more attention when he was born, and my brother and his partner tended to make a bit more of a fuss over him whe he fell, and the kid cries at EVERYTHING.
i wont deny that it makes me feel kind of good when i can watch them playing together and modi will do something happily that would leave his older cousin a screaming mess, and my brother looks at me and says 'HOW DO YOU MAKE HIM DO THAT?'


I do the "you're ok" thing, too. Apparently my sister-in-law would run over to her daughter if she fell on the carpeting and fuss over her. I was worried I'd be an over-reacter, but I decided right away that if he starts crying, then I'll run over and comfort him. So far it's working and he hits two next week.


I've always gone with the "you're ok" approach. That's my first response to any bump, bruise, or injury. If that doesn't cut it, well, we can work form there. But I agree, having a fit yourself only tells the Little One that there's something to have a fit about.

We also do the "Wipe out Dance" as a distraction. Basically, when Sabrina would fall, we'd get up, sing the chorus to "Wipe Out" (nanananananana na nanananana na.....WIPE OUT!" dance around and jump at the end. 6 year old Brina is now teaching her one yr old sister the dance.

Ron Southern

My sister's grandchild is just past one year and spends his life falling, sometimes tripping and then becoming jet-propelled as he lurches forward in a horizontal plane and smacks his head against God-knows-what-next. It doesn't seem to have much effect on him, but I wonder how most babies live through it! If I was beaten up like that every day, I'd be a wreck, possibly crippled.


At 7 1/2 months and starting to pull herself up, we're just starting to deal with the bumps and bruises of life. I'm still in the over-reacting stage of motherhood—she fell off of the bed onto the hardwood floor the other day and I was in hysterics (which, in retrospect, probably fed into her shrieks). I like the approach of your youth group leader; it acknowledges that something has happens, so the child doesn't think s/he is being ignored, but doesn't give into the "every bump requires tears" that I worry about getting into.

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