Links to Think

Links to Think: 13.10.21

October 21, 2013


The Great Sleep Obsession (The Problem of Modern Day Life versus the Primitive Infant) – A lengthy, but insightful article, that will hopefully put some fears to rest. (As I (and my children) grow older, hopefully I can serve younger mothers with the type of support that I yearn(ed) for in the stages of young motherhood–the type that is described here.)

“No other word can generate such an emotive response in so many parents of young children. The ‘baby sleep industry’ is worth millions of pounds, a myriad of products from pharmaceutical to musical, mechanical and material adorn the shelves of the high street luring in tired new parents with the promise of peaceful nights. Thousands of professionals earn a living from exploiting the vulnerabilities and exhaustion of sleep deprived parents around the world, training babies and toddlers to ‘sleep through the night’.”

“Sleep is a big issue in our modern day society and an enticing money-maker. Yet, is our species so flawed that we must forever be destined to be on the verge of a nervous breakdown for the first three years of our offspring’s life? Or does our infant sleep obsession show a more concerning need for a greater understanding of the norms of our evolutionary biology? If parents were truly educated about the sleep behaviours of normal babies and children and the illusion of the perfect ‘contented little baby’ sleeping 12 hours at night by as many weeks was shattered and replaced with realistic, evidence based information then everything would change. It would change how we are with our babies and children, it would change the value of motherhood and it would change the support we give to young families…”

“Currently, as a society we are not supportive of young families. Only a century ago it was acceptable to be a mother, it was rightly seen as the important job it is. Now we parent miles away from our own families, no longer embraced by a support network. We are under pressure to “have it all” to be a ‘yummy mummy’, with a perfect figure, a perfect house, perfect clothes and a perfect job. It is however, just not possible to live up to this ideal whilst also responding to the normal and natural needs of our infants. Something has to give and sadly, very often, it is the needs of our children. We sleep train our children in order that they fit into our modern lives more easily, we fool ourselves into believing that it is our offspring that have ‘sleep problems’ rather than opening our eyes to the real problem – that is the disharmony between the primal needs of our young and the expectations of the modern world. Who really has the problem?”

“If we have realistic expectations we realise that what we really need is not to train our babies and toddlers, but build a network of support once again for parents, a ‘village’ as some say. The issue really is a problem belonging to adults and society, what really needs fixing? We need to respect what a huge job parenting is and we need to support mothers as much as possible so that they can concentrate on the most important thing they will ever do – raising their babies.”

Native Women, Even Babies, Exploited In Lake Superior Sex Trade – A helpfully eye-opening account of a tragedy going on in our nation.

“Sarah Deer of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation is a professor of law at William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minn. She said that Native women have been sexually exploited for centuries, as European settlers used warfare, slavery and relocation to destroy Native nations and colonize the land.

In the Star Tribune, Stark wrote that one Native American woman she interviewed, a sex trafficking survivor, said her pimp was a wealthy, White family man who paid her bills, rent and expenses for her children. But during the weekend, the woman said the pimp “brought up other white men from the [Twin Cities] for prostitution with Native women … he had her role play the racist ‘Indian maiden’ and ‘European colonizer’ myth with him during sex.””

“Part of the increase, according to Suzanne Oliver, founder of Love Justice, is that “people think prostitution is a choice of life and that it’s acceptable in today’s society.” But most women are not in the sex trade industry by choice.

“When a person is held against their will and being threatened, they will do it just to stay alive,” Oliver said.

Unfortunately for sex trafficking victims in Duluth, safe housing specifically designed for victims does not exist there, which, according to Duluth resident and sex trafficking survivor Gina, allows pimps to hunt down women and force them to work.”

“Another factor that keeps the industry alive and well is the demand. Gina says she would get hundreds of phone calls a day from men and says she serviced about 100 men a week.”

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