Genre: Non-Fiction/Self-Help/Parenting Publication Date: February 2012 Date Finished Reading: 25 June 2019
When American journalist Pamela Druckerman had a baby in Paris, she didn’t aspire to become a “French parent.” But she noticed that French children slept through the night by two or three months old. They ate braised leeks. They played by themselves while their parents sipped coffee. And yet French kids were still boisterous, curious, and creative. Why? How? With a notebook stashed in her diaper bag, Druckerman set out to investigate—and wound up sparking a national debate on parenting. Researched over three years and written in her warm, funny voice, Bringing Up Bébé is deeply wise, charmingly told, and destined to become a classic resource for American parents.
I picked up this book because I was intrigued and at the same time, I believe that it’s significant. It’s not my usual SELF-HELP because this is a PARENTING BOOK. So if you are a new parent, soon to be parents, or basically live with babies & toddlers, this is a very interesting book to read.
The author is not saying that French mothers/parenting are the best. Rather, what she’s trying to say here is that MAYBE they have a different approach & when you read this, I suggest that you be open about the discussions & discover them out. Just like any other things in life, just get the good stuff that you can apply in your life & family. I know that every family is unique & there’s no EXACT formula to raise kids.
Pamela Druckerman is an American writer (economy & politics) at New York Post & she met her husband in Paris, a British Sports Writer. To cut the long story short, after Pamela got laid off from her job, moved to Paris & joined Simon. Later on, they got married & got pregnant and they settled down in Paris. And even from the time of pregnancy until she gave birth, she can already see the difference in the culture. The French are more relaxed and very chill on pregnancy. And while they got a lot of books pregnancy books available, they don’t buy them all. They don’t hoard and create their own anxiety. For the French, their pregnancy isn’t like a project that they obsess with.
In my opinion, this book provides a different perspective on parenting toddlers and babies. Some of the important points in the book are the following:
- Babies are intellectual human beings and they understand the things you tell them even before they can speak.
- Don’t be afraid to reinforce limits to your children but at the same time, give them freedom.
- Be firm and speak with conviction.
- Listen to kids and communicate to them just like another human being & don’t treat them as dumb kids.
- Teach them to wait, delayed gratification and patience & you will thank yourself later.
You don’t have to be French to raise your kids the French way. Honestly, the “French way” is all about trusting what you feel and add common sense; And I want to add that when we become parents and guardians, we are somewhat gifted with parental instincts and that’s a wonderful gift that we get to discover.
I had a more in-depth discussion of the book on my podcast show and you can listen here:
About the Author
Pamela Druckerman is an American journalist and the author of Bringing Up Bébé (The Penguin Press: 2012); the U.K. version of the same book – French Children Don’t Throw Food (Doubleday UK: 2012); and Lust In Translation (The Penguin Press: 2007).
From 1997 to 2002 she was a staff reporter at The Wall Street Journal, based in Buenos Aires, São Paulo and New York. Her Op-eds and articles have since appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Observer, the Financial Times, New York Magazine, Monocle and Marie Claire. She has been a commentator on the Today Show, National Public Radio, Public Radio International, Al Jazeera International, BBC Women’s Hour, the CBC, CNBC, and Oprah.com.
Pamela has a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University. She has studied (with varying degrees of success) French, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese and Hebrew, and has trained in improvisational comedy at the Upright Citizens Brigade and Chicago City Limits. She lives in Paris.