• Understanding Your Baby from 1 Year to 18 Months

    Posted by Admin Dino, November 16, 2012

    You've made it through the first year! Bake a cake to celebrate your success as parents as well as one for the first birthday party. The past year has been full of new experiences and you've all come a long way.

    One year brings an explosion of activity as your little baby turns into a toddler. Having been practicing for months, your 12-month-old is now well on the way to walking and talking. All that rolling and crawling will allow her, if she hasn't done it already, to learn to walk alone. She has been communicating since she was born, but now she'll begin to vocalize with great expression and eventually talk.

    She can finally bring together a myriad of physical skills — walking, reaching, grasping, and turning - so suddenly she's an explorer. And each time anything changes, she can explore those changes with renewed vigor. It's almost as though she's seeing those old toys for the first time - realizing their potential. But exploring at this age can be a painful business. Your baby's memory is still short and she may stand up under the table and bump herself often before she remembers to crawl out.

    Between one year and 18 months, your baby will gradually come to a clearer understanding of how different you and she really are. It's a long process because you (rightly) try to meet her needs and thereby bolster the illusion that the two of you are inseparable. So this emerging understanding can be a scary business.

    New relationships
    But little by little your baby is beginning to look out from the intense relationship that you and she have had, to the outer world of brothers and sisters, grandparents, and other children. These secondary relationships will be slow to develop and she will still need you the most.

    Between one year and 18 months, the relationship you began with your baby at birth becomes clearer. Understanding how babies learn to relate to other people and how you can help or hinder this process is perhaps one of the most significant tasks of parenthood. Babies learn what to feel about themselves firstly (usually) from their mums, and secondly (often) from their dads. But they can't learn different lessons from the ones that you live by.

    If you love yourself, the chances are your baby will learn to feel good about herself too, and to go through life ensuring that people treat her well. If there are aspects of yourself that you can't accept, then she's likely to feel the same way about herself. Whatever you don't like about yourself — shyness, anger, isolation, loudness, busyness — whatever — talk through your feelings with someone you trust until you are happy to be a model for your baby.

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