The importance of being seen
From the moment a baby is born, it has an innate drive to be held, contained, heard and wholly observed, this for me encapsulates the concept of being ‘seen’.
Being seen helps you to connect with your baby and supports your baby to connect with you. Being seen will also help in your understanding of your baby. If you observe carefully you will begin to recognise YOUR baby’s non-verbal signs and signal, cues and clues. After a while you will begin to see a pattern to your baby’s expressions and you will be able to comprehend these expressions to understand what is being experienced or what is desired.
Observation to this degree is available to most of us and it is this simple idea that will support you to understand more about your baby’s wants, needs, desires and feels.
In addressing your baby’s non-verbal cues and clues you will be given so much information. How often have you looked at your baby and asked, “What is it sweetie? Why are you crying? Are you hungry? Are you ready for a nap? Does your nappy/diaper need changing? You may well go through a number of possibilities before you actually get to the bottom of what is ‘wrong’.
Babies often display cues and clues that will help you decipher what is ‘wrong’. Is the skin beneath their eyebrows darker? This may well indicate tiredness. Is your baby poking its tongue in and out? If so, what is it they looking for? Is it milk? If your baby is wriggling and shuffling, are they telling you they are uncomfortable in their nappy?
Keep your eyes open and ‘listen’ on a multi-sensory basis. You will be amazed by what your baby is telling you and often times they will tell you way before they reach the crying stage.
Vivien Sabel UKCP MBACP ScPTI
Author of The Blossom Method™ The Revolutionary Way To Communicate With Your Baby From Birth
Relational Psychotherapist/Clinical Supervisor/Researcher