When O was born, I worked on the floor as an ECE (I also did so [exhaustingly] for awhile after he was born, but that’s a story for another day). While pregnant, I deeply nested and dove into my ECE books (I spent a lot of time with this wonderful one), and in doing so, I became grounded in the tenements of RIE.
If you have no idea what RIE is, see here.
If you want to know what RIE means when it come to parenting, see here.
The more I learned about RIE, the more it began to shape the majority of my interactions with the children I worked with. Once O was born, it was my go to. It continues to be to this day. It hasn’t always been easy, and sometimes it asks of me to do things a LOT differently on this parenting journey than what is typical, but it has been SO worth it. D too follows RIE, and while at first I think that was due to my insistence, he has long come into his own with it all.
The bases (at least to me) of RIE lie in respecting, trusting and genuinely hearing the child(ren) in your life. This sounds simple enough, but it asks of you to turn SO many parenting standards directly on their head to really, really follow it through. Your language, actions, intentions and purpose? They all change. Seriously. Think about the process of authentically trusting and respecting a newborn, toddler, etc. Everything modern society is taught to do when parenting goes *exactly* against that, much without realizing it.
How so? I’ll leave that to the “experts” explain. One could first read about RIE through Magda Gerber. These days, Janet Lansbury is big on the scene with RIE, and she shares a lot of really great resources on how to go about making it a reality in your home and/or child care. Lisa Sunbury talks about it a lot, too.
(Note: I know that in the topic of respectful caregiving/parenting as a whole, there are a LOT more resources than these two, and it’s also called a lot more things now, too (i.e., Resptecful Parenting). Janet and Lisa were just my fallbacks as I learned, initially struggled with and came to strongly find my footing with RIE.)
I bring up the topic of RIE, as it matters immensely in my journey of being a parent. I’m not here to preach about it. I’m terrible at writing in this blog, so I likely won’t write about it, either. I rather wish for it to be known that in what I do post in this life, be it personally or here, RIE is the direction from which I’m/we’re working. It’s important, and it matters. RIE might not always make sense to you or perhaps seem a bit peculiar to you, and that’s okay. For our family, it works. Remarkably so.
And, if you’re curious, RIE might work for your family too! Let me know if you’d like to know more.