What Cavemen Knew About Parenting (That We Don't)

Most modern, educated moms and dads are hell-bent on raising their children to be smart, sane and successful. We fill our homes with educational toys and props, shuffle our young from bouncy-seat to play mat to swing to keep them engaged, do our best to breastfeed for as many months as we can (unless we have a really good reason not to), and embrace tough-love practices like “crying it out” to foster independence and teach critical skills like self-soothing and falling asleep. Apparently, we’re doing it all wrong.

When researchers at Notre Dame compiled the results of a study looking at why our Neolithic ancestors had more intelligent, happier, better-behaved kids than we do, they came up with a laundry list of the cavemoms’ winning ways. Among them: Breastfeeding for at least two to five years (something most people today would consider “extreme”), immediate response to baby’s cries, constant carrying and natural, drug-free deliveries.

On a positive note, having multiple adult caregivers beyond mom and dad was considered a plus (I’m hoping preschool counts here), along with exposure to multi-age playmates (I gave the first kid a sister; was that enough?).

If you’re pregnant or considering adding to your brood, this is good information to have. But honestly, I’m glad I didn’t have it back when I would have known how much potential damage I was doing to my kids -- or else I would have felt compelled to have them both strapped to me at all times.

Do the results of this study change the way you view parenting today? Chime in below!

FILED UNDER:
Connect with Us
Follow Our Pins

Yummy recipes, DIY projects, home decor, fashion and more curated by iVillage staffers.

Follow Our Tweets

The very dirty truth about fashion internships... DUN DUN @srslytheshow http://t.co/wfewf

On Instagram

Behind-the-scenes pics from iVillage.

Best of the Web