Playtime & Toys
How to entertain a 2-month-old
I've tried to help stimulate my 2-month-old developmentally through age-appropriate toys—contrasts, faces, mirrors, singing and reading to her, etc.—but she only seems interested in the ceiling fan! She doesn't calm with singing or reading; on the contrary, she often "bucks," arching her back and neck, fussing and even crying at times. I don't try for very long periods because I get discouraged and frustrated, but she just lies there. Sometimes I'm afraid she is stunted or that there may be another problem.
Submitted by Gina
A:Bettye M. Caldwell, Ph.D.
Gina, many parents don’t try hard enough; I think you’ve been trying too hard. Your baby is far too young to be interested in reading. I would expect her to like to be sung to, but only if it is done as something you just like to do when you hold her. And it is perfectly normal for her to be interested in the ceiling fan. Try turning it off and noticing what she does (whether she seems aware that it has stopped moving).
Try calming her by holding her against you with her head on your shoulder and bouncing her up and down a little. And play a little game with her when you change her nappy—tweak her tummy and say something like, “I’m going to get you,” while leaning down to kiss her. Put a mobile over her cot and let her watch it when she is alone. When you’re around, she’s going to want to do things with you.
And, Gina: relax a bit. Your daughter notices when you’re uptight and reflects your anxiety in her behaviour. You’re going to be a great mother, and she’s going to be a great child.