Is my kid eating enough? Will he be taller than my short hubby? Is screaming good for my baby’s lungs? Does teething cause fever?
Dr. Jeff Weisbrot (better known as Dr. Jeff), pediatrician for over 20 years, teacher, lecturer, musician and now author, tapped into the many questions parents ask at his Richmond Hill, Ont., office and wrote Should I Worry? Pediatric Tips for Parents. It’s a humorous, tell-all book intended to guide parents through the early years of their child’s development.
What started as a creative outlet for the doctor became 75 chapters covering everything from choosing a pediatrician to dispelling old wives’ tales, intermingled with personal stories, poems and Yiddish references.
Should I Worry? is sure to entertain, from its first-time mother’s mantra: “I just had a baby and I don’t know what I’m doing. Om,” to a Dr. Seuss-inspired poem: “When Little Miss Sned Would Not Go to Bed.”
“The book is designed to make you smile and laugh out loud,” Weisbrot says.
Should I Worry? is divided into four parts – What is Normal?, How to Parent, When to Worry and Where We’re Heading – a compilation of songs, sayings, jokes and more. His “pediatric pearls ” of wisdom offer a fresh perspective on different issues and are generally found at the end of each chapter.
For Weisbrot, who grew up in Toronto and was raised, he says, on a healthy dose of Mad Magazine, writing the book was both therapeutic and a tremendous amount of fun.
Weisbrot chose the title, Should I Worry?, because this is the most common question he hears. He believes that when parents ask him if they should worry, they are actually asking him for permission to worry.
“Parents often ask me if it’s okay to feel a certain way regarding their child’s behaviour or illness. The word ‘should’ implies there is a right or wrong way to feel, and there are no rights or wrongs when it comes to parents’ feelings.”
Should I Worry? explores some of those uncertain feelings that parents have and provides valuable tips on how to handle difficult situations.
Still, Weisbrot says, “the best advice is no advice.
“Having children is an exploration of self-discovery. What parents need is to be informed and empowered to believe that what they’re doing is the right thing.”
Should I Worry? is available at www.shouldiworry.ca and is sold at the York Central Hospital Gift Shop in Richmond Hill, Ont.