New Certified HUG Teacher Shares Her Story: Parents discover their own SOSs!

Ellynne Skove is a therapist and movement specialist focusing on somatic practices and birth psychology in New York. She developed the GoGo Babies classes teaching Developmental Movement, Tummy Time, & Baby Yoga for new parents and their babies to help parents understand the importance of movement in a babies physical, mental, and emotional growth. Bonding and attachment are of special interest to Ellynne as well, and she works with this from pre-conception through the pregnancy, birth, and beyond, especially with babies conceived through Assisted Reproductive technologies. For more information see: GoGo Babies or True North Wellness.

As a Movement therapist and developmental movement specialist working in the field of pre and perinatal psychology and health I am very interested in helping all members of the family who are bringing a new baby into the world.

While teaching my first HUG class I overheard a father whispering to himself about his own S.O.S. (signs of over stimulation) behavior. Upon hearing this I quickly added to our post video discussion a query to all of the adults about their own S.O.S.’s. The couples began to tease one another and laugh, along with expressing frustration about when a spouse becomes “unavailable.” Of course we all deal with our own over stimulation or too much stress by Spacing Out, Shutting Down, or Switching Off. There may be many other ways we do this too.

Since having a baby can be such an enormous change for many couples, and often there is not enough support for new families, I now always ask my parents in class to identify their S.O.S. behaviors. Naming these behaviors can be really helpful to the parents. Becoming conscious can help the person who might be overly stressed ask for what he or she needs, and it can certainly help others in the family give more patience, support, and understanding.

Since the adult caregivers in a family need to be able to address the needs of their children and babies it is also extremely useful to ask the parents what feels nurturing, supportive, and helpful when they are overly stressed. In somatic trauma healing work we call this being “Re-Sourced.” It is when we feel more centered and grounded in our beings, physically, emotionally, and mentally. More present and in our “Ready Zone.” Sometimes it might be a cup of tea or a bath. For a new mother, it might be just finding a way to get to the bathroom without having to worry about the baby. For others it might be going for a walk, or to a yoga class. Perhaps having time to complete a task without interruption, or taking a nap.

Whatever it is, it is wonderful for the new parents to identify these ReSources and remember them, much as we encourage them to use swaddling, swaying, sshhhhing sounds, and sucking as ReSources for their new babies. Understanding that all humans, especially in our busy multi tasking societies, go through “Rebooting” is really important. Finding ways to help brings the family closer and creates deeper bonds and attachment for all.

© HUG Your Baby 2012