Giving Matters: NHCT Reduces Incidents of Shaken Baby Syndrome

Apr 18, 2015

Bob Logan’s grandson, Devin, was born on Christmas Day, 2004. Devin’s parents weren’t living together, so he spent the following Father’s Day weekend with his father. In early the morning hours of Father’s Day, Devin woke up crying, his father’s efforts did not soothe the baby. So, as Bob puts it, “in an effort to get the baby to stop crying, he shook him.” Devin stopped crying. 

Logan and his former wife met up with their daughter at Children’s Hospital in Boston, “and we were told that Devin was probably not going to survive.” Bob was incredulous, he was “a healthy baby boy. To go from that to dying? For what?”

But Logan understands that the root of the accident was not malice, “The baby’s father didn’t wake up and say I’m going to murder this baby today. That’s not what happens.” Bob faults two elements for the accident: the frustration that arises when you’re the parent of a newborn not getting much sleep, and lack of education. “Education is key to parents of newborns, caretakers, daycare providers.”

The second element is why Logan has become an ambassador for The New Hampshire Children’s Trust, whose mission is eliminate child abuse and neglect. To further this mission, NHCT has implemented the Period of Purple Crying program to educate new parents and caregivers about how to deal with their baby’s crying and their own frustration.

Logan explains that there are three main thrusts to NHTC’s outreach around the program. “The first part is with the parents in the hospital before the child is sent home. The second part is home visitors healthcare providers. The third part is public education in schools and such.” At each point NHTC explains acronym to prepare new and someday parents for this trying experience.

The program has been implemented in most New Hampshire birthing hospitals and is available in schools, and reaches eighty percent of the parents of infants born in New Hampshire each year.

“Babies are going to cry. If it happens and you can’t deal with it you have to take a walk get a cup of coffee or some water.” Logan is grateful to NHTC for reaching as many people as they have with this program, and hopes that no one will have to live what he and his daughter lived through.