Sense & Sensitivity by Harriette Cole

Reader Doesn't Want to Teach Daughter to Swim

DEAR HARRIETTE: My husband and I just had our first child. We are loving being parents so far, but are having a serious debate about whether we should be teaching our daughter how to swim. My husband was trained to swim as an infant by his parents and supervised by an instructor. He explained to me the process of infant swim training. He says he is glad his parents made him go through this, and he wants to put our daughter in these classes. I have looked up online what the training entails, and I am disturbed by it. There has been controversy about whether it is good for the child. My husband is very set on this, but I am not 100 percent comfortable with it. How do I get him to change his mind about the swim classes? -- Not for Swim Training My Infant, Washington, D.C.

DEAR NOT FOR SWIM TRAINING MY INFANT: Full disclosure: I learned to swim at age 4. My younger sister was a few months old. I got my daughter swim lessons starting at 11 months old. In other words, I am a believer in early swim training. That said, I feel strongly that you should find a certified swim teacher for your infant. What you can do to feel more comfortable is to identify a class that is focused on infants. We used the YMCA, which has swim programs across the country.