Information on Attachment Parenting
What is Attachment Parenting?
Attachment parenting is a way of life!
The main goal of attachment parenting is to create
a close, loving, and understanding relationship with your child. Not
everyone can be successful with every aspect of attachment parenting, but
the more aspects you are successful with the better!
The benefits of attachment parenting are
endless. An AP relationship enhances your child's development, sensitivity,
and intelligence as well as their ability to love, trust, and be
independent. You become closer and more in tune to your child through AP,
therefore creating the closest relationship possible. The only ones that
know what is best for our children are us -- the parents. That is what AP is
all about: doing what is best for the child.
There are some main points to Attachment
Parenting. They are:
(extended if possible)
Responding to Baby's
The Family Bed or Shared Sleeping
How many times have you heard
someone tell you not to hold your baby too much because he/she will be
spoiled? Babywearing is an important part of bonding and getting to know
your baby. It is disturbing to think that some people (including some in the
medical community) think that a baby is better off in a swing or crib than a
parent's loving arms.
It is so comforting for the baby to be close to mommy or daddy in those
first months. Baby wearing will allow you to hold the baby and still move
around and do other activities such as tending to other children or
household duties. Keeping baby close allows your baby to feel your warmth
and your heartbeat, too, a sound that was his/her comfort in the womb.
You will see one of the happiest and best behaved babies are the ones that
get to stay closest to their parents! In most of the world, mothers carry
their babies around full-time. Why not? It is certainly easier and more
Slings are most convenient to wear your baby in. The sling is made to be
used use from birth to 40 pounds (more or less, depending on the sling).
There are numerous ways you can wear a sling depending on your child's age
and what activity you are engaging in.
While wearing your baby in a sling, you can nurse on
either side discretely and with little effort. Slings are great when your
baby wants to nurse at the most inopportune times! Often, baby wants to be
on the breast constantly during a growth spurt, and a sling allows you to
move out and about while filling the needs of your baby.
Babies have less of a need to cry when they are held. They are comforted at
all times and are in the exact place they want to be. In essence, by wearing
your baby you are remedying the problem of the baby needing to be comforted
before it happens. What a concept! The sling + baby + parent = perfect
Slings or other
babywearing devices are perfect for the "high needs" child since they are
always up and moving around!
Here are some
advantages to babywearing
1) A baby's spine is
placed in a compromising position in many other carriers. When the infant is
carried upright, it puts undue stress on the spine, which can cause a
condition called spondylolisthesis and also inhibits developing curves in
2) The carrier allows an older baby (4+ months) to sit cross legged which
distributes the weight evenly through his legs and hips. Upright carriers
cut in to the child's leg circulation and also holds his legs apart in a
bowlegged position which isn't the best for a soft and forming pelvis.
3) A sling parallels the womb experience. The baby gets motion, pressure,
warmth, and sound similar to what he felt in the womb.
4) Wearing baby alleviates stress in the baby because he can see, feel and
hear his caregiver. This creates a comfortable baby who cries a lot less!
5) Babies who are carried for long periods of time develop better neck and
6) A baby is unable to discharge his own energy laying on his back or inside
a stroller. When carried in a sling, the baby shares all the walking,
talking, working, laughing, playing and is able to discharge that energy in
a pleasurable way.
7) A baby raised in a sling needs to be carried less when older than his
counterpart who was reared with mechanical devices. This is because they are
more self reliant and confident.
8) Older siblings are less jealous of a new baby when carried in a sling.
This is because the sling enables mom to have her hands free to give
attention to the other children.
9) Studies have shown that those deprived of touch have more difficulty
coping with stress than those who are held. Babies who are carried
experience less stress, because they are allowed to learn more, thrive
better, develop their senses better and are overall more relaxed and secure.
10) The sling offers a simple but ultimately affective way to begin to
reconnect with our babies and nurture them in a way that is simple but in
the infant's eyes critical to their survival and their development.
What can I say,
breast is best! We all know that! Getting support before the birth of
your child and after are of the utmost importance. Surround yourself
with supportive people and great resources. Have a lactation
consultant number handy in case you need help. Join an online support
group for further practical advice. Don't assume breastfeeding will be
natural, it does take work, but is worth it in the end!
Here are a summary
of the main benefits of breastfeeding
Breastmilk is the most complete form of nourishment.
Provides the baby with precious immunities to fight sickness and disease.
Breastmilk protects against allergies.
Breastfeeding provides comfort and security
Breastfeeding helps baby bond with the mother.
Breastmilk is easily digested.
Breastmilk makes stool "sweet" smelling.
Breastmilk helps prevent gas and colic.
Through breastfeeding, baby develops a normal weight gain pattern which
discourages obesity as a child and adult
Nursing encourages the uterus to
contract, therefore reducing it quickly to its pre-pregnancy size.
Nursing burns calories and excess fat, helping you get back to your
Nursing greatly reduces your risk of contracting Breast Cancer before
Nursing helps you bond with and fulfill your child's needs.
Nursing delays the return of menstruation (no more cramps!).
Nursing saves money because you don't have to buy formula.
Breastmilk is always the right temperature and always available (less
Learning about your new baby is
important! They are a new person, with feelings and thoughts. By
learning to understand them, you further your attachment to them!
Responding promptly to a baby's cues will not "spoil" them, it will prove to
them that you are there, always will be, and that you love them
A baby doesn't cry without
reason. Most of the time, the baby just needs to eat, be changed, or just
held and loved. You may also find that your baby may just want to latch on
and nurse for comfort. Many times in the early months, a baby may cry due to
colic. Sometimes, in severe cases, no matter what you do, there is no
consoling her for a period of time. However, this doesn't mean to shove her
in a swing or in a crib. The best place for that baby to be is in a parent's
loving, caring, and understanding arms.