When you hear the words “attachment parenting,” you probably picture moms and dads “wearing” their babies in slings or toddlers sleeping in their parents’ beds. And while those are definitely components of such type of parenting, they are only part of the bigger picture. Until about 50 years ago, parents didn’t overthink what parenting theory they were using. Mothers typically carried their babies in their arms or wrapped them against their bodies with strips of cloth; parents slept with their babies next to them, and babies were nursed whenever they wanted to. But things have changed now. From your busy weekend schedule, which is packed full of adventurous solo trips, self-care, and dates, to your unabashed life in yoga pants, there is a sudden shift in your life’s purpose as soon as you lay your eyes on your new baby. After those first few weeks or months of sleepless nights, jaw-dropping blowouts, and around-the-clock feeding sessions, you might finally be coming up with some free time to decide how you’re going to manage this parenting thing with a style that fits your beliefs and family dynamic. Should you go for attachment Parenting?
Four decades of research have proven that humans’ optimal physical, mental, and emotional development depends on meeting the infant’s innate relationship needs. So if you are in a dilemma about whether to go for attachment parenting, then the answer is clearly “YES.” Wait! Are you one of those parents who doesn’t’ have any idea about what such parenting is? Are you confused between “secured parenting and attachment parenting? Then you need to scroll more
What is attachment parenting?
Attachment parenting is a modern parenting concept where parents’ connection and responsiveness to their baby’s needs have a lasting effect on their baby’s future emotional health and relationships. It accentuates, forming physical and emotional infant-parent bonds and promotes maximal empathy, responsiveness, and physical touch. This fosters both parents’ and child’s confidence. Wondering how? Well, this is because the parents learn to appropriately identify and respond to their baby’s signals, and the baby feels assured that their needs will be met. You might be wondering if there are any long-term benefits of attachment parenting. Of Course, there are!
6 Benefits of attachment parenting you should know
- Improve kids’ development.
They use their time to grow and learn. Who hasn’t seen mother-infant pairs in action and interaction? Of Course, we all have so many times. Babies seem to be much more satisfied and happy when they are worn in a carrier, breastfed on cue, or sensitively responded to. They feel better, behave better, and grow better, and here is why: attachment parenting promotes the state of quiet alertness. A baby in the attachment parenting state is more receptive to interacting and learning from their environment. Such a state promotes an inner organization that allows all the body’s physiological systems to work better. They divert the energy that they would have spent on fussing into growing, developing, and interacting with their environment.
- Kids develop their organizing skills.
The growth-promoting effects of attachment parenting can be summed up in one word: organization. Babies who go through attached parenting are organized. In their early months, they spend a lot of energy trying to become organized – that is, adjusting to life outside the womb. Not just that, healthy, attached mothers and fathers act as behavioural, emotional, and physiological regulators for their baby. They act as conservators of their baby’s energies, diverting them into growth and development, not into anxiety and fussing.
- Kids develop kindness.
Kids are never perfect, but they genuinely try to be kind to others — to you, to each other, and to students at school who seem to be struggling. Attachment kids do grow up, expecting kindness. So, we would always suggest you respond to him/her if they cry. Discipline is gentle, so it is the natural inclination of many such parenting kids to respond in kindness.
- Tots with attachment parenting are independent.
One of the censures of attachment parenting is that it creates overly dependent children. Yes, indeed, they will not be independent at 3 or 4 years old. But as teens, usually kids and other attachment parenting kids gain a certain level of confidence.
- Champs usually are affectionate.
Has it been a long time since you heard the pitter-patter of little feet making their way to your bedroom in the middle of the night? We are pretty sure your kids are still big-time snugglers. This can be one of the best examples of attachment parenting. You will, most of the time, observe your kids still like to snuggle up when you watch a movie. You would hardly see your children leaving or entering your room without expecting a hug. Such kids are often comfortable showing affection even when they are supposed to be too cool.
- They are always “ a happy-go-lucky”
You will be surprised to see all the attachment kids are actually “happy kids.” Wondering how that can happen? Well, it’s all because they have experienced infancy and early childhood quite literally in the arms of the people who matter most to them, that is, their parents. They have been showered with love and affection. It’s almost like feeding a hungry child. He needs attention, affection, and the security of his parents’ presence to satisfy his physical hunger. And if you feed a hungry child, he will be satisfied and grow healthy and strong. Withholding food does not make the hunger go away. It only makes it worse. Attachment children have been emotionally well-fed. The result is healthy and happy kids.
Attachment parenting isn’t the only way of parenting. Your children might not be perfect. But you would definitely like who they are turning out to be. You would definitely like who they are at their core. None of us is a parenting expert. But if you are a young mother, you will realize it’s not the experts who ease out your fears and address your concerns. It’s the other mothers — mothers who will tell you what worked for them. Such parenting worked for many parents and their kids. So if it’s your thing, relax. Enjoy. Such parenting might sometimes be demanding, but the time is so very short. And you are making priceless memories and awesome kids. Bringing in a new life can rock your world in so many ways. And we know mom guilt is real, so when approaching parenting styles, you can read through several sites and learn strategies that go with your beliefs, life, goals, and family dynamic. By the time you invest in doing all these, we would love to recommend discussing safe sleeping guidelines with your child’s paediatrician before implementing this attachment parenting tool.
So, why worry? Keep parenting! Keep loving!