Sunday, July 5, 2009

Attachment Parenting

I have not posted anything really on my love for the philosophies of Attachment Parenting. The basic idea is that families become stronger throughout generations as children are raised with the goal of building trust, respect, and affection for each other. The ultimate goal is that these children would then have the ability to build strong, lasting bonds to other humans. The most popular "attachment parent-er" is non-other than the famous pediatrician, Dr. William Sears, his wife, and now his children that are also writing about child health and attachment.

The main reason I am writing about this today is because Attachment Parenting International has a free online copy of their newsletter that is currently available here

But while I'm at it I'm going to go a head and post the 8 Principles of Attachment Parenting.
1. Prepare for Pregnancy, Childbirth and Parenting
Become emotionally, physically and mentally ready for birth, through education, support and family.
2. Feed with Love and Respect
Bring baby to breast, learn signs of hunger, and model healthy eating habits.
3. Respond with Sensitivity
Baby's are not capable of self soothing, give consistant empathy to help them learn to regulate their emotions. Build the foundation of trust from the beginning, let them know that their words (all forms of baby communication) matters to you.
4. Use Nurturing Touch
Touch meets baby's needs, skin to skin contact, baby wearing, nursing, massage, and hugs. The need for physical touch does not lessen as children age.
5. Ensure Safe Sleep Both Physically and Emotionally
Children have needs at night just as they do during the day; from night fears, hunger, loneliness to feeling too hot or cold. Responding to a child gently in the night also builds their trust and ability's of secure attachment.
6. Provide Consistent Loving Care
7. Practice Positive Discipline
Discipline that does not devalue, disrespect or belittle a child. Discipline that is supportive, loving consistent and encourages positive behavior. Discipline that helps a child develop his own internal discipline, and compassion for others. Rather than reacting to the behavior, discovering the needs that are leading to the behavior.
8. Strive for Balance in both Personal and Family Life
Create a support network, set realistic goals, put people before things, and don't be afraid to say "no". Be creative, and have fun with parenting and take time for yourself!

As you can imagine everything is built on the final one. And of course its the hardest... hmmm when was the last time I took time out for me... oh wait I've been reading Twilight all day... I guess its time for FAM!!