Attachment Parenting

Attachment Parenting is a term coined by world famous pediatrician, Dr. William Sears. Basically, it is a parenting philosophy of nurturing and responding to your baby. This involves both mental and physical closeness to your child at all times (hence the “attachment” part). A Google search for “Dr. Sears” or “Attachment Parenting” will reveal quite a large subculture of AP-related sites, books, and products (such as baby slings and bedside co-sleepers).

A mother-to-be would really benefit from looking into this subject. Yes, mothering and nurturing come naturally, but modern society influences us to ignore some of these natural instincts. For example: it is a modern, western practice to place baby in his own bed, in his own room, far away from parents so they can get a long night’s sleep. AP submits that this is a selfish arrangement on the parents’ behalf.

Little did I know, until my son was a few months old, that I was a practicing Attachment Parent! I had never even heard of AP before…just thought I was overprotective. Or, at least, that’s what people had convinced me of. They told me I was holding him too much, picking him up too quickly when he cries, that I should nurse on a schedule, and that I should never share a bed with him! I ignored these comments, as I was only doing what felt natural to me.

“Crying it out” is a phrase we will never use in our house. I felt so lucky to discover Dr. Sears’ information on responding to your baby’s cues. I now know there are many of us out there. My son and I are inseparable and I wouldn’t have it any other way. So many people comment on how healthy he looks, how well mannered he is for an infant, and I really feel it’s due to AP.

The 8 ideals of Dr. Sears’ Attachment Parenting:

Preparation for Childbirth
Emotional Responsiveness
Breastfeed your Baby
Baby Wearing
Shared sleep and Safe Sleeping Guidelines
Avoid frequent and prolonged separations from your baby
Positive Discipline
Maintain balance in your family life

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