Attachment Parenting (AP) is a term coined by Dr. Sears to describe a style of parenting that promotes a strong parent/child bond. Although AP is a flexible and family-specific approach, Dr. Sears describes seven tools (listed below) as a starting point for parents. AP is the style of parenting we have chosen for our family and have used since the birth of our oldest child.
In some ways, I believe the term "attachment parenting" can be a bit of a misnomer. The natural parent/child bond is strong and takes a significant amount of trauma to break. It was a term, however, which rose in response to an increasingly common form of parenting which encouraged independence in very young infants. As the ideas of "independence" and "scheduled training" became of such importance to even babies, parent/child attachment was affected, the extent to which I believe we have yet to see. AP places a strong emphasis on developing and maintaining that parent/child bond in a very natural and intuitive manner.
I post a regular series about attachment parenting - what is it, what is it not, how it plays out specifically in our home, what struggles we have had, and what we can do at the community level to make this instinctive style of parenting, well, instinctive again.
The first several installments covered Dr. Sear's "Seven Baby B's":
- Birth bonding
- Bedding close to baby
- Belief in the language value of your baby's cry
- Beware of baby trainers
Working through the Seven Baby B's in the Attachment Parenting Series proved to be immensely beneficial in my own life. I appreciated the opportunity to really examine and solidify my thoughts on each topic, as well as the renewed focus it gave me in my own parenting. I plan to continue the Attachment Parenting Series, taking a look at various other aspects of Attachment Parenting beyond the Baby B's. I will be posting a new installment each month. The current lineup includes:
- Attachment Parenting: A father's role
- Attachment Parenting: A Christian perspective
- Attachment Parenting: Beyond the baby years
- Attachment Parenting: Dealing with criticism
- Attachment Parenting: Through the challenging times
- What Attachment Parenting is Not
- Attachment Parenting as a non-parental caregiver
- Attachment Parenting when using an additional caregiver
- Attachment Parenting: Staying attached to your spouse
I look forward to continuing this series and hearing your thoughts on the various issues!
Is there a particular aspect of Attachment Parenting that you'd like to see explored in the series? Let me know in the comments and I'll be sure to include it!