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Wednesday, 27 January 2021
Attachment Parenting Print
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Things like co-sleeping, wearing the baby, eye contact games, a “no-holding” policy for the first several months, etc… definitely had positive impacts on our children.

My son’s attachment issues presented as avoidant at first. It took us 4 months to really see that little by little he was pushing us away. If we left him alone, he was happy and very easy-going, but we knew this was not healthy. If we tried to take care of him in any way, he fought hard and it was emotionally draining and exhausting. We realized that we were spending our days holding our breaths, walking on eggshells, and tiptoeing around our son in an attempt to keep him happy. The situation was not healthy for any of us and we quickly found help. Once we began therapy with an attachment professional and made a lot of changes, his attachment style quickly improved.

What we did (attachment parenting):
1. Used a front facing carrier and mom carried and interacted with baby several hours a day
2. Stayed close to home and severely limited time away from home
3. When away from home, mom carried baby in carrier (not stroller or cart)
4. Mom co-slept with baby
5. Mom bathed with baby at least once a day
6. No one held baby but mom
7. Mom did all caretaking (changing, feeding, bottles, bathing, bedtime, etc.)
8. Mom and/or dad interacted with baby during all playtime/floortime
9. Mom fed baby on demand rather than anticipating needs so baby was able to go through the attachment cycle.
10. Family used a very consistent schedule with lots of routines for transitions

While attachment parenting made a huge difference, there was still some pushing away and attempts to avoid. The harder our son pushed, the tighter I held onto him and assured him over and over until he calmed down that I would always love him, always take care of him, and always keep him safe. I was his forever mommy and this mommy would never leave. I did not let go no matter how long it took for him to settle in my arms…sometimes minutes but more often hours went by but it paid off. Over time, he pushed away less and less and wanted me to be his mommy more and more. The baby who could not stay in my lap for more than a minute and who would only sit with me if his back was to me became the toddler who happily snuggles with his mommy, wants to sit with his mommy for long periods of time, and can even be cradled.

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