Online Parent Support Chat

"Attachment Parenting"?

Could someone please explain the basic concepts of "Attachment Parenting"?

Specifically in regard to fostered children, if you have any ideas? Thanks!


Anonymous said...

The core to attachment parenting is treating your child with respect and therefore training your child to have respect for others.

It generally starts in infancy, when you thoughtfully, carefully and promptly attend to all the baby's needs and desires. This is to train the child to trust you to be there for him/her no matter what.

As the child gets older, he/she will naturally want to explore the world because he/she will have a great deal of confidence, knowing that you are completely trustworthy. Also as they get older, they learn to take more responsibility for themselves and to share more responsibilities in the home. (Some people think that catering to their kids' every whim is AP, but it's not -- it's just spoiling them. The idea is to create a cooperative relationship between each family member.)

Discipline in AP is usually referred to as "natural consequences." In other words, it's time to go and your child doesn't want to put on his raincoat, but it's raining hard outside. You say, "If you don't put on your rain coat, you'll be soaking wet and very uncomfortable." If the child refuses, you let him go out and get soaking wet. After all, it's not going to hurt him/her to get rained on. When he/she realizes how uncomfortable it is to be wet when you get to your destination, he/she won't argue about putting on a raincoat in the future.

There are, of course, times when you have to lay down absolute rules, especially in regarding to safety. But when you limit it to, say, safety and mutual respect and a few other key points, it actually gives rules more importance than having rules for every little thing.

Foster children can be APed; the most important thing is to start out by building that relationship of trust. There will likely be need to discipline, esp. if a child came from an unstable environment, so don't be afraid to do that, but really look for ways to build that trust with the child.

Abel said...

Not to repeat what has been posted, you may want to check out an interview I did with Dave Taylor (excuse the link), the writer for a popular AP blog:

Hope it helps.