What Is Attachment Parenting

By | 09/12/2015

As a new mum you will have thought a lot about the best way to parent you child but have you ever

considered Attachment Parenting.  What is Attachment Parenting?  It is a new and unique way to raise your child that is being practiced by many European families.Attachment Parenting

This mission statement was copied from  the attachment website at http://www.attachmentparenting.org

“Our mission is to educate and support all parents in raising secure, joyful, and empathetic children in order to strengthen families and create a more compassionate world.”

What is different about  Attachment Parenting.

In short the system involves breast feeding your infant until he is a toddler and carrying your  baby  close to your body in a sling or similar instead of putting your baby in a pram or stroller the parents carry their babies close to their body.  The child sleeps with their parents for as long as they need or want to. It means you are attached to your baby 24/7.

Where did this method of parenting come from?

The attachment parenting system was developed by American Pediatrician William Sears.  German actress, Frauke Ludwing, is an advocate of attachment parenting and said recently in Hamburg “parents fear overindulging their child”.   she also runs courses where she encourages parents to show full, unreserved support.  Her claim is that the more attention a parent pays their child will result in a more mentally stable and self confident child.

There are numerous blogs and forums where parents share and discuss  their positive feelings and results of attachment parenting.

Attachment parents shield their child from any disappointment or adverse feelings and want to have a child that is happy all the time.  To them the child is a partner and friend.

Different strokes for different folks.

While it is a fact that every child needs an attachment figure to enable them to develop, it is also a fact that the childSleep With Dad is not the only one in this relationship. Parents also have needs and this is something  every child needs to learn.  The needs of the parent do not seem to figure at all in this form of parenting.  It is exclusively about the child.

If children are sheltered from the moment they are born  how will they cope when they come face to face with reality for the first time?  Children need to learn how to cope with difficulties while they are still safe in the care of their parents.  It is too late when they go to school and are bullied by their peers.

Children of parents who use the attachment parenting system are not learning how to cope with disappointment.

Attachment parenting place a huge load on the parents, particularly on mum.  Women have fought hard for rights that this form of parenting completely ignores.  It ties women to parenting and pushes them back into the traditional role  their parents and grandparents fought to free them from.

There is more than one way to raise a child and all of them have merit.  A lot of things go into the decision on how to parent your child and it should always take into account the needs of both the child and the parent.

In summary

There will be many parents who will see a lot of merit in the attachment parenting system and just as many who will dismiss it as nonsense.  For me I see this system as setting a child up for ultimate failure.

Children are precious and as parents we have the responsibility of giving them the skills to cope in the real world not to lead them to believe that life is a Utopian dream.

I would really like to hear your thoughts on this subject and you can leave me a message below.

My very best wishes to you and your wonderful family


Nanna Mother Nurse


12 thoughts on “What Is Attachment Parenting

  1. Angel

    Dear Margaret,

    Thanks for sharing this. 🙂 This helped me reflect back on the days when I was a Psych Major learning about Attachment Theory. This is a very important crucial and most critical step in a baby’s development.
    The baby is bonded with their caregiver and based on the smell a baby knows who to cling onto versus cry when it encounters being held by a complete stranger. It is truly amazing really.

    Wishing you all the best with your online success above and beyond the horizon,


    1. Margaret Post author

      Hi Angel,

      Thank you for commenting. I really appreciated your comment but do you think that the 24/7 method of parenting is what bonding is all about?

      Babies do recognize their parents at a very early age because that is where all the comfort and care comes from but they also need to learn to adjust to being alone too.


  2. Linda C.

    Hello, Margaret!

    What a cool post! I am a mother again at 63 after I lost my firstborn who was only 37 years old. She had a 17-month-old daughter and two teens. The 17-month-old is special needs and was not even sitting up by herself.

    i raised my children with the methods your “attachment parenting” post summarizes. They are all well-adjusted adults. The baby is not so much a baby anymore, as she is 6 years old, but I am confident that being so close to her has made a great difference in her progress and confidence.

    Thanks for confirming that bringing our little ones close to us is a positive thing to do. I hope your word gets out to more and more parents.


    1. Margaret Post author

      Hi Linda,

      I honestly do not agree with this form of parenting but I am pleased to hear your children are well adjusted adults.

      Having your child close to you is one thing but being constantly attached is another. How did you children ever learn to be alone?


  3. Travis

    Okay, so I am going to comment, even though this could be a controversial subject, lol. I am a dad of five and this attachment parenting ideology is definitely not for us. Children do not need to come between parents or be misled into thinking he or she should be happy all of the time. This will create an emotional basket case of a person. Balance is very important.

    This reminds me of the new movie in America called “Home,” they had to learn that sadness brings people together in an intimate way that joy cannot, even in disciplining.

    My wife and I love our children unconditionally, and we love them so much we want to build character in them that is respectable and stable. And yes, we love them so much we want more, but we do not follow these guidelines of attachment parenting; we do however, follow other principles to win the heart of each child individually.

    I just thought I would comment 🙂


    1. Margaret Post author

      Hi Travis,

      I totally agree with you. They are setting these children up for failure in life. I believe without experiencing a whole gamut of emotions how do you really know what you are feeling?

      I really appreciate this comment it echoed everything I feel about this attachment parenting thing. A young couple adjusting to a new baby is difficult enough without letting the baby come between them and I do think that is what this form of parenting would do.


  4. Joon

    I believe children need both. I think it is all about balance. Children need that there is place where they can go for security, warmth, love and trust(attachment), but also need to be encouraged to be independent, confident, and creative in problem solving.
    I do both for my son. I stay physically close to my son and express love without hesitation so he knows that he will be secure with me and I will always be there for him. But at the same time, I teach him how to be independent, responsible and how to deal with problems when he is left alone. And so far he’s been doing fine in both environment.

    1. Margaret Kennedy Post author

      Hi Joon,

      I totally agree with you. I think exclusively attachment parenting does not allow the child to develop as an independant individual. Children do need to know you are there for them but they also need to learn to be independant and able to cope with problems when they are away from you

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts & leaving your comment.

      All the best to you and your family.


  5. Kris M.

    Hi Margaret,

    I totally agree with you. My son is 12 years old and is special needs. But since I taught him some independence as soon as he was able to learn it as a toddler, he is more independent now than many 18 year olds I’ve met.

    I think the key is to find the right balance for your family. I don’t think an exclusive attachment would be free from substantial negative consequences, such as not handling school well when the attachment has to be broken. An injury or illness could unnecessarily devastate a child that isn’t emotionally mature enough to handle it. There are just so many ways it could turn real negative, real fast.

    Thanks for sharing,

    1. Margaret Kennedy Post author

      Hi Kris,

      You are right but I am so glad it worked for your son. Independence for any person with special needs is the best gift we can ever give them.

      There can be problems and I am sure even if you plan it down to the last detail you will still run into something you didn’t plan for and maybe that is just another lesson for the child. Even the best laid plans can go astray and we all have to learn to cope with that..

      Thanks for sharing your experience.


  6. Marlaine

    The whole “Attachment Parenting” discussion is very interesting, isn’t it? In some instances, when a baby is very, very difficult (like a few I know), carrying them close ALL THE TIME is the only way to stay for the mom to stay sane. That’s the exception though, I think.
    I agree with you that children need to learn coping methods for being apart from Mom though, and sometimes, learning them through some tears is the only way it can be done.
    Personally, it would have driven me BANANAS to be tied to my children (literally). It would also have broken my back… because contrary to what all of the pro-baby-wearers say, you can’t do baby-wearing if you have a bad back to begin with.
    Just my thoughts. 🙂 Thanks for an interesting read!

    1. Margaret Kennedy Post author

      Hi Marlaine,

      Thanks you for your comment on “Attachment Parenting”.

      If you have read through the other comments I got for this post you will see that there are many parents using the method of raising their child. My personal opinion is that these children will grow up without learning to be self reliant.

      As a child my parents were dairy farmers and I was left to amuse myself most of the time as both parents were too busy to entertain and amuse me all day. The end result for me was that I grew up to be independent, able to amuse myself and never got bored with my own company and able to survive the loss of both my parents.

      My greatest fear for these Attachment babies” is that they will never really be able to stand alone if the need arises.

      I also agree that the parents need some time to themselves and I have to wonder how a marriage can survive when they are never apart from their child.

      That is my personal opinion and there are probably a lot of people who will disagree with me and they are also entitled to their opinion.

      All the best to you and I cna sympathise with your back problems. I hope you have solved your problem by now.



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