Is she too attached?

by stephanie on February 26, 2015

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Editor’s note: This post was originally published on Aug. 11, 2010, and centers on an issue that many of us know all too well — that of separation anxiety and Attachment Parenting.

baby-kiss-1395713-mMy 8-month-old daughter, Penelope, is going through a separation anxiety phase. If I walk out of her eyesight, even for a second — even if Peter, my husband, or someone else is sitting with her and playing — she cries. She is a mama’s girl right now.

When her anxiety first showed up, I was concerned. I thought, “Oh, what have I done?!” Is she too attached? Have I taken Attachment Parenting to an extreme and done damage? I thought, “Should I finally get a babysitter and leave her with someone other than my husband and ‘teach’ her to be OK” — which, of course, had been so often told to me by neighbors and some friends. I had also been told to simply let her fuss for a bit and not immediately pick her up and tend to her.

Luckily,  I snapped out of my doubt and regained my confidence before I heeded any of that advice.

Even if her behavior is not the stereotypical 8-month-baby-separation-anxiety-phase, and she simply wants me all of the time, that’s perfectly fine with me. I am her mother, she is my baby and we are still deeply connected through my breastmilk that I make for her. To me, breastfeeding feels like an extended, energetic umbilical cord. I hold her all day long; I sleep and cuddle with her all night long. I want to be in close contact with her, as much as she wants to be in close contact with me.

This is what is supposed to be happening. This is how mothering and baby rearing is supposed to be.

One of my most favorite books is the Continuum Concept. When I read it…before I was a mother when I was a nanny…it turned on a light bulb in my head. What a novel idea, that babies are expecting to be with their mothers at all times! They are expecting that Mama — or a really great almost-Mama substitute for the time being, like a fabulous nanny — is going to be right there, every step of the way.

I will admit that sometimes I dream of lounging by the pool, or going out to dinner and then (gasp!) a movie with my husband. But most of the time, I am thrilled to meeting my baby’s every need and demand. I love knowing that she has not once “cried it out” to go to sleep. I love knowing that she knows that if she communicates to me that she needs me, that I will be there, every single time. She completely trusts me, and that makes it all worth it.

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How does Attachment Parenting inspire you?

by Rita Brhel on February 24, 2015

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Inspired Parents cover_Page_01Parenting is inspirational.

Our children motivate us to become better role models, to move past our childhood hurts and to find new ways to nurture and guide our children.

Mothers and fathers who have discovered Attachment Parenting (AP) find that their creative geniuses come alive as they question the status quo and dare to do something different than the cultural norm — to have warm, nurturing relationships centered on compassion and respect.

A boost of creativity is channeled directly into families, as parents strive to improve their relationships with their children, their spouses and partners, even their communities.

Just allowing themselves the freedom to think outside the box is enough for many parents to open new worlds of possibilities throughout their lives, within and beyond parenting. For many parents, this boost in creative energy spills over into a desire to reach out to other families to provide support and education about Attachment Parenting.

Many parents find their outlet in writing. Our journeys into motherhood and fatherhood, personal growth and change in perspective — not to mention, any of our individual interactions with our children — combine to make for some great writing material, as parenting bloggers can attest.

In the latest issue of The Attached Family, we celebrate “Inspired Parents” with features on:

We hope that this issue of The Attached Family will inspire you to open up your potential for creative parenting problem-solving in your home. And perhaps if time and inspiration allow, you may choose share your experiences with APtly Said, API’s blog by parents for parents.

Writing not your thing?

AP parents may also find their creative outlet in becoming accredited in API Leadership and facilitating local API Support Groups. Others choose to volunteer with Attachment Parenting International (API) on national and international projects. Many become an API Member for free or donate a small amount to become involved as an AP Advocate. Like-minded professionals have the opportunity to join the API Professional Associate program. There are so many options to choose from when getting involved with API.

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A lesson in approachability and honesty

February 23, 2015
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I returned home after a night out at a friend’s house. It was late. The house was dark and quiet. My husband and kids were asleep. I was looking forward to taking a hot shower, to complete my relaxing evening with friends — a rare treat I promise to repeat more often in an effort […]

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In lieu of presents

February 19, 2015
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Editor’s note: This post was originally published on Oct. 16, 2008, and it continues to offer a valuable perspective on passing along family values to our children. This year’s invitation reads: Ella’s 14th Birthday Party! Bonfire — Music — Food — Fun! In lieu of presents, Ella requests that you please bring an item of […]

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Q&A: Baby dislikes car seat

February 18, 2015
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Q: I have a 2-month-old son who suddenly really dislikes being in his car seat. He cries inconsolably during car rides. I have tried talking soothingly to him, singing and offering a pacifier. When able, I have sat in the backseat with him, and this works best. But most of the time when we’re in […]

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Was Attachment Parenting worth it?

February 16, 2015
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For the last few days, my son has been hunched over an application for a summer program at NASA. I’ve been helping him, shoulder to shoulder, when he needs it, and I find myself staring at him when he’s not looking. It’s his junior year, and he’ll soon be filling out college applications. How did […]

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Loving one another in anger

February 13, 2015
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I feel a lot of love in my house. But there are conflicts, hurt feelings and misunderstandings. I know we are on a journey together to love each other the best we can — to forgive and accept, and to challenge ourselves to feel our feelings without hurting others with our actions or words. This […]

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Opportunity for mothers with postpartum depression

February 12, 2015
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Editor’s note: Attachment Parenting International (API) advocates for a parenting approach rooted solidly in research, and continuing research further validates and builds upon API’s foundation. API shares this opportunity from Mills College for women with postpartum depression to share about their transition to motherhood: I am a graduate student at Mills College. For my research […]

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