Is my friend an attachment parent?(5 Posts)
My friend has a DD who is four years old. I'm wondering if she's an attachment parent as she does the following, which I think are linked to attachment parenting, but I'm not sure:
* Co-sleeps with her DD in her DD's bed (her DH sleeps in a double bed in their bedroom alone)
* Breastfeeds, infrequently, but on demand during the day and at night to help her settle
* Carries her in a sling (my back couldn't take carrying a child of that size!)
* Never shouts at her or uses a naughty step or similar. Always explains that she understands the child is angry (when she tantrums and lashes out, which is fairly frequently - particularly if she thinks she's not the best at something, e.g. jumping the highest)
* is planning to home ed next year.
I'm not anti-attachment parenting or anything. I'm not sure what it is really - that's why I'm asking!
Ask her! We can't tell you how she identifies herself.
They are all things that people who call themselves attachment parents do, but they are also things that loads of parents do without labelling it.
It's a spectrum but I imagine she would say she did AP.
- We co-sleep (DD is 3.6) - but all 3 of us in one bed - and have done since DD was born.
- DD has just about given up breast-feeding in the last couple of weeks. She was fed on demand day and night.
- I carried DD in a sling most of the time - her feet rarely touched the floor till she was 5 months old. It was the only thing that stopped her screaming and allowed me to do anything.
- we have never done CIO and I still sit with DD till she falls asleep every night (willingly). But I'm a strict disciplinarian as DD is very strong-willed and would run riot otherwise.
I have no intention of HEing, didn't do cloth nappies, let DD eat amazing amounts of junk. We're not particularly crunchy at all and we didn't plan to AP at all - just worked and felt natural to us.
I would say that's attachment parenting, from the little I know of it.
Mustn't be much fun in the bedroom for your friend and her DH if they sleep apart every night. I wonder why they do that?
Are they a happy family? In my ignorance, of course, I imagine your friend to be very controlling and would wonder why a girl of her DD's age is tantruming like that. That comment is no criticism of attachment parenting.
If she is carrying a 4 year old in a sling it won't be because she is attachment parenting per se (unless she has seriously misunderstood the concept).
She may not understand what a 4yo should be capable of, or it may be that there is some as yet undiagnosed SN that she is unconsciously responding to.
I used to be quite concerned about two separate families we knew who seemed to be babying their children to a very worrying degree. In the end it turned out both children were autistic and the parents were just responding to what their child could actually do, long before their instinct was confirmed by the diagnosis.
I also remember getting a fair few pointed remarks about how much I carried dd on my shoulders when she was around 4. I didn't know how to deal with them because I genuinely had no idea why dd was so different to other children: I just knew that she wasn't capable of doing what they could do. 4 years later dd got her diagnosis. By then she was in a wheelchair.
But of course it could equally be that your friend is babying her daughter.
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