Baby wearing is hip. But, baby wearing is trendy not just because there are so many chic kid carriers on the market today that allow you to show off your adorable new bundle of joy.
Rather, according to pediatrician William Sears, M.D., there’s actually a development psychology theory behind baby wearing, and engaging in other activities that encourage baby-parent closeness like co-sleeping and extended breastfeeding.
This theory, or parenting philosophy, is known as Attachment Parenting. According to Attachment Parenting International, Attachment Parenting is the practice of developing strong bonds—a.k.a. “a secure attachment”—between infants and parents (or their caregivers, like Grandma). Secure attachments built from infancy provide the essential foundation for creating a lifetime of healthy, trusting, and secure relationships.
It’s easy to get “hooked” on Attachment Parenting philosophy and practice. Long before my first child was born, and well before I purchased my first Ergo Carrier (and well before Ergo was a household name), I knew Attachment Parenting was the way to go for my family—for me, it made life with a baby much, much easier—think less crying, more cooing). Now, two babies and two Ergo Carriers later, saying I’m “hooked” on Attachment Parenting is an understatement.
Thanks to some great products on the market today, I’ve found easy ways to bond with my children—sometimes with fringe benefits, like more or better sleep for everyone in my household (see #1 below).
While it’s not “stuff” or the acquisition of “stuff” per se that makes emotionally healthy children, there are a lot of products available to new parents that make practicing Attachment Parenting and developing those bonds easier.
Here are three quality products that complement Attachment Parenting which I’ve used over and over again with each my children:
1. Snuggle Nest. The Snuggle Nest provides a safe co-sleeping area within your own bed for your infant. Besides making co-sleeping safer and giving you more time with your infant, the Snuggle Nest is convenient—think, less time running down the hall to check on your baby (I can’t be the only mom familiar with those “is she still breathing?” checks!), easier nighttime feedings, and extra sleep for mom and baby!
2. Ergo Baby Carrier. I can’t imagine parenting little ones without this versatile carrier. I swear, I’ve tried dozens of different carriers with my babies, and time after time I return to the Ergo. You can wear your baby (up to 40 lbs) on the front, back or hip. Ergo, the company, supports the 8 Principles of Attachment Parenting. That’s another plus in my book.
3. Boppy. I loved using this pillow with my children, although I admit it has seen progressively less use with each child—though, I attribute this to my increased confidence and comfort with breastfeeding and not as a fault of the pillow. The Boppy is more than a pillow for breastfeeding support. It is also great for “tummy time” and for those early learning to sit days.
Even if your “baby” is no longer a baby, don’t think you’ve missed the Attachment Parenting boat. Empathetic parenting (the core concept of Attachment Parenting) never goes out of style.
For more reading on Attachment Parenting, check out Natural Family Online which features links to articles on Attachment Parenting.
Now, it’s your turn. What products are on your Attachment Parenting must-have list?