Breeding Compassion With Attachment Parenting

Parents who use attachment parenting tools often pull out the “instincts” card.

I stumbled upon a great site over the weekend called Parenting Science. It’s a parenting site for those with a more fact-based approach in their choices.

The site is created and written by a woman named Gwen Dewar, Ph.D. Gwen is amazing. Just check out her bio to see the great list of credentials she brings to the table.

Her training falls within anthropology, evolutionary psychology, and other similar areas. All of which she uses to look at babies and toddlers in terms of where they come from, rather than where modern society wants to stick them.

I am absolutely in love. For me attachment parenting always seemed like common sense because it best fits the basic needs of an infant. When I would hear someone call it a “new fad” I couldn’t help but cringe, most of the basic ideas of attachment parenting have been around longer than we have. All that humans have done is put their own spin on the concept.

My own spin on this particular concept is also very obvious in the kind of childcare I prefer. As an attached mom, I would rather have a babysitter come over to care for my kids.

Call me paranoid but I prefer having a babysitter come over. No attached mom would have peace of mind with the services of a daycare center. I really don’t think a daycare center can really address the basic needs of an infant.

If you don’t think a babysitter can address the basic needs of an infant, you better think again. For the past years, I have been signed up with Sittercity and I’ve been very happy with their services.

For me, this online babysitting website is the best there is. Even if it’s online, I get to screen the babysitters before I even get to talk to them. For any attached mom, that’s a big deal.

As much as I am very attached to my kids, there are times when I have to leave them at home. For those scary moments, I need to make sure that I have a babysitter that I can trust.

It just makes sense because that’s just the way motherhood is for me. I want to make sure that my kids are safe and that’s why I hire babysitters from Sittercity.

It’s almost like an instinct or a gut feeling. Given all the information I can get from the babysitters on Sittercity, it’s very easy for me to trust my gut feeling. I just feel safe.

The gut feeling I get is really more than just an instinct or a lucky guess. It’s a mom thing and there’s nothing magical about that.

As a matter of fact, there is some science into that. The science of attachment parenting is one in particular that looks at attachment parenting practices through a scientific lens.

Parents who use attachment parenting tools often pull out the “instincts” card. And I am certainly not knocking that, I am a huge supporter of using your instincts while raising your child.

If your gut is telling you not to do something that everyone else is doing, I say follow your gut. Unfortunately that is often turned around on us and claims are made that we are not thinking rationally, not looking at the facts. So in those moments when science and my instincts line up it’s worthy of a tiny celebration.

Attachment parenting can also get quite tiring, I must say. I’ve noticed some rough spots in my parenting lately, getting frustrated and annoyed far easier than I should. When these rough spots show up, I immediately go on Sittercity so that I can get some help.

In spite of my attachment parenting style, I must admit that I rely a lot on the services of Sittercity. Hiring a babysitter is the only way I can remain sane and attached.

When it’s one of those times that I hire a babysitter from Sittercity, I usually pick up a book. The latest book definitely helped guide how I wanted to parent. The book is Above All, Be Kind: Raising a Humane Child in Challenging Times by Zoe Weil.

One of the beliefs I see spoken often in Attachment Parenting circles is that if we raise our children with respect and compassion they will learn to be respectful and compassionate. The opposite is often seen, raise a child with violence and they become violent is one example. So using the qualities we want them to hold is a great stepping stone towards them having those qualities themselves.

There is a story in the book that Weil shares about a boy with some physical and mental disabilities.  The boy loved baseball, and though his father would play in the yard with him, he wanted to play with the other kids on a real team. His father always held him back, afraid of how the other children might treat him.

Finally one day he gives in and takes his son to the ball field. Rather than the teasing and torture he was afraid of the boys on both teams cheered the boy on, helped him to hit a home run, and applauded him around the bases.

Some people might roll their eyes at a story like this, knowing full well how cruel and vicious some children can be. Anyone who has survived Junior High can often attest to it. But there are still moments of compassion left in the world. Look at this news story of a girl who, having finally hit her first home run, blew out her knee and could not run the bases. The opposing team members picked her up and carried her around the bases so that she could have her moment.

I’m not saying any of these children were or were not raised any certain way. Compassion springs forth in the best and worst people at times. I do hold hope though that by working to share more compassion with my sons, every day, that I am planting seeds for more compassion to trickle out into the world.

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One thought on “Breeding Compassion With Attachment Parenting

  1. Thanks to your website, I can now confidently admit that I’m an attached mom as well. I wasn’t too comfortable admitting it until I came across your website. Thank you.:)

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