Monthly Archives: August 2012

Attachment parenting and its bad rap

Mom and baby

Brought into the spotlight through recent negative publicity (i.e., the infamous Time magazine breastfeeding cover), attachment parenting has gotten a bad rap.

I just read a wonderful article about attachment parenting in The Attached Family magazine which, describing the latest research on the subject, debunks the traditional and, dare I say, old-fashioned ideas behind the Time magazine editorial.

Current studies contradict the entrenched understanding of parental attachment expressed in Time magazine. Secure attachment is key to healthy human development.

Attachment theory is a widely accepted view of child development today. It is based on the concept that an infant needs to develop a strong mutual relationship of communication and response with the mother or primary caregiver for development to occur normally. Where the mother or primary caregiver doesn’t provide the needed security through the creation of a sensitive responsive relationship with the infant, the child may be unable to form healthy relationships in the future. Other problems can include inappropriate or inhibited responses or hypervigilant behaviors in social situations.

Recent scientific studies have demonstrated these consequences, among others.
Take a look at this fantastic article and see what you think:

Norm Lee on parenting

Parental Discipline

Norm Lee is an advocate of punishment-free parenting. The biography of his early years reads like a horror story. Abandoned by his mother due to severe abuse at his father’s hands, Norm suffered cruelty, forced servitude, beatings, abandonment by his father to a violent former housekeeper, among heaps of additional abuses.

As an adult, Norm dedicates time to promoting positive parenting, writing a regular report, referred to simply as “The Norm Letter”. The Norm Letter describes Norm’s theories about parenting. He believes that parenting should be positive and that discipline is unnecessary and harmful because children learn from their parents’ behaviors. He believes that children should be respected and trusted as human beings and that a home should be ruled democratically. Since children are entrusted to parents so that parents can protect them, nurture them, and provide for them, Norm sees punishment as a breach of trust, harmful to both parent and child.

Referring to the parental complaint, “I’ve tried all I know. I beat him and beat him, and he’s still violent”, Norm advises parents to polish their own mirrors, to work on their own morality, and to recognize that what appears to be child misbehavior is generally either normal child behavior or a reflection of parental modeling.

To many in our culture (one in which the majority of parents hold fast to the view that physical punishment of children is a parental right despite mounting scientific evidence that it is harmful), Norm’s views would be classified as radical. Personally, I think they are revolutionary.

Read the latest “Norm Letter” and decide for yourself: