Attachment Parenting: How to Parent Needs?

Attachment parenting, i.e. needs-oriented parenting, has been a popular and much-discussed parenting model for several years. You can read here what the term means and how attachment-oriented parenting works.

Attachment Parenting: What is it?

The pediatrician Dr. William Sears coined the term attachment parenting in The Attachment Parenting Book . What is meant by this is a needs-oriented and bond-oriented upbringing. Parents who bring up children in a needs-oriented manner try not only to represent their own interests as best they can, but also to recognize and meet the needs of the child.

  • A good and stable bond between at least one parent and the child enables a self-confident, independent and happy person to grow up – this is the basic idea of ​​needs-based upbringing.
  • In attachment-oriented parenting, it is always about mom or dad listening to their gut feeling, trusting their instincts and raising the child the way they would have wished for themselves.
  • In infancy, attachment parenting means that the baby’s basic needs for food and closeness are met as soon as possible after a signal from the child.
  • That is, babies are generally not allowed to cry, since crying is a signal of a need.
  • Bonding immediately after birth, breastfeeding as needed, being carried close to the body and sleeping in the family bed are further cornerstones of a needs-based upbringing.
  • Attachment parenting advocates reject the idea that babies can be spoiled by too much closeness or need to sleep alone as early as possible. Sleep training is out of the question.
  • In infancy, attachment-oriented parents attach great importance to treating their offspring as equals. The opinion of all family members counts, including that of the children.
  • This means that it is fundamentally assumed that children want to cooperate with their parents and that they do not act manipulatively. In the case of defiant reactions and tantrums , the child’s behavior is questioned and understanding is shown.

Criticism of attachment parenting and why you can still bring up needs-based

Critics of attachment-oriented parenting methods fear that children are given no limits and mothers sacrifice themselves to the point of exhaustion. However, if you want to bring up a relationship-oriented parent, you don’t have to meet any rigid requirements.

  • You can say no to your child, but at the same time explain to them why they shouldn’t run out into the street and why they shouldn’t throw their drinking cup around.
  • You can set limits and still get along without harsh punishments because you are looking for the reason why your child behaves defiantly or inconsiderately in certain situations.
  • You can recognize that defiant behavior is often a signal of an unmet need and try to address it.
  • You can meet your child’s needs and still pay attention to what is good for you and what is not, and you are allowed to say so.


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