Does anyone here do attachment parenting?

posted 5 years ago in Babies
Post # 92
410 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

I have a 5 week old daughter and am definitely inclined toward the AP/gentle parenting methods. But mostly, I favour evidence-based parenting methods.

I am currently breastfeeding, bed-sharing.

I will do my best to avoid CIO:

And I’m all for BLW and non-spanking discipline. I was spanked as a child, and even though I “turned out fine,” I don’t think that argument is a valid way to support any parenting method because a person can’t counterfactually compare themselves as a person having been spanked with the alternative self having not been spanked.

“Parental corporal punishment was associated with all child constructs, including higher levels of immediate compliance and aggression and lower levels of moral internalization and mental health”

My husband and I will definitely set strong boundaries for our daughter, because I have seen friends who follow AP (and, for that matter, also friends who are not AP)  to be lax on boundaries, which is now (presumably) causing some challenges for their children. 

Post # 93
927 posts
Busy bee

allyfally:  I like the sound of some of the AP approaches. But I’d like to comment on dealing with people (in real life) who disagree with how you’re parenting.

Some people might take your passion for AP as a slight on how they parented if it was the opposite, especially if they are a bit sensitive/opinionated (not saying anyone here is, I mean some MILs!). And as there really is no right or wrong way, it is always difficult to convince others of what you are trying to do if they have opposite views. So, if your ILs disagree with your style, I would caution against getting into lengthy discussion with them about it. Just do what is best for your family and just say “thanks for the advice, I might try that” when they try to tell you otherwise, even if you have no intention to! Or if they question what you are doing specifically (eg. they are at your place and you go to baby each time he cries, and they say “why are you doing that!? just do this…!”) I’d go with a shorter version like “Oh, this just seems to be what works for us” rather than the longer version that includes the theory behind it. 

And some people will be genuinely curious and ask you questions for the right reasons, but if they do in front of people you know disagree (eg. SO’s cousin in front of MIL), again maybe keep it brief. 

It’s really about keeping the peace! The most important thing is doing what is best for your family, not convincing others about it. (Not saying that’s what you’re doing here, or at all). 

Parenting should probably be in the basket with religion and politics, best avoid discussing it! LOL

Good luck when the time comes! 🙂

Post # 94
835 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

What an interesting thread! I don’t have have children yet (hopefully soon!) so it was really interesting to read everyone’s opinions on AP. I had heard of AP before but didn’t know exactly all the things it entailed. I definitely like some aspects of it but I am curious about the co-sleeping/bed sharing aspect. My parents did not do that with me or my siblings but I know plenty of couples do it (including 2 of my friends). I’m kind of wondering how co-sleeping/bed sharing affects people’s marriages (intimacy wise)…I can’t really wrap my head around how that works exactly (like how are you being intimate if you have a toddler still sleeping with you?) so I’m curious to hear from people on whether they feel that is healthy for their intimacy or not. No judgement at all! Just purely curious!

Post # 95
927 posts
Busy bee

Weddingobsessed:  LOL! Maybe they do the deed on the couch while kidding is in bed asleep!

Post # 96
1073 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

allyfally:  We all do our best parenting before we’ve had our own children. 

Even I am guiltly of it. I am 28 weeks pregnant with my first child. I will do what feels right. I have a general idea: I want to breastfeed, co-sleep in the beginning, and I like the idea of baby-wearing. As for the CIO method, I am not sure. I have spoken with a mother of 3 who it worked quite well with. It’s pretty remarkable how close her boys are to her and their father, which leads to me to believe that there were not any negative effects from it. As for spanking, I will most certainly spank my child’s hand if they are caught playing with electrical outlets (something that they must immediately learn to associate with pain) because I cannot take the chance of trying to explain to them (which they likely won’t understand if they’re babies) and have them do it again which could lead to them seriously harming themselves. I will also spank them if they run into the street. Those are the only circumstance-life or death. As for everything else, my husband and I will learn as we go. One final point, plans are great but they go awry in many cases: birth plans, parenting plans, any plans for that matter. People get so stuck on being in control that when their notions of what they thought would happen goes sideways, the lose complete control and freak out. The ultimate goal should be finding a plan to fit you and your child, not the other way around.

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 7 months ago by  .
Post # 97
882 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

PeachyMama:  that’s great advice. No one ever thinks about shaking their baby. It just happens. 

Post # 98
1341 posts
Bumble bee

It’s interesting to me to read that this is a ‘type’ of parenting. I guess I’ll do some of it but never really viewed them as inter connected. I’ll breastfeed, but not beyond a year, will prob do some carrying, but mainly use a stroller, and at times I will comfort them when they cry and others will let them settle themselves, and will have them sleep in our room until 4 months when they grow out of their bassinet. I see it as adjusting bAsed on situation rather than categorising. And perhaps that’s what you can do OP to those who you feel may question or not support you. Rather than say, ohh we AP, you can tell them what you do in separate situations as it avoids and overall judgement. 

Post # 99
592 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2017

Kelly6871:  I was reading the responses on this thread and yours really resonated with me. My fears for strict AP-style parenting are exactly what you and your sister experienced, because it is the same situation with my Boyfriend or Best Friend and his brother.

My Boyfriend or Best Friend was the first born and coslept/bed shared with his parents every night until about 4th grade. His mom did not believe in CIO and came to him for everything. Growing up, my Boyfriend or Best Friend has told me that he was never able to spend the night at anyone’s house because his mom wasn’t there. When he was forced to stay with family, he would have to talk to his mom for a long time before he could go to sleep. Even in middle school when he tried sleeping over with other people, he would call his mom in the middle of the night to pick him up. Now, he is VERY dependent on his parents still; we finally moved out of his parents’ house after being together for 5 years, but we moved 1.5 miles away. He could only bear to sign a 9 month lease because he didn’t know if he could handle moving from home. He has to see his mom and dad many, many times a week and is really struggling to not be with them.

His brother is the complete opposite. They did not bedshare/cosleep (his mom said it wouldn’t have been possible because the first born was already in their bed every night) and they allowed CIO a lot more than with my Boyfriend or Best Friend. He is the most independent kid I’ve ever met, and has always been that way.

My parents did the opposite of every form of AP; no cosleeping, breastfeeding, wearing, they had my brother and I CIO, and they spanked. The spanking really caused issues as I got older, but I am very independent and don’t “need” to be with them all the time.

I feel bad for my BF; his dependency is something he recognizses, and he has said he hopes his future kids aren’t as attached as he is. We will not be doing strict AP with our future children based on these experiences.

Post # 100
9813 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

Weddingobsessed:  I only bedshare in the early AM hours when she is having a lot of trouble sleeping.  So she always starts out the night in her crib (8pm) and if I bring her to bed it’s usually not until the early morning hours.  We aren’t getting it on at 2-5am so I don’t see much of a difference lol.

Some nights we only wakes once, eats for 10m, and goes directly back to her crib.  Other nights something is bothering her and she wants to be soothed by sleeping next to us.  So that is how I use it.

But yeah, I think people who truly bedshare (meaning baby is in the bed all night) have to actually put their mattresses on the floor and baby proof the entire room.  Because I’m certainly not going to bed at 8pm with my baby so it doesn’t really work for me to bedshare all the time.  But I guess I’d be having sex a lot more out in the living room (or other room) if a kid was in my bed haha.  When Dear Daughter crib was still in our bedroom we took advantage of the living room.

flossy.lou:  Done that when her crib was in our room.  Although I think most people have less sex with a newborn/young infant anyway.


Even though I don’t bedshare all of the time…I am a super light sleeper now.  You are very aware of your baby, I think it is just instinctual.  Smoking and being drunk would be big no-nos though.  And baby does not get blankets or pillows.  Though she sleeps on her tummy in her crib (her own preference) I force her to sleep on her back if she sleeps with me.  If she gets squirmy she goes back into her crib.

I am not sure how other people sleep but I have never once (not a day in my life) been a stomach sleeper so I naturally sleep on my right side or back.  With baby I have to stay on my right side and I put her right below my right arm (which is under my pillow) so she is basically at a level with my boobs.  She gets to sleep on her back.  And I put my left hand on her tummy so I will wake if she moves. Then my legs make the C position so she is in the little nook of the C. Darling Husband is way on the other side of the bed (king bed) so she is in the middle as well.  I couldn’t sleep securely with nothing between her and the floor.  I push the blankets down past my hips.

Post # 101
253 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

“I could never just put my baby down somewhere and let them cry because I couldnt figure out how to stop it”

As as someone who is in the midst of sleep training with their baby right now, this hits home. As a mom who loves my baby more than my own life and who is doing my best, it makes me sad to be perceived in this way. I can understand not using CIO yourself (I had hoped desperately I wouldn’t have to), but this is not an accurate description of what we are doing at all. For 4 months, I have swaddled, rocked, nursed, and held my baby (for hours, in the middle of the night as well as the day) to get her to sleep. I have co slept a handful of times out of desperation, which felt terribly unsafe to me and gave me nightmares about smothering my baby (though I know of people it has worked well for – use proper precautions!). before sleep training, most naps were battles, I was up multiple times a night to give my daughter her paci, and felt so sleep deprived I could hardly function. My daughter had dark circles under her eyes from waking all night. Based on my pediatrician’s recommendation, we have been using a modified CIO approach.  DD is not being laid down “somewhere”, she is safe, warm, and clean in her crib with a full tummy. I know exactly how to make her stop crying – pick her up and give her a paci – but it’s a band aid for the problem. sleep training is honestly one of the hardest things I have ever done, and it’s not right for everyone, but we are all sleeping better 4 days in now that she is learning how to soothe herself. I could tell before we started that she WANTED to soothe herself, she just didn’t know how. I feel that it is the best thing, in the long run, for my dd. 

I don’t mean that to be argumentative at all – I think it’s great you have an idea of how you want to parent. AP can be really awesome and beautiful.  i think it is good to keep an open mind however – have some grace on yourself in case things go differently than you plan (for example, I couldn’t wait to baby wear….but dd HATES it after multiple attempts and carriers. On the other hand, breastfeeding has been awesome and she loves it). Also be sure to have some grace on other mommies who are trying their very best too. Best wishes! 



Post # 102
340 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

We do all of this except the non-spanking part. While we havent had to “spank” my DS he does get his fanny patted and hand popped when we does things he knows is a no-no. BLW is awesome! I babywear all the time! And we co-sleep, no CIO 🙂 happy with what we do and it works for us! 

Post # 103
1381 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: February 2011

allyfally:  the nice thing about parenting is that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing, and at the end of the day AP is about responding to the needs if your child – bf’ing, babywearing etc are just tools that can make it easier!

i never thought I’d end up being an AP / Gentle parent but that’s what has worked for our family. I’m still nursing at 26 months (and 28 weeks pregnant!) and we still occasionally bedshare (as safely as we can!) after doing so from about six month. I’m not sure of you could put it down to parenting or personality but my toddler is independent, bright and 95% of the time she puts herself to sleep and sleeps through the night despite never being left to cry or sleep trained. Being AP does not mean I give into tantrums or am permissive to the point that she is a spoilt brat!

im also a pragmatist and believe there’s a huge difference between giving an older infant five or so minutes to “work it out” at bedtime (some kids will wind down by crying) and just shutting the door and leaving a child to scream and cry in a distressed state.

Go with what your gut tells you is right for your family but don’t ever be afraid to make changes if you need to!

Post # 105
159 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

What is CIO ?  I don’t know what that is. I hope it isn’t that let the kid cry themselves to sleep. 

btw, call it what you want but I’ve seen what happens to strong willed kids with no form of disciple – they grow up to be spoiled rotten kids. Trust me. so choice a method spank, no spank  But kids can’t get away with bad behavior without consequences. 

I let my daughter sleep w me because I had a cesarean and no one to help me, especially with a husband working night shift.  Worse, a mattress on the floor. But i Loved our closeness when she was younger. 

Self weaning? Ha. like when would that have happened? Have you noticed animals like mama cats, cows, etc wean their babies ? I had to start weaning my daughter off or she would have always used me as a pacifier. 

Kids needs guidelines and love. Remember love doesn’t mean the kids make the rules.  I wish I could do it over. 

Leave a comment

Find Amazing Vendors