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It may sound counterintuitive, but attachment parenting can foster independence if done properly. Today I’d love to talk a bit about Attachment Parenting to older children. Next, we are going to discuss How to Encourage Independence in Attachment Parenting. Our job, as parents, is to teach our children to grow up to be well-rounded adults. They should know how to do things on their own. If done with encouraging independence at the forefront, you can raise independent children. At the same time, they will have a strong bond with you at the same time.
What is Attachment Parenting?
First of all, I would like to adjust the same understanding of attachment parenting, before we continue further talking about independence in the parenting style.
According to Wikipedia, Attachment parenting (AP) is a parenting philosophy that proposes methods aiming to promote the attachment of parent and infant, not only by maximal parental empathy and responsiveness but also by continuous bodily closeness and touch. That definition sounds mainly refer to the early baby and toddler childhood.
Attachment Parenting to Older Children
In fact, attachment parenting can happen when children are getting older as well. Here are some practices you can work on:
- Having family meals together. Dinner will be the best time, if you have limited options. Chat with children about so many things. Have some discussions with them about some topics. Check out our Conversation Ideas for Teens
- Be your children’s best friend, someone they can talk to easily. Thus, children will feel comfortable to communicate anything in their mind. As a result, it is less likely that they will be difficult to deal with in the future.
- Get to know your children’s friends and people they work with. In this way, we still have control over them without being bossy
There are still many ways we can practice attachment parenting to older children. Why can’t we get attached to our own children? As long as we don’t make them “mommy boy”, although we stand close to children, we still have to make them independent.
Are you interested to know more about attachment parenting for both younger and older children? Here are some books you will need to check out:
Attachment-Focused Parenting: Effective Strategies to Care for Children (Norton Professional Books (Hardcover))Raising a Secure Child: How Circle of Security Parenting Can Help You Nurture Your Child’s Attachment, Emotional Resilience, and Freedom to ExploreThe Connected Parent: Real-Life Strategies for Building Trust and AttachmentModern Attachment Parenting: The Comprehensive Guide to Raising a Secure ChildThe Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing MindThe Whole-Brain Child Workbook: Practical Exercises, Worksheets and Activitis to Nurture Developing Minds (Practical Excercises, Worksheets and Activities to Nurture)The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts
How to Encourage Independence in Attachment Parenting
Meeting Needs of Child
When a child grows up in an environment where their needs are being met, they tend to feel more secure and grow up with higher self-esteem. Attachment parenting involves learning what your child needs, meeting those needs, and always listening to what your child has to say. This concept allows your child to feel that they’re always heard and cared about, no matter what.
With higher self-esteem, your children will have more sense of responsibility toward themselves, which is is the basic of being independent.
Love and Trust
Attachment parenting comes from a place within us. Love and trust are the main ingredients of this parenting style. With this style of parenting, you’ll foster a deep level of love and trust within your child. Knowing that all parenting decisions have been made from the feeling of love and trust. It will help to foster your child to have a deep desire to always do well in life.
A parent who practices attachment parenting as their preferred method of parenting is able to recognize when their child has a need that isn’t being met. Children who grow up with parents who acknowledge the child’s needs often thrive to be that way as an adult. This upbringing encourages a child to be more introspective as they enter adulthood.
One key area of attachment parenting that will encourage independence is to be responsive. A good example of being responsive as an attached parent is to allow your child to complete new life skills when they’re ready. Your toddler may want to pour their own milk, you are worried about the mess. An attachment parenting technique is to let the toddler try to pour their own milk, it meets a need.
We call them independent once they are ready to meet their needs by themselves.
Let Freedom Ring
Lastly, attachment parenting when done properly is able to let the child grow when they’re ready. As a child enters adolescence they’ll feel comfortable speaking up about their needs. This is where you start to be more responsive. Thus, Make decisions from a place of love and trust while recognizing the needs your teenager is expressing.
At the end of the day, attachment parenting fosters a secure relationship between parent and child. Attachment parenting is more about following your intuition, learning your child, and adapting based on their needs. As a result, most parents who practice this style of parenting are able to quickly know when their child is ready to learn specific life skills. They encourage those skills to be completed by their child. The ideas that attachment parenting fosters spoiled children who can’t do anything on their own are old tales. They don’t exist in most attachment parenting families.
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