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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Beyond The Sling: Mayim Bialik on attachment parenting

I started to half-watch a segment with actress Mayim Bialik (you know, the Bette Midler mini-me from 'Beaches') on 'The View' with nonchalance today.

Hmmm, another actress on another talk show, plugging herself. (Ouch... painful! You know what I mean: on the PR trail. Again).

But no, this was different.

When I heard Mayim had written a parenting book, I thought, sure, I'll listen. When I saw she'd completed a PhD in neuroscience and was an advocate for attachment parenting, I thought, yes: I want to know more.

The clip from 'The View' is still to be uploaded here - the links I have found so far cannot be viewed in Australia - but I did find an excellent clip from US ABC News, also from the past 24 hours.

In it, Mayim explains how and why she believes in attachment parenting.

Attachment parenting involves these elements: co-sleeping until the child grows out of it, feeding [breast] on demand and for as long as possible (Mayim is still breastfeeding her second son, who is 3; her eldest is 6). And no baby formula.

It also involves 'elimination communication', which mean no nappies. Ever. That's right, from the moment they are born, parents need to learn their baby's cues for when they need to wee or poo.

Watch the clip, and comment below on your thoughts:

Does this style of parenting resonate with you? Have you taken various elements of it and adapted it to your own life? Or none at all?

For me: toilet training has been done based on the child's agenda.

Feeding on demand happened sometimes - and only as newborns. I breastfed for as long as possible (almost six months but alternated with the bottle as I had two babies to feed. And you can't mess with screaming, hungry twins and two boobs that aren't producing as much milk as you'd like).

And we never, ever have our children in our bed.

Okay, there have been transient visits to our bed, which have lasted all of ten minutes, and this has only been when they were inconsolable. In over four years, I can count these occasions on one hand.

My husband has been deadset against co-sleeping from day one, and I am very glad to have stuck to this parenting rule, too. Today, nobody comes to our bed in the middle of the night and wants to hop in.

We need our own space sometimes, you know.

Share your thoughts here. What has/is working for you?

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