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May 11, 2022

Bonding With Your Child

Written by Karissa Monzo, Family Support Navigator

I read somewhere once that the more a child feels attached to their parent, the more secure they are in acceptance of themselves and the rest of the world. In shorter terms, the more love they get, the more they can give love. After reading this, the idea of “attaching correctly” to my baby felt really overwhelming as a first-time parent and I wasn’t sure if there were specific things I needed to do. I spoke with my child’s doctor for advice, and they gave me some ideas on easy ways to build attachment with my child. The great thing about speaking with them was that I was already doing these things and had no idea they were considered bonding with my child! 

Are you feeling overwhelmed about this currently? It’s okay! Listed below are some easy ways to bond with your baby:  

  • Snuggle with your baby. 
  • Wear your baby on your body if you are able. 
  • Do skin-to-skin contact with your baby. 
  • Sing to your baby and rock them.  
  • Look your baby in the eyes when you are feeding them. 
  • Answer your baby when they cry if you can.  

Our babies need constant reassurance that their caregivers are near and not going anywhere. Being constantly available to answer your child’s cries can be overwhelming – I get it! I try to remind myself that each time I respond positively to my child’s needs, I am helping them build a positive foundation that will be with them for the rest of their lives.  

Also, I had the worry I would be spoiling my child if I picked them up too much when they cried. When I asked my child’s doctor about this, she said not to worry because it is almost impossible to spoil a baby. Crying is the only way a baby knows how to express what they need, so responding when they cry is not a bad action. In fact, when we DO respond to them consistently, we are showing them that they can trust us to meet their needs. My child’s doctor also shared with me that babies don’t need to be taught to wait for us to soothe them because their brains aren’t ready to learn that yet. Letting a child “cry it out” does not help them learn to trust us as their caretakers. So, remember when your child cries, it is their way of trying to talk to you and let you know that they need their guardian!   

Parents, take it one day at a time and remember we are here to help brainstorm other creative options for bonding and attaching with your child. You got this! If you want more information on this topic or have questions, contact us at navigation@familyfutures.net.