extended nursing

Attachment Parenting Is About Sacrifice

May 14, 2012

Most people have seen the controversial cover of Time Magazine, or perhaps read the Motherhood vs. Feminism debate at the New York Times revolving around Attachment Parenting, the parenting theory coined by Dr. William Sears that emphasizes breastfeeding, sharing sleep, and wearing your baby. So is attachment parenting this weirdo hippie movement wherein parents stifle their children and impose martyrdom on themselves with endless efforts at a childcentric life complete with nursing, carrying, tending-to on demand with organic food on the side? I don’t think so. Nor do the others parents we know who follow Dr. Sears’ theory. It’s not a take-it-or-leave-it kind of thing. Lots of parents incorporate his suggestions into their parenting style. We follow many of his suggestions and I’d like to think we’re normal, and our children are balanced, loved individuals. At its heart, I find that attachment parenting is about self-sacrifice and prompting parents to be aware that having a child means you have to set yourself, your world, your needs, everything aside, and take up caring for this little human in a respectful and loving manner. Put yourself last, focus on your family, and you’ll feel tremendous satisfaction and joy and see the way love grows! (A radical notion in our egocentric society.) Dr. Sears and his wife have written extensively, and we’ve read most of their books. Their AP focus is a lens that says, “Your child has these particular biological and metaphysiological needs. Be aware and try to meet them, even if…

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Nursing Past Age One

July 8, 2011

I’ve written quite a bit on breastfeeding, starting with some basic thoughts, latching techniques, nipple pain, duration of early nursing sessions, and nursing from the get-go. But now that my little boy is just over 12 months old, and we still breastfeed. So what’s the norm now? This post is not aimed at a criticism of mother who don’t breastfeed, or stop at age one. Every mother has to figure out what’s best for her and her child, and no scientist, doctor, or other mother can judge that decision. Below are the factors that I’ve weighed when figuring out what’s best for my Little Sweet Pea and our family. 1) Health benefits. Dr. Sears discusses the health benefits to extended breastfeeding. He puts it so well. The following is a lengthy excerpt from his website regarding breastfeeding beyond one year of age: Science is on your side. I have read many medical journals with articles proving the long-term health benefits of breastfeeding. The incidence of many illnesses, both childhood and adult, are lowered by breastfeeding  — diabetes, heart disease, and central nervous system degenerative disorders (such as multiple sclerosis) to name a few. The most fascinating studies show that the longer and more frequently a mom nurses her baby, the smarter her child is likely to become. The brain grows more during the first two years of life than any other time, nearly tripling in size from birth to two years of age. It’s clearly a crucial time for brain development, and…

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