Is it mandatory to collect and breastfeed six years to educate children respectfully?

When someone does the behavioral method of letting children cry for nighttime so they sleep alone they usually explain that they are doing the Estivill or Ferber method to the child. They say it this way because it is a method with a name. However, I am very shocked when I hear or read someone say that "they are following the method of parenting with attachment," as if there were some key guidelines to follow to do well.

I comment this because Jamie Lynne Grumet, a 26-year-old American who may sound like you on a cover a few months ago in Time magazine, has returned to sow criticism for appearing again breastfeeding her 4-year-old son while explaining that he does it because follow an education method called "attachment based parenting" which includes techniques such as extending breastfeeding time to six years.

At times like this one is stunned because or who has interviewed it has not heard half or who writes the article is more papist than the pope.

Apparently this mother does not stop receiving criticism since she left on that cover so she, neither short nor lazy, has decided to appear again on the cover of a magazine, this time in a so-called "Pathways to Family Wellness", giving the chest to Aram and next to the dad and his other son.

In the magazine they explain that "the age of breastfeeding has been delayed because it uses an education method called" attachment-based parenting. "

This already sounds bad, first because breastfeeding age is not delayed if we take into account that, as we read a few days ago, the natural age of weaning is between two and seven years and second because Raising with attachment is not a method with items to mark to consider you an "attached breeder."

The attachment-based parenting method includes ...

They say that the attachment-based breeding method includes sharing the bed with the child, having the skin for as long as possible in contact with that of the mother and extending the breastfeeding time to approximately six years.

There are people who have come to tell this mother that breastfeeding a four-year-old baby is sexual abuse (You know, there are unknowns everywhere), although she says, calmly, that she understands that educating such a child creates distrust and surprise, despite being backed by multiple doctors such as Dr. Sears.

What is attachment-based parenting really?

Raising with attachment to a child is not something that someone has to point to (“since I have not done well raising him in this way now I will try a few months to do it with attachment”) because it is not a method, but of a parenting philosophy or even something else, a philosophy of life, one in which adults respect children.

Sharing the bed with the children is something optional, the one who wants to sleep with the children and the one who does not want to, no. Although perhaps it is not wanting the right verb, but "power": he who can sleep without children and he who cannot, no. By this I mean that the majority of parents who collect try to have the child sleep in his bassinet or crib and end up collecting because the baby is bad about the separation. Since they can't sleep apart, they end up sleeping together.

Then, over time, "power" gives way to "love": I sleep with my son because I want to, because I enjoy doing it, because I sleep better, because we are all calmer and then, with the following children, it depends ... there are parents who they don't even try to separate and there are others who, although they go back to school, confess to having tried to sleep apart as well.

However, there are children who do not sleep well with the adults next door. They are a minority, but there are. If they put you in bed with you they collide, they are uncomfortable, they notice the movements of the parents and they wake up more often than if they are alone. In these cases, if we talk about raising a child respecting their needs, parents should let him sleep alone and would not collect. Does this mean that they no longer breed with attachment? No, quite the opposite, this means that they respect their needs. This means that they take into account what you need, despite not collecting, as seems to be required if you follow this "method."

Something similar happens with breastfeeding. There are children who are weaned a year, others at two years and others later. My children, for example, weaned both at two and a half years, when Miriam became pregnant the next. Have we respected them less for not breastfeeding them until they were six? I do not think ... as she was not with the tit, they were chasing them around the house so that they would suck from time to time and thus say that we will continue to be part of the followers of the method ...

And with respect to skin-to-skin contact as long as possible, it's the first time I've heard it, although I imagine they refer to picking them up. Many parents really enjoy our children in their arms and carrying them, but we are also good when our children play on the floor and let our arms and backs rest.

Taking the child is a matter of pleasure and also a matter of respecting their rhythms and their needs for affection and transportation. They are not able to walk well until they are 3 or 4 years old (walking well is not walking, but walking as an adult for a long time) and they usually ask for arms because they are overwhelmed or tired. At that time you can make use of the stroller, a backpack or foulard or the arms, but it is not a question of "as I have to carry it on me I always carry it, even when you can walk".

I don't know if I explain myself. It is true that parents who respect the logical needs of children tend to sleep with them, mothers tend to breastfeed until children are weaned and have them in their arms for a long time, but it is not a question of “you have to do it yes or yes, because the method demands it ”, but in response to common sense.

If a child needs affection, the logical thing is that we share time with him, that we take him in his arms, that we don't leave him alone feeling insecure. To eat, the logical thing is to give him the food that nature has planned for him, human milk, which is what will make him develop normally. To sleep, well, humans need to feel safe to fall asleep. If they are not, the body becomes alert and cannot sleep well. A human baby feels safe when he is close to his caregiver. If you don't have it, cry. It is not a whim, it is survival.

Raising babies and children respecting their needs is not a method, it is to apply common sense when it comes to treating babies, it is, in short, treat them as we would like them to treat us. No more no less.