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Thread: The Importance of Bonding with Your Child

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    The Importance of Bonding with Your Child

    Research has proven that without a secure mother figure, a child who is exposed to unexpected events will have an intense stress reaction. When the doctor cuts the umbilical cord at birth, the physical attachment to our mothers cease. This is when psychological and emotional attachments begin.

    Being physically attached to our mothers while in the womb is a life-sustaining adherence. Without it, we would never be born but research has shown that emotional and psychological attachment provides a foundation that allows us to thrive in the world. A firm bond between mother and child affects reactions later in life. It reflects how well children do in school, how they build relationships with friends and how well they react to stressful or new situations.

    Babies often become very attached to a primary caregiver. In the 1950’s, this was usually their mother. In the ‘90’s and well into the future, it was, and will continue to be, more often than not, someone else.

    Babies who are securely attached to a mother figure feel she is a safe base from which they can explore the world. They are assured by the presence of this mother figure and go to her when they are hurt, stressed or frightened. If the child does not have a concrete bond with their mother figure, they still seek her out but she is not of great comfort or assurance. This leaves a definite void in their lives. If a bonding occurs between a child and caregiver, what impact does this have on a child’s life? It has been found that children who have formed a deep bond and suffer loss of the person they are bonded to will become less secure.

    Infants who experience a deep bonding with their mothers become very independent at a young age. This bond also boosts their self-esteem. It is the most important part of a child’s life. Even when their lives are stable, the bonding process enables them to be self-reliant and enjoy relationships with their peers. These children are also more successful in school, especially in mathematics (heh... that must be why I totally suck at Math! ). Bonding creates within the child a sense of confidence and a positive attitude. This influences both attendance and achievement.

    It has been found that the lack of bonding in infants can have a life-lasting effect on a child. Infants who don’t bond are more likely to become anxious and insecure. However, if their mothers enter into a loving relationship and are no longer stressed and depressed, the infant will become more secure. Infants are deeply affected by the emotions of those around them, especially their mother or mother figure.

    f there is no motherly bonding whatsoever with a child, the result is a profound negative effect. This would occur when babies are abandoned at birth or sent directly to an institution. The child will have little or no physical or emotional bonding with its caregivers unless it is adopted quickly. Often, the staff or even a foster mother is so overworked that they do not have time to bond with a child. If they do, this can lead to negative affects when the child and the caregiver are separated.

    One of these negative affects can be produced by the child’s own body. Cortisol is a stress-related hormone that is regulated by the pituitary-adrenal system. It works with adrenaline to regulate sugar levels in the blood. Cortisol dampens the body’s reaction to stress by suppressing the immune system. Touch is crucial to the regulation of the stress-response system. It can affect a child’s motor skills and memory. During the average day a typical child’s cortisol level peaks in the morning and decreases in the evening. In children with no motherly attachment, the cortisol levels continue to increase during the morning and only decrease slightly by evening.

    In the nineties and probably well into the future, more children are being placed in daycare centers. The staff of these facilities becomes the child’s primary caregiver. This title also includes parents, grandparents or any other person who cares for the child during the day.

    Infants and small children form a bond with the person who diapers, feeds and comforts them. Researchers have found that 50% of children form the same type of bond with primary caregivers as they form with their mothers. The only difference is that 70% of children form a close bond with their mother. The lower rate of bonding with caregivers probably reflects a lower quality of care and closeness.

    Studies have found that children who have formed a close bond with primary caregivers are sociable and gregarious. Those children lacking a secure bond are more likely to be antisocial, withdrawn, hostile and aggressive.

    Bonding develops through interaction. Breastfeeding, reading to your child or any activity where you spend one-on-one quality time with your child turns into a bonding experience. Horseplay, heart-to-heart talks and just listening intently to what you child has to say can create a strong bond that will last forever.

    Research has found that society needs to find ways to ensure that mothers can stay home with their children. This usually, though not always, ensures high quality care and a firm bonding process.

    Trends of today make it almost impossible for mothers to stay at home and care for their children. If it is necessary for mothers to work, they should take great care in choosing a primary caregiver. Whether it is a daycare facility, a relative or a hired daycare provider, it is a parent’s responsibility to ensure their children have someone with which to form a strong bond. This will give the child a firm foundation on which to base his/her life. After all, children are our most precious assets. They are the future of the world.

    Copyright © 2003 by Mary M. Alward

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    Well i did much oif the daily caretaking of my kidbrother.. taking him home from kindergarden and taking care of things for a few hours every day.

    Also when going to various social visits, id get to take care of him. One feature that repeated itself was me holding my hand on his head, that way i could do a bit directing.. walk in the right direction, also at the same time giving him shelter, id be there protecting.

    Which also manifasted itself when there was something frightening, he would take my hand and put it on his head :animal-sm
    Evidently felt safe.

    Not quite that bad for me either, not being the most social person imaginable.. he preformed as a passport for all types of real and imagined excuses. Hey, who says no to a nice 5yr old boy anyway?


    When shouting and screaming fior whatever, i needed to tell him just once "i do not understand what you want -sandwitch, listen to greenday, play doom or go for a walk. Express yourself clearly or there is absolutely no chance i can give you what you want".
    After that only very rarely did i need to remind him that screaming gets him absolutely nothing.

    Not that expressing it, was very much of a guarantee either
    I want pokemon cards! Sure, you got the cash and help you buy. I have few coins here, how much do you have? Ohwell, guess no cards this time.

    Which by no means stopped the rebellions. A few times deciding to go with fists and kicks to get what he wanted.. and dropping him on his butt time and time again. Doing it perhaps too gently, for those fights could go on for quite some time...
    But giving in and letting him have it would have been worse. Rules must stay rules.


    And as a note, after moving away, i started getting reports on how my parents couldnt get him to do things.. but when im around at worst he will say no... but me then going, oh yes, you are coming and taking his hand and off we go to wash his hair or whatever. And never any protests, except silent, but then i just give him a raised eyebrow "oh yeah?", and the argument is settled.


    Oh and sharing. I have this habit of coming with a tasty something small and asking him to open his mouth and shut his eyes. Perhaps licoridge or something. Anyway, at some point he got his first own bag of candies, and asked if i could have one.. "no, they are mine!". "Oh, so you like to divide it like that, well then i wont be giving you any of mine either, like 2 days back and the week before..".
    A quick calculation went on in that brain, and since then has always come offering to everyone when he has something. A great triumph!
    Ignored: Nicholas

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    Almost forgot, a little game. Amusement park outside when warmer and on grass, can be done inside as long as you remember the roof..

    Anyway, boys love flying and as I have noticed with my 2 cousins 4 girls in total, girls like it too. Still got to be old enough to jump, so lei you have to wait a while..

    Kid squats and jumps, you assist in the jump by keeping hands under their arms. So a bit depending upon your confidence, in full acceleration and softened landing, either a 1m or 1,5m jump (wheter you hold on at all time or throw, not having the confidence to throw the girls, mostly because i dont want to sit there explaining why she fell and is crying.. not that i ever lost him, but sometimes things happen.. so check for sticks, rocks and corners).

    Now i have always demanded full participation, so if there is no real jump.. flight wont be very spectacular either. Like a full 10cm jump for just standing up..
    Good excersise for both, and pretty fun too!
    And they never want it to end, but after 30 throws your arms just get tired... so better make sure they understand the "im tired, maybe tomorrow".
    Ignored: Nicholas

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    My husbands younger brother often comes to our apartment with his computer to spend the night or the weekend. Funny thing is, my son (18 months) formed a bond with him too, and even sooner than he formed one to me or my husband! Well, when the young uncle goes into the bathroom and closes the door behind him, my son cries, and he always tries to climb on his lap all the time. If uncle is busy he tries to get his attention any way possible, even by unplugging his computer. Whenever he comes over, my son runs up to him to give his leg a big hug.

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