8 December 2009


What a rubbish word to describe something magical - here we go, another rant about the scientification of Love, the popular misconceptions about parental care and affection, the cruel irony of a society who values independence so highly it can't comprehend a relationship in anything other than a negative light...

How I wish that this topic didn't deserve a mention, that none of us had to look at the world and think "oh God, what a mess". The words we use aren't at fault, but they are hardly helping.

To have let bonding become something that we are supposed to "do" - a test that the new mama can pass or fail dependent on how much effort she puts into loving her baby? Screwed up thinking. Screwed up world. Of course, if we fed mama and let her and baby rest skin to skin as nature intended, without putting any silly shoulds or oughts on her...

To hear attachment parenting described by the BBC as doing nice things for the baby "so that they're dependent on you, to make the attachment really strong" is, well, less insulting than I could have expected. But it totally misses the point. Attachment parenting isn't adding something extra to the relationship to earn more love from the child. It's leaving well enough alone in order to love the child in the way that is meaningful to them.

It isn't about getting something from the child, it's about giving something (totally normal and healthy) to the child. Just love. Nothing fancy. Just love.

What happened to the idea of just BEING together? Child centred or parent centred, all we have to do is just be present with each other and let the relationship unfold at it's own pace. Personally I'm a fan of just "family centred" and people's needs taking precedence, well, at need. I'm a fan of getting on with things and letting them get on with things, as far as possible,

Love is not superglue to tear at or put up with. It is a warm shared blanket to retreat to and refuel. Love is not a force that clings like a powerful magnet, it is like two trees growing side by side whose roots may entwine but not so closely as to injure the growth of either.

Love isn't doing nice things to the baby. It isn't doing anything TO the baby. It's just letting the baby BE.


  1. This came at just the right time for me! It's putting into words all the feelings I have had the past few weeks but I haven't been able to put them down into coherent thoughts and words. Great post!!

  2. What a beautiful, simple and accurate description of love. The BBC's description, however, is far less beautiful and accurate. If they are spouting things like that, then it's no wonder attachment parening is viewed as alternative, weird, not normal and/or wrong by so many people.
    At least some people can just do what they do without bothering about marks, scores, passes, failures or compettition, and those peoiple make all the difference, even if they are noticed by some for the wrong reasons.

  3. What a lovely way to put it!

  4. My thoughts exactly (although my brain wouldn't be able to put the sentences together quite like you have lol)!

    It's so sad that what should be normal is seen as something alternative or just an added extra but then I've been seeing the world as a sad, sad place for a while now. Hey ho! xxx


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