Attachment Parenting vs Gentle Parenting

I wrote in this post about the future of my blog that I wanted to write more about our parenting style so here goes!


When I got pregnant for the first time I was given a whole bunch of books from various people and one of them detailed a daily schedule, almost to the minute (something about being contented, I’m sure you know the one!). I read this naively thinking that this was how parenting is done, and cringing of the idea of getting baby up at a certain time and making it nap at a certain time, what if it didn’t want to? Not long after we arrived home from the hospital with a brand new baby I realised not only that babies do not fit into a schedule but that I didn’t WANT to parent to a schedule. So the book went out the window (not literally!) and we just got on with being parents they way we felt things worked for us. It was a good few months later that I came across the term ‘attachment parenting’.

Attachment parenting is based on 8 principles as devised by Dr Sears, although he makes it clear that they are not to be used a checklist but rather a guide.

Prepare for pregnancy, childbirth and parenting.

Feed with love and respect.

Respond with sensitivity.

Provide nurturing touch.

Ensure safe sleep.

Use consistent and loving care.

Practice positive discipline.

Strive for personal and family balance.

To read more about each of the principles read this page, but the basis is this:

The essence of Attachment Parenting is about forming and nurturing strong connections between parents and their children. Attachment Parenting challenges us as parents to treat our children with kindness, respect and dignity, and to model in our interactions with them the way we’d like them to interact with others. 


Then there is Gentle Parening,

The websites definition is:

Gentle Parenting is parenting with empathy, respect, understanding and boundaries.

Is there a difference? No not really, Gentle Parenting isn’t a set of principles though, rather it is something to keep at the back of your mind and a way of being.

When I first realised we were ‘attachement’ parents I spent a lot of time looking it up, trying to commit the principles to memory (I saw them as rules almost) and suddenly I thought of that ridiculous baby regime book, and although Dr Sears principles are for guidance I much prefer the Gentle Parenting mindset and when I read the excerpt below I felt a lot better:

There are no rules to follow, no ‘how to’ lists and no exclusions.

It doesn’t matter if you bottle feed, give birth by elective C-Section, use a buggy and your child sleeps in a cot in their own room. Just as it doesn’t make you a ‘gentle parent’ if you breastfeed until 3 years, homebirth, babywear and bedshare. These ‘tools’ are irrelevant, they don’t define the conscious actions and thoughts behind your parenting… It is not new, it is not trendy. Gentle parents come from all walks of life, all ages, all ethnicities and most don’t even realise that their style of parenting would fall under this banner, it’s just the way they have always been. [from this page]

Gentle parenting isn’t all stroking your kids head, wrapping them in cotton wool and never losing your shit. If it was then I definitely couldn’t call myself one because I DO lose my shit, I’m human after all and parenting is HARD at the best of times! But when I do I don’t bellow at my kid, I take a deep breath and count to ten, leaving the room to scream if I need to, it’s normal and it’s okay! I then have a slightly clearer head to go back and try and deal with the situation in a way that makes everyone understand it.

Now firstly let me say I am loathe to put a label on anything (hence the random unopened for weeks tupperware container in the fridge that’s started to omit a bad smell…) let alone something as all encompassing as my ‘parenting style’ but if someone held a gun to my head I’d say that Sam and I fall into this Gentle category. Although really, we’re just parents doing things the way we feel is best for our children. I don’t judge anyone for their parenting style at all, but we’ve fallen into our way of parenting and it works for us.

When we became parents we knew we had to nurture these tiny human beings, in a way that would help to shape their ‘now’ and just as importantly, their future.

I plan to write about specific times  or areas of behaviour and learning and how we go about dealing with them. I might talk to other parents about their experiences, and maybe even get a few guest bloggers down the line too. I’m hoping that writing about how we do things will help us, and maybe even someone else reading too!

Beauty treats for frazzled Mums

As I said in yesterday’s post I’m feeling a bit ‘blah’. I think it’s partly because of the whole house hunt thing and partly because the only ‘me time’ I’ve had since before Arlo arrived is a half hour trip to do the food shop two weeks ago! I need a day (nay, two days!) away in a spa with just me and a couple of good books for company to recharge myself but that won’t happen anytime soon so instead I’ve been browsing Just My Look for some treats that I could give myself a pamper session with at home!

beauty treats

Firstly a new body scrub and hair macadamia hair treatment for a blissful bath time (which admittedly is doable now that the small one sleeps in the evenings!) because a proper scrub with a body brush always makes me feel refreshed and renewed, probably because i’ve taken the top three layers of skin off!

A new hair brush, because it has ladybirds on it, but also because I dread to think how old my brush is, definitely pre children!

Loose powder and a good upper and lower lash mascara can make even the most sleep deprived face look brighter and more awake, I love tiny little brushes for getting right into the corners and coating those tiddly little lashes!

Lastly a proper manicure and pedicure, although actually this should be top of the list because I ALWAYS have painted toe nails, and feel better when my fingernails are painted too! I used to have acrylics so had perfectly shaped and non-chipped nails but sadly they are no more as they’re an expensive habit! These OPI colours are all gorgeous, and start from £4.99 which is a bargain, especially as UK delivery is free! Once i’ve sorted through all my old nail polishes and got rid of the gunky ones I’m definitely going to splurge on some new ones!

What’s your beauty treat to cheer yourself up when you feel like you need it?

This is a partnered post, all words and opinions my own.

Stuff on a Sunday #41

I’m feeling a bit blah today and don’t have the energy to write a full recap post of the last week but in a nutshell:

  • Sam’s dad came to stay for a couple of days
  • We went to a friends wedding reception on Brighton Beach. They’d hired a
  • We viewed three properties, 2 were lovely one was super scummy. I always assumed ‘double bedroom’ means you can fit a double bed in and have room to walk around it but it seems not!
  • I started a new book (John Grisham’s Gray Mountain)
  • Went to the last playgroup before they all break up for the summer holidays! It’s a good thing we have lots of parks and the beach near by!
  • Arlo got not one but TWO teeth! He’s not even four months old the poor thing!
  • We went to a new (to us) soft pay place that was MANIC. Literal soft play hell because it’s meant to be for kids 4 and under but because it was the holidays there were big beefy seven year olds running around masquerading as toddlers.
  • More or less mastered the RIng Sling with Arlo, it’s a lot trickier with a diddy one than a toddler!

I hardly took any photos this week at all either, so here are three from the wedding reception!

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