Attachment-based sleep strategies are considered protective because they promote healthy sleep habits while also strengthening the attachment relationship between the parent and child.
This is why they are my preferred strategies:
- Promote feelings of security: When parents respond consistently and sensitively to their child’s needs, they help their child feel secure and safe. This sense of security can help the child relax and fall asleep more easily, reducing anxiety and stress levels.
- Build trust: Trust is a critical component of attachment relationships. When parents respond promptly and reliably to their child’s needs, they help build a sense of trust that the child can rely on. This trust can promote a sense of safety and security at bedtime, allowing the child to feel more relaxed and comfortable. Children need to have a sense of safety to learn new skills. An example to explain this is, imagine being asked to learn a new skill at work under a boss that told you once and left. How about a boss that yelled at you when you stuffed up? How about a boss that gave you no instructions – just walk away and expected you to figure it out for yourself? How would you feel? Overwhlmed, unsafe, frightened? Now imagine if you had a boss that upskilled you one stage at a time. Scaffolded your learning. Allowing you to feel mastery of each skill before progressing to the next stage. These are the sleep strategies that I prefer to work with. Yes, they take a bit longer, but they maintain a relationship of trust and respect. AND children maintain these skills & relationships for life. What an investment of time and money.
- Foster emotional regulation: Attachment-based sleep strategies can help children learn to regulate their emotions and self-soothe. By encouraging the child to develop self-soothing techniques and responding calmly and consistently to their needs, parents can help their child learn to manage their emotions more effectively.
- Enhance brain development: A secure attachment relationship can help support healthy brain development. By promoting a sense of security and trust, attachment-based sleep strategies can help support the development of neural pathways that are important for emotional regulation, stress management, and overall well-being.
WHY IS IT SO HARD TO ASK FOR HELP AROUND SLEEP?
Asking for help around sleep can be difficult for several reasons:
- Many parents feel that they should be able to handle their child’s sleep on their own and may view asking for help as a sign of failure or inadequacy. They may worry that others will judge them for not being able to handle the situation on their own.
- Parents may worry that others will judge their parenting skills or their child’s behaviour if they ask for help. They may fear that others will think they are doing something wrong or that they are not doing enough to help their child.
- n some cultures, there may be an expectation that parents should be able to handle their child’s sleep without outside help. This can make it difficult for parents to ask for help, as they may feel that doing so is not culturally acceptable.
- Parents may feel that they don’t have anyone to turn to for help or that they will be a burden on others if they ask for assistance.
It’s important to remember that asking for help is not a sign of weakness and that many parents struggle with sleep issues at some point. By asking for help from Thriving Familes, parents can better support their child’s healthy sleep habits and their own well-being. Amanda will help yu form a clear plan, decrease confusion and make the process efficent.
EVERYONE HAS AN OPINION.
It is true that when you become a parent, everyone seems to have an opinion on how you should raise your child, feed your child and how your child should sleep. This can come from family members, friends, neighbours, and even strangers on the internet. While some of this advice can be helpful, it can also be overwhelming and conflicting, leaving parents feeling unsure of what to do.
It’s important to remember that every child and every family is unique, and what is needed or works for one family may not be required or work for another. As a parent, it’s important to trust your instincts and do what feels right for you and your child. This may mean ignoring unsolicited advice or politely thanking someone for their input and then doing what you think is best.
Sleep is one of the most controversial topics around parenting. But it shouldn’t be, because it is honestly no one’s business but yours.
If you would like help with sleep, it can be helpful to seek out advice and support from trusted sources. I have had 25 years of working with families around children’s development and sleep issues. I work with research-based strategies and will comprehensively explore all areas of your child’s development, sleeping area, intake and family resources.
Overall, attachment-based sleep strategies are considered protective because they promote healthy sleep habits while also supporting the development of a secure attachment relationship between parent and child. By promoting feelings of security, building trust, fostering emotional regulation, and enhancing brain development, attachment-based sleep strategies can help set the stage for healthy development and well-being over the long term.
Ultimately, the most important thing is to love and care for your child to the best of your ability, and to trust yourself as a parent. If lack of sleep is getting between you and being able to cope as a parent, reach out. I am here to help.
WANT TO READ MORE?
Childhood attachment – why is attachment important?
Natural Parenting magazine article written by Jo Bealey