Nurturing the Heart of a Child.
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I'm Dr. Barbara Sorrels -  a mom, grandmother, child development specialist, and served as University Professor, Children's Pastor, teacher, and consultant.
When you understand some basics of child development, parenting becomes less mysterious and more wondrous.
As founder of the Institute for Childhood Education, we're helping parents, teachers, & child care facilities create nurturing environments.
Child development is amazing, and a glimpse into the mind of our Creator. I'm here to help you nurture your children, grandchildren, and the kids you care for. Read more →

Podcast #8: 

Attachment is my absolute favorite topic – because it can change your family!

In previous episodes, we spoke about the topic in general. Today we’re talking about “insecure  attachment” and discuss the signs.   

Listen here: 

OR – Listen and subscribe in  iTunes  or  Stitcher

We love hearing from you!  Please feel free to send us any questions that arise after listening to our podcast and hopefully we can answer yours on a future question and answer podcast!  Email us at nurturingtheheartofachild@gmail.com

Please share this post with your friends!

Krista and Dr. Barbara


New book for parents!

Nurturing Healthy Attachment: Building Parent-Child Connections to Last a Lifetime

Pre-Order paperback here

 


What is Attachment?

Attachment in the context of an adult and child relationship is a strong and enduring bond between a child and an adult who assumes responsibility for the well being of that child.  It is a relationship where a more mature other assumes responsibility for meeting the needs of the child in a warm, responsive and consistent manner.  It is a relationship where the child feels a sense of both physical and emotional safety in the presence of the adult, and has the confidence that that person will meet their needs in a kind and loving manner.

Insecure Attachment

We spent the first two episodes explaining attachment and how a secure attachment is developed.  Today we are going to dive into the first type of insecure attachment, and what that looks like in a child.

 

So what happens when a child doesn’t have secure attachment?

Types of insecure attachment.   Today we will focus on insecure avoidant.

How does the insecure avoidant attachment pattern develop?

Dismissive parents- the needs of their child make them uncomfortable.

More concerned about how other people view them.

Achievement oriented, task oriented, uncomfortable with intimacy.

“If you’re going to cry- I’ll give you something to cry about.”

How does insecure avoidant attachment manifest itself in children?

Characteristics in infancy: avoid eye contact, seem not to miss their caregiver, don’t cry very often.

We love these children because they are “independent.”  They demand so little from us.

Aggressive avoidant

Withdrawn avoidant

If you notice any of these signs in yourself or in your child, what do you do?

Self: Deep reflection as to why and looking at how you were parents.  Acknowledge that you were parented by imperfect people.  We are not being disloyal by recognizing these things and wanting to change them for our own families.


I just returned from leading a wonderful two-day program, (see below) where I helped teachers and childcare workers understand how to help children who have experienced trauma.

If your community or church would like to host a seminar on trauma, parenting, or any other child development topic, please contact me and let’s discuss.

Continuing education credit is available for some topics. 

 

 


Order my new book, Nurturing Healthy Attachment!

Pre-Order here

 

 

 

 

Podcast #7: 

Attachment is my absolute favorite topic – because it can change your family!

In Episode #5, we spoke about the topic in general. Today we’re talking about attachment in infancy. 

Listen here:

 

OR – Listen and subscribe in  iTunes  or  Stitcher

 

Please enjoy – and share this post with your friends!

Krista and Dr. Barbara


New book for parents!

Nurturing Healthy Attachment: Building Parent-Child Connections to Last a Lifetime

Pre-Order paperback here

 


What is attachment?

The truth is that all parents are involved in establishing an attachment with their children. For example we can form a healthy attachment with our kids even if we don’t wear our babies.  

Attachment in the context of an adult and child relationship is a strong and enduring bond between a child and an adult who assumes responsibility for the well being of that child.  It is a relationship where a more mature other assumes responsibility for meeting the needs of the child in a warm, responsive and consistent manner.  It is a relationship where the child feels a sense of both physical and emotional safety in the presence of the adult, and has the confidence that that person will meet their needs in a kind and loving manner.

Why is a secure attachment relationship so important?

It’s in our very DNA. We are born looking for attachment.

  1.   Advances in neuroscience have discovered that the physical growth and development of the human brain is dependent upon the quality of the relationships and life experiences that we have in the early years of life.  
  • The actual number of dendrites or “connectors” in our brain is directly related to the quality of care that a child receives.  
  • In every interaction that we have with our child connections are being made in our child’s brain.
  • Parents are brain architects
  • The structure of a well-nurtured child’s brain is more complex than a child who is seriously neglected

 

When does this attachment relationship begin?

Attachment starts during pregnancy. The warm fuzzy feelings start before we ever lay eyes on the baby.

“Every baby is looking for someone looking for them.”

Every baby knows at birth whether or not they are wanted.  

 

How is a secure attachment developed and how long does it take?

Sensory language of attachment:

• Touch

• Movement

• Motherese

• Tone of voice

• Maternal gleam

• Responsiveness

• Attunement – “I hear you, I see you, and I understand you”

 

Should we let a baby “cry it out”?

Should I put my newborn on a feeding and sleeping schedule?

 

What are some of the things that can undermine attachment?

• Post-partum

• Prematurity

• Difficult birth

 

What role can the local church play?

 

We love hearing from you!  Please feel free to send us any questions that arise after listening to our podcast and hopefully we can answer yours on a future question and answer podcast!  Email us at nurturingtheheartofachild@gmail.com

 


Order my new book, Nurturing Healthy Attachment!

Pre-Order here

 

Podcast #6: 

It’s time to discuss your questions!

Listen and subscribe in  iTunes  or  Stitcher

(You can also listen on your web browser  – click here)

Enjoy – and please share this post with your friends!

Krista and Dr. Barbara


New book for parents!

Nurturing Healthy Attachment: Building Parent-Child Connections to Last a Lifetime

Pre-Order paperback here

Pre-Order Kindle on Amazon

 


Podcast notes

Thank you for those of you who have taken the time to share what you are learning, liking, or having difficulty with. 

Anytime you have a question, feel free to email us at nurturingtheheartofachild@gmail.com

Also, if you enjoy our podcast, would you subscribe on iTunes and leave us a rating and review?  It just takes a minute but means so much to us!  Thank you!

Question 1:

In episodes 3 and 4 we took a pretty firm stance against spanking.  For parents who are Christians, wanting to follow God and the Bible fully, how can you justify not spanking when there are verses that seem to condone it as an important part of discipline?

 

Question 2:

What if mom and dad are not on the same page with discipline?

  • We all think we know children and what it means to be a child based on our own experiences.  Was it the right kind of experience?  We have to do the deep work of reflection and look at our past and say do I really want to reproduce this pattern?  Understanding child development is taking time to understand God’s design.
  • Raising a child is the most awesome, heavy responsibility that is given to any parent.  Most men know more about football, their computers, or the engines of their cars than they do about children.  Most men spend a lot of time researching before a big purchase or making a big decision but spend very little time trying to know and understand children.
  • Understanding how God knit us together is the responsibility of every parent.  Not to accept this responsibility with a humble heart is an affront to God.
  • Let’s be practical- maybe your husband won’t listen to a 25 minute podcast, but perhaps he would read the notes on our blog.  

Question 3:

Do you still correct your child when their behavior is totally age-appropriate?  For example, if my one year old is taking toys from other kids, how do I respond to that action that is age appropriate but still ultimately undesirable?

Yes, you still respond. With one’s and two’s you use distraction. Most of the time they will respond to you handing them a different toy that is similar and you hand the toy back to the child that had it first.

If your child reacts and starts to throw a tantrum, pick him up, remove him from the scene say something like, “I know you really like to play with the _____” and draw his attention to something else–look out the window, walk to another part of the room and find something to do. If your child continues to protest there is probably something else playing into it as well–fatigue, hunger, overstimulation etc.

It is “normal” for one’s and two’s to take things from others…they begin to understand the concept of sharing and turn taking at around 3–and notice I said BEGIN to understand:)

It’s all about Instruction and correction.  Not every behavior needs a consequence!  Guide without anger.

Question 4: 

How do I respond when I see other mom friends holding their children to inappropriate expectations at playdates?

Your example will speak the loudest.  If you can speak up–do.  If not then just keep living it.

Here are some simple tools to start with:

  • Ignore the no and give two yeses.
  • Do overs.
  • Listen to the podcast!

Please feel free to send us any questions that arise after listening to our podcast.  Email us at  nurturingtheheartofachild@gmail.com 

Other resources:

http://whynottrainachild.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Thy-Rod-And-Thy-Staff-They-Comfort-Me-Mar-2013.pdf 

 

 


Order the new book, Nurturing Healthy Attachment!

Pre-Order paperback here

Pre-Order on Amazon Kindle