FIRST 5 LA ASK A PARENT COACH: Bonding
Have questions about bonding with your child? Ask First 5 LA's Parent Coach!
When a baby feels secure and becomes attached to caregivers through bonding, it improves his or her development and growth in the first five years of life—and beyond.
Your infant learns to trust that his or her needs will be met by spending time bonding with parents and caregivers through touching, holding, gazing, playing, and other activities.
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Ask a Parent Coach: Bonding
Q. Will I spoil my newborn by holding him too much?
A. In a word, no! For newborns, being held, like feeding, is a basic need. It is important to healthy bonding and helps your baby feel secure and safe. Every time you pick up your crying newborn, you are offering comfort that builds trust and self-confidence. This actually helps a child become more self-sufficient and less likely to be spoiled in the future. So go ahead and hold your newborn—it’s a good thing!
Q. I am exhausted and worried that I am not bonding enough with my baby. What can I do?
A. Don’t forget that you have just experienced some of the biggest physical and emotional challenges in life, so try not to worry if you don’t immediately feel very attached to your baby. Bonding is a process that may take time, and it is different for every parent and infant. Breastfeeding, skin-to-skin contact, and holding and carrying your baby in a carrier can help. It’s also very important to take care of your own needs and accept offers of help. If you are more rested and relaxed, connecting with your little one will be easier.