We all understand attachment parenting. Mostly. Sort of. Doesn’t it have something to do with your boobs hanging out all the time? Or wearing your baby on your chest like you lack actual appendages or the money to buy a stroller?
Not quite. Luckily, instead of spending time on real research, which could burn up hours best used internet shopping for the perfect nursing bedding to match your brand-new nursery shiplap, you can let Hollywood stars explain AP to you! Clearly, this is a win-win for all parties involved. We’ll follow “attachment parented babies are raised the way nature intended” Dr. Sears’ criteria for AP, and let the celebs do the talking. Because who better to explain this parenting shit than random famous humans?
Birth ‘em Good
First, hardcore APs want to birth as gently and naturally as possible. That promotes that oh-so-vital post-birth bonding APs crave. Dr. Sears, guru of all things attachment parent, says, “A close attachment after birth and beyond allows the natural, biological attachment-promoting behaviors of the infant and the intuitive, biological, care-giving qualities of the mother to come together.”
Pamela Anderson must’ve wanted that instant birth bonding. Or she wanted the tiara and the bronze statuette that comes with avoiding an epidural (which, you know, will kill your baby, because labor pain doesn’t kill people, but side effects of drugs do). Or she wanted to do that cool thing where you have your baby in the water and then look down and stare at it like, holy shit, that’s a baby, and the baby stares back at you, and you do that for a little while before you take them out of the water and into the wider world. But she says, “”I gave birth at home both times – natural – with a midwife, in water… with nothing.”
Owen Wilson and his now-ex-girlfriend, Jade Duell, had a home birth. As some anonymous source (is there any other kind?) told Star, “Jade and Owen were both on the same page when they decided to have the baby at home … They wanted a calm, quiet, soothing atmosphere for their boy. It was very important to Owen that the birth be Zen-like, because now he’s all about tranquility being the key to a healthy life.” According to Dr. Momma, who of course has all the hippie deets, Jade labored for 18 hours “before bringing her son earthside at 10:47am local time. Ford “weighed 6lbs, 13oz” and was “healthy and happy in his mom’s arms.” Dr. M reports that Owen did a celebratory hula dance all afternoon, because that is apparently an acceptable response to new fatherhood.
If you wanna AP, you gotta whip it out — your boobs, that is. Can’t? Boo-hoo, what a shame, we will all mouth pity at you while you stuff your baby full of poison (AKA formula). Anyone who’s anyone breastfeeds their babies, but some of them go even further.
Gisele Bundchen decided to tell everyone like it was when she hit the cover of Harper’s Bazaar UK, and then used the platform to inform everyone that “I think breastfeeding really helped me keep (my figure) … there should be a worldwide law … that mothers should breastfeed their babies for six months.” Then she posted an obnoxious-ass pic three years later of breastfeeding her one-year-old while a team of makeup artists works on her perfect self. So if you want to AP like the stars, you need to boob it like Gisele.
It’s also apparently an Instagrammable moment. Gwen Stefani, Jaime King, and Pink (multiple, multiple times) have all posted pics of the Big Boob Moment, not to mention Gisele and her beauty chair. Alanis Morrisette says, “I breastfeed and I’ll be breastfeeding until my son is finished and he weans.” Selma Blair snarked, “We all have nipples. I don’t care who I offend; if my baby wants to eat. If I can’t get a cover on me quick enough so be it.” And Alicia Silverstone? She was once photographed while nursing and walking at the same time.
You wanna AP like the celebs, you gotta tie your baby to you in some fashion. Gisele, of course, rocks the Ergo with no problems whatsoever. Kate Hudson favors a ring sling. Alyson Hannigan does the forward-facing Bjorn thing (so passe) in a Halloween costume, while Natalie Portman and the male attached to her use some kind of Ergo-esque carrier. Alicia Silverstone’s man sucks ass at using a pouch, but at least he’s trying; Alanis does a better job with her ring sling. Neil Patrick Harris, as if he could get any hotter, rocks the Moby wrap. Before you can properly AP, you need to learn what all these things mean, pick a celeb to emulate, and then stuff your offspring into it properly.
Sticking Baby in Your Bed
Cafe Mom calls it “the family bed”, and says that benefits include not getting up to check on your baby, easier breastfeeding, and bonding, bonding, bonding, bitches. Mayim Bialik, The Big Bang Theory Star and Maven of All The AP Things, says her babies “rarely went any time without a parent’s touch.” And shock me, shock me, Angelina Jolie is a gigundulous proponent of co-sleeping. By now, we can all recite the names of her children in order of adoption/birth: Maddox, Zahara, Shiloh (who prefers John), Pax, Knox, and Vivienne. She tells Vanity Fair that “family sleep” is something they “liked doing together … That means everybody crawls into our bed. And we actually have a giant bed. We had sheets specially made. I don’t know if it’s twice as big [as a king], but it’s notably bigger. Everybody files in and we watch a movie. It breaks all the rules … We’re thinking of building a room just for family sleep.”
Treating Baby’s Cries Like Real Human Communication You Have To Decode
Look, according to hardcore attachment parents, ignoring your baby’s cry can turn him or her into some kind of serial killer. Mayim Bialik, star of the Big Bang Theory, is well-known for both her adherence to attachment parenting and for never letting her children cry ever. She told E! News, “Any time you become immune to those cries, you are pushing down a very strong hormonally primed instinct to protect and help your baby and that’s kind of sad to me.” She also called ignoring your child’s cries, “going against your natural mammalian wiring.”
According to PopSugar Moms, Alicia Silverstone, Clueless star and AP maven known for chewing up her son’s food before he eats it, says that letting a baby cry “hurts the parent-child relationship so the baby ‘misses out on the trust building that’s crucial in infant development.’” So you pick up that baby. You pick it up now if you don’t want the Son of Sam on your hands in ten years.
Author Elizabeth Broadbent is an ardent practioner of attachment parenting, and has proudly nursed her children to 3 years and 3 months old, over 4 years old, and almost 4 years old with no signs of stopping. The youngest still sleeps in her bed every night and is more often than not joined by the other. And yes, she still has a sex life. Just not in conventional locations.