API Links you to ...
News on pregnancy (reduce your risk of C-section),
infancy (make your baby smarter through touch),
childhood (keep your child from becoming a bully),
adolescence (keep your child from smoking),
all the way through the teen years into adulthood (expect to have your children around for a long time).
A Mother's Touch Can Improve Cognitive Function and Stress Resilience
For an infant, a mother's touch provides a feeling of security, comfort and love. But research at UC Irvine is showing that it does much more. Caressing and other sensory input triggers activity in a baby's developing brain that improves cognitive function and builds resilience to stress. "What's noteworthy about this study is that it reveals that brain structure is influenced by the environment early in life, and especially by maternal care," says researchers.
Help Further Research on Adult Attachment
Adult attachment has been found to be strongly associated with child psychological, socio-emotional, and behavioral outcomes. Currently, the only measurement of adult attachment that has been proven reliable in this area can often cost $400-$700 per person to administer; this is money that most child advocacy agencies do not have. Researchers are working to develop a low-cost measurement of adult attachment to eventually be made available to agencies that advocate for child welfare and safety. There are many uses for such a questionnaire, such as: a) helping place at-risk children (e.g., abused, neglected, diagnosed) with safe and nurturing parents, b) potentially reducing the number of failed adoption placements, c) protecting children from at-risk adults, and d) screening foster/adoptive families to reduce the possibility of abuse and/or neglect.
Learn more about this research opportunity by contacting L. Brooks McKenzie or going directly to the survey site.
How Not to Raise a Bully: The Early Roots of Empathy
Increasingly, neuroscientists, psychologists and educators believe that bullying and other kinds of violence can indeed be reduced by encouraging empathy at an early age. Over the past decade, research in empathy--the ability to put ourselves in another person's shoes--has suggested that it is key, if not the key, to all human social interaction and morality.
Parental Involvement Is Key to Preventing Child Bullying
Communities across the United States are developing programs to address child bullying. New research shows that parents can play an important role in preventing their children from becoming bullies in the first place.
"Communicative Fathers" Help Reduce Teenage Smoking
Children who talk to their fathers about the issues that are important to them are less likely to take up smoking during early adolescence, a new study has found.
Give That Special Father the Recognition He Deserves!
Want to prepare early for Father's Day and give that special father in your life a gift to last? Did Mother's Day flash by so fast that you missed the chance to give a cherished present? Do you want to remedy that in a memorable way? Come look at API's unique and lasting gift packages we have available for Mother's and Father's Day. Give a gift that's not only memorable but also meaningful!
The Slow, Winding Path to Adulthood: Flashback to the 1900s?
Many a parent believes that their children are growing up too fast. Eight is the new 12, and 12 is the new 18. Today's middle schoolers dress like adults, know how to swear like adults, are exposed to drugs, and reach puberty earlier than we ever did. But then, they stop. And reverse. One study finds that "despite living in an age of iPads and hybrid cars, young Americans are more like the young adults of the early 1900s than the baby-boom generation: They are living at home longer, are financially insecure, and are making lower wages."
When the Ties That Bind Unravel
Therapists for years have listened to patients blame parents for their problems. Now there is growing interest in the other side of the story: What about the suffering of parents who are estranged from their adult children?
API Live--The Gift of Being a Flawed Parent:
How to Use Our Mistakes, Fears and Anger to Raise Kids with Big Hearts, Emotional Security, and Inner Resilience, with author Lu Hanessian, Founder of Parent2ParentU
Have we got a teleseminar for you! Don't miss this month's API Live on May 24th!
On this call, API founders Lysa Parker and Barbara Nicholson talk with Lu about how:
--our "flaws" are actually pathways to raising resilient, secure, connected kids;
--without an awareness of how our story drives our fears, our kids re-enact it;
--without self-understanding and empathy, parents then tend to manage rather than engage, control rather than connect, in a chronic practice of "defensive parenting";
--we can turn our old wounds to new wisdom and free our kids from repeating our stories;
--the gift of our anger, fear, doubt, chaos, anxiety, struggles, and conflicts is that they can shed compassionate light on our old wounds and we can use this light to "heal" our inner conflicts, and pave our path for ourselves and our kids; and
--doing this paving work "keeps our light on" ... and our children's light on, and teaches them the power of forgiveness, humility, and humanity.
Working at Home: Family-Friendly?
Our lives were supposed to be more flexible and family-friendly thanks to the technology at our fingertips. But in this age of BlackBerrys and recession pressures and working from home after hours and on weekends, family time may not be working out the way we thought.
Test Leads to Needless C-Sections
A 2006 analysis found that fetal heart monitoring failed to reduce the risk of a baby's dying late in pregnancy, during birth, or shortly after birth--and increased cesarean section rates and forceps deliveries, compared with listening to a baby's heart rate intermittently.
The Danger of Pharmaceuticals
In April 2005, Rani Jamieson gave birth to a healthy baby boy, Tariq. She was given Tylenol #3, a medication containing acetaminophen and codeine, for postpartum pain. She took two pills twice a day, less than the prescribed amount, and cut this dose in half two days later after experiencing fatigue and constipation. She was told it was safe to take this medication while breastfeeding, and did so. On his 13th day of life, Tariq died.
We Have All You Need Right in Our Store!
Visit our online store today to find invaluable resources to support you and your family on your AP journey.
We have two new books:
The Warmest Place of All, by Licia Rando and illustrated by Anne Jewett, is a lovely children's book (ages 4-8). Sophie discovers that true warmth and comfort is found in the abundance of family love.
The Five Love Languages of Children, by Gary Chapman and Ross Campbell, MD, will help you understand how you can most effectively communicate unconditional love, respect, and commitment in ways that resonate with your particular child.
These books are just the newest examples of quality Attachment Parenting products available for purchase through the API Store. Please stop by today!
Join Us As We Read Our Founders' Book
We're beginning to read Attached at the Heart by Barbara Nicholson and Lysa Parker, and we have a special running just for this occasion! (Wow! Check out the sale price!) Don't miss out on the opportunity! We'll be reading Attached at the Heart for the months of May, June, and July. Take the opportunity to read about the Eight Principles of Parenting, backed up by scientific data, that are presented in their book, as well as additional resources to further your research in the principle of interest. We truly look forward to joining the discussion with you.
To Tackle Childhood Obesity, Focus More on Pregnancy and Infancy
Childhood obesity campaigns such as First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let's Move" program are good, but they may not be enough to truly stem the tide of obesity.
Simple, Low-Cost Steps Enhance Adolescents' Health
Simple, low-cost measures such as wearing a pedometer to inspire walking and spending a few minutes a day meditating can put adolescents on the track toward better health, researchers report.
What Parents Say about Family Vacations
You need a vacation now more than ever, and you shouldn't feel the least bit guilty. In fact, you've got lots of company, according to a new family-travel poll. The majority of the 1,100 people who responded said that vacations are as important now as they were before the recession, and nearly one-fourth of respondents said vacations are more important now.
API in the News!
API Comments on Baby Sling Safety
The recall of 1 million Infantino baby slings following three infant suffocation deaths may have some parents questioning whether baby-wearing is safe. But baby-wearing and breastfeeding experts say the practice not only can be done safely, but it also makes for happier, healthier babies.
Slings Still Have Place for Parents Despite Recall
"My thought when I heard Wednesday that Infantino was recalling more than 1 million baby slings because of concerns about suffocation: Why didn't they do this earlier?"
Just for Fun ...
How Babies Are Delivered
Scroll down to the Humour section; then click on "How Babies Are Delivered." Oh, were it that easy ...
Clap, Baby, Clap!
A researcher in Israel conducted the first study of hand-clapping songs, revealing a direct link between those activities and the development of important skills in children and young adults, including university students.
Need Ideas on How to Keep the "Play" Factor in Your Family This Summer?
Check out these ten great ideas, including a laugh-off and beach ball golf!
API's 2010 Blog Carnival Continues!
Are you a blogger? Join the carnival! API Speaks, Attachment Parenting International's blog, begins its series of blog carnivals. These carnivals will center on API's Principles of Parenting. Interested? Here's the schedule:
June: Ensure Safe Sleep, Physically and Emotionally
(Deadline for submission: 06-11; Carnival date: 06-18)
July: Provide Consistent and Loving Care
(Deadline for submission: 07-09; Carnival date: 07-16)
August: Practice Positive Discipline
(Deadline for submission: 08-13; Carnival date: 08-20)
September: Strive for Balance in Personal and Family Life
(Deadline for submission: 09-10; Carnival date: 09-17)
October: October is Attachment Parenting Month so we'll be hosting an AP Month-themed carnival this month. Details will follow as AP Month 2010 nears.
May is all about Mom and Mother's Day! And while we moms aren't perfect--after all, what child would want a perfect parent? (see Lu's teleseminar)--it's comforting to know that our instincts are spot on.
So many of us have found ourselves swimming against mainstream parenting advice and having to defend our choices. How refreshing to find that the research is finally catching up with us!
These days I find myself smiling more and more frequently, as time and time again I stumble across research that confirms what AP parents already know--that our instincts and the API Principles of Parenting are right on the money.
This month's Links is chock-full of just such research--and information you can use to improve your life today!
You can even help further research into adult attachment!
Finally, see how babies are really delivered in our Just for Fun section (located at the bottom of this newsletter).
And let's not forget about June--Dad's month. Next month's Links will be all about how important fathers are in their children's lives. Too often Dad's role gets overshadowed by Mom's, but often their influence is just as important--and sometimes even moreso--than Mom's.
Please let us know what you like and what you don't about Links; contact us.
Alice Miller, Psychoanalyst and Author, Dies at Age 87
Alice Miller, 87, a European psychoanalyst whose influential book The Drama of the Gifted Child brought new attention to the long-term consequences of child abuse, died April 14 at her home in Provence, in southern France. Her book was originally published in the United States as Prisoners of Childhood in 1981 and sold more than 1 million copies. Jargon-free and easy to read, it was credited with sending a generation of readers on a quest to confront the past. It also convinced countless parents that spanking or screaming at their children--or quietly humiliating them--could have serious consequences.