API Links - October 2012

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News on AP Month festivities, school and creativity, pacifiers and sleep training, and even how being an AP parent can positively affect your kids' friends.

Editor's Picks

Parental Bonding Makes for Happy, Stable Child
Parents: Want to help ensure your children turn out to be happy and socially well adjusted? Bond with them when they are infants.

Child Welfare Legislation Outlaws Spanking in Delaware
Delaware has become the first state in the nation to effectively outlaw corporal discipline of children by their parents. The legislation creates a definition of the term "physical injury" in the child abuse and neglect laws to include "pain." Currently the law permits a parent to use force to punish a child for misconduct, but it prohibits any act that is likely to cause or does cause physical injury. By defining “physical injury” to include the infliction of pain on a child, spanking has become a crime in Delaware punishable by imprisonment.

How Early Social Deprivation Impairs Long-Term Cognitive Function
A growing body of research shows that children who suffer severe neglect and social isolation have cognitive and social impairments as adults. A study shows, for the first time, how these functional impairments arise: Social isolation during early life prevents the cells that make up the brain's white matter from maturing and producing the right amount of myelin, the fatty "insulation" on nerve fibers that helps them transmit long-distance messages within the brain.

10 Reasons Why Oxytocin Is the Most Amazing Molecule in the World
Though often referred to as the "trust hormone," oxytocin is increasingly being seen as a brain chemical that does a lot more than just bring couples closer together.

Love Our Work? Tell the World!
You have an opportunity to help us make even more of a difference!
GreatNonprofits – a review site like TripAdvisor – is honoring highly reviewed nonprofits with their 2012 Top-Rated Awards.
Won't you help us raise visibility for our work by posting a review of your experience with us? All reviews will be visible to potential donors and volunteers.
It’s easy and only takes 3 minutes!

Prepare for Pregnancy, Birth, and Parenting

Eating Well During Pregnancy Reduces Baby's Obesity Risk Regardless of Mom's Size
If you are overweight and pregnant, your baby isn't destined to a life of obesity after all. A team of U.S. scientists show that modifying fat intake during pregnancy to a moderate level is enough to benefit the child regardless of the mother's size.

It Takes a Professional Village! A Study Looks at Collaborative Interdisciplinary Maternity Care Programs on Perinatal Outcomes
The  Canadian Medical Association Journal published an interesting study examining how a team approach to maternity care might improve maternal and neonatal outcomes. 

AP Month Is Finally Here! Just in Time!

AP Month is going on all October and our theme is on the benefits of support groups!

Join in the AP Month fun in any one of these ways:
Look up an API group and get involved, join our blog event, enter your photos in our photo event, bid on our goodies in the online auction, or share your support stories with us!

Keeping Mom and Baby Together after Delivery Beneficial
"Rooming in," keeping mother and her newborn in the same room 24/7 to encourage breastfeeding, has been a popular initiative of The WHO/UNICEF Baby Friendly Hospital. A new review finds evidence that it does support breastfeeding, at least in the short term.

Planned Hospital Birth versus Planned Home Birth
Observational studies of increasingly better quality and in different settings suggest that planned home birth in many places can be as safe as planned hospital birth and with less intervention and fewer complications.

CLICK with AP Month!
Enter the 2012 AP Month Photo Event!
It's one of our favorite events!

Feeding with Love and Respect

As the Media Milks the TIME Cover, Can Breastfeeding Benefit?
The TIME cover mom, Jamie Grumet, is breastfeeding on another magazine cover. This time it's Pathways to Family Wellness, and instead of "staring defiantly at the camera," Jamie is gently cradling her now four-year old nursing son, surrounded by her loving family, her face radiating a quiet tranquility and warmth. Of course, the Pathways image is much more fitting of Jamie, her family, and the act of breastfeeding than the far more controversial and confrontational TIME cover (which Jamie didn’t choose – see her article in the new issue of The Attached Family). Unfortunately it's also serving to resurrect the same "extreme parenting" reaction (2,300+ comments on Huffpo!), and the same ugly comments are spewing forth...but don't get sucked in! 

The Smell of Mom: Scientists Find Elusive Trigger of First Suckling in Mice
For newborn mice to suckle for the very first time and survive, they depend on a signature blend of scents that is unique to their mothers. Mom's natural perfume consists of odors emitted from the amniotic fluid, which served to nourish and protect those young mice before they were born.

Get the goods
at our online auction, happening from October 18th through the 31st!

Responding with Sensitivity

Pacifiers May Have Emotional Consequences for Boys
Pacifiers may stunt the emotional development of baby boys by robbing them of the opportunity to try on facial expressions during infancy.

Ensure Safe Sleep, Emotionally and Physically

Sleep Training Study Findings Not Final Word
API and other researchers encourage parents to reject the pervasive notion that parental sleep can only happen, or best happens, when we purposely and repeatedly ignore and dismiss the distress calls of our babies and children at night. Read more about API's response to the recently published Pediatrics study on "behavioral infant sleep intervention" that's garnering headlines that sleep training is safe.

Fostering Creativity

Does Playing Music Boost Kids’ Empathy?
A new study suggests it does, at least when practiced in a group.

Can Students Love School? Yes, If Schools Love Students
David Allyn reflects on what made his former school, Georgetown Day, "magical." There has been a lot of talk about the need for greater academic "rigor" in education. Rigor is meant to be a synonym for high standards in the curriculum, but the word reveals much about our culture's attitude toward learning. "Rigor," according to Merriam-Webster, means "harsh inflexibility in opinion, temper or judgmental severity; the quality of being unyielding or inflexible." Think of rigor mortis.

As Children’s Freedom Has Declined, So Has Their Creativity
New research suggests that American schoolchildren are becoming less creative.

Is Technology Sapping Children’s Creativity?
"What if when Miles had started to cry, I had handed him a phone app to play with to distract him from his sadness, or offered a Dora the Explorer episode to watch on my computer to cheer him up? It’s so easy to reach for this solution and it’s a sure success. But is it interfering with our longer term goals of helping our kids develop inner resilience and social skills? I’ve become concerned that many children today are learning to cope with their feelings and relationships by distraction, and that screens of all kinds have become easy substitutes for the inner life experiences and personal interactions children need to have."

Consistent and Loving Care

A Healthy Life May Require a Good Start
Early-life stress and trauma can harm American lives. Columnist Jerry Large says a new book convinced him that the country has to do more to help people when they are young, because stresses and traumas manifest in mental and physical ways later on.

Emotional Neglect in Children Linked to Increased Stroke Risk Later in Life
The results from a new study suggest that people who were emotionally neglected as children may have a higher risk of stroke in later adulthood.

Child Maltreatment: Prevalence, Incidence, and Consequences in East Asia and the Pacific
Maltreatment of children - including physical, sexual, and emotional abuse; neglect; and exploitation - is all too prevalent in the East Asia and Pacific regions, a report from UNICEF finds. To date, research on the consequences of child maltreatment has focused on mental health, linking abuse to depression, low self-esteem, suicide ideation, and self-harm. The report notes, however, that high-quality qualitative and mixed-method studies from the region remain hard to come by.

Strive for Balance in Personal and Family Life

Strict Moms Influence Kids' Friends
Authoritative parenting - a style that balances warmth and communication with appropriate control and supervision - can help teen friends cut drinking, smoking, and drug use.

How Instagram Became the Social Network for Tweens
Well-intentioned parents who've kept their tweens off Facebook are catching on to the workaround: kids are turning to Instagram, the photo-sharing app that may as well be a social network.


Dear Supporter,

It's finally here! This is the month that API looks forward to all year long!

It's AP Month, and wow, do we have a month full of goodies for you!

This year's AP Month topic is "Relax, Relate, and Rejuvenate," and it couldn't have come at a better time.

While October is the start of lots of great things - the crisp fall air (well, here in Texas, "crisp" is considered any temperature under three digits), kids' eager anticipation of which costume they'll choose from the hundreds they've considered (yes, my 12- and 14-year-old still trick-or-treat), and the fall festivals around town - it can also be the start of stress.

Even if it's good stress - Thanksgiving preparations, gift-giving lists, end-of-year party planning - it's stress nonetheless.

What better way to relieve some of that stress than to spend time with friends and like-minded souls? If you haven't yet found an API Support Group, now's the time! You can rant, rave, vent, and share with parents who "get it" and who think the way you do.

And what about that shopping list? Lots of us celebrate the holidays by giving gifts, and I don't know about you, but my list seems to get longer every year.

Think about helping out yourself, other AP parents, and API too by checking out the amazing selection of items on the Auction page - bidding starts on the 18th! Pick up some goodies there, and you can easily check off a few people on your list.

However you celebrate this time of year, consider celebrating it with other AP families. Even if you find it the most relaxing and rejuvenating season, think about sharing that peace and wisdom with other families who are a wee bit stressed by getting involved with your Support Group.

And don't forget to check out all the cool stuff going on this month! Share your AP photos, submit your blog posts to the blog carnival, share your support stories, and bid on auction items!

This month please welcome Naomi Davidson, of API of Port Angeles, Washington, and Rebecca Sanjabi, of San Francisco API, as new Leaders, as well as new Leader Megan Tyers, and her new Support Group, API of Wangaratta, Australia!

Camille North,
API Links Editor

Please let us know what you like and what could be better about Links.

API is a free enewsletter, dedicated to bringing you information to support you in your parenting journey.

Beset by Fall Madness?

AP Month Is Your Antidote!

"Relax, Relate, Rejuvenate: 
Renewed with Parent Support!"

See what's going on!

"Safe and healthy birth: The music of our head, heart and hands"

2012 Lamaze Innovative Learning Forum
October 26-28, 2012
Nashville, TN

General sessions featuring
Ina May Gaskin, Jack Newman, and Steven Frye

View the Preliminary Program

Lysa Parker and Barbara Nicholson, cofounders of API, presenting on Attachment Parenting

Stop by and visit the API Exhibit!

Papas and Mamas Sing for Healthy Birth Benefit Concert

Saturday, October 27

Nashville, TN

Join us at "3rd and Lindsley" as we listen to Delbert McClinton and friends for an amazing night of music to celebrate Healthy Birth!

API Board members Dr. Bill and Martha Sears will be presenting our "Attached at the Heart" Parenting award to Ina May Gaskin, Head midwife at The Farm, and recognizing award recipients Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein, the filmmakers who created "The Business of Being Born."

Invite your friends!

Gold Circle and Regular tickets

~Teaching parents about the importance of starting their parenting journey with a safe, conscious birth experience~

Attachment Parenting II:
A Contemporary Perspective

From Child Development Media, Inc.

What's in Store for You
in Our Store?

If you are looking for Attached at the Heart, please contact us by email.

Do Well and Do Good...

Support the mission of API and connect with your target audience.

Contact us
to help you create an advertising package to fit your message and budget.

API is proactively engaged with organizations with diverse missions and activities in order to leverage and expand our work in supporting all parents, children and families to promote secure attachments and strong, positive relationships.

Want to change a life?
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and learn more about
becoming an API Leader!

Did You Have an Aha! Moment Reading One of These Links?

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Photos by Nina Matthews Photography from here, by Elliot Bennett (potzuyoko) from here, and by woodleywonderworks from here.

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