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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

attachment

The big "A" word.

Any comments/advice is wecome. I notice that after our 2 weeks together in Vietnam, the twins prefer me over all other...a good step I am sure. So in our arrival home we have set a few "groundrules". The husband and I are the only ones to feed, change, and comfort the crier. Is this enough? Is it too harsh? Grandma's all aound are itching to feed a baby and rock a crier, but we have so far been firm...as I said any advice is welcome. Also, whenever possible, husband is administering care, especially with only having this week off.

We had our roughest night yet last night, but we are getting close to having a schedule so in th end it will be good. I fully expect this time next week to be posting how they sleep the old Vietnam standard of 11 hours with one or two bottles in the night.

Did I mention that attachment advice is welcome?

10 Comments:

At 1/03/2007 9:23 AM , Anonymous S said...

It is fine have Brian take care the the babies, so he can bond, before he returns to work, but grandmas and grandpa need to bond with them, also, as you rely on them as caregivers too. Also, let big sisters help. The babies will learn and adjust quickly.

 
At 1/03/2007 9:59 AM , Blogger Jo said...

When we get home with our girl, we (husband and I)will be the only ones to comfort and care for her until we feel that she is secure and know how we are. I have read several books on attachment and that is what they recommend.

 
At 1/03/2007 10:01 AM , Blogger Ange said...

We've heard over & over that the only ones that should administer care are the parents, this includes putting babies to sleep, calming crying babies etc. It is very important that they learn who is responsible for their care now. I think you are doing a good job, and doing what you think is right is important. This doesn't mean that nobody can hold the babies, I would just make sure to keep one of you in sight most of the time. This is the way I plan to handle things when we come home from Vietnam, but heck everything could change by that point.

 
At 1/03/2007 10:04 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jenn,
Your girls are precious! When I came home with Mia, she couldn't stand me! It totally broke my heart. Even after being together for three weeks in VN, when we got home, she still didn't like me. We too set VERY strict rules about everything so she would attach to me. I changed diapers, fed her, bathed her, etc. Even more so than my husband did, only because she instantly liked him (and anyone else that was not me). Mia was pretty sick too. I think that it helped tremendously that I cared for her only. She had to rely on me to care for her while she was ill. It was probably a blessing in the long run. Now, she's all over me and acts like she's been in our family her whole life. She's doing great. I think that for the first six weeks or so that you're home it's a good thing to limit the caregiving, and exposer to people that will not be staples in their lives. Now that we've been home for almost three months, and Mia has caught on to who "her people" are we take her everywhere and let our other kids and family members help out. We've even let the grandparents take her out to the mall and to dinner a few times without us. Just my 2 cents on what's worked for us.

Melissa

 
At 1/03/2007 10:47 AM , Blogger Ryan and Heather said...

I also agree with the mommy and daddy doing all the feeding, changing, bathing and holding for the first couple of months home. We are also hoping to practice this once we are home with our baby.
Don't forget to take care of yourself though! If you really need a break-I don't think it will hurt them to have Grandma and Grandpa take care of them a little.

 
At 1/03/2007 11:38 AM , Blogger Nicki said...

Jenn, it feels like overkill but coming off of the other side of 6 weeks home, it is definitely the right thing to do. It may seem like they already have preference and it is all good and they probably do but the bond you both will develop by isolating them to just you two will just cement what has already been laid down. Plus you are all still adjusting to new routines and new family and new schedules and the last thing the babies need are new "caregivers". We did let Addy's brothers hold her but not feed her or change her. We still don't let family feed or change her but we will let others hold her. I think the rule of thumb is one week of no-outside-contact for each month of age they are. So for us that would have been 6 weeks and it really does seem like it helped a LOT even though Addison has always seemed very bonded. There is bonded and then there is *bonded*.

 
At 1/03/2007 12:03 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jenn,
I think your doing everything right. When we brought our daughter home we made sure that we were the only people who fed and changed her. We let other family member hold her but that was it. We didn't even let people in our church "pass her around",even though they meant well. We felt it was in her best interest that we be her only caregivers. Our 2 boys helped feed her as she became more attached to us. She is now almost 8 yrs old and is very, very bonded with each of us.
I think you will know when the right time is to let others help out with the babies, but for now I think your right on target with what your doing.

Stephanie

 
At 1/03/2007 7:56 PM , Blogger -Jenny said...

Oy, The attachment. The girls are totally attached to us and look for us but home has been tough, 24 hours is this...Conor keeps forgetting we can be the only feeders. He keeps forgetting the diapers. And it is hard with the two.

I can see though that we need to keep it up. The looks aren't the same since we got home, maybe jetlag maybe insecurity.

The only other thing recommended well 2 is baths, only you give baths and then holding time with other needs to be limited.

Isn't it grand to be home!!!

 
At 1/04/2007 3:42 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was stuck in country for a long time too. My daughter (toddler age) never developed any attachment problems that I could see, and we are almost at 3 yrs home.
Once we got home I let all the family be "family" to her. I kept my eye on the situation but no problems ever developed.
It is important to recognize that attachment can be a problem, but it is improtant for the family to attach to your children too. Your children need friends and family. If you are not seeing any problems I would not worry.
Friends and family have a lot to offer and you must be exhausted.
In fact my daughter acted a lot more "normal" having so many other people of different ages to interact with. She had been good and subdued with me, once we got home she became the active happy loud social person she was met to be.
Every day for months it had been only the two of us living in a hotel room with lots of tension about if we could come home.
It was so nice to be home and know she was happily playing with grandmom so I could run to the bathroom without company.
I wanted her to bond with my family and feel comfortable with her uncles & aunts.
I know it is not what the books say to do, but everyone met me at the airport, everyone held her, everyone enjoyed giving her goodies and presents. She was very hungry all the time. How such a tiny child could eat so much is a family joke.
For attachment I would work on things like; don't leave them with a baby sitter for a while. Don't start day care (if you do that) for a few months. Don't drop them off at the nursery at church while you attend. Don't let them cry themselves to sleep alone in their crib, don't prop bottles. Try and make eye contact, rub them down with lotion, sing to them, cuddle them, kiss their feet and tummies. All the fun stuff you are probably doing anyway.

 
At 1/08/2007 11:00 PM , Anonymous molly said...

Like many have already said....we have always made ourselves the main caregivers. DH and I were the only ones to feed, bathe, comfort our babies. I had this instinct to be stingy with them :) and it really helped with bonding. I did let an occasional grandparent feed a bottle. But it was rare. I think each of the 4 G'parents only got to do that once each....if at all. It was good for their bonding to have that one time and it didn't hurt the babies bonding to my dh and I.

We did not leave the kids in the nursery at church or with a sitter or anything like that. Even when I was beyond exhausted from being up all night for months on end, my instincts just wouldn't let me do that.

With our next adoption I think I will allow our oldest to give a few bottles here and there. He loves babies and we are a close knit family so there will need to be bonding between siblings as well as us. We will still do the majority of feedings, etc but I can't see myself not allowing my other kids the joy of bonding if they have the interest and desire.

 

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