Building Bonds with Baby
You and your spouse both work. One of you travels for a living and can be gone for days in a row. Of course, you both want to have an endearing, enduring bond with your newborn baby. What can you do to foster that bond?
Baby is likely already bonded with Mom as a result of the connection from within the uterus. Baby may also be bonded with Dad by virtue of hearing his voice often while still within Mom’s uterus. However, bonds can and should be reinforced. What follows are tips on how to build bonds with your baby.
- 1. Meet his needs promptly and kindly. If he is hungry, feed him. If he is sleepy, rock him to sleep. If he is wet or dirty, change his diapers. Ensure that he knows you are going to respond to his needs.
- 2. Anticipate his needs before they occur and do things he will like. For example, if you know that he gets hungry at about 2:00 p.m. each day, start feeding him then (before he cries due to hunger). Another example would be to play peek-a-boo with him since it makes him smile.
- 3. Speak softly and often to your baby. Say loving things to him. He will not understand your words, but he will understand your tone, and the love in your tone of voice is what he needs to hear.
- 4. Babies love to be touched. Caress his head and temples as you speak to him. Touch or play with his arms and legs often. Cuddle him each and every day. Lay him on your abdomen or chest, his bare skin touching your bare skin.
- 5. Breastfeed your baby. This can be a tremendously bonding experience between mother and child.
- 6. Fill his room with scents that he likes. For example, he will likely be drawn to Mom’s scents. By hanging some of Mom’s and Dad’s worn but not dirty clothing in his room, he can smell you and sense your comforting presence at all times.
- 7. Let him see your face as often as you can. He likes to see the faces of his parents, and he needs to see you as often as possible to know you are bonded with him.
By following these seven tips, you can foster the bond between you and your baby. May this precious time with your newborn baby be all that you are hoping it will be. And congratulations on the birth of your new little one!