Parenting a child with attachment issues is challenging because those struggles usually come with behavioral and emotional difficulties that can wear down even the most seasoned parents.They will test your patience, your endurance and your commitment. When working with children who struggle to attach, remember these key things as you strive to help them find security.
Keep Your Cool
The behaviors that accompany attachment disorders will try your patience. Screaming, hitting and name-calling are just a few of the trials you may face. It is easy to find yourself pulled down to your child’s level, allowing your frustrated emotions to dictate your responses. This exactly what your youngster wants you to do, but it is also one of the worst things you can do for him or her in that heated moment. Instead, your child needs calm, consistent responses born out of unconditional love. Keeping your cool will help keep them close, rather than pushing them even farther away.
Never Give Up
Attachment issues usually begin when children do not receive the consistent love and attention they need. Abuse, neglect and abandonment are the most common causes of attachment disorders, though occasionally a child can develop these issues in the absence of those risk factors. Children who struggle with attachment expect all adults to eventually stop caring about them, give up on them and leave them. Changing this expectation can only be accomplished by an adult in the child’s life who chooses to stay and refuses to give up.
Gain Their Trust
You may be wondering, “Do I simply have to keep my cool and choose not to give up for the rest of my life?” The answer, in most cases, is no. Attachment disorders are rooted in a lack of trust, so you overcome them by building trust in your child. Keep your cool and refuse to give up for long enough that your precious one learns to trust you. It is worth it.
Children with attachment issues can struggle to find a place in the world. Having a parent who will stay calm, will not give up and can gain their trust will change their lives forever.