My Arms Are Your Shelter: You'll Never Be Too Big For Me
It doesn’t matter whether you’re 3 months old, 3 years old, or 30. My arms will be your shelter – that home where you can grow up feeling loved, valued and protected. This corner of my body will be here every time you need a pillow to rest your head upon to forget your problems. Every time you need that love and affection that we all need, even when we’re adults.
Surely on more than one occasion during your day-to-day life as a mother or father, someone has said to you: “don’t get your baby used to being held or he’ll be spoiled.” Upon hearing these phrases based on supposed popular wisdom, we ask ourselves it if would really be better to leave our babies in their strollers or cribs, face up, staring at a wall or looking up at the infinite sky where nothing happens and no one talks to them.
Children are the anchors that hold a mother to life
Of course, everything must have limits and be kept in balance. However, despite what we might believe, babies are meant to spend the first part of their lives resting on their mother’s body. Nothing can be more beneficial or stimulating. The chest and arms of their parents are the the ideal setting where they will find constant security and stimulation. This is exactly what their maturing brains need.
Furthermore, we want to give you one detail to reflect upon. There are studies that show that the psycho-affective development of children that have grown up in orphanages is often so weak it’s traumatic. The majority suffer disorders when it comes to connecting with others. In fact, it has been observed that babies in some of the worst orphanages have even stopped crying.
These babies reach a point where they learn that crying serves them no purpose whatsoever. This has nothing to do with whether they are well fed or not. What they truly desire is to be held, rocked, and emotionally comforted.
When this is lacking, when this is not offered, children begin to develop deficiencies. The impact of this unmet need will leave a number of consequences: Low self-esteem, difficulties with paying attention, and slower cognitive development…
You will grow up in my arms in order to be strong
In the face of such dramatic situations such as those of abandoned children in certain orphanages in Asia or Africa, we are all clear on the importance of establishing strong, healthy and safe bonds with our babies. Those bonds are essential and they are something that we need to promote, especially during the first three years of life. This time period is especially key in psychomotor, affective, psychosocial development, as well as in the development of the brain.
For that reason, it is always a good idea to follow the key principles of raising our children in our arms. The benefits and the holistic impact that this parenting approach has on our children is amazing.
Growing up in mom and dad’s arms improves a child’s development
A child’s natural posture, as we all know, is with his back arched in the form of a C. This is how our babies were positioned while they were in our wombs, and it is the position they find most comfortable during their first months of life.
- Whether we carry our baby in a baby carrier or in our arms, remember that our baby’s knees should always be positioned above his bottom, in a “frog” position.
- This continuous interaction while you hold your baby in your arm favors his social, affective and communicative development: your baby will respond to smiles, words and caresses…
- Also, the fact that you carry your baby in your arms will greatly reduce the presence of colics, including the classic reflux that is so common during the first three months of life.
- Take into account the fact that babies who are left lying down all day may develop plagiocephaly (flattening of the head due to poor positioning).
My arms will always be your home, no matter how old you are
Children grow up fast, as we know. Yesterday they were napping on our chest and we were walking around the park with them in our arms. Now, all of the sudden, they are off to school, riding in the front seat of the car, and getting ready to go on vacation with their friends.
Education is not a race to life, but tempers the soul to the difficulties of life
All of that is good and positive, and it is what all mothers and fathers hope for: that their children may be free, strong, mature, capable of being happy and of making others happy as well. Just the same, remember this: No one is too old that they don’t need a hug.
A mother and a father’s hugs have no expiration date. They should be readily available for those everyday moments as well as for those instances when our children most need them. They are a way to return home, a sensational way to remind our children how much we love them, how important they are to us, and how proud we are of them for who they are, just the way they are: Our precious, perfect and valuable children that life has given us.
So, please do not pay any attention to those who repeat the old refrain or saying that if your baby gets used to being held, he will be spoiled. Because the truth is, to allow your child to live without this source of emotional nourishment in his day-to-day life is to rob your baby of something he desperately needs.
Raising a child isn’t just about caring for their physical well-being. It’s also about nourishing their emotions and caring for their minds, their brains and their hearts…
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Bowlby, J. (1986). Vínculos afectivos: formación, desarrollo y pérdida. Madrid: Morata.
- Bowlby, J. (1995). Teoría del apego. Lebovici, Weil-HalpernF.
- Garrido-Rojas, L. (2006). Apego, emoción y regulación emocional. Implicaciones para la salud. Revista latinoamericana de psicología, 38(3), 493-507. https://www.redalyc.org/pdf/805/80538304.pdf
- Marrone, M., Diamond, N., Juri, L., & Bleichmar, H. (2001). La teoría del apego: un enfoque actual. Madrid: Psimática.
- Moneta, M. (2003). El Apego. Aspectos clínicos y psicobiológicos de la díada madre-hijo. Santiago: Cuatro Vientos