Detachment Parenting

Detachment Parenting | Twin Cities Moms Blog

My partner and I have long joked that we practiced attachment parenting for the first six months of our kids’ lives, then switched to detachment parenting! We thought we were being clever with our play on words, but our detachment parenting has evolved to be a very real thing for us with real life implications for how we operate and what we value as a family. 

In yoga, meditation and Ayurvedic traditions, the law of detachment is allowing yourself and those around you the freedom to be as they are. It is about the wisdom of uncertainty and the field of all possibilities. 

And what is more uncertain than life with young kids?! But honestly, for us as parents, this means letting our kids learn who their truest selves are, nurturing that little person and being open to paths and solutions that might not be obvious to the adults in the room. Yes, my kids have boundaries and safety rules. They eat with a fork and wash their hair. But we also let them take risks and we believe in their capabilities. 

Detachment Parenting | Twin Cities Moms Blog

We also describe our style as let-them-bleed parenting. We don’t tell them not to jump off that boulder, we simply point out the rock that’s on the ground in front of them and suggest angling another way before jumping. All actions (and all words) have consequences. Our kids are learning that in the first-person as opposed to only being told.

Both my kids will tell you that if they can climb up, they can climb down. Asking for help is completely encouraged, but it’s usually met with a “did you try it yourself first” response. They’re figuring out what they are able to do on their own – the successes/mistakes/defeats they make this time around will inform the choices they make and actions they take the next time. In other words, a little blood never hurt anyone!

Detachment Parenting | Twin Cities Moms Blog

In order to be as you are, you have to know who you are. I believe that’s our role as parents: to provide guidance and support as our kids discover just who they are and how the world around them works.  

This kind of parenting allows them to experience the possibilities and find their own solutions. To try in ways that I could not know. I want my kids to know they can do it, on their own, whatever IT may be. They have us if they need us, of course, but the creativity they use and confidence they gain in learning to go their own way is how I want them to experience all the fun, adventure, magic and mystery of life.  

Annie and her partner of ten years are making strong efforts to raise their two kids with an appreciation for adventure, laughter, love and being at the kitchen table at the same time while eating the same meal. They hike, paddleboard, snowshoe, camp, kayak - basically if you can do it outside, they probably are, along with their big ol’ spotty dog. They are passionate about exploring new places, new people, new food, new adventures, so they travel as often and as far-flung as they can. Plus, there's nothing quite like living through an epic airplane meltdown to make you really appreciate life. So far they've managed to live on both coasts and overseas, but the longest stint is in Minneapolis. When she’s not outside with her family you can find Annie madly trying to catch up on all the laundry, oh and working full time.

1 COMMENT

  1. Love this! Instead of saying “no” all the time, we try to say “is that a wise decision?” and try to encourage mindfulness of their environment and relationships.

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