Here are a few expert opinions and research that tout the importance of a parent’s presence in the life of a child? Have a favorite quote or current research that we’re missing? Add a Comment below and we’ll get it added.

It is presence that regulates the child’s anxiety and therefore the child will grow up healthy and happy. And the degree to which you are present is the degree to which your child will benefit from being in your life and the degree to which you’re absent is the degree to which you will be a wounding source for the child. And those are always correlated in the sense of being present to yourself as well as being present to your partner. In other words, what’s evolved for Helen and me is trying to synthesize and get down to one main principle, which is presence. – Harville Hendricks

The more we are aware of how we are really feeling in each moment, without judging ourselves, the more we embody authentic presence. The more we live in this way, the more our children will feel it, know it, and embody authentic presence themselves. Everyday Blessings: The Inner Work of Mindful Parenting – Myla and Jon Kabat-Zinn

Cultures high in physical affection; touch, holding or carrying, rated low in adult physical violence. Those cultures rated low in physical touch were high in adult physical violence (Prescott, 1996).

Parental warmth and positive expressiveness with children was strongly correlated with children’s development of empathy and social functioning especially in older children (Zhou, et al, 2002).

You can’t have fun with one another if everyone is wearing headphones. There may be a place for Walkmans or Game Boys on long car trips or boring plane rides, but these devices shut people off from one another. When going on family vacations, we’ve had to monitor the use of TV, Walkmans, handheld computer games, and other electronic influences that interfere with our children spending quality time together. Nobody wants to have a lot of rules on vacation, but you can’t create family togetherness in a van full of kids with their ears plugged into their own music and their eyes focused on some electronic gadget. Set some limits, and then be prepared with alternative activities. Many families enjoy listening to a book on tape as they travel together, or they play games. The Successful Child – William and Martha Sears

Our silent and most potent language, touch is the medium through which parent and infant communicate and become attached, each tender touch strengthening the bond between them. In fact, touch is literally a baby’s lifeline. Able to thrive without hearing, without vision, and without smell, infants lacking affectionate touch literally perish from a syndrome called, appropriately, failure-to-thrive. – The Vital Touch by Sharon Heller

The reason AP preemies grow better, breathe better, and do lots of other things better is because attachment parenting organizes a preemie’s physiology. A preemie enter the world with immature physiological systems; the heart, lungs, central nervous system, endocrine system, digestive systems, and immune system operate at less than peak efficiency. The continued presence of an attachment person, usually a mother, although it can also be a father, lowers baby’s stress level, so these systems function more efficiently. – The Premature Baby Book by William and Martha Sears

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Harmony Rose West October 17, 2008 at 3:26 pm

Today may I feel that it is both a blessing and a privilege to be a mother.

A card from the Bless You Mom-Conscious Thoughts for the Mothering Journey deck

2 Rachel October 24, 2008 at 6:36 pm

Quote by Jan Hunt, author of: The Natural Child
“Children raised with love and compassion will be free to use their time as adults in meaningful and creative ways, rather than expressing their childhood hurts… If adults have no need to live in the past, they can live fully in the present.”

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