I use the term ‘gentle parenting’ a lot when I write and a lot of people ask me what exactly I mean by it. “What is gentle parenting?” they say…… Often they confuse the ‘gentle parenting’ terminology with the idea of Attachment Parenting (or AP is it is commonly known), which isn’t strictly true. Although often attachment parenting and gentle parenting can be and are complimentary, attachment parenting is a style of parenting following specific principles (FYI click HERE for the principles of Attachment Parenting), whereas I see ‘gentle parenting’ as just a way of being that has no bearing on making specific choices to be in-line with a certain style.
So, with this in mind I’ve tried to come up with my idea of the definition of gentle parenting, ultimately I think it can be summed up with three words:
The table below elaborates a little more, as does this article on the Gentle Parenting Website. I don’t mean to be scathing or judgemental of what I’ve called ‘mainstream parenting’ (if there *is* any judgement it’s directed at the mainstream ‘parenting experts’ and societal myths NOT the individual parents!) and I’m sure I’ve been overly stereotypical, but it’s a start. Without wanting to plug, if you don’t understand some of my ideas (the not using rewards/praise is usually the point that is most confusing, my new book HERE has a lengthy explanation of why I don’t support these parenting methods).
p.s: You might find it easier to read the table contents if you zoom in.
p.p.s: Come and chat with me and fellow gentle parents in my discussion forum here, it would be great to meet you!
COPYRIGHT NOTE: I am *very* happy for you to share this blog post and spread awareness of gentle parenting, but PLEASE DO NOT COPY the table and use it outside of this blog post without my permission.
p.s: Did you like this post? Want to read more similar content and receive weekly top tips, reader Q&As, hear my take on current parenting research and enter the odd competition? Then why not sign up to my new FREE WEEKLY NEWSLETTER and get the latest in gentle parenting delivered straight to your inbox. I promise I will never share your email with anybody else and if you don’t like what I send you can unsubcribe straight away!