When we speak about “bonding” between parents and their babies, we mean the initial and developing feelings parents have towards their babies.

Some parents will describe an overwhelming sense of love and protection for their baby straight away. For others this can develop more gradually over days or weeks. This can happen, if for example, there has been an interruption in the development of the relationship with their baby.

Difficulties with bonding

Parents who have experienced a traumatic delivery or who have been unwell following the birth can feel numb and shocked at first. If the baby is ill at birth, a feeling of fear might be more dominant. This is completely normal and part of the gradual transition into becoming a parent.

Getting help

If you think you are experiencing difficulties speak to your health visitor. He or she can listen to you and help you understand these feelings. Sometimes talking to someone about the reality of becoming a new parent really helps. Your health visitor will help and support you and can also refer you to a specialist therapist.

Learning how to strengthen the bond between a child and their parent or carer is a skill all parents and carers will need throughout their child’s life and especially during challenging times.

Feedback from our patients

Great support, we both enjoyed the home visits during the first weeks.