Mom-Toddler Bond Helps Kids Make Friends

mom-child attachment

Photo by Borikaos

Okay, so there's another new study out (and I know how many of you feel about these new studies!) that says toddlers who form strong bonds with mom in the preschool years will have closer friendships in grade school.

Well, who wouldn't want that for their toddler!

The reason for this connection?

When mom and child regularly and honestly share their feelings, children develop a better and more positive understanding of others. In turn, that promotes more positive friendships during the early school years, says researcher Nancy McElwain of the University of Illinois, part of the team that looked at the data on over 1,000 children.


The researchers started following the kids at age 3 -- assessing their language and vocabulary, how openly mother and child communicated feelings to each other, and how hostile children were to others on the playground.

When the children hit grade school, mothers and teachers were asked to report on how well the child got along with their peers and give details about the quality of the students' relationships with their closest friends in third grade.

"When kids feel comfortable talking about their emotions, especially their negative emotions, it increases their social competence with classmates and leads to closer friendships," McElwain says.

++ What are you doing to strengthen your mother-child bond? Do you openly share your feelings with your tot?

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