Food to sustain the body and caresses to nourish the soul are neither offered nor denied, but are always available. Offering a child more or less help than he or she asks for is detrimental to his or her development. In light of the principle of the continuum concept, for proper physical, mental and emotional development, human beings need those experiences for which our species has adapted during the long process of evolution. For an infant, such experiences include:
- Permanent physical contact with the mother, a relative or caregiver since birth.
- Sleeping in the parents’ bed until the baby no longer needs it on its own, which occurs around the age of two.
- Breastfeeding on demand in response to the baby’s body signals.
- To be permanently in arms or in physical contact with a person until the crawling and crawling phase begins, around six to eight months of age.
- Have caregivers who are willing to immediately attend to the baby’s needs without being judgmental, unhappy or invalidating the baby’s needs.
- Once we fully recognize the consequences of our treatment of babies, children, each other and ourselves, and learn to respect the true character of our species, we can discover much more deeply our potential for well-being.