Season 1, Episode 56

The Power of Attachment with Dr. Deborah MacNamara

In this insightful podcast episode, Dr. Deborah MacNamara, a developmentalist and expert in attachment-based parenting, shares her profound wisdom on conscious parenting. Dr. MacNamara emphasizes the pivotal role of fostering environments that nurture adaptability, resilience, and independence in children. She underscores the transformative power of human connection and relationships in the process of child development, shining a spotlight on the fundamental importance of secure attachment in shaping a child’s behavior. Her unique perspective offers a refreshing approach to raising emotionally healthy and self-reliant individuals.

Additionally, Dr. MacNamara explores the intriguing intersection of food and connection, illustrating how mealtime can become a catalyst for building strong family bonds and ensuring emotional safety. She provides practical insights into addressing the common challenge of picky eating while creating a positive and nurturing feeding environment. Moreover, the episode delves into the complexities of establishing healthy sleep patterns for children, offering valuable strategies and suggestions to help parents navigate this often turbulent aspect of parenting.

Join us for a deep dive into conscious parenting, attachment theory, and practical tips to raise resilient, independent, and well-adjusted kids.

 

 

Key Notes

  • Attachment Shapes Behavior: Dr. Deborah MacNamara emphasizes that secure attachment is the cornerstone of child development, significantly influencing a child’s behavior and emotional well-being.
  • Mealtime Connection: The podcast explores the profound connection between food and relationships.
  • Picky Eating Insights: Dr. MacNamara provides practical guidance on addressing picky eating habits in children.
  • Sleep Challenges: The episode delves into the challenges of establishing healthy sleep patterns for children.
  • Conscious Parenting: Throughout the discussion, Dr. MacNamara introduces the concept of conscious parenting, encouraging parents to be mindful of their approach and the impact it has on their child’s development.

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Read This Episode Transcript

Lorne Brown:

By listening to the Conscious Fertility Podcast, you agree to not use this podcast as medical advice to treat any medical condition in either yourself or others. Consult your own physician or healthcare provider for any medical issues that you may be having. This entire disclaimer also applies to any guest or contributors to the podcast. Welcome to Conscious Fertility, the show that listens to all of your fertility questions so that you can move from fear and suffering to peace of mind and joy. My name is Lorne Brown. I’m a doctor of traditional Chinese medicine and a clinical hypnotherapist. I’m on a mission to explore all the paths to peak fertility and Joyful living. It’s time to learn how to be and receive so that you can create life on purpose.

I want to welcome to our show Dr. Deborah McNamara. I’ve been really looking forward to having conversations with Deborah because of her background. I call them Conscious Parenting Counselors, therapists, that’s what I call them, but I’m going to give you a little bit of introduction. We’re going to talk about her new book that just came out nourished and for all our listeners here, why I wanted to bring Deborah on is a couple of reasons. One is many of our listeners are trying to grow their family and we all want a manual. So what better time than while you’re trying to grow your family to have this manual on how you can help raise your child to reach their, I guess we can call it human potential. And then so many of our listeners already have children or were once children themselves and are looking how they can attach and support their children or their own inner child. And so Deborah, that’s why I kind of wanted you to come on because my patients have been asking me questions to ask you. Sorry. Are you ready for this?

Deborah Macnamara:

I’m delighted to be here. Thank you so much.

Lorne Brown:

Well, let me just tell our listeners, listeners a little bit about you. So Deborah has her PhD and she’s a registered clinical counselor and an educator. She’s author of three books. Her latest book actually just got released as we’re recording this month in September, 2023 called Nourished on Connection, food and Caring for Our Kids and everyone else we love. She’s also written the So Plane and one of my favorites is Rest, play, grow, making Sense of preschoolers or anyone else who acts like one. She is on faculty at the Neufeld Institute. If you haven’t heard that episode, we had Dr. Gordon Neufeld on episode 50, and she’s also the director of Kids Best Bet Counseling. She regularly does make sense of kids to the adults responsible for them through presentations and consultations and also on podcast. Apparently that’s why she’s here with us today. So Deborah, welcome to the Conscious Fertility Podcast.

Deborah Macnamara:

Thank you so much.

Lorne Brown:

Now I’m interested because we want our children to grow up and to reach their potential. And on our podcast we talk about consciousness conscious parenting. Some have used the term developmentalist versus behaviorist. Can you kind of just share with us why people seek you out and what you subscribe to or your theory of parenting, whether it’s called attachment or developmentalist, just so our listeners have a sense of it and may be just some of the stages. What happens during those first six years of life that I’ve heard you talk about or mention in your books?

Deborah Macnamara:

Well, I call myself a developmentalist first and foremost, and that’s primarily due to the work that I’ve done with Gordon Neufeld working and studying with him. I was an attachment based theorist and practitioner before I met Gordon. So relationship was key to my understanding of human development. But it was when I met Gordon Neufeld that I realized that I’ve always really been a developmentalist. And it’s really, if you had to put it in a nutshell, what a developmentalist is concerned with is how do we create the condition so that our kids grow up to be adaptive, resilient, resourceful? How do they grow up to be their own person? They’re separate, they’re independent. They can form their own goals. They don’t need to just fit in, but they can find their place of belonging and mattering in the world. And also that they’re socially, they can fit into the world as a social being.

They’re compassionate. They can take a step into community and contribute. If you ask parents, and when you do research, parents will tell you that that’s what they want most for their kids. They want them to reach their full potential. So what’s my job as a developmentalist is basically to say, well, how do we create that context? How do we create those conditions? What is our role in that? And it’s also an understanding that we don’t do this alone. Our children came with a template for development. We’re not, it doesn’t all rest with us. And that is very reassuring as a parent is to know that it’s not hinged on everything you do or don’t do just as your body grows, so does the whole psychology of the self and the development unfold. So that’s what a developmentalist is really preoccupied with. And the greatest sin, if there were such a thing, or a way to say that to a developmentalist is to deprive a child of those conditions so they can’t grow. Well,

Lorne Brown:

And do you find in your practice then that people are coming in interested in this developmentalist approach, but really because I think I’m guilty of this, I’ve said this on other podcasts at the beginning. Anyhow, we come to you to use your approach to really be behaviors, to get our kids to behave a certain way. Have you found that in your practice because just looking for another tool to make the kids be really good soldiers or really good behave? Well,

Deborah Macnamara:

I think we’re trying to do our best that we can. And we’re, as parents, we’re baffled by behavior. Like my go-to person as a parent is Gordon Neufeld, and I’ll call him up and say, Gordon, I’m struggling to make sense of this behavior. Help me understand. And the reason that we want to try to understand because we are preoccupied by behavior that alerts us that there is an issue. If we didn’t pay attention to it, how would we know, oh, the child’s screaming, the child’s upset, is hiding in their room, doesn’t want to go to school. So we do focus on behavior that’s not so much a problem, it’s just if we stop there and we try to push the child along, we actually have to go a little bit deeper into try to make sense of it. So what’s driving the child right now, and that’s what a lot of the behavioral learning theorists missed, is that there are roots, emotional and instinctive roots that drive us all.

Why is that child scared? Why are they upset? Why are they full of counter while resistance and opposition? So that’s why we seek to make sense. And I think it’s been my experience that when parents and myself can understand what drives someone’s behavior, I have more compassion. I’m less frustrated. I can think my way through the problem. I can maybe provide some ways of getting through that or helping my child, but if I’m stuck just focusing on behavior and getting it to change, then I’m really just stuck there with my child. And so that’s where parents are usually at when they come in. They don’t want to be stuck along with their child. They care about them deeply, but they’re just confused. I mean, we all get confused by the things that we see.

Lorne Brown:

So when a lot of the children, I’m going to make a generalization, but it seems like there’s many more anxious children, sensitive children. Can you make sense of that from the developmental attachment theory that you work with? And is there a way that these parents can come alongside their kids? I think of the polyvagal theory, Steven Porges, we had him on the show as well, that what’s happening in the world, digital, the digital world, what happened with Covid with isolation and separation? He thinks that’s definitely impacted adults and children nervous system. And I’m just curious because I think what you do and what you teach actually is the cure for a lot of these children that are anxious. What’s your sense of that?

Deborah Macnamara:

Well, I would say that I love, and of course what you’re saying about Steven PO’s work, I would completely agree with and G Mate and toxic culture, of course, this is the bigger context. I think I’ll just share a story where it’ll exemplify sort of where I come from. I was given the opportunity when rest play Grow was released. Gordon Neufeld got called to go and speak at the United Nations, but he was out on tour with another organization. And so he called me and said, will you go and speak at the United Nations on the international day of the parent and speak about parenting in a digital world? And I had 15 minutes, so I got to go to this incredible experience. I say that I’ve peaked too early now. I’ve just, everything else is, it was amazing. But one of the things that the organizers, when she brought me in, she was talking to me and said, this is a very international audience, obviously as is the Newfeld Institute, but we’re going to have people here from all over the world.

And she says, I think the biggest problem that we face today is that we’re trying to solve all sorts of problems, mental health in our kids, financial issues, climate change, whatever might be those problems. And the fundamental thing that we’re missing is that we have to strengthen those human connections at the family level. And so if you trace from the very small level of the family all the way up into culture, the question you have to ask is, does culture support families today? And I would say, I don’t think it does. And so then we turn to the parent and say, well, what are you not doing because your child has anxiety? Well, what is culture not doing for that family, those parents, those children, to make sure that what is held sacred is that every child has a caretaker who they feel confident in to be able to take care of ’em.

And lots of stuff could be going on really well in the home, but a child goes to school and classrooms and school refusal is in an all time high now after Covid. And what is that about? It’s about that our children are wounding each other more than ever before. Covid took a very hard turn in terms of increasing separation and distress. And so when we look at anxiety, it’s kind of like the tip of the iceberg. We have to unpack it a little bit more. It’s about human separation. So why do we have so much separation and how do we make connection the cure again?

Lorne Brown:

And I think this ties well, and we’re going to jump around a bit, but your book nourished because there’s a great opportunity around the table to have that connection. No, when I first saw the copy of your book Nourish, I thought it was all about eating healthy, right? And diet and it’s not. So maybe can you talk a little bit about what’s most important when it comes to taking care of our kids and others when it comes around food? Then why did you write this book nourished and really, what’s the message you’re getting there? I think this what we just started talking about ties into that with culture.

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah, exactly. Well, as a parent and as a counselor, I noticed that food problems and relationship problems went hand in hand. And so I became very curious about that. And we are given this prescription that we need to eat together. But it’s not simple like that. If you’re a counselor, you know that what happens around a table can be incredibly wounding. Talk to any child who sat with a parent who’s narcissistic, abusive, whatever, that table is a place of great wounding. So it’s not about food actually. And anybody who reads nourished will tell you one of the first things that hits you is, oh, this actually isn’t about food. This is about human relationship. And so it became really clear to me that every single professional I talked to and interviewed for this book said, in North America, everybody has some sort of food related issue.

Shame, fear, diet, culture, whatever you want to talk about. Our relationship with food is in big trouble. And with eating disorders now the second leading cause of fatality behind opioid use, that should tell you worldwide, we’ve lost something significant in our relationship with food. And part of the problem is when everybody goes back to Maslow and says, well, Maslow says food’s the most important on the bottom of that pyramid, but he actually got it wrong. It was never about food being the most important. It’s always about relationship. Neuroscience has taught us that attachment science has taught us that everything must happen in the context of emotional and relational safety. So how do we come to rest? How do the people who care about us feed us, take care of us, protect us? Food serves us best when it serves togetherness, but we’re so busy focusing on what food to serve that we’ve missed the whole love story about feeding and eating. It was fundamentally an active relationship, but it’s not anymore. It’s not. We’ve lost our way. We’ve become very focused on what’s in the food. Is it good for you? How much are kids eating? Look at all the nutrition. Nutritionism has just taken off the industrialization of food. It’s just we are so far away from nature’s agenda, which is to take care of each other with food. Its greatest expression of that.

Lorne Brown:

And what I think I heard clearly here is it’s not so much, okay, we’re you did not say, okay, force everybody around the dinner table, right? Because you said sometimes that’s not a healthy environment, the relationship for the child, but cooking with the intention of cooking and using that as an opportunity to bring the family together, then over a meal

Deborah Macnamara:

If you can. But I would say that one of the things, and I struggled with this a lot and it took me a long time to wrestle. What is it that I’m actually trying to say here? That relationship has to come first. So if we had to actually hijack something or give up something or sacrifice something, I would say cooking from scratch or sitting together and enjoying food, the primary response would be sit together and enjoy whatever food you have available to you. If you can cook it yourself, wonderful. It can be an expression of feeding, but I know lots of people who can, my daughter’s at university now, so it’s like, okay, hey, can I pop by and bring you your favorite tuna poke bowl and we’ll just sit at the beach and eat it together? I didn’t make it, but it’s an active relationship.

It’s an act of dependency. It’s an act of invitation to rest in my care. And so I think the food thing has gotten so fixated on prescriptions for how we do this that we realize that we’ve lost that it’s an invitation for caretaking. And that invitation can look a lot of different ways. If someone brought you a cup of coffee, if someone brought you your favorite muffin from somewhere, you’d be like, thanks. Thanks for taking care of me. You might share it together. There might be a sense of connection. So it’s not about the food, it’s about how we go about sharing food.

Lorne Brown:

Yeah, it reminds me, my wife often brings me tea, can I make you tea? Can I bring you tea? And a male slow learner. So it took a couple a decade to realize that it was never about the teeth. She was just being kind. Right. It was always just that gesture and what you mentioned about whether cooking from scratch or ordering in and eating around the table. It’s not exactly how the quote went, but it went something like this. I think it was John Robbins, one of the heirs of the, maybe it’s the Baskin Robbins empire. I can’t remember which ice cream group it was, but he said, it’s healthier to eat beers and francs with cheers and thanks than bread and sprout with dread and doubt.

Deborah Macnamara:

Oh,

Lorne Brown:

Beautiful. Something of that sort, right? Yeah. Beautiful. So even back then, that was over 20 years ago. So what’s the attitude? And then we talked about Steven Porges earlier. If you think about the nervous system you have the sympathetic and parasympathetic. Parasympathetic is our rest and digest. And also for those that are trying to grow their family, breathe and feed. So breathe here. And when you’re in alarm, you’re in sympathetic, which is not a great time to receive food, to receive nourishment. So if you can have that relationship going on around the table, you’re going to improve digestion. Those children that have so many adults come into me with stomach problems, but they’ve had them since childhood. And I think of that sympathetic tone that how that stress is showing up on the body. So your book on nourished in this idea, not only are you talking about how this impacts our mental and spiritual wellbeing, but it does trickle down to the physical wellbeing.

Deborah Macnamara:

Absolutely. Yeah. Well said. And the research on the gut right now is absolutely fascinating. And if you look at how emotions can hijack the functioning of the gut, it’s absolutely, it’s mind blowing how alarm sheds the alarm when we are alarmed, that sympathetic nervous reactions there, how the body is dumping out basically the food so that the energy can be used for solving the emotional problem, not for digestion. Digestion is always hijacked in favor of solving an emotional problem. The brain always goes to put all the energy into this emotional relational problem and gets rid of contents. We lose our hunger. Kids have stomachaches. They don’t digest the food you could eat, but you’re not digesting it. And so when you actually look at how nature wired us up together, we actually digest when we’re at rest. But then what is rest? It’s not just sitting about the table. It’s not just having a home cooked meal. It’s something more fundamental to human nature. It’s about human relationship and what does togetherness actually mean and what does it mean around food? We have so many people who subscribe to conscious parenting, attachment parenting, positive parenting, responsive parenting, whatever you might want to call it or see themselves as a developmentalist. But do you know that when it comes to translating that into food and feeding practices, it’s largely absent. It’s astounding. One of the most important acts of caretaking. This approach has not been translated into that.

Lorne Brown:

So what do you see? How does it show up that it’s absent? And then how does it look if you are purposely doing it?

Deborah Macnamara:

Well, I mean, paint a scenario that I think probably every one of us could relate to. You come home late, you wish you had more time with your kids. You may pick ’em up from daycare school, you’ve got a thousand things on your mind, work commitments, but you want to have a sit down family meal together. So you find a way to get beside each other. And then where’s your head? You’re preoccupied. The child isn’t eating. You just took time to make that. They’re food at each other. They’re jumping up and down. They’re restless, they’re not listening. And you look across at your partner and their head, they’re there, but it’s like this disembodied self because in their head they’re somewhere else or I don’t know, maybe that’s just what I see. But I hear this a lot from parents and then we’re like, eat your food.

It’s good for you. You’ll go blind if you don’t eat your carrots and we get into all this, your body needs food or otherwise you’re going to get sick. And so it’s alarm control resistance. That’s not relationship. But then if you talk to that parent, they’ll tell you, yeah, I just want to spend time with my kids. I want to have a nice nighttime routine. I tell them stories, I put them to bed, we cuddle, we have chats. And you’re like, that caretaking, that generosity has to go to everything we do. Feeding is one of the most central things we do. And so we have inherited practices around eating that are industrialized, that are based in nutrition and medical models, which nothing wrong with that. Nutrition is important. I want to do say that, but that becomes our focus. And behavioral principles eat outcomes, rewards, threats, bribes, punishments. And so my goodness, you lose your appetite in those

Lorne Brown:

Kind, right? Yeah.

Deborah Macnamara:

Environments.

Lorne Brown:

And so what’s kind of the important part that when you’re taking care of our kids, when it comes around food, and this is for those questions where you have picky eaters. So your parent, you have one or multiple children, there’s one that’s a picky eater. Now from the parents’ perspective, they’re, it’s a perspective. Their best intentions here, they’re concerned their child’s not getting enough vegetables. Let’s say the child hates vegetables or they’re not getting enough protein so they don’t eat meat or certain foods for protein, whatever it is, the parent is concerned that their child’s going to become malnourished. It’s only mac and cheese and you really want to push on them nutrition. So how do you address that considering that you’re saying we want relationship and relationship around food, but the parent has this belief that their child’s going to grow up incredibly malnourished because they can eat what you think they need to be eating. Because this to me is a scenario that was in my house, one of my kids. Well,

Deborah Macnamara:

Exactly. That was the question that I first asked Gordon Neufeld. When I tell the story, that was one of my questions of Gordon Neufeld in my consult with him when I was doing my postdoc with him was my child’s a picky eater. She has a very highly sensitive palette and nose, and so a chemical sensing system. And so everything was over the top, my other daughter. And so it was my own challenges with my picky eater and realizing I was creating an attachment problem because I was pushing. I was coercing, I was alarmed. And when you get alarmed as a caretaker, there’s nothing more, especially from personal level, when I feel alarmed, it’s very hard to lead from that place. How do you lead a child and take care of ’em if you’re in that place of worry, concern, frustration. And so the book starts with the story of this is how I came to this whole research is my daughter was a picky eater.

The very interesting thing about picky eating that I found is up to 50% of children between the ages of two to three would be deemed picky. Most common complaint brought into pediatricians and doctors and health professionals. But because we don’t understand how we become an eater, we’ve labeled this resistance or reluctance to try new things as a problem. That’s a behavioral viewpoint. If you actually take a step back, what you realize is that children are most receptive to eat, want to be, to try to feel comfortable exploring when they feel safe. And so when they feel attached to their caretakers, when the eating context is one of relationship and safety, what you find is that children are less reticent. They’re more interested in trying things, that the people that they’re attached to, children at the age of two and three are also incredibly autonomous. This push to autonomy, I do it myself, need do.

And so they want room. They go from being simply fed to becoming an eater. And we’re like, what do you mean you want your sandwich cut in quarters instead of how I’ve always cut them just because now they’ve got their own mind and you’re like, where did you come from? Well, I don’t like that anymore. You’re like, what? So you got to understand this is healthy development, that they want to have some autonomy around food. So how do we make it playful? How do we make it safe? And of course, there’s incredible shyness instincts here. So you’re only meant to eat the people you’re attached to. Human beings are omnivores, but we’re open-ended systems. So what closes it? Human connection. You want to be like the people that you’re attached to with food being part of it. So simply put, you say, oh, these blueberries are so I love these blueberries. Blueberries are my favorite things. I love eating them. You don’t say you eat the blueberries, you enjoy the blueberries. If your child attached to you and you love blueberries, they’re going to be curious about blueberries. How many of us feed our children different food or at different times when the adults aren’t even at the table.

Lorne Brown:

So to attach, what I’m hearing is you model for them rather than tell them you model. So it’s kind of like the parent that smokes or drinks, but tells your kids not to smoke or drink, grows up smoking, drinking, they’re going to model you, right? So they’re not listening to you. They’re not listening to you, they’re watching you, right?

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah. They want to be the same as people that they’re attached to. There was this really interesting study done down in Mexico of why is it that the two year olds don’t touch the chili peppers and all the hot spicy foods that the Mexican families would eat? And a researcher tracked that development and said something miraculous happens by the time the child is five and they all like hot peppers. What happened? We don’t know. But it happens around the table when they’re watching their family members eating hot peppers. And so the taste buds develop around the relationship.

Lorne Brown:

So maybe this is a good time to of this where we kind of jump into one of your original books, rest, play, grow, talking about how we attach and the science behind it. You guys have observed and documenting your writing in the research, how at there’s different ages and stages, things are changing. You brought up that sameness, which I know is one of the developmental stages. So when you say you’re a developmentalist, you’re following what’s happening naturally in the child’s development through ages. So can you share a little bit about how we attach and so we can be a little bit more intentional about it?

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah. That’s great. Well, over the first six years of life, there are six different ways that attachment can unfold. It’s never too late. You can be unfolding these different ways of attaching later on too. But in the first year of life, it’s all around senses. So touch, taste, smell, seeing, hearing, feeling. Babies know the smell of their loved ones. They know the sound of their loved ones right at birth, and they orient around smell, and we all have our own particular smells. By the time a child is one year of age, you hope that they’re starting to copy, become sharing the same characteristics of the people that they’re attached to between one and two. This is where they’re going to copy your words. So if you have any of those choice words, you don’t want them to learn best not to repeat them when they’re between one and two, language unfolds, they like the same colors, foods, whatever it is.

By the time they’re three, it’s all about belonging and loyalty, where they want to be. They possess fiercely the things that they’re attached to. If you put two, three-year-olds in a room around toys or possessions or people, they’ll fight over those things because it’s mine. And that’s a form of connection, right? This is mine. It’s a way of keeping it close. They’re also very loyal, will tell other people, that’s my mommy. That’s my daddy. This is what they say you should do. And again, that’s just a form of connection. Who are you loyal to? Who’s your people? That’s a form of identity that happens. And by the time they’re four, hopefully you see significance where they come to you and they want your eyes to light up. Look at me, look what I did, daddy, daddy, look what I did. And they’re just hungry for that praise. They’re hungry for that attention to say You matter. And of course, we want the mattering to be attached to who they are and not what they do.

Lorne Brown:

Sorry, we got to highlight that one.

Deborah Macnamara:

I just try to go right by that and I get asked questions.

Lorne Brown:

No, we got to because that will go right over their head. Because what we do, because we’re mostly raised by behaviors, is we praise them based on what they do, not who they are. Exactly. So do you want to say that one again? I think that is one of the big ones that we can do differently in our society.

Deborah Macnamara:

Absolutely. Well, I think I remember I said this to one of my kids the other day when they had blown it around something and I said, you are not more lovable to me when you are successful and you don’t matter less to me, when you make mistakes, it’s you. That matters. Not the sum total of either end of the spectrum here. And so this to me is the essence of unconditional, an unconditional invitation to exist in my presence. It’s one of the hardest things to do as a parent. And I think the times when we give it the most or display it the most is when our kids fail to meet expectations and we don’t withdraw the invitation for connection. And at age four, they are now aware and very much their self is being created around am I acceptable to the people that I want, that I’m attached to? And so if they’re only as good as their last performance, if they’re only as good as the last time they’ve met expectations, you can generate this form of pursuit, a kind of hunger. There’s no rest in a relationship that you have to work for. And so the invitation we want to give is you matter. My eyes light up because of you, not because of what you’ve done or haven’t done,

Lorne Brown:

And seeing your eyes light up. And you mentioned, because I remember in one of the Newfeld courses that I learned through Gila Glab, episode 10, everyone, if you’re interested in that one on the podcast, and I shared this in a story where one of my children was a poor sleeper poor in that they kept on coming and waking me up to sleep with them or to sleep with us. And I was never happy when he did that. And then I heard the story about when they see you, they should always see delight in their eyes that you’re so excited to see them. So when he woke me up, I would like, Hey buddy, I was exhausted. I wasn’t happy, but I would say, Hey buddy, what’s going on? I realize I’m impacting their whole nervous system and their developmental stages. So that part’s I thought was interesting that you say to really, even today when my child, I don’t do this as often as I think I would like to, but if I’m busy working, they started talking, I’m at the keyboard and every once in a while I have to remind myself to just stop, make eye contact.

And for those 30 seconds, he’s the only person in this room. He is so important. Let him know that I know that. And again, I’m getting better at it. I’m habituating to that. I often don’t do that. The rest part is really important because a lot of adults I see are exhausted so their and your child doesn’t get seen, and our children are exhausted. And so I think you said this, and it’s worth repeating that if they’re constantly the way you put it’s if they’re constantly having to perform or they’re only as good as their best performance, this is exhausting to kids to constantly have to get your approval. But what I believe I heard is if they know their existence is enough, they get to rest because they don’t always have to be performing or doing. So is that a good summary of what I

Deborah Macnamara:

Heard? Oh, it’s beautiful. Yeah, it’s beautiful. And tying that into the nervous system, because when you’re facing separation, I’m only as good as my last performance. That is a form of separation because you’re always on the hook to have to work for love. So you’re always facing separation. There’s going to be alarm, then the body is not at rest. You get agitation, you get restlessness, you can get some attention issues. You can have a harder time. Anxiety pops up at different time, and you’re like, why is this child so anxious? Why do they feel so insecure when they have so much here? And the reality is that parents unintentionally. And there’s a whole host of experts who tell you, praise your kids and reward them when they’re doing well. As Gordon Neufeld says, you’re not meant to work for love. You’re meant to rest in it. The more that you have to work for it, the more insecure you’re going to be. And I think one of the biggest challenges of the behavioral learning point of view is that it put our noses right into working for love. And that is the greatest tragedy of the behavioral model is that we had to work for connection. And if you could summarize it, that’s how I would summarize. The biggest problem with the behavioral approach is that it was always unconditional. It was always unconditional.

Lorne Brown:

Thank you. And so continue the stages. Oh, sure. Where are we at? Four H? Five? What?

Deborah Macnamara:

We’re going into five. One of my favorites, this is when I love you, mommy. I love you, daddy. And to them, love is often represented as marriage. Not always, but I’m going to marry you. I’m going to stay here forever. I’m never going to leave. And so the brain is basically opening up deeper forms of intimacy through deeper love and warmth and caring. They can also surprisingly become full of so much more missing. And I don’t leave. It’s so hard. I’m going to miss you. Because of course, the deeper the attachment, the more the missing comes in the wake of it when they can’t hold you close. So it’s an incredible stage if our kids could get to love what a difference it would be in their adult relationships as they take that in and know that kind of emotional intimacy. But there is also a deeper one and a one that helps us know each other when we become much more of a mystery to others.

We have a brain that can temper our thoughts, that can decide to keep secrets that doesn’t always share ourselves. And this is when the 6-year-old realizes and their brain has taken them to this place where they know that they basically can keep secrets. They are a secret. They have this bias now when they’re deeply attached by age six to share their secrets. They want to tell us what happened at school, but I promise I wouldn’t tell my friend, but I have to tell you this and why? Because the secret is the source of separation. And so the hardest thing in relationships with our kids, with our teens in our adult relationships is when there are secrets that we can’t be known by. If you seek to attach to someone at the deepest level of psychological intimacy, when there are secrets that serves as a divide.

And so nature has it that our most vulnerable form of a connection is through being known so that we only share our secrets in the context of togetherness. Because secrets could get hurt. You could get hurt a lot by sharing secrets with someone who didn’t have your best interests in mind. So you can get there later on, or you can get there at six, but the six-year-old might come home bursting to tell you what’s happened in the school day. And they’ll be like, oh, okay. The teacher might be like, oh, you heard all that? Yeah, yeah, yeah. Well, they seem really quiet at school. Oh yeah. Well, they got lots to say when they come home. Why? Because you’re the person they want to share and be known to. So it’s beautiful. It’s beautiful. It’s unfolding.

Lorne Brown:

So to witness this, for those that have been parents and those that are in it right now or those hopefully will have the opportunity to have children, I want to talk about a few milestones and just see where this fits in. So you said there’s a stage where they say, son wants to marry their mommy, right? And some people, no, no, no. Or I live with you forever. And they’re like, no, no, no. So that is a healthy form of developmental. So for people that are listening, when your child says they’re going to marry you and live with you forever, that’s a sign that they’re attaching them not to get panicked.

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah. I wouldn’t panic about it all, but I have had people panic. I had a dad say once to me, I need to see you. My daughter’s increasingly anxious. She keeps telling me she wants to get married. I tell her, I can’t marry you. That’s inappropriate. I’m married to your mother. I can’t marry you. And every time I do, she gets more upset and she keeps sort of following me and I’m like, she just wants to know that you love her. And so for her, love is represented as marriage, but not every child would even represent love’s marriage. It might be this deep connection. I just want to be close to you. I want to sit you. I want you to read me stories. You can feel them all. It’s like snuggle up to you. They just couldn’t. There’s no part of them. There’s no separation between your body parts. They just want to be like on you. They’ll smell you. There’s different ways to represent love in that sense of caring.

Lorne Brown:

What’s the language then for the mother or father when the child says, I love you, I want to marry you, or I want to live you forever. What’s the response to let the child know I see you. I love you. I got

Deborah Macnamara:

You. Well, yeah, and that’s such a beautiful question because that should be our yearning, isn’t it? It’s just our yearning is how do I bring my child to rest and the knowledge that I’m here and it’s deep? Well, first of all, you’ve got to give more than they’re asking. So you’d say love you. You could say lots of stuff, but you could say Love you. There’ll never be a day when you don’t feel that I love you or that I’m not with you. I think about you when you’re at school. I look forward to seeing you. You can do whatever you want. Come here. There’s my girl. There’s my boy. Of course this is forever. And I love what Gordon says. It’s beyond the grave. When I was doing this research for Nourished, I found this beautiful and tragic epitaph that an 8-year-old had written for her father in World War ii, and she was eight when her father passed away. And she said, death is not a barrier to love Daddy. Beautiful. That’s the invitation, right? That’s invitation. If we do it well, they shouldn’t feel separate from us. If you can attach at this place of love and being known, you are always attached. They’re always with you. They will talk to you whether you’re there or not.

Lorne Brown:

And this comes up. This brings me to a question that you said they’re always attached, and when they’re five, they’ll say, I want to live with you forever. What’s happened? The question is, can you over attach your child? And I think I heard Gordon talk about it, so I’m curious if you can elaborate, but I think he said there used to be, and I don’t know the word’s not coming to me, where when they become independent, when they want to leave, like

Deborah Macnamara:

Emergent energy

Lorne Brown:

Emergence, right? So he said it. It used to be common somewhere around that 14 plus or minus two years where they emerge, and it seems like that has been delayed by maybe a decade. We have 20 year olds in our houses that they’re like, I’ll never leaving here. Is it because they’re so comfortable and we do their laundry and we cook for them and they don’t pay rent? Or can we over attach? Will they emerge? That’s the question that I have by many people that are doing this work, saying, okay, I’ve done all this work and my child’s still living in my house and they’re 20.

Deborah Macnamara:

That’s right. Well, let’s just put it like it is. This is the terror and the alarm that somehow this is going to lead to a less independent child. I think whether our kids launch or not is not always just a developmental question. It’s a financial question. It’s a societal question. As a parent of two kids in university, they can’t launch not on their own, not because they’re not capable of taking care of themselves and knowing what they want, but they can’t afford to live.

Lorne Brown:

That’s a good point. So they just can’t pay rent, they just can’t do it.

Deborah Macnamara:

And they’re working for $20 an hour, and you realize the cost of living and what it actually requires, and then you realize how challenging it’s for families. So there’s a developmental question. Then there’s a societal, why do we have to tease those apart? What I would say to the people that are concerned that, and I get asked this all the time about attachment, is it possible to be too attached if we understand that attachment is the root of all growth and development. Attachment doesn’t enslave you. It frees you to grow. If you can rest in what is available to you as not being conditional, as being ever present, as being anchored and a foundation, then you don’t ever leave home. When you venture out, you’re always taking your home with you. It gives you freedom, it gives you security. It’s only a lack of attachment that imprisons you and holds you in place and doesn’t allow for that growth.

It’s interesting, when I did the research on nourished, I went to many places to look at food, and one of the places that I looked at was outer space and the care packages from home that would be sent up into outer space to take care of the astronauts psychologically, because the separation into outer space, the psychological issues of anxiety, of hallucinations, of panic, of all sorts of stuff can be quite common in astronauts, right? Because of the huge disconnection from family base, everything you’re floating around in space. And so they send up these care packages that represent home to them, and I thought, what is the difference here? The difference is, is that if you are tethered to home, you’re able to be an explorer, but if you’re not tethered to home, you can’t explore. You’re as gaba Matee writes, in the realm of hungry ghosts, you’re constantly seeking something to fill the hole. So attachment doesn’t imprison you, it frees you. It allows you to venture out, and it allows you to come back for care when you need it.

Lorne Brown:

It’s interesting because logically that seems so counterintuitive, but the research and what you are seeing clinically and life experiences, when people feel safe when they are at rest, they can explore and they can exactly. They can do these things. It’s quite interesting in the developmental stages, I think, was it around two? You said it was sameness? Yes. So is that why all the boys walk around in their parents, their mom’s high heels,

Deborah Macnamara:

The same thing? Oh, yes, we all see it, right? Or male polish if they have sisters, if they have sisters or they want to be like their mom. And yeah, I mean all identity at that age is all about who am I attached to and who do I want to be? Like you have a child who just barks because they’re attached to the dog or they talk like a figure that they have on tv or they talk like a friend or someone in the class or they imitate their teacher. And so they’ll take on many different manifestations and sameness of the people they’re attached to because they’re trying to figure out who they are. They’re trying things on for size.

Lorne Brown:

My wife has started listening to the podcast, so she’ll laugh at this, but the sameness stuff, and it was something witnessing my son do that actually snap me out of a certain unconscious behavior. I used to have a little bit of a temper tantrum and punch things or break things of trying to put it together, Ikea shoe rack, and next thing you know, I’ve been stepped on it. It’s in many pieces. And one day our son, young, maybe three and a half, four years old, had a temper tantrum breaking things, and I was horrified. And just because it was so unconscious, she goes, does he look familiar to you? And I was like, no, what are you talking about? She goes, you’re kidding me, right? I go, no. And she goes, look at him. You does this not look like what you do? And I’m like, that was pretty much the last of it.

Really. It woke me right up, and that was the last of me. I learned better ways to move through my frustrations and anger and to model it for my son in a very appropriate way. There’s the same, they don’t listen. They model. And so you can watch your kid’s behavior, and I use that when I see my children because I believe that as parents, we are regulating their nervous system more and more research. So if I’m not at rest, how can I expect my child to be at rest? And when your child’s not at rest as a parent, most of us it does. It makes us uncomfortable. That’s why we want our kids to be so okay because when they’re not okay, we don’t feel good.

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah, no, I mean certainly having to make room for our children’s emotions, it’s one of the greatest challenges as a parent is taking care of their emotional world while also having our own. In the last chapter of rest, play, grow, I write about how children grow us up as parents, and it’s that emotional load that we take on. One of the things that gives me a lot of hope and patience and for ourselves as parents is also understanding that nature didn’t leave us alone in this respect. When you are truly in a provider position, we have these instincts and emotions to take the lead, to be responsible, to be the one in charge, to get through the impasse. And when you actually feel the ignition of those provider instincts, and for me, it’s really easy if there’s a crisis or something. I mean, I just feel like I’m rock solid If there’s a crisis, just lean on me.

I know that I’ll have my emotions afterwards and I can just lead through whatever the storm is. My emotions at that time are being held at bay by those provider instincts. And that’s really critical I think to understand as parents, is that we’re not just going it alone here. If you truly see yourself as being the one responsible, the one that has to take care of something that your child depends upon you and needs you to show up in a particular way, your child’s being bullied. You don’t have many parents go into medical professional’s office and say, there’s something wrong with my child. The medical professional say, no, there isn’t. And they’ve done research that shows in an emergency room, your biggest mistake is not to trust the parents telling you. They have these provider instincts that are like, oftentimes we don’t even have words for it, but we know something’s not right.

I need to figure something out here. I have to be the lead. We oftentimes will fall apart after the crisis, and that’s when our emotions come back. So yes, when our kids are stirred up, yes, it will stir us up for sure. We also have these incredible provider instincts though, to help us in those situations to say, I got to lead through here. So if you can find them, if I had a secret to how you found them quickly, I would share it. I’m just sharing that they’re there. Really, you’re going to have to find it for yourself.

Lorne Brown:

And again, questions that were asked to me to ask, because I told people I was going to interview you, some of my patients, a question around sleep, and then I had a discussion with another therapist that I know, and we had a discussion, so I thought, I want you to chime in now. I subscribe to the idea that that sleeping with your kid can be beneficial for their development. And our kids didn’t have that. We were trained when my kids were young, we were told to get them out of your bed as quickly as possible. So that’s how we did it, the ferberizing method, regrettably, but that’s what we did. If I could do it over again, I would do it a little differently. And so the discussion was, well, you don’t want an exhausted parent, so at seven months it’s good to start sleep training your child, and if your child’s in your bed and because they’re in your bed the way the sleeping situation is, you can’t sleep as a parent.

You’re not of service to your child that you’re exhausted. So you want to sleep, train the child. And so there’s this discussion about whether your kid should sleep with you or not sleep with you. Safety issues. I will say right now that every child is different and parent’s different. So there is no, this is how you have to do it. But I just kind of wondered your thoughts on this. If somebody’s coming in and they have a child that doesn’t sleep well and the parent is exhausted, what kind of advice or direction can they go in with this?

Deborah Macnamara:

Well, this is a really critical issue because sleep is so important for functioning, and we know we don’t do well without sleep. And parenting is mentally and emotionally and physically exhausting sometimes. And so we do have to be well resourced. If someone comes in and they’re not sleeping and their child’s not sleeping, we’re in a bit of a crisis, first of all. So it’s better to catch it when it’s not as big. But when it is in a crisis, what’s most important is that we need to take care of the parent, and in doing so, take care of the child at the same time. There is no prescription. I think when people start saying, okay, well we have an exhaustive parent, so we have to sleep train. Well, that’s a really big knee-jerk reaction. It’s like if my daughter came in and said, well, I have a headache.

I’m like, well, have you had water? Have you been out in the sun too long? Do you need some food? What do you need? What is driving this issue? And everything needs to start going to make sense of, okay, what is in the context of this family that we can get some good rest? Is the parent alarmed? Is the parent stretched? Does the parent have support? Who do we have as a baby? Does a baby need to be touched? Are they breastfeeding all night long? What is going on here? What if sleep issues weren’t about sleep, but about human connection? How do we solve that problem of human connection at night? One of the projects I’m working on right now with Gordon is actually around how we do this initial dance of disconnection at nighttime and the role of attachment, the role of play, and the role of the lullaby.

And so we’re actually writing a project, writing a book on the wisdom of the lullaby and how this was nature’s ancient way of helping us slide into sleep. What if we set parents up for success? What if we brought back a lullaby? What if we brought back some play? What if we found a way to have connection at night so that a parent could sleep and a child could feel safe and in contact and closeness with their parent through senses smelling, seeing maybe it’s in the same room, maybe it’s not in the same room, but we don’t need to go to this knee-jerk reaction of, well, we have to do the cried out method, then that’s a sacrificial play. And I would say, we need to try some things. We need to work with what we’ve got. We need to look at the whole pieces and try to say, well, how do we start changing some things?

How I did sleep with each of my kids was very different. I couldn’t sleep with them in a bed with me. I couldn’t sleep. I was too alarmed, but I could sleep with them beside me. And that worked, right? One was a little bit harder, one was a little bit easier, one needed to be touched and one didn’t need to be touched. One needed to suckle and breastfed to sleep, but she was fine. The other one needed to be touched. So part of it is also honoring parents’ understanding of their child and supporting them through that. But I think the problem is, is we said, well, if the parent’s exhausted, then we have to sleep, train. Hold on a second. Let’s have a conversation. Let’s try to make sense of this, first of all, and let’s work with what we have and with the parents’ desires, with the parents’ interests with what the parent has in terms of resources.

Lorne Brown:

And we’ll add that you’re not going to solve it in one night or by listening to this podcast, so seek out the help like somebody like Deborah to give you the tools and do this over a period of time. So mom gets to survive and baby gets to thrive. Yeah, exactly. Do both. I want to circle back here as we’re getting close to our time together, undernourished and I don’t know if we really talked about this, so I thought it’s worth to repeat it anyhow, just how you’re suggesting then we tackle food issues like picky eating and other food problems. If you kind of want to review that from your book’s perspective.

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah. Well, I think to put it in a nutshell is the idea that we need to eat together is actually backwards. We need to first gather and then eat. And so if we put our energy into that relationship into creating contexts that are relationally safe, where the focus is on play or enjoyment on being together, food doesn’t get in the way of that togetherness. We’re not focused on how much they eat, what they eat, that we’re making meal times or any kind of delivery of food as a place of connection, that we create a place of rest, that we have some rituals around how we do this and that. We don’t get so caught up on, is my child eating? Are they eating the right things? If you step back and you focus on relationship, you are going to create more receptivity to what you offer them.

If you have more relationship, you have more receptivity and you have more dependence, your child is more dependent upon you to take care of ’em. You can have the best bedtime ritual in the world. If your child isn’t dependent upon you and isn’t connected to you, they’re not going to follow you. It’s the same with food. They’ll follow you to the table, they’ll follow you to the peas and carrots. It might take them a while to like it. They might squish it, play with it, make it enjoyable, make it about connection repeated. Remember, each of our kids are different with their tactile and their auditory sensitivities, but food is, we have a bias to eat. We have a bias for relationship. Just put them together. When it comes to feeding and eating,

Lorne Brown:

You talk about that tactile sensation. My child that the sensitive tactile sensations didn’t like certain fillings of clothes. I remember we wanted to be healthier, so we made hot dogs and tofu dogs, and he wouldn’t eat the tofu dogs. So we made both and then chopped them, mixed them up. He put in his mouth mouthy clothes. You could see things going on with his tongue. And then at the very end, just the tofu ones are there and he’d spit them out. We did the same thing putting tuna inside his mac and cheese. He, next thing we know, tongue pretzels, his tug will be out and he spit out just the tuna.

Deborah Macnamara:

So the good news is he has his own mind. Yeah.

Lorne Brown:

Now he is a grownup, but he eats much better. But that was, we were trying to get him to eat that way. Exactly. This has been really interesting for me and for our listeners, here’s the kind of last question I have. I have teenagers. I have older teenagers, and I know people have kids in their twenties. What about those that are listening? I didn’t know this from age zero to six, can I still make a difference? Is it too late?

Deborah Macnamara:

No. No, it’s never too late. It’s never too late to they lower you in the grave and be working on relationship and human connection. It’s their greatest hunger. It really just comes down to having that warmth and desire in your heart to connect with somebody and to invite them to rest in your care and figuring out what that might look like. Try some things. Are there activities that you enjoy together? Are there things that you’re the same on connect on those places of sameness. Is there a particular food item you could make for them? Surprise them with things that you know are important to them. I thought of you, I, whatever. And it’s this constant invitation to say, I’m here. Even though your teenager might disappear a little bit inside their thoughts, be less transparent perhaps because they’re trying to figure out who they are.

Maybe the draw of their peers is very loud. Maybe they’re trying to figure that out. But how do you, hold on. How do you hold on? How do you hold on? Do you have faith? That relationship is important. How do you continue just to make those overtures to someone to say, I am here. I am here. I am here. It’s like Horton. Here’s a who, right? Isn’t that Dr. Seuss? Oh, a little. I am here. We’re here, we’re here, we’re here. And it’s just this beautiful perseverance and this faith that this will deliver the fruit. There’s nothing else that will, and so I’d say, hold on. And sometimes it is hard, sometimes it’s hard to connect with our kids and sometimes really hard things happen to us and we can feel very lost as a parent. And I’d say go back to the basics. Go back to the relationship.

Go back to finding a way to open up a window and just poke your head in and say, I’m here. We’ll get through this. And that relationship is for life. It’s no small task to raise a child today and to continue this invitation for the longterm. And as I realize today, as we get through our teenage years, we then have an adult child, an adult who was our child, and now we develop an adult relationship with our children that are grown and that relationship can conceivably be longer than the one that we raised them like 18, 19 years. We can have that length of time with them as adults. So we’re going to be doing this for a while.

Lorne Brown:

And you know what you shared though is it’s never too late. And when you make that shift, your child who’s an adult, can start to rest. And I know when I am studying with Gila, Gila, Gola, she says, when you heal your heart and mind, your whole family system heals, including your children. And I work with women and men, but mainly women come to see me. Some men do just the typical culture of men not seeking out at support. And they have shared that as they do the conscious work that we do in my practice, that they’re making the shift, they’re shifting, they’re working on themselves, they’re healing their heart and mind, they’re healing their inner child, and then they’re noticing incredible behavior changes in their children where children wouldn’t sleep on their own. They’re now wanting sleep on their own, inviting their parents to come to certain activities.

They’re just seeing their child at rest and they’re not doing well. They’re being different. So their child’s behavior has changed because of how their parents are more at rest. And I do get that when your nervous system shifts, you’re the broadcaster, the parent. I think the kids pick up on this, and we’re learning more about this in research that they are picking up on our nervous system or on our autonomic nervous system. That’s what you see in your practice when it’s not so much the kids you’re working with, it’s the parents you’re working with, right?

Deborah Macnamara:

Yeah. I work primarily with the parents. I mean, I used to work more in an adolescent practice as well, but much more with parents these days. Yes. I would say that definitely well put, Lorne, is that of course you change the emotions that are in your relationship. You change your emotions, you work with grieve, find your way through what it is that’s held you stuck and you offer a different invitation, then your children will be hopefully receptive to that. What I would say for if there is anyone where you are really struggling with someone who may be an adult child who has an addiction or is down a path that’s really difficult and you can’t always exert change. I think about some of the parents with kids with eating disorders, which is a really hard journey as a parent. And I always come back to this when I’m walking alongside parents who are courageous in the face of so many things they can’t change is just the wisdom that Gordon had said once, which is caring about someone may not change them, but it will surely change you. And so it comes back to the self again. It comes back to our relationship with ourself. And so if we can keep our heart warm, if we can keep the invitation there, then we will also be better off for that and not turning our back or our heart against someone that we do seek to have a relationship with. And we may have to decide how we do that relationship to.

Lorne Brown:

Right. So Debra, I want to thank you and I’m going to give you all some directions on where you can learn more about this, including more to find out about Debra. First, I want to mention that her latest book at the time of this recording is Nourished Connection, food and Caring for Our Kids and everyone Else We love. She also has the story playing, and the other book is Rest, play, grow, making Sense of Preschoolers. So check out all of her books. Also, if you’re interested in this attachment idea on our podcast we have episode 10 was Gila. You deserve to have it all, I think is the title. Episode 48, we had the Nest Le Point. Episode 50 is Gordon Neufeld, who, Deborah, you’ve referenced many times. And then here we have Deborah. So there’s a couple of episodes that I invite you to listen to more than once because there’s lots of pearls in this episode and the other ones before. And then to connect and learn more about Deborah, we’ll put ’em in the show notes. But her website is deborah mcnamara.com. She’s on Facebook as well under Dr. Debra, sorry, DR Debra McNamara. She’s on Instagram as well, and she’s on Pininterest. And we’ll put that all in the show notes. De thank you so much for accepting my invitation and for sharing some of your clinical wisdom and for writing these books. I really appreciate it.

Deborah Macnamara:

Thank you so much for having me, Lorne. All the best.

Speaker:

If you’re looking for support to grow your Family contact Acubalance Wellness Center at Acubalance. They help you reach your peak fertility potential through their integrative approach using low level laser therapy, fertility, acupuncture, and naturopathic medicine. Download the Acubalance Fertility Diet and Dr. Brown’s video for mastering manifestation and clearing subconscious blocks. Go to Acubalance.ca. That’s a CU balance. Do ca.

Lorne Brown:

Thank you so much for tuning into another episode of Conscious Fertility, the show that helps you receive life on purpose. Please take a moment to subscribe to the show and join the community of women and men on their path to peak fertility and choosing to live consciously on purpose. I would love to continue this conversation with you, so please direct message me on Instagram at Lorne Brown official. That’s Instagram, Lorne Brown official, or you can visit my websites Lorne brown.com and accu balance.ca. Until the next episode, stay curious and for a few moments, bring your awareness to your heart center and breathe.

 

Dr. Deborah MacNamara

Dr. Deborah MacNamara

Deborah MacNamara, PhD, is a counselor and educator, author of the books Nourished: Connection, Food, and Caring for our Kids (and everyone else we love) (2023), The Sorry Plane (2019) and Rest, Play, Grow Making Sense of Preschoolers (or anyone who acts like one) (2016). She is on faculty at the Neufeld Institute and the director of Kid’s Best Bet Counseling. She regularly makes sense of kids to the adults responsible for them through presentations and consultations.

 

 

Where To Find Deborah MacNamara

 

Website: deborahmacnamara.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/drdeborahmacnamara/

Instagram: @drdeborahmacnamara

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.ca/drdeborahmacnamara/

Hosts & Guests

Lorne Brown
Deborah MacNamara

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