“There are many things that can be done to prevent suicide, the very best thing is to ensure a child does not become suicidal in the first place. Research clearly shows that if a child grows up in a loving and stable home then their chances of becoming suicidal are dramatically reduced, although not eliminated”


Proverbs 1:33 “but whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm.”

Research shows that early attachment, from the moment a child is born gives a child the absolute best chances in life. Secure attachment depends upon the parent meeting three conditions so that the child knows:

  1. I’m safe
  2. I can trust my parent
  3. I can express myself

Ultimately, attachment requires a proper balance between structure and nurture. If your child needs structure (form, order, rules) and you instead give her nurture (comfort, nourishment, compassion), you limit her growth. If a child needs nurture but you give her structure, you limit her trust. All of these elements are essential to the formation of a lasting parent-child relationship.

One of the most important things a child can have to grow up with a secure attachment is loving human touch. We live in a world that tries to minimise the physical contact children have with adults, but loving touch such as appropriate hugs are vital to positive child development. See Montagu, A. (1972). Touching, the human significance of the skin.

A child forms attachment by an adult spending loving time with the child, when they are young this can involve reading stories and playing games. The more face to face interaction a child has with their family the more secure they will grow up. When a child falls over and hurts themselves they will form a secure attachment if a parent goes over and comforts them.

For a child to grow they also need safe challenges that they can learn on their own, such as going to the park by themselves when they are old enough.

The book Free to Learn by Peter Grey talks about the importance of giving children free play so they can become resilient adults.


Children don’t just need secure attachment in infancy they need it for their whole lives. Although a parent of a teenager may not play games with their children, they should hav regular meals together and try and make time to form a stable and positive bond with their children. The teenage and young adult years are really difficult, your children still need their families are this age.

A good book to learn more about attachments is The Power of Showing Up by Daniel J. Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson.