ADELE ALLEN: A lot of people think when the
milk teeth come through, you should stop breastfeeding. All it comes down to is the, the mother and
the child. It should be a mutual decision
between both of them.
ADELE ALLEN: Off-grid parenting is moving
towards self-sustainability and being a bit
more free-range, less institutionalised.
COMM: The Allen family adopts an all-natural
approach to every aspect of parenting.
ADELE ALLEN: When I fell pregnant, I very
much felt I didn’t want any medical intervention,
and so for me the only way to achieve that
was to step out of the system.
MATT ALLEN: We did receive some very interesting
messages such as, “What if your choices
end up in your child being born dead?” Which,
then obviously added to our own stress. Well,
I was convinced in trusting Adele, I trusted
that she just knew her body and that she knew
her mind and that she, she wouldn’t do anything
to jeopardise it.
ADELE ALLEN: ‘Lotus birth’ is basically
you don’t cut the cord so you, you let it
naturally fall away, and then you kind of
wrap it up and treat it with salt and keep
it clean. For both of my births it took six
days to fall away naturally.
COMM: Perhaps controversially, Adele and Matt
had decided not to inoculate either of their
ADELE ALLEN: I don’t see there is any need
to start injecting foreign substances. The
kids’ health is just as important as mine.
If I had something serious like cancer or
such, I would definitely take the natural
path. Breast milk can be used for conjunctivitis
or eye infections. It’s, it’s a sterile
substance obviously, it’s coming right out
of the body and it’s at the perfect temperature
of all the living enzymes.
COMM: Adele breastfeeds both of her children,
Ulysses, aged 5 and Ostara, who is 1.
ADELE ALLEN: A lot of people think when the
milk teeth come through, you should stop breastfeeding,
and I really think it all comes down to is,
is the, the, the mother and the child. It
should be a mutual decision between both of
them. It’s something, which is just as natural
as a hug. It’s, it’s a connection.
COMM: Adele has some strong views about stricter parenting styles.
ADELE ALLEN: Traditional parenting methods,
I guess, rubbed me up the wrong way, see,
the cry out method for young babies. Okay,
we’re humans, domesticated, we live in houses
but the, the baby has still got that in their
DNA from when they used to be a hunter-gatherer,
you know, their ancestors, and they need to
feel safe. It’s highly dangerous and in
my opinion it does constitute a form of neglect
and child abuse.
COMM: The family is used to criticism of their parenting method.
MATT ALLEN: I was walking with Ostara outside
the shop and, and she’s barefoot and it’s,
it’s a local shop on a main road and so
yeah there is, there is dirt, there is the
potential for glass and for hazards and, and
so a gentleman noticed this and said, “You
do realise your daughter is not wearing any
shoes?” And all I turned around and simply
replied is “It’s the greatest way for
her to feel life. To interact with life, to
get a feeling of the sensation beneath her feet.”
COMM: The parents home-school Ulysses from
their one-bed flat in Brighton.
ADELE ALLEN: So we all sleep in the same room
and it works out quite nice for us. And Ulysses
pretty much picks his own bedtime really,
but as we don’t have a school routine in
the morning, he’s able to then wake up when
it suits him as well.
ADELE ALLEN: We feel we’d like them to,
to learn in a natural, free-range way. It’s
basically taking a lead from the child’s
interests and seeing what they gravitate towards.
Because home-schooling kids, they tend to
pick up reading and writing in their own pace
at a bit later age. I don’t have an issue
with that. There’s no need for him to be
able to read and write at this age anyway.
ADELE ALLEN: So these are a few examples of
things that Ulysses has access to as part
of his home education. This is an arts and
craft box with paints and collages and, and
glue and all sorts. And he really just comes
and uses it as he pleases.
ADELE ALLEN: It’s much more important to
us than the big set of plastic toys to, for
them to be interacting with the animals and
the plants and, and learning about the environment
ADELE ALLEN: I think this style of parenting
is definitely increasing in popularity with
a lot of celebrities now integrating aspects
of ‘attachment parenting’ into their lifestyle
and bringing it to the forefront in the media.
MATT ALLEN: They have fun, they smile, they
laugh, I smile, I laugh and, for me is building
a bond of trust.