Bonding is the forming of an emotionally positive and mutually satisfying relationship between babies and those who provide care for them (usually mothers). This relationship is important for the baby to be mentally and developmentally healthy. The tendency of the baby to be close to certain people and feel safer next to them starts at infancy and is a process that lasts for life.

The formation of a healthy and secure bonding relationship with the mother during infancy is extremely important from a personality development point of view. The baby’s need for bonding is related to his/her search for uninterrupted help and support in circumstances where he/she is insecure, helpless and dependent such as pain, hunger or a stranger approaching. The fundamental closeness and feeling of trust that should be between the baby and the mother is only established when the mother responds without delay and consistently to the baby’s demands/pleas with this expectation. Thus, sensing that he/she is a precious being to be protected and paid attention to, and via this closeness, believing that the mother will be close and tend to his/her needs at any time, the baby feels secure.

This closeness serves as a “secure base” or a “strong shelter” for the baby to use while discovering the surroundings. In this way, the baby can take the first steps in becoming a self-sufficient, independent individual. Via the security and closeness supplied by the mother, the baby believes he/she can trust not only the mother but also everyone in his/her surroundings, and are inclined to discover the world with a sense of security. The success in developing a secure bonding relationship with more than one person within the first years after birth gives the baby the capacity to develop close relationships in adulthood in future years.