And you’re always telling them to stop!
And you’re always telling them to stop!
With a single child households on the rise, it’s time everyone got on board with what onlies and parents of onlies already know: Only children may grow up differently, but they’re just as awesome. I put together this list of comments that I really don’t like to be asked or say.
First of all, there’s a difference between being alone and being lonely. I can say that only children are actually less likely to feel lonely because they have more experience being alone. We’re comfortable hanging out with ourselves and often have rich inner lives. That said, it’s important to make sure only children have lots of opportunities to play with other kids, so if you’re really concerned about the sibling-free boy down the street, I’m sure his parents would be happy to send him over for a play date.
While this technically may be true, there’s no guarantee that the children in a bigger family will share the work of caring for a parent, anyway. We have all heard about families where one sibling becomes the de fact of caretaker, whether he or she wants to or not. This is a situation that’s impossible to predict, so it’s just hurtful to make someone feel guilty for it.
Well, yes and no. Yes, parents of only children don’t have to referee sibling fights, fill out school forms in triplicate, or spend nearly a decade changing diapers. But some of us made that choice because we know that we would have trouble managing a bigger family. When other parents start complaining about the stress of having multiple kids, I resist the urge to remind them that they chose to have a bigger family.
Several parents told me they’d heard variations of this hurtful line, as if only-child moms “fall somewhere between a mother and an aunt on the challenge and commitment spectrum,” as a friend described it. We may have “just” one, but we have the important job of protecting and nurturing that life and feel all the same fears, worries, and boundless love other parents feel.
Trust me; parents of only children have internalized this stereotype so deeply that most of us are hyper-vigilant about not “spoiling” our kids. Even so, it’s a given that an only child is going to get more focused attention from his parents. Research shows this is a positive in terms of self-esteem, achievement, and even intelligence.
Does anybody know me or know my situation or the reasons for not to have another baby? That is another topic.
First of all, there is nothing wrong with being shy or introverted. The shy, withdrawn only-child stereotype is so pervasive that for a long time people believed is true, that is another topic.
That’s a loaded complement if I’ve ever heard one. All kids have selfish and bratty moments, but only children are more quickly defined by these labels than kids from bigger families. Conversely, some people see an only child who actually has empathy and social skills as a rare unicorn. The reality is that all kids are in the process of acquiring these skills and should be allowed some mistakes as they grow.
Well, yes, I’ll be a little disappointed if I never experience being a grandparent, but having more than one child just to ensure it happens doesn’t seem like the smartest gamble. Plenty of people never have kids. I want my child to grow up to be happy with his choices, not with pressure to make me a grandmother.
Variations include “Just one?” and “Don’t you want one of each?” I especially like this sneaky one from the grandparents: “Our friends are asking us if you’re having another baby.” It should go without saying, but these are very personal questions. Some people will be happy to respond that they’re “one and done,” but others may have painful reasons behind their family size—money troubles, marriage problems, medical conditions.
I love my child dearly, but I try hard not to give in to him every whim and want, and that includes creating another human being for him to play with. There is no guarantee that siblings will be friends. I felt completely identified in this article Follow my blog for more informative and interesting articles about parenting and motherhood’s experiences.
Here are a few easy tricks to make your child smile.
Frustrated by your picky eaters? A new study says pressuring them to try something new (or to eat just three more bites!) doesn’t help.
Your picky eater comes to the table, takes one bite, and announces she’s done. Or declares that she now hates her formerly-favorite dinner. It’s frustrating—and enough to make you resort to pleading, bribery, or demands to eat more. After all, it’s your instinct as a parent to nourish your children. And when it seems like they’re not eating enough, you worry that they won’t grow well (and will never eat anything beyond buttered pasta and chicken nuggets!).
But according to a new study, pressuring kids to eat doesn’t do much good. Researchers at the University of Michigan found that when parents pressured their toddlers at mealtime, it didn’t affect their growth one way or another and had no impact on how picky they were a year later.
“The fact that we did not find a link between pressuring in feeding and future picky eating suggests either that picky eating is not especially changeable, just like it’s hard to eliminate shyness in a shy child, or that reducing picky eating needs a different approach than just pressuring,” says researcher Julie Lumeng, M.D., a professor of pediatrics at University of Michigan.
That’s not to say that pressuring kids to eat is necessarily harmless either. “Pressuring in feeding can be considered controlling or intrusive, and we know from decades of research that controlling and intrusive parenting is not valuable for child well-being,” she says.
Mealtime pressure can also worsen a child’s eating habits over time, warns pediatric dietitian Natalia Stasenko. That’s especially true if there are underlying reasons for a child’s hesitation to eat, such as anxiety or oral motor problems. Even if a child’s finicky habits are more garden-variety, pressure can negatively impact how a child feels about food and eating in general, she says.
What’s more, though this particular study didn’t show that pressure led to more weight gain, those tactics could contribute to a higher obesity risk as your child gets older. That’s because pressuring kids to eat when they don’t want to interferes with their ability to self-regulate (knowing when they’re hungry and when they’re full). Toddlers are typically good regulators, but that natural sense tends to diminish by age 4 or 5, says Stasenko. “The study wasn’t long enough to study the effects of mealtime pressure on the ability to self-regulate and its relationship to obesity,” she notes.
Since it’s natural to be concerned about picky eating and how it might affect your child’s habits in the long term, what can you do? Lumeng says children are more likely to try a new food if they see others eating and enjoying that food—especially if it’s another child like a sibling or classmate. A “one bite rule” may help some children grow to like and accept new foods. Pairing a disliked foods with a liked food (like a new veggie with ranch dressing or ketchup) is a reasonable approach too, she adds.
Remember that experiencing a food without eating it is part of the process too, says Stasenko. “In order to try a new food, kids need to go through multiple levels of experiencing it in a pressure-free way, starting from seeing it multiple times, having a chance to interact with it, seeing other people eat it, touching it, smelling it, tasting it and finally eating it,” she says. “All kids progress through these steps at their own speed.”
Sally Kuzemchak, MS, RD, is a registered dietitian, educator, and mom of two who blogs at Real Mom Nutrition. She is the author of the forthcoming book The 101 Healthiest Foods For Kids. She also collaborated with Cooking Light on Dinnertime Survival Guide, a cookbook for busy families. You can follow her on Facebook Twitter Pinterest, and Instagram. In her spare time, she loads and unloads the dishwasher. Then load
What happens in the early years of a person’s life has a profound effect on how they fare later on. Thousands of research papers – many of them using the rich data in the British Birth Cohort studies – have shown that children who get a poor start in life are much more likely to experience difficulties as adults; whether that’s to do with poor health, or their ability to enjoy work and family life.
Ensuring that children get enough sleep is one of a number of ways to get them off to the best possible start in life. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that toddlers should get roughly 11 to 14 hours of sleep every day. For children aged three to five years, the recommendation is ten to 13 hours, or nine to 11 hours for children once they’re at primary school.
But the latest research carried out by our team at UCL’s International Centre for Lifecourse Studies, shows that it’s not just the amount of sleep a child gets which matters. After digging into the data from the Millennium Cohort Study (MCS) – which has followed the lives of some 20,000 children since the turn of the century – we found that having a regular bedtime also affects how they get on at home and at school, throughout the first decade of their lives.
The ‘jet lag’ effect:
To begin with, we looked at the relationship between regular and irregular bedtimes, and how the children got on in a range of cognitive tests. Parents who took part in the MCS were asked whether their children went to bed at a regular time on weekdays. Those who answered “always” or “usually” were put in the regular bedtime group, while those who answered “sometimes” or “never” were put in the irregular bedtime group.
The results were striking. Children with irregular bedtimes had lower scores on maths, reading and spatial awareness tests. In fact, the time that children went to bed had little or no effect on their basic number skills, or their ability to work with shapes. But having no set bedtime was linked to lower scores, especially for three-year-olds. The greatest dip in test results was seen in girls who had no set bedtime at their early life.
At the heart of this phenomenon is the circadian rhythm – the internal body clock, which tells you when it’s time to sleep and wake up.
If I travel from London to New York, I’m likely to be slightly ragged when I arrive, because jet lag is going to affect my cognitive abilities, appetite and emotions. If I bring one of my children with me, and I want them to do well at a maths test having just jumped across time zones, they will struggle even more than I will. If we think of the body is an instrument, then a child’s body is more prone to getting out of tune.
The same thing happens when children go to bed at 8pm one night, 10pm the next and 7pm another . Scientists sometimes call this the “social jet lag effect”. Without ever getting on a plane, a child’s bodily systems get shuffled through different time zones, and their circadian rhythms and hormonal systems take a hit as a result.
As well as enhancing a child’s intellectual development, we found that regular bedtimes can also improve their behaviour.
At age seven, according to parents and teachers, children in the MCS who had irregular bedtimes were considerably more likely to have behavioural problems than their peers who had a regular bedtime. The more frequently a child had been able to go to bed at different times each night, the worse his or her behavioural problems were. In other words, the effects appeared to accumulate throughout childhood.
But we did find an important piece of good news,too: those negative effects on behaviour appeared to be reversible. Children who switched to having a regular bedtime showed improvements in their behaviour. This shows that it’s never too late to help children back onto a positive path, and a small change could make a big difference to how well they get on.
But of course, the reverse was also true: the behaviour of children who switched from a regular to an irregular bedtime got worse.
A weighty problem:
In a follow-up study, which looked at the impact of routines (including bedtimes) on obesity, we reported that children with irregular bedtimes were more likely to be overweight, and have lower self-esteem and satisfaction with their bodies.
In fact, of all the routines we studied, an inconsistent bedtime was most strongly associated with the risk of obesity. This supports other recent findings, which show that young children who skipped breakfast and went to bed at irregular times were more likely to be obese at age 11. Even children who “usually” had a regular bedtime were 20% more likely to be obese than those who “always” went to bed at around the same time.
Clearly, the evidence shows that a regular bedtime really matters when it comes to children’s health and development, throughout that crucial first decade of their lives. Including these findings alongside recommended hours of sleep in advice for all those caring for young children could make a real difference, by helping protect children from “social jet lag” and getting them off to a flying start instead.
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Before becoming a parent, I probably could have come up with a pretty decent list of things that annoyed me. Things like people chewing with their mouths open and slow drivers in the fast lane mostly just the obvious offenders that annoy most other people too. But since become a parent? Well, let’s just say that the list of annoyances has grown exponentially, though most of the things that make the list are things that would’ve been no big deal in the pre-parent days. Here are lists of things that have become annoying since becoming a parent.
1. The UPS guy who rings the doorbell
Pre-kids, the UPS guy ringing my doorbell was a neutral event in my day. Actually, it was probably an enjoyable event in my day; because it meant some fun item or another awaited me in a package. Now I sort of want to punch the UPS guy (or anyone for that matter) who dares to ring my door bell and wake my baby from his nap.
2. The fact that Costco doesn’t open until 10:00 AM
Before parenthood, I rarely tackled errands before 10:00 AM—because, sleeping in on Saturdays. But now? 10:00 AM rolls around and I’ve probably been up for four hours. I mean, seriously? The day is halfway over by 10:00, Costco. The parents of this nation need economy size boxes of baby wipes and 3-packs of milk and we need it before 10:00 AM. Perhaps I should start a petition.
3. The chatty checker at the grocery store
OK, this was a little annoying before kids as well, but after kids it’s on another level. I’m sorry chatty checker, I really don’t want to hear your life story and I definitely don’t want to tell you mine while my kid is making a mess. I don’t even care. Not even a little bit.
4. Any and all lines
Waiting in lines is never a super fun task for anyone, but it had always just been a part of life. But waiting in lines with kids can be downright hellish. And waiting in line behind someone whose club card isn’t working or who can’t find a coupon while my kid is crying doing even get me started.
5.People who get offended by public breastfeeding
Before becoming a parent, I recognized that some people just don’t feel comfortable with breastfeeding in public. Even though I found it silly, it didn’t annoy me really. After becoming a parent, the ridiculousness of taking offense to breastfeeding annoys me to no end. Seriously people, you’ll see more cleavage walking past Victoria’s Secret on your mall walk then you’ll see while someone is feeding their baby. Get over it.
6.People who talk about their pets incessantly like they are their babies
I’ve never been a super huge animal person, but if other people want to compare and treat kids as a pet and talk about them as such who am I to resent them? Well, after having kids, I find the behavior a lot more annoying. And please do not compare your animal to my child. Totally not the same.
7.Phone calls over text
Talking on the phone is not my jam, but if I had information to communicate I had always been more than happy to give a quick phone call. Now, I basically send all phone calls straight to voicemail. I pretty much would like everyone I know to ask them before calling me: “Is this information that could be conveyed via a text message?” If the answer is yes, then please send a text. It will be much more pleasant for both of us to not have to carry on a conversation while my children yell in the background.
I suppose the reason I never real took issue with glitter before having children is because I didn’t really have to encounter it very often in my daily life. In the adult world, very few things are festooned with glitter for glitter’s sake. Unfortunately I have learned that in the world of children glitter is on EVERYTHING. Literally everything. And subsequently it is all over my house as well. Glitter is most definitely the herpes of craft supplies and I wouldn’t be particularly sad if it no longer existed.
I identify myself on this POST ! Life changed drastically after having kids, I hope you identify also on this post from my blog about Things that become annoying after having kids
Here are a few easy tricks to make your child smile.
You think you have mastered the English language. You’re sure you know the meaning of these commonly used words, right? But then you have kids. And you realize that these words you thought you knew take on a whole new definition once you become a parent. Here are 11 words that you’ve had to relearn since having kids, with brand-spanking-new definitions.
Pre-Kid Definition: Feeling sleepy
Post-Kid Definition: EXHAUUUUSTED. Frickin’ BEAT! A condition usually brought on by severe lack of sleep which happens night after night with no recovery. Every muscle in your body aches. You feel like you just competed in two Iron Mans back to back. Your eyeballs burn. SO, SHUT UP, PRE-KID DEFINITION!
Pre-Kid Definition: An entire nighttime period spent partying and having fun. No sleep is experienced because one is too busy drinking, dancing and being free. Being so free and alive. So free …
Post-Kid Definition: An entire nighttime period spent up with your baby or toddler who is crying incessantly and won’t go back down in her mother-‘effing crib. Like, she won’t stop crying and it’s making your face melt. And this goes on all night long.
Pre-Kid Definition: Doing something with swiftness, efficiency, in a short amount of time.
Post-Kid Definiton: Leaving the house before noon. Or getting out of the grocery store in less than 2 hours.
Pre-Kid Definition: Trousers or nicely ironed slacks or skinny jeans
Post-Kid Definition: As in, yoga
Pre-Kid Definition: Going to a restaurant and enjoying a leisurely meal wherein you eat and possibly have a glass or two of wine while you talk about world issues and/or the latest episode of RHOBH.
Post-Kid Definition: Going to a restaurant with the hopes of getting food in your belly before you a) either leave voluntarily with ranch dressing across your shirt and tears in your eyes, or b) are kindly asked to leave by the restaurant manager after more than 3 surrounding tables complain about the croutons flying from the circus happening at your table.
Pre-Kid Definition: A brief episode of sleep, usually taken mid-day to rejuvenate and reenergize. Perhaps taken in a hammock after just a few beers or a delicious, slowly eaten meal.
Post-Kid Definition: Something that is a daily struggle to get your baby or toddler to do; something that doesn’t exist for you anymore, honey.
Pre-Kid Definition: Trousers or nicely ironed slacks or skinny jeans
Post-Kid Definition: As in, yoga
Pre-Kid Definition: Hot, torrid and potentially spur-of-the-moment boot-knocking that happens often and anywhere
Post-Kid Definition: A major event. Likely put on the calendar. To occur in your bedroom, done quietly as to not disturb young housemates, in an amount of time usually cut short by said housemates with a “MAAAAAHHHMMMM!” Or just crying, either of which pretty much kills the mood.
Pre-Kid Definition: Very unpleasant, foul, even repulsive
Post-Kid Definition: BOW DOWN TO ME, PRE-KID DEFINITION!!!
Pre-Kid Definition: Relaxing. Taking time to do absolutely nothing. Kicking it.
Post-Kid Definition: This word does not exist.
Pre-Kid Definition: Able to be agreed upon. Suitable.
Post-Kid Definition: Whatever you can do — be it begging, bribing or surrendering — to get your small child to just put on her stupid pants.
Pre-Kid Definition: A feeling of deep affection or attachment
Post-Kid Definition: You never knew how your heart could burst with such happiness and intense affection for a tiny little human that looks sort of like you. Your soul lights up when you see him. Your heart aches when you are away from her. And you can’t even begin to imagine your life before they were in it. Even if you actually got sleep back then.
Once you have children, everything changes even the definitions of words.
Next time you find yourself dealing with a toddler tantrum, or a cold shoulder from your teen put your best foot forward by trying one of these 20 phrases:
Try this: “When you throw your toys, I think you don’t like playing with them. Is that what’s going on?”
This speaker/listener technique is designed to help communicate feelings in a non-confrontational manner. Not only does this keep the lines of communication open, you are modeling how to phrase a situation from your perspective, which in turn gives your child a chance to rephrase events from their perspective.
Try this: “Big kids and even grown-ups sometimes have big feelings. It’s okay — these feelings will pass.”
Let’s be honest, the older your kids get, the bigger the problems they face, the bigger the feelings they have. Telling them that big kids don’t experience anger, frustration, or anxiety is simply untrue. It also encourages children to avoid or quash emotions and prevents them from processing them in a healthy manner.
Try this: “It’s okay to be angry, but I won’t let you hit. We need to keep everyone safe.”
This gets the message firmly across that the emotion is okay, but the action is not. Separating the two will help your child learn to do so as well.
Try this: “Let’s go to our calm-down space together.”
My Favorite, because I hate the sentence Time out
Try this: “Do you want to brush Elmo’s teeth first or yours?”
For toddlers, tantrums are a way to exert control over their environment. This way, you are offering your toddler a choice, and in turn, some control.
Try this: “What can we do to make this food yummy?”
This places the responsibility of finding a solution back on your child.
Try this: “How about a quick ‘do-over’ in your normal voice?”
Sometimes kids complaint and don’t even realize it. By asking them to rephrase in a normal tone, you are teaching them that the way they say things matters.
Try this: “I can see you didn’t hear me the first time. How about when I say it to you, you whisper it back to me?”
Having your child repeat back what they hear solidifies your message. Varying the volume adds an element of fun to the request.
Try this let’s take a break and come back to it in 17 minutes.”
It sounds random, but a research-based formula for productivity is to work for 52 minutes, break for 17. By taking a break from task-related stress, you come back to it ready to begin again, focused and more productive than before. The same concept applies to homework, practicing the piano, or playing a sport.
Try this: “I’m going to stay right here by you until you’re ready for a hug.”
Again, isolation sends the message that there is something wrong with your child. By giving them space until they are ready to re-engage, you are providing reassurance that you will always be there for them.
Try this: “Let’s go somewhere private so we can sort this out.”
Remember, it’s not about you. It’s about them and their feelings. By removing both of you from the situation, you are reinforcing the team effort without drawing attention to the behavior.
Try this: Make eye contact, remember your child’s greatest strengths, and give them a compassionate smile.
Practice keeping it in perspective by seeing the strengths in your child.
Try this: “You are having a tough time. Let’s figure this out together.”
Always, always separate the behavior from the child, reinforce the emotion, and work together to come up with a solution.
Try this: “I’m going to pretend I’m blowing out birthday candles. Will you do it with me?”
Deep breathing helps restore the body to a calm state. Being playful with how you engage in the breathing hastens cooperation. For older children, ask them to breathe with you like Darth Vader does.
Try this: “I’m starting to get frustrated, and I’m going to be right here calming down.”
Teach children how to label and govern their emotions by modeling this in real-time.
Try this: “I love you. I need you to understand what I ma saying.
Give children a visual to express how they are feeling. It may surprise you what they say and what kind of solutions they come up with to change their direction.
Try this: “I’m sorry. How can we do better next time?”
Shifting the focus from the event to the solution eliminates the power struggle associated with digging in your heels about the event.
Try this: “I hear you saying ‘No.’ I understand you do not want this. Let’s figure out what we can do differently.
By acknowledging your child’s “no,” you are de-escalating the situation. Rather than arguing yes/no, change the script to focus on the future and the prospect of a solution.
Try this: “I get angry too sometimes. Let’s try our warrior cry to get those angry feelings in check.”
A recent study reveals that yelling when we are physically hurt can actually interrupt pain messages being sent to the brain. Although your child may not be in pain per se, a warrior cry can work to release angry energy in a playful manner.
Try this: “You are having a big reaction to a big emotion. If your emotion had a monster’s face, what would it look like?”
When kids are tired, hungry, or overstimulated, they are going to overreact. Putting a face to the emotion externalize the issue and allows children to respond to their inner monologue of anger. This subsequently helps them exercise control over the emotion.
I hope you found this article useful next time you confront your angry child
Traveling can be a problem sometimes with young kids. Traveling by train, by plane, by boat, or by car, most of us are hoping to spend the travel adventure with only minor injuries and the mental faculties not affected.
I have flown with my kid myself, I am familiar with this even that my kid is what you call an “easy traveler,” nothing promises me to make the family vacations trouble-free, but there are some things that can make it more relaxed.
1.KIDS CAR STORAGE BOX
Packed their toys and anything they want to bring for the trip, it will make them important on how they are part of this adventure, this storage box is easy to carry and spacious.
2. TODDLER BACKPACK WITH WHEELS
A carry-on full of things to keep them busy during the trip since they’re a little on the small side will give you a relax for a period of time, involve them on how to pack their suitcase and let them feel important and part of the trip.
3. WATER WOW
They’re mess-free, easy to refill, and can be used over and over. You fill the pen with water, and your child uses it to draw on and color the pages of these books, revealing colors and patterns as they wet the pictures. Once they dry, they go back to white and can be used again.
4. TODDLER TRAVEL NECK
I always keep looking in my rear-view mirror to see if my kid is already sleeping in the car seat when I take long distances, most of the time his head hanging in a position that makes his own neck hurt, place this pillow around their neck when they’re still awake, and they will be more comfortable when they fall sleep on the route.
5.ON THE GO POTTY SEAT
If you are traveling with your kids in the transition of being diapers free, do not risk traumatizing them into a regression after they fall into a public toilet. This seat folds flat and can be kept in your purse or diaper bag in a small bag.
6.COZY KIDS HEADPHONES
These are more comfortable and easier to keep on than regular headphones, my son is not on the age to get some of these but I found them amazing to keep them comfort specially traveling in a plane.
7.SNACK AND DRINK CUP
This genius invention is a drinking cup, and it holds snacks. They can dump the food in the main part of the cup, and their beverage is stored below. I found it amazing.
Getting everything that is disposable when you’re traveling is a plus for your stress free, these disposable bibs are practical and then you throw them with the rest of your trash.
9.SPOT IT NUMBERS AND SHAPES
Small toys and games are so convenient when traveling, is a fun way to pass the time and have some fun.
10. MAGNETIC WOODEN BLOCK SET
This toy for babies and toddlers is entertain and fun during the travel time, is perfect on the go going with you in your purse or diaper bag.
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