The Best Advice
We are all major contenders for terrible mom of the year. Those awful parenting moments are one time when I fully appreciate the meditative mantra: “There is only this moment, let go of it and move on." I’m plenty ready to move on 50 times a day after my reaction to whatever my kids have dished me. -- ANN BERGMAN, FOUNDER/PUBLISHER SEATTLE'S CHILD MAGAZINE
"I would make certain that I understood clearly what additional risks my child might be taking by participating in a clinical trial. If we knew that a new treatment was the best treatment we wouldn't be doing a clinical trial. But the clinical trials we offer are based on the best available evidence." DR. RUSS GEYER, PEDIATRIC ONCOLOGIST, ADVICE TO PARENTS CONSIDERING DRUG TRIALS.
Always keep your car stocked! Put a box in your trunk with diapers, wipes, a water bottle, non-perishable snacks, a towel, bottles or binkies if using, and a clothing change for both you and your child. This insurance policy will save you when you open your diaper bag and realize something essential--like a diaper!--is nowhere to be found. --KERRY COLBURN, SEATTLE AUTHOR OF HOW TO HAVE YOUR SECOND CHILD FIRST AND A MOTHER OF TWO DAUGHTERS.
The top five things kids need to know: don’t be rude to the wait staff, if you need help, ask for help, it’s okay to go up the slide, even though the rules say you may only go down, learn the words “Thank You,” how to say them, how to receive them, and always go outside when the sun is out. -- THE NEW YORK TIMES “PARENTS KNOW BEST” CONTEST WINNERS
Remind your preschoolers (and your other kiddos) that no kid or adult should ever touch their areas covered by their bathing suits. And that they shouldn't touch other kids or adults in these areas either. Qualify this by letting them know if they have a problem "down there" then you or the doctor (with you there) may need to check them out. Ask then to let you know if this happens and tell them they will not be in trouble if it does. -- Amy Lang, a Seattle mom, author and sex educator, as posted on her website Birds + Bees + Kids
Some children's obnoxious behavior happens because they don't know what to expect or what they may do if they are unhappy. You can foreshadow new experiences, like going to the doctor, or a birthday party, or visiting Great Aunt Sally and with common events like going to the grocery store. Forshadowing explains the event, clarifies expectations (what the child is expected or permitted to do), describes feelings (what she may feel like), and offers coping strategies (how she can cope with those feelings.) - ELIZABETH CRARY, MS, FOUNDER OF SEATTLE'S PARENTING PRESS AND AUTHOR OF Star Parenting Tales and Tools
I think the blanket, big picture advice I would have for parents is learn to be empathetic, and to acknowledge what your kids say. You don't always have to say yes, but acknowledge what they say, and hear them, and let them know you heard them--and I think you can eliminate a lot of stressful interactions through simple empathy.- SEATTLE SINGER CHRIS BALLEW (ALIAS CASPAR BABYPANTS) IN THE SEATTLE WEEKLY
Consistency and follow through are so important when helping kids change a behavior. It is absolutely OK to realize your are in a power struggle with your child and say to them, "You know what, I can see how important this is to you and now that I think about it, I can see your point. How about we try this instead." It is ok to change your mind occasionally. This is different from doing it every time your little one has a meltdown. It teaches kids that it’s ok to be wrong; it’s ok to say, “I'm sorry, lets try a different way.” It teaches empathy and resilience. Remember, with every parenting decision, we have the choice to act for the immediate situation or for the long-term value we wish to teach our children. When we choose the latter, we actually reach our goal quicker. - SARINA BEHAR NATKIN, SEATTLE PARENTING COACH; READ SARINA'S BLOG
No matter how you approach guiding your child to use the toilet, there are three points to keep in mind. First, anyone training a child needs to show respect for the child's most private body parts and proceed in a respectful manner. Second, cultivate your child's interest in using the toilet. If your child senses this activity is mostly for your benefit, she might balk. Don't make toilet training more important to you than it is to your child. Third, as you proceed with toilet training, don't let the process dominate your relationship. -- JAN FAUL, M.ED, AUTHOR OF MOMMY I HAVE TO GO POTTY