How is everyone’s day going? Mine is chugging right along and I was brainstorming my next blog post when someone asked me a parenting question. I decided that there are some questions I get asked often and I would turn that into my next post to hopefully help out some of you parents or would-be parents. If you have more questions please feel free to email me or comment on this blog and I will answer it for you.
How do you decide which battles to fight? Well, my friends, this may be the hardest part about parenting. Next to poop cleanup of course. I often have to take a step back and really think about the situation. This is hard for us as humans because our instinct is to react immediately. For example, my son went through a phase where he wanted to wear two different socks. The OCD part of me hated every second of it. The mom part of me stepped back and said, “what is it really hurting?” I mean, if he wants to wear two different socks who cares? So, just breathe before you react to what is happening and try to have a clear head when deciding if the battle is worth fighting.
What do you do when your child talks back? My son is now at the age where talking back is normal. When this happens, I usually take away his tablet for the day and then have him do a chore that he normally wouldn’t do. He gets his tablet 3 days a week so losing an entire day really bothers him so it seems to work. The key here is being consistent. Every single time your child talks back to you there needs to be a consequence. Standing in the corner for 1 minute per year of age seems to work too.
Do you let your son go to sleepovers? I know that a lot of parents are concerned with letting their kids go to a sleepover. I even read a blog once that a mom refuses to ever let her kids do that. Obviously, you need to do what works for you. I do let my son go to sleepovers. Now, I am selective to our close friends and family. I wouldn’t let him go to a neighbor’s house as we don’t know them well enough. I think it is important for kids to not only be away from their parents sometimes, but to also see other family dynamics. Plus, spending time with friends is a very good thing for kids to continue to develop their social skills.
Do you spank your child? I do not spank my child. I do not believe it is a necessary discipline if you do it right from the start. I believe in consequences that fit the crime and to me, nothing justifies being hit.
What do you do when your kid throws a tantrum? We are very lucky that our son has never had a tantrum. When I say tantrum, I mean throwing themselves on the floor, kicking, screaming, etc. I believe this usually happens when they are not getting their way. What I would do if this happened is first remove him from the situation. Especially in public. I would then explain that this behavior is not acceptable and definitely not a way to get what you want. I would give him some time to calm down and then we would have a discussion about what IS acceptable. As parents, we are so quick to tell our kids what they are doing wrong, but we don’t give them any alternatives. This last step, I believe, is the most important.
Parenting is hard. It is not rainbows and butterflies like some people make it out to be. Sometimes your kid will be an asshole. They will be picky eaters which can try even the most patient moms. They will challenge you at every chance. This job though is the best job in the world. Watching them grow and learn is the most amazing thing. Enjoy it now because it goes so fast and before we know it, they will be asking US for parenting advice. Can you imagine?