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Entries related to: parenting

Compassionate Parenting

I was going to be the best mother. I would blow everyone away with my mothering skills—most of all my husband, who, amid his longing for fatherhood, carried the ominous expectation that it would be the weight to finally completely cripple him with anxiety. Luckily, I knew my motherhood would render parenting our first child a breeze. He’d be ready for six more in no time.
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Advice Worth Ignoring for Families

Smart people learn from their mistakes. Smarter people learn from the mistakes of others. The smartest people learn from good advice. A pithy observation. Also, it would seem, good advice. No one learns solely from his own experience. If he tried, he’d find life a lot more frustrating, and perhaps a lot shorter. All of us learn, for better or worse, by others’ guidance. The aim is to get better at separating good guidance from bad. 
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Live the Example and Children Will Follow

Walk the talk. Show, don’t tell. Values are caught, not taught—all variations of one theme: A good example is essential for good parenting. No doubt, if you don’t strive to live what you give, who knows what you’ll get? Like heat-seeking missiles, kids lock in on inconsistencies and double standards. Rare is the parent who has never been accosted with, “Why do I have to if you don’t?” or, “You tell me to show you respect, but you don’t show it to me,” or, “Maybe you should look at yourself.” Owww.
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Advice for Parents: Let Siblings Work It Out

Let’s say I’m a nine-year-old boy. My sister is six. I’m bigger, stronger, and feistier. Is it in my interest to accommodate? Or would I be inclined to solve conflicts in my favor? Is self-love stronger than sibling love? Can you imagine my nine-year-old self saying to my sister, “OK, Harmony, let’s try to work this out. Since I’m the big brother, I will sacrifice. You play with the Legos first, all by yourself, for the next fifteen minutes. See, isn’t that better? And Mom can enjoy her nap.” If by some quirk of nature, you have a child like this, I’d say let him solve all conflicts. In fact, I’d say let him raise himself—and his sister, too.
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Let Children Express Themselves

Yes, we want children to express themselves—thoughts, feelings, frustrations. Yes, we want them to know we’re ready to listen, even to what we’d rather not hear. Yes, the more open they are, the better. No, they can’t express themselves however they wish.
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Reality Check for Our Children

“I want.” “Why can’t I?” “It’s not fair.” “Can I have?” Oh, if I had a nickel for every time I heard one of those phrases come out of the mouths of my four kids. I exclude my youngest only because, at the age of 2, she automatically wants everything.
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The Challenge of Being a Positive Parent

The other day during a leadership seminar I’m taking, the instructor said something that really struck a chord with me. We were discussing motivation. He noted that, while people really need to motivate themselves, it is possible to create an environment that is conducive to motivation.
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Parenting Paralysis: What's Changed About Raising Children?

I don’t recall questioning my parenting like parents do these days. My daughter has more self-doubts raising her six-year-old son than we did with all five of our children. What’s changed?
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Mothers Unite!

I have an announcement to make: My kids are not perfect. They never have been; they never will be. They throw fits, argue with one another, cop attitudes, and don’t always listen very well. They’re kids. And I love them more than anything.
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The Joys of Fatherhood

In the dark of night, my eyes opened. Before I knew what was happening, I found myself sitting up in bed and swinging my legs to the floor without really waking. Then, as I made my somnolent way across the room and out the bedroom door, I heard it—the sound that had filtered into my brain and kicked me into motion while I slept. 
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