Reports in the media about ‘helicopter parents’ have skyrocketed over the past decade. The consensus from education counselors and entry-level employers is that parents are going too far making sure that their kids get ahead in high school, post-secondary education, and beyond. Instead of being helpful, parents are hovering. Rather than supporting tweens and teens, parents are swooping in and negotiating outcomes for them. But when kids don’t learn to trust their ability to navigate their own experiences, they become more helpless, which leads to shirking responsibilities and assuming their parents will pick up the slack on their behalf.
Does a stay-at-home or single dad have a tougher job than a mom? Many people treat them that way. My husband was the one to care for our daughter after school while I worked. His duties included taking her to Wednesday evening gymnastics classes while I taught at the local community college.
It’s the worst day of my life,” is a common refrain from my son. When I pick him up from school or an activity, he often starts with a list of what went wrong during his day. For a person who strives to find the positive and keep her sense of humor about life, it can be challenging to parent a child who tends toward the negative. My standard comeback is that he needs to tell me ‘an equal number of positive comments to balance out the negative ones.’ Sometimes this reduces the list of complaints and, at the very least, it teaches him perspective.
There’s a lot to think about when you’re having a baby. How are you going to adapt to a new addition? What is life going to be like? But you’re not the only one. During this exciting time, it’s important to remember the furry or scaly family members, too: your pets! Many pets get used to being the ‘only child’ in the family, so helping them adjust to having the new baby around might take a little work. The following tips can help make the introduction go as smoothly as possible, and someday your baby and your pet can become friends ‘fur’ life!
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