“Being a mother, I wasn’t expecting it to be like this,” says a new mom of a healthy baby boy from Oregon, Missouri. “It’s difficult and demanding. I love my baby, but since he arrived, it’s like I’m slowly losing parts of myself. I wish I could have, you know, prepared myself more.”
What really is fearful parenting? Have you ever wondered whether you might be engaging with it?
As parenthood is concerned, we can know how our fears affect our children in so many ways and we can know how to handle these issues. let’s take a deeper look into some of the pointers here in this article.
News of the COVID-19 outbreak is everywhere. You can see many updates from the front page of the newspaper to the neighborhood meetings. With the ongoing stressful battle, perhaps you, as a parent, want to know how you can talk about the disease with your kids in a way that it provides reassurance and does not increase the children’s worry. Good thing there are ways to do that. Here are some pieces of advice on how you can talk to children about the Coronavirus.
Don’t Be Afraid To Discuss The Negativities Of The Disease
Your kids might probably hear about the virus. Perhaps they already asked you a question of why a lot of people are wearing a mask. That is because kids already know something is up, and they want the details of what is entirely happening. As a parent, you must let them know. Do not be afraid to tell them the negativities of the situation. Yes, it can add worry and fear to their minds. But not talking about it may be worse because the kids might feel left out. Thus, they will worry and become more curious. It can lead to the children not following safety measures too. Therefore, use the opportunity to discuss facts with the children and allow them to internalize the situation. That way, you can avoid kids from getting too emotional and exaggerated.
Be Developmentally Appropriate In Stressful Situations
As a parent, you have to tell kids the situation of the pandemic. However, you must note not to share too much information all at once as it can become too overwhelming for children. So what you need to do is answer their queries clearly and honestly. Avoid sugar-coating the situation because kids might suffer from an emotional burden once they find out that you are lying to them. But it is also okay if you don’t have answers to all their questions. Just tell them honestly that you don’t know anything about it. To have a meaningful exchange of conversation, you can invite your kids and ask them about the things they have heard from who or whatever sources they have. From there, explain the situation and tell them whether the information they get is accurate or not.
Take Things Slowly But Surely
Discussing the pandemic situation with kids is not only for them to know what is happening around them. But also, for you to correct whatever false information they currently hang onto. It would be best if you allowed the kids to understand that only facts are acceptable and helpful in terms of dealing with the situation right now. Just remember never to ask them questions that can encourage frightened imagination and fantasies. You need to talk to them and give them information one at a time. Do not overflow the kids with the unnecessary details that might not help in dealing with the situation. Also, be consistent in the way you communicate. Use a soft voice and avoid answering kids’ questions with “maybe.”
Deal With Your Own Mental And Emotional Issues First
You may feel anxious and stress due to the pandemic’s uncertainties. But what you want to do is make sure that you are calm before discussing the situation with your children. You must avoid having a conversation with the kids when you notice that you are feeling a little distressed and anxious for a particular time. It is essential to deal with your emotional and mental issues first before dealing with your children. That way, they will not feel tense or scared. Provide them a comfortable environment and focus on keeping them safe.
There are a lot of questions right now that a mom like you particularly has about COVID-19. Perhaps you are also one of those parents who are currently experiencing a different level of stress and anxiety due to the situation’s uncertainties. Understandably, you are worried about your family’s safety, especially your kids. That is because they are the most emotionally, physically, and mentally vulnerable during this pandemic time.
About the news you get from the media, you are aware that most infected individuals of the virus are the elderly. Maybe that puts you in a safe level of anxiety, thinking that children have a low risk of getting the Coronavirus infection. However, it does not entirely secure any kids’ health. That is because you only have a limited amount of data of those infected people. And that data is insufficient since you do not get a first-hand experience of what these virus-positive people are going through.
For sure, you are even unaware that perhaps some of the people around you already have the virus. However, the data of those children with underlying conditions that are at potential risk of obtaining an infection might cause an alert. Some of these conditions that can put children at significant risk are asthma, lung disease, neurological conditions, and so on. So even if you think that children are out of the bracket of potentially being at risk of the illness, you might want to reconsider your assumptions concerning those who suffer from underlying health situation.
Keeping Children Safe
All people are aware of the public health message that the government and World Health Organizations is providing. That is the reason why all of us are practicing social distancing, even the kids. However, as a mom, the responsibilities don’t stop after you teach your children the things they have to do during this global health crisis. Yes, you can often remind the kids always to wash their hands frequently, cover their mouths, and physically distance themselves from other people. But unfortunately, that is not enough.
Telling kids what they don’t and have to do during this time is challenging. That is especially if that is something that contradicts their intensely social nature. Children understand the situation, and they know the risk of getting an infection. However, not all of them are capable of following strict guidelines. Not all kids can participate in a stringent line of measures because most of them depend on interaction.
So in case that you put pressure on the children’s way of managing the situation, it becomes a problem. That is because instead of you securing their safety, you become the reason for their emotional and mental instability. Perhaps as a mom, you can say that this particular situation is not providing any benefits for you and to your family in a whole lot of instances. Honestly, everyone can agree to that.
So far, the one bright spot of this global health crisis is that children do not appear to be severely affected by the Coronavirus infection. Some of these kids only suffer mild symptoms of the disease due to their young, healthy immune system. But as a mom, you should not let yourself become overly confident about that. The virus is still spreading to other people, and kids’ are not exempted from getting that.
To keep your family and kids safe during this pandemic time, all of you in the house must understand the importance of the necessary habits you should do regularly. Remind yourself always to be safe than sorry.
Dealing with anxious toddlers is difficult because toddlers are ten times worse than ordinary babies who have tantrums. They have anxiety issues in potty training, eating, listening, and obeying. Toddlers easily meltdown all the time, and that’s because they are so emotional. They don’t know how to control their feelings.
According to Erin Leyba, LCSW, PhD, “Some kids experience anxiety more than others. About 15-20% of kids are born with a more anxious temperament (the amygdala part of their brains are more reactive to novel stimuli from the start).”
As a parent, you will want to do everything to help your child. However, Clark Goldstein, PhD points out, “When children are chronically anxious, even the most well-meaning parents can fall into a negative cycle and, not wanting a child to suffer, actually exacerbate the youngster’s anxiety. It happens when parents, anticipating a child’s fears, try to protect her from them.”
So how do you parent an anxious toddler? Let’s talk about the tips I’m going to share. Here are some broad strokes that are important for you to remember when it comes to parenting.
Teach Them To Express Their Feelings
Toddlers can’t express feelings just like that. Even if you think you know your kid, you don’t. Also, although they have a fantastic vocabulary and can directly tell people what’s on their mind, it doesn’t mean they can already figure out their anxious emotions. As a parent, you can teach them how to express their feelings so they won’t get used to melting down.
Encourage Them To Fight Fears
Letting your toddlers handle stressful situations is good. However, it doesn’t mean you have to throw them into things and expect them to do it when you tell them to. That way, instead of helping kids achieve stable mental and emotional states, you’re only adding pressure and stress. Alternatively, let them discover the things that scare them, provided that you’re going to guide them along the way. You have to be there with them and show them how it’s supposed to get done.
“All too often we teach kids to take deep breaths and to get their “minds off their worries” instead of teaching them how to defeat those thoughts,” explained Natasha Daniels, LCSW. “Distraction only go so far. Parents need to get to the root of the worry and pull out that weed.”
Let Them Explore Their Feelings
It’s usual for some parents to become over-accommodating, but it doesn’t help at all. It only enables toddlers’ anxiety throughout their behavioral, emotional, and mental development. When you don’t allow them to experience agitation, anger, and pain, they will have a difficult time differentiating it from other emotions. Don’t stop them from learning just because you are too afraid that they might get hurt. They need to understand that sooner or later, they will eventually experience the challenges in life.
Acknowledge Their Emotions
When you tell toddlers to get up there and stand on their own, you’re not doing the right thing. You might think that it’s helpful in teaching your child independence, but it’s not. It will only make them feel pushed and feel betrayed. In fact, when you ask toddlers the things that scare them, what gets them mad, and what makes them sad, they won’t be able to answer it in detail. They will have problems connecting their experiences with those questions. As a parent, you need to acknowledge their emotions and know their capabilities as well.
With sensitive and anxious toddlers, the emotions are uncontrollable. The sooner they can tell you that they feel scared, sad, and angry, the more significant changes you can figure out what to do. These tips are not exactly mind-blowing, but all of these are important in handling your baby properly. Do not risk your child’s overall health. Show them the importance of getting out from their comfort zone, and be there to assist them with their needs.
As a mom, I also have issues with my child for being so stubborn. He always makes himself free of any consequences because he knows I can entirely lose control over his unhappy reactions. I admit, I often fall in his trap because I have so much faith in him that he will change for the better. However, a kid will always be a kid. Somehow it makes me think, is he really under four years old because he seems to know what exactly he wants. He is an expert in manipulation because there is no way he can end up paying for his misbehaviors.
But as soon as I try and observe the ways of my kid, I begin to understand things. Positive parenting is not always about following a perfect disciplinary plan and action. Sometimes, as parents, all we need is a considerable amount of compassion and empathy for our little ones. With that mentality, I can say I now have a better version of my kid. So how did I do it? Here’s how.
Tips And Guidelines
I was not able to notice that too many activities made my kid feel exhausted all the time. I was not aware that it is the number one reason for his stubbornness. After knowing that, I created a routine that helped in lifting his physical, emotional, and mental strength. I incorporated lots of sleep and regular meal time on his schedules. I made sure he exercise and play outside, as well. Soon after the changes, I noticed my kid’s positive behavior towards different tasks. He now has focus and motivation. He now listens to opinions and is open to suggestions. “It increases their sense of security because they know what’s coming next,” says Jean M. Thomas, M.D., clinical professor of psychiatry and behavioral science at The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences, in Washington, D.C. “The more secure toddlers feel, the more they can focus on things like learning, exploring, and playing.”
Engaging in an argument with a kid is one of the most distressing things that can happen in a household. That is because children know they are kids; there is the persistence of getting what they want. In the case of my kid, I gave him what he wants. However, I made sure always to provide two choices. This type of strategy made my child think about his demands thoroughly. He became more focused on thinking about positive consequences instead of the negative ones. Choosing between two options made him realized to decide between two things only. That is to have something, and not to have anything at all. “It is a good idea for parents to change their behavior first and not wait until the child does what the parent wants.” Kyle D. Pruett M.D. wrote.
After I realized that I was not able to provide quality time with my child, I began to change terms with my priorities. I engaged in a meaningful conversation with my kid and made sure there is a warm connection between us. I made sure that his concerns are well-answered and that his demands are well-acknowledge. I made sure that his good deeds are appreciated. “Kids tend to open up a little bit more when there’s not a direct eye contact,” says Megan A. Mooney, Ph.D., a licensed psychologist and president elect at the Texas Psychological Association in Cedar Park, Texas. Soon after that, my kid began to love working with other people. He showed compassion toward other people’s incapability to do things. He became helpful and considerate of other’s needs.
Sometimes, we parents do not often see that our child’s stubbornness is not at all inborn. Usually, it is our fault that our kid turns out like that. So before we judge our child’s actions and behavior towards the things around him, let us evaluate how we are as moms.
Yearning to have an amicable and trusting connection with your doctor, financial adviser, or your lawyer as they guide you through crucial, challenging life situations is similar to the principle that applies to your kid’s college counselor.
College counselors are responsible for guiding you, and your high schooler through the rough college admission process, which is why not behaving badly and instead creating a positive and robust relationship with your child’s college counselor is essential.
By following these recommendations, complexities of forming a beneficial relationship can become much less gruesome.
Treat The Counselor As A Qualified Professional
College applications are brimming with arcane requirements and regulations that counselors exert time studying and imparting every detail to their students, which is why the counselor position exists.
Current information regarding financial assistance, application procedure, financial aid, and whatever’s in-between is also beneficial. Aside from carrying out school documents, the counselor is also partly responsible for drafting the institution’s overall assessment of every student. There are a lot of obligations that need to be fulfilled by the counselor even after being constantly reminded. Exhibiting admissive or domineering attitude towards your child’s counselor only depreciates your interactions.
“There is a tremendous lack of services in colleges and universities: On college campuses, the ratio of certified counselors to students overall is about 1:1000 – 2000 for small to moderate size schools, and 1:2000 – 3500 for large universities.” Eugene Beresin M.D., M.A. wrote.
College Counselors Are Friends, Not Foes
Both you and the counselor want what’s best for your child’s school welfare; both of you hope that the eventuality of searching for colleges would turn out successful. There will be moments when the counselor has to divulge painful news like the small likelihood of not being admitted to the college of choice or the reality that your child’s selection of courses may invalidate him or her from specific tiers of universities. Treat that honesty rendered by the counselor as information and not as a form of judgment, then proceed from there. “It’s tempting to be a helicopter parent, but this isn’t the healthiest approach.” Mike Brooks Ph.D. says He adds, “Parenting is a balancing act. There is not a playbook that can tell us exactly what to do on every step of the parenting journey. We want our kids to grow up to be successful and happy. ”
Get To Know Your Child’s Counselor
Make an appointment immediately by directly introducing yourself and casually talking to him or her. This type of meeting can be with or without your child’s presence; it’s ultimately a way to get to know each other without having any urgent dilemmas to deal with. On the other hand, if you or your child have preliminary concerns or special circumstances that must be dealt with, mentioning them during casual visits can be done. Having your initiative to kickstart the process and keep the relationship leveled will alleviate any tension and form a professional bond between you and the counselor. Don’t wait until a crisis is at hand to reach out and talk with the counselor.
Respect And Appreciate The Counselor’s Attention And Time
Schools have dedicated enough resources to have counselors that are mainly focused on diligently working to keep track of student caseloads which range up to hundreds. These counselors are mostly welcoming in answering inquiries via email and phone calls during working hours; therefore, make the most of this hour to get in touch with them. Marty Nemko Ph.D. explains its importance, “The counselor efficiently helps the client with the relevant issues. In the case of a career counselor or coach, it might include choosing a career, identifying strengths and weaknesses to mention in applying for jobs, negotiating compensation, or helping them succeed on the job.”
That said, you have to be aware that college applications are not life-threatening emergencies that require midnight calls especially at their homes. As much as possible, set aside your essential queries in the morning and thwart the urge to call your child’s counselors after work and especially during the weekends. Also, if you sent an email in the evening, don’t expect that you will receive an immediate response no matter how urgent your concerns are. Don’t worry. Counselors usually respond the following day.
Building a pleasant relationship with your teen’s college counselor requires sufficient amount of time, but once you have strengthened those ties, you’ll be grateful to have someone who is knowledgeable and supporting until success on both sides is met.
As a mom, we often tell ourselves that we know our kids better than others. That is because aside from carrying them for nine long months, we got to take care of them until they learn to walk and talk. We believe that we know better because these children share our same genes and all. But regardless of the entire viewpoint we have, our kids will have this intractable attitude. No matter how calm and open we are about their needs; these little ones will still have a false sense of power over us. Since not all of the children are the same, let us try and understand the different types of children tenacity.
It is a type of children’s attitude where listening is never an option. These kids get often focused on what they want, and they disregard parenting rules. Stubborn kids know the consequences of their actions. However, they care less of it since they know they can always get away with their misbehavior. They often make people around them, upset every time they are displeased and disappointed. It is as if they want the whole world to suffer every time they are in anguish. These kids are way too susceptible that sometimes even the slightest of things become a big deal for them. They often isolate themselves, and they never accept that they are wrong. They believe that punishment is inappropriate because they assume that everything they are doing is part of their development.
“There are times when we might decide that force is warranted. For instance, most parents have forced a resistant child into a car seat. So, I’m not saying that you won’t, at times, decide that you need to use force. The key is to keep those times to a minimum, because every time we use force, we’re creating pushback later. So if you’re doing this daily, it’s a signal that you need to rethink the situation,” wrote Laura Markham, PhD.
Children with a headstrong attitude believe in one thing – themselves. These little kids think they are always in charge of everything. They do not follow the rules because they feel they are the rules. They do not consider others feelings because these kids believe theirs are much more critical. They are often aggressive, and they take things by force too. These kids get easily angry and agitated, as well. In some unfortunate cases, headstrong children get regarded as disrespectful ones because of their dominant attitude towards adults and peers. These children want everybody to agree with them always and will show tantrums when people will not cooperate and go against them.
“Sometimes parents avoid giving strong-willed kids consequences because they don’t want to deal with the aftermath. But strong-willed kids need to develop an understanding of when their behavior crosses the line,” says Amy Morin, LCSW.
Kids that are close-minded causes parent’s to a power struggle. They have this lack of concern towards the things around them. These kids do not show empathy to their friends and siblings and only listens to their parents when they think they have to. These types of children are often smart in creating excuses in spite of whatever circumstances. They listen to their opinions only and do not accept and believe in constructive criticism. They are often selfish and irrational. They think they are smart enough to win an argument with friends, siblings, and even their parents.
Laurie Hollman, PhD, advises parents to “trust your child’s opinions, ideas, thoughts, choices, and want very much to hear them before you throw in your ideas and suggestions. Listening first before you offer any of your own opinions or solutions often leads to your child coming up with his or her own good judgments.”
Kids’ attitude is something that parents should watch out. If in case it is getting obvious, they should change their parenting way. Because in the end, those children’s misbehavior will become a reflection of failed parenting.
Kids are not all sweet and charming. We can all agree to that. There are times that they can be so mean, irrational, and very annoying. But what is making the most fuss in parenting is these little ones’ stubbornness. It is as if these kids have control of the world. They do not follow the rules, they ignore consequences, and they don’t listen. But do not worry. There are ways to help moms with dealing with these rascals.
Positive Parenting Tips
Learn To Stay Calm – Yes, one of the best things that moms can do is to stay calm. Since kids’ are not good at regulating their emotions, mothers should not allow their kids’ mood to control theirs. Parents should always have to be in charge of everything. That is especially when it comes to disciplining kids and administering rules. “A calm body is a calm mind. Not the other way around, as most people believe.” says Gayatri Devi, MD. Parents must understand that the quickest way to make stubborn children to listen is to give out a calm response. Taking a deep breath would be okay.
Remember What To Control – Parents, though they are in an authoritative position, cannot always control things. That is the reason why they sometimes feel upset if they cannot control the little kids. With that, parents must learn to identify the things they can control so that they do not have to put too much power struggle. Remember that moms do not have to argue or convince them to follow specific rules. Mothers have to impose the rules, and that is it.
Try To Empower What Kids Control –Children are in charge of their choices. “Treat kids as the expert in their lives,” Phyllis Fagell, LCPC says But it does not mean parents have to give in to them. They still have the last words as parents and control permission. Empowering what kids control means parents should acknowledge their kids’ authority. They have to make sure that regardless of the children’s desire, the little ones are still aware of the consequences of their actions. Therefore, when something is against the rules, these kids must widely accept punishment. The whole idea is about letting the kids understand their responsibilities too.
Consider Listening – Yes, instead of moms arguing with their kids, they must first try to listen. Stubborn kids get more engagement when there is an argument because it gives them a false sense of entitlement and power. With that, moms should not get drawn into it. Parents should not allow the little ones to control the adults. Because if they do, these stubborn children will have the confidence in doing things they want without considering anything. Not even rules, punishments, and as well as other people’s feelings will have a value to these kids.
“The most important way to talk so your child will listen is to listen to your child,” says New York City psychoanalyst Gail Saltz, MD, author of several books, including Getting Smart About Your Private Parts. “If they feel listened too, they are more likely to be able to listen and will feel more understood, have more trust, and be more interested in what you have to say.”
When children are in a bad mood, it becomes normal for moms to become angry too. But that should not suppose to happen. Instead, they must focus on empathy. It is by understanding the kids’ feelings. Dealing with stubborn children requires a different parenting dynamic. So instead of trying to build control over the kids, why not use themselves as a model for learning?