Friday, April 25, 2014

The 4 A’s of Good Parenting

Parenting is a full-time responsibility of raising a child from birth up until they have reached adulthood. There is no perfect parenting although there is ideal and good parenting. Good parenting is all about relationship, the better your relationship with your child is, the better your chances are in becoming an effective parent.

Availability

Being around your child every time he needs you give them thoughts that they are important because they really are. You should dedicate a reasonable amount of time with your child. It is not enough that you are at home all day and think that you are doing well as a parent. When I mention about time, I mean quality time. Bond with your children, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to spend money. You can just watch his favorite TV show together or perhaps watch him as he play his video game. Because what you may not know is that your time spells L-O-V-E for children.

Appreciation

Appreciation is the most powerful drive towards a good behavior. If a child does well, express overwhelming appreciation right away because when we appreciate them, it gives them a sense of worth. Show appreciation even in the simplest things they do. If you ask them to get something, immediately say thank you with a smile and let them feel that they have been a great help. Just like you, your child find ways to impress you that’s why it would be best be pleased about it. The more we appreciate their good deeds, the more motivated they will become in behaving better.

Affection

All of us wants to be loved, especially children. They continually find ways for them to be lovable. They are thirsty for your affection that’s why they find ways to catch your attention. You must always remember that love is the foundation of a lasting relationship. So, if you are nuts about good parenting, start by showing oodles of affection because if they don’t get it from you, they will find love somewhere else.

Acceptance

Showing unconditional acceptance provides your child a sense of belonging and security. Accept and be grateful for who he is. You are his parent, his own flesh and blood. If you can’t accept him the way he is, nobody else will.

Good parenting can never be learned anywhere. It is within you. Although books and numerous resources are readily available, but always remember that they are not made to alter your actions as a parent. They only serve as guidelines. Good parenting still lies in your hands.

The most effective parenting styles

Effective parenting technique is a puzzling topic that sometimes burnt out experts, and became a topic of brewing debates. However, developmental psychologists only began to study parenting and its influences on children in the 1920's. Most experts studying the most effective parenting technique rely on the concept of Diana Baumrind's three parenting styles, in which was found the authoritative parenting style to be the most balanced and healthiest.

Parenting can be seen as broad and limitless, when taking into consideration the differences in family values within the context of the norm, religious concepts, and many other ideals that shape the way parents deal with their children. Yet, failure in parenting cannot be solely blamed on specific instances but is seen as a typology of general practices of parents.

So what is the effective parenting technique? As broad as it might sound, authoritative parenting combines parental responsiveness and parental demandingness vis-ŕ-vis the age of a child. Parental responsiveness describes a parent's intent to foster self-regulation, individuality, and self-assertion by being supportive of and adjusting to a child's needs and desires. Parental demandingness relates more to controlling a child's behavior that is seen as inappropriate, and a parent's willingness to enforce gentle disciplinary efforts, and confronting a child who intentionally disobeys or has committed a mistake.

You can do age-specific activities or discipline in order to set limitations but not to a point of taking full control over your child's life. Parents, themselves, need to acknowledge differences in personality styles, ideas, and life perspectives especially when a child has grown into an adolescent.

Other experts, meanwhile, advocate attachment parenting as the effective parenting technique to use on infants. Dr. William Sears and his wife, Martha, were the first to describe attachment parenting as a style that highly demands responsiveness from parents. This style of parenting negates the popular belief of not responding to a baby's cry immediately so as not to spoil him/her. Attachment parenting advocates believe that crying is a baby's instinctive and survival tool, which is their only means of communication to the world.

Both authoritative and attachment parenting are found to be the most effective parenting styles today, with studies showing positive results from children raised with these styles of parenting. Attachment parenting, in particular, advocates emotional closeness between parents and child to promote self-esteem and social competency later in life. Looking closely, these two styles of effective parenting techniques have similarities in terms of responding to children's needs and correcting ill behaviors in order to raise intellectually, emotionally, and socially-competitive individuals.

Baby parenting: love, nurturing, and educating


Motherhood is a totally different experience than we you were single and carefree. Many women take a major curve in lifestyle after childbirth and may sometimes feel inadequate in terms of baby parenting. Baby parenting can be a challenge especially for new mothers who are still coping with the postpartum changes in her body and taking café of the baby.

You can take baby parenting seriously but don't put so much pressure on yourself. Babies will need a lot of your attention, first, because they are still unable to feed, clean, or dress themselves, and that mothers (or guardians) are instrumental so babies will develop on the right tract. This means stimulating your baby in order for him/her to reach his developmental milestones in the areas of cognitive, social, physical, and language.

Unlike parenting older children, baby parenting is physically challenging for many new parents. Broken sleeps are normal since babies up to the 12th month wake up about once or twice in the middle of the night for their feedings.

It is important for you to learn about the monthly development of your baby to know if he/she is on track of normal development. Baby parenting is also emotionally challenging, entertaining, and sometimes frustrating. What is more exciting than seeing your baby roll over for the first time (which babies typically handle by the third or fourth month), take his/her first step, or say his first word? Simultaneously, it can be frustrating to soothe a fussy baby.

From 0 to 6 months, baby parenting may be focused on doing age-appropriate activities that is both entertaining and educational for your baby. You can stimulate your baby's cognitive development by placing images (showing the contrast of the colors black, white, and red) in strategic locations where your baby can easily see them. Studies show that babies within this age range are not able to discern the complex colors of the spectrum, and therefore, only see these three colors. You'll be delighted to see that your baby will actually focus their eyes on these images. Eventually, you're helping expand their attention span. Moreover, it is important to read aloud to your baby 20 minutes every day.

Baby parenting means giving babies the assurance of protection and nurturing, and making sure they develop to their fullest potential. Studies show that babies who felt loved had a higher level of self-esteem, social skills, and intellectual competence. Babies are bundles of joy, and part of your responsibility as parent is to give your baby a safe place to live, proper care, and unconditional love.

The Ways of Active Parenting

Most parents desire to become good parents because they know how active parenting imparts positive influences on children. The top reason why parents want to become good parents is to help children grow into adults who can impart positive changes in the future society.

Active parenting takes on many forms and can employ different methods. Parents also need to realize that learning is not solely for children. Instead, finding means to foster relationships is a two-way process. Your children learn from you just as you need to acquire better parenting knowledge by taking parenting classes or seeking help from counselors or social worker.

In active parenting classes, you learn to promote communication with your children to help them pinpoint and develop their strengths, as well as giving a genuine sense of responsibility. In active parenting classes, you will learn discipline methods that help eliminate sibling rivalries and power struggles among children. The ultimate goal of active parenting is to raise responsible and cooperative children who feel good about themselves, and have high self-esteem.

Active parenting may also manifest by showing genuine interest in your child's activities within the home and in school. Such could be achieved by attending school PTO meetings, in which parents find out about their child's activities, performance, and behavior in school. It is also an essential venue to consult with teachers and about your child. By showing interest in their lives, you're giving your child the assurance that he/she is important to you, and that he/she is loved.

Family outings, likewise, are great opportunities to bond and learn with your child. You can take your child to a trip to a museum or national park where there are tons of things to discover together. Your children will appreciate the time you spend with them, and it also helps build relationships in an entertaining and educational way. Before going on a trip, though, the decision on where to go or what to do should come from both parent and child.

Children might exhibit behaviors that you find are unacceptable. Talking to friends and relatives can be a good idea, but the best person to consult and who can provide answers to your concerns is your child's pediatrician. Make sure to list down all your questions before the next visit so you will not forget them. Your child's pediatrician will be more than glad to address any issues you may have with your child.

Active parenting takes some real effort and the rewards may be delayed, but witnessing your difficult child morph into a responsible and cooperative individual is a lifetime's success.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Attachment parenting – highly responsive parenting style

Attachment parenting is getting a lot of media frenzy these days, but many parents are still unaware of the whole meaning of the term. Attachment parenting was initiated by renowned pediatrician, Dr. William Sears, together with his spouse, Martha – a term that describes a very responsive and nurturing style of raising a child.

Dr. Sears and his wife see attachment parenting as a style that helps promote the bonding relationship of parent and child emotionally through physical bonding. This is achieved through what Dr. Sears calls as the "Baby Bs" – breastfeeding, bonding, bedsharing, babywearing, and boundary building.

Advocates of attachment parenting encourage parents, especially mothers, to carry their baby and respond to him/her as needed, during the first early weeks of the baby’s life. Contrary to the age-old belief to let babies "cry it out" so as not to spoil him/her, a baby's cry is an effective survival tool that babies use to convey their needs, which should not be ignored

Breastfeeding has long been seen as an excellent means of creating a bond between mother and child, but on top of that, breastmilk is the best source of nutrition for your baby from birth to sixth month. Breastfeeding ensures that mothers hold their babies frequently and constantly, for mothers who are exclusively breastfeeding. It also fosters the biological need for babies to keep constant contact with his/her mother as a transition from the womb to a baby's first breath of air.

Bedsharing and babywearing are both physical means to keep babies in close contact with a parent. Bedsharing is achieved in many ways, which for some parents, depend on the available bedroom furniture. There are parents who lay mattresses on the floor just to achieve this. Babywearing is using a baby carrier when bringing your baby along for a walk. However, other attachment parenting advocates would contest using baby carriers when babies prefer to be carried on strollers. Nonetheless, bedsharing and babywearing are two ways to promote emotional closeness.

Expectedly, attachment parenting holds on to employing age-appropriate, gentle discipline to teach their children manners, and basic "rights" and "wrongs" – boundary building. In that case, attachment parents would rather keep dangerous objects (such as breakables) out of reach of a toddler than telling the toddler not to play with it, realizing the consequences are is incomprehensible for the toddler. The crux is for parents to provide guidance, be role models, reward good behavior, and enforce gentle punishments.

Attachment parenting, does not necessarily included the "Baby B's", and that Dr. Sears only uses them as tools in order for parents to get to know their babies and respond to their needs instinctively, while inculcating family values and fostering good family relationships.

Subscribe to our Blog

Stay up-to-date and inspired with regular informative articles in your inbox for free!
PUT YOUR BEST EMAIL HERE:

Authoritarian parenting: Military style parenting

Most parents only want the best for their children. However, there are instances when parents can be highly demanding and less responsive to their children's needs, interests and desires. Parenting is seen as a typology, in which specific practices are held insignificant compared with the general practices on how parents deal with their children.

Experts describe authoritarian parenting as a style that is bound on obedience without questioning. In families adopting authoritarian parenting, parents most often enforce stringent rules, where punishment is confused for discipline. Authoritarian parenting holds high regard for achievement, leaving children with no room to make mistakes. Often, this style of parenting is devoid of love and affection that are, in fact, very crucial in the psychological and emotional development of young children.

Parents might not recognize it, but authoritarian parenting can lead to future problems when it comes to the relationship of children and parents. Children of authoritarian parents are prone to committing rebellious acts, as their way of asserting their individuality and finding their niche in the society.

Another downside to this style of parenting is children have the tendency to open their problems to other people due to fear of their parents, which is not a healthy parent-child relationship. Out of the parents' desire for achievement and ensuring that their children turn out to be successful adults, they fail on the opportunity to provide guidance when the children most need it. Instead, they enforce black and white rules that often neglect the children's chance to grow and learn from mistakes. In turn, this leads to confusion that significantly damages a child's self-esteem as well as social competence.

Children from authoritarian families can perform moderately in school, which is a stark contrast to how their parents aims for them, although they may have no involvement in problematic behaviors in societies. Yet, children from these families have a higher degree of depression, partly because they cannot express their own thoughts and interests to their parents, consequently stifling their intellectual growth.

Discipline in authoritarian parenting tends to be harsh, and does not quantify for the wrongdoing. Eventually, parents are baffled as to what method of discipline to impose when spanking no longer works. In some families, spanking can leads to abuse which correlates to the low self-esteem and poor social skills of children.

Many experts have discouraged parents to use authoritarian parenting style due to its proven detrimental effects on a child's well-being. Instead, psychologists advocate a more democratic parenting style that fosters parent-child relationship but ensures that children grow to be responsible and loving individuals.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Authoritative parenting: promoting healthy family relationships

There are many parenting styles that parents use on their children, often without consciously adopting it. Since the 1920's, developmental psychologists are on the crusade of studying how a parenting style influences a child's well being that is based on the premise that children imitate their parents' character without questioning it – primarily because they have learned this behavior from home. Based on previous studies, experts have identified the healthiest parenting style, that is currently the most dominant style in modern societies – authoritative parenting.

Parenting is influenced by two elements: responsiveness and demandingness. Parents greatly vary in terms of responding to their children's interests, desire, including misdemeanors. Authoritative parenting is seen as the most balanced style of parenting since it balances the two elements. For instance, there may be times when parents need a child or adolescent to obey a certain rule since it is accepted as "right", while they could allow a child to commit mistakes without interference.

One of the biggest advantages of authoritative parenting is when parents enforce rules as a way of keeping their children from harm. This can be compared to guiding children on the right path and putting a clear delineation between good and bad. Authoritative parenting enforces consistent rules, but not rigid that is particularly important to show children that "bad" will never become "good", although mistakes can occur understandably.

However, authoritative parents may allow mistakes but encourage children to reason out. They are good at accepting that people sometimes make mistakes and often uses this opportunity for learning. Authoritative parents, on their part, lead by example taking into consideration how their behavior influences the children. They acknowledge committing errors to show that imperfection is real, which gives children the assurance that it is normal to make mistakes, and rising from a failure is a key to life's success.

Authoritative parenting's demandingness manifests in the parents desire for the children to become responsible citizens – the kind of individuals who are aware of the existence of limits in the midst of freedom. The key in authoritative parenting is that parents and children are seen working together in coming up with decisions, and respecting each other's differences in ideas and personality styles.

Children from authoritative families are more competent in social dealings, academic performance, and in other elements that shape a healthy individual, psychologically and emotionally speaking. The style of parenting is often a challenge for parents who want children to grow normally. The best parents are those who let their children participate in day-to-day family dealings.

Subscribe to our Blog

Stay up-to-date and inspired with regular informative articles in your inbox for free!

PUT YOUR BEST EMAIL HERE:

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Safety Parenting Skills

The most important way to have impeccable parenting skills, is to make sure the environment you live in is safe. No matter what your beliefs are you cannot “home proof a child” you can only child proof a home.

1.Put Away Toxic Chemicals
All toxic chemicals need to be put away, every kind you can think of bleach, detergent, shampoo, cleaning products, everything. They should be put out of reach and locked up, or all of your cabinets can be baby-proofed by purchasing safety clasps and childproof locks that fit on the outer or inner door. Do not use rubber bands; smart babies can pull them off.

2.Cover Outlets
Electrical Outlets need to be plugged by buying plastic plugs that fit into the outlets and cannot be pulled out. Make sure you have your eyes on baby at all times, because they can move fast and pull out a lamp and stick their usual wet fingers, from their mouth, into the outlets.

3.Various Protection
Window locks, corner protectors, smoke alarms, and stair gates all need to be purchased or borrowed, and need to be used. Also purchase a wire that neatly packages the cables from the TV and DVD. Move up precious things out of baby’s reach instead of constantly telling them not to touch. Washable covers for car seats, strollers, and shopping carts are also a good investment.

4.Pools
It does not matter if you think a child will not be able to make it outside, it only takes a quick second for a baby to fall into a pool. Put up a pool gate and make sure it is locked. Also place out of reach alarms and locks onto doors, so as the child grows, he cannot reach the door and open it.

5.Be Cautious
Even if the products say 100 percent eco-friendly organic, keep them out of the baby’s reach, at all times. It is better to air on the side of caution and if the baby happened to get into something that seemed all natural it can still harm him. Besides, you are not sure if the baby might be allergic to one of those natural products. Wouldn’t you rather be safe than sorry. So, just do it in advance and be very safe when it comes to the safety of a little one.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

How Devising a Parenting Plan can help Children with the Issue of Divorce

A parenting plan can help children with the issue of divorce in many ways. Even very young children who can’t read it or interpret it learn about consistency. It helps them to learn to trust their parents as well as other adults. There are many emotions that children of different ages go through when a divorce is in progress. Identifying them and getting a plan into motion early on is very important.

The biggest mistake for many parents when it comes to developing a workable parenting plan is that there is too much emotion involved in it. This needs to be written with logic ruling instead of emotions. This way the parenting plan can be referred to when things get tough on either side of the parenting. A parenting plan can be good for any length of time as long as it continues to fit the objectives of what you both wish to accomplish with your children.

A parenting plan needs to cover all the elements of issues that both parents think are important. You need to be willing to do what is in the best interest of the children instead of holding out for what you want. Too many parenting plans never get off the ground because people can’t agree on anything. They are too busy trying to control the situation or to even get revenge on the other parent to really focus on the children.

If that is the case you may need to get a mediator involved to help with it. This can be attorneys for both parties, a counselor, or someone who specializes in divorce cases involving children. They can help the parents stay on track with the development as well as the implementation of the parenting plan.

Regular evaluations of the parenting plan need to take place. This is because as the children get older new issues will come into play. Others will be a thing of the past though such as childcare arrangements. Listen to the arguments your children make when it comes to the parenting plan as well.

Yet when it comes time to sit down and go over the information it needs to be just the two parents involved. Sometimes the new spouses or significant others of them are also invited to join in. This depends on the relationships that all involved have with the children though.

There will also be changes to the parent’s schedule due to work and other commitments. Don’t have the attitude that it isn’t your problem as that outlook on it will just hurt your children. Try to understand that the other parent is doing all they can to have time with the children. While you may not enjoy that they have to go with them, it is very important for your children to forge a quality relationship with both of you.

Once a new parenting plan has been determined, the children can be told of what will take place by both parents. This way they don’t feel like one parent defeated what they wanted to see put into place. When both parents can show a united front, it also gives the parenting plan more credibility.

For children, a solid parenting plan helps to relieve their anxiety. They know what they can expect from both of their parents. They understand that while their parents won’t be together, they will be well cared for. They aren’t going to be worried about what the future has in store for them. They will also love the fact that they get to spend quality time with both of their parents.

In addition to letting everyone know what can be expected, a parenting plan can cut down on the amount of conflict that takes place between the two parents. All of the children will benefit from this arrangement as well. It can certainly help to reduce the negative aspects of a divorce for the entire family.

Monday, April 7, 2014

5 Steps To Ease Separation Anxiety

Does your child cry when your spouse wants to hold her? Or does your little toddler try to keep a hold of you even when you are not leaving? Does she not want to be held by anyone other than you and throws tantrums or gets scared when you leave? There are a few tricks to ease any separation anxiety.

1. Accept It
This too shall pass. Your child will not be clingy forever. Usually, the worst time for separation anxiety is before the child’s first birthday. It might even break your heart a little bit, when he doesn’t want to cling to you as much any more.

2. Trapped
Don’t feel trapped. Sometimes a crying baby, that will do nothing other than hang onto you all day and all night, can be overwhelming. You may feel as though you have too many other things to take care of, and it would be much easier if the baby would just let go a little bit. Don’t get angry, the baby just loves you that much, and wants to be close to you.

3. Know You’re Here
If they even start to scream when you leave the room, continue to chat if you have to do the laundry. You can even record messages of your voice, singing, talking or reading a book, to help make it easier for you and the baby.

4. Don’t Disappear
For a baby that is terrified of being left. Do not disappear when she is not looking. Many toddlers should be watched at all times. Play peek-a-boo with the baby. This is a great way to let your know that just because you can’t see someone, doesn’t mean they are not there. You can act like a ghost, and pull a sheet over your head. For older children, you can make things like balls and cups disappear and come right back.

5. Reassure Your Partner
Let your partner know he is doing nothing wrong. Many partners, men and women can feel left out, if the baby only wants to be with and cling to one of the adults. Let them know that this is just a stage too. Do activities together, so that the baby feels more comfortable with whichever person it is that’s being left out. Let the person know that toddler does not love you more.