This week I saw another in a slew of studies and opinions about how to raise your children. As a mother and a psychologist, I find this trend of battling opinions to be crazy-making fodder for frustrated parents.
There are a few things we know for sure. Don't abuse your children. Do feed, clothe and shelter them. Beyond that, you can probably find some sketchy opinion or study to back up any position you take on parenting.
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So, how do we solve parenting dilemmas like whether to let our babies cry it out, whether to let them sleep in our beds, how to discipline them and so on? Here's an idea: Follow your gut instincts.
I didn't let my babies cry it out. Why? The crying was like a jackhammer in my head, and I was afraid I'd move out if I heard them cry for one more second. So, I picked them up or put them in a swing. Or my husband picked them up, and we loved on them a bit and put them back to bed.
I didn't have my babies sleep in my bed. Why? Because everyone in the bed was sleeping except me, and when mom doesn't sleep, well I think you can imagine what that looks like.
There are some great parenting books and blogs out there, but all of them can't be right for each of us because they are all dramatically different. Parents can read each or any of these with a discerning eye and decide what makes the most sense for you and your family.
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What makes your family more peaceful? What style of parenting allows for partner and individual time? Parenting is an exhausting marathon, and we must pace ourselves in a way that saves some energy for those adolescent years. Keep reading ...
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