Years ago my husband and I were lazing on a fairly secluded beach in South Goa. There we witnessed a sight, which we quickly made up our minds for, was to be our parenting mantra for the future. We saw a little boy who belonged to parents from Europe. It was actually a group of some 3 families who were travelling with babies. He was dressed in nothing but plain white underwear and was frolicking freely on the beach, playing, falling, running on the sand. His parents sipped their drinks under the shade of the beach resort’s cafe. The child was living his life. He must not have been more than a year and half. He could barely walk. But he was out there, living the touristy life. And we wanted it too. We wanted to give our future child that carefree life.
Most parenting is about receiving conflicting opinions from people around you. Your own parents and grandparents give you information from a time where most things were natural, homegrown and uncompromised. While you want to believe and follow much of their wisdom we find that most of it is not practical or available today. Speaking of friends, colleagues and peers, you may not have babies around the same time or maybe geographically scattered. Parenting philosophies also may not match. How then do you gain information, that has been tested by application and proven to give results? How do you find support in situations which you know your friends and family may not understand or have experience in? Continue reading
Why is the sky blue? Why doesn’t the doggy wear a diaper? Why do we do potty? Where does the water in the washbasin go? And the most famous one – Are we there yet? Thankfully babyT is still a little too young to ask that last question. But hey, did you even attempt to mentally answer these questions? Did you seek the right answers full of logic? Then you are wrong my dear friend! Parenting is all about finding innovative answers to the many questions your children will ask you, because the same questions will be asked to you a million times over. Sadly most parents lose their nerve when their children ask them questions. Half hearted attempts to answer turn to frustration and soon enough the child learns to not ask, not learn and not be curious. You see asking questions is a very healthy habit and you, the parent must encourage it. It’s not just learning the facts and information, it is a lot more than that.
At a time, not so long ago, parenting was about being the leader, absolute authority and disciplinarian. Today we see a very different version of this. Look around you, parents are asking their children for their choices and preferences. They are handling difficult situations much like they would mediate adult conflicts. They are setting goals and providing opportunities to their children much like how it happens in the corporate world. Have parents today gone nuts and living in some crazy bubble? Or are these techniques showing positive results on the development of the child? Positive parenting is seeming to raise happy, healthy kids and showing similar results on the parents too. Continue reading
This weekend was a very hectic one. It also seemed to be the hottest day in Mumbai. We spent a day out with our son, despite the hot sun, because well it had been a long time since we had done something outdoors as a family. So anyway when we got back home in the evening, we were dead tired and just wanted to crash. But before that – dinner time. BabyT was in a happy, over joyous mood and the last thing he wanted to do was eat his dinner. My husband attempted to tempt him, “I’ll give you a deal, finish your dinner and we will have the ripe, sweet mangoes after that.” My son paused, scampered up to me and proudly proclaimed, “I’ll make you a deal… I won’t go to school tomorrow.” I laughed a rather nervous laughter. I couldn’t handle a toddler off school when I had tons of work to finish. But somewhere I was amazed that a 2 year old had the skills to attempt to negotiate with his parents. Continue reading
You know what’s the one thing that gets on my nerves. Kinderjoy eggs! A big kick in the rear to Gender Neutral Parenting. Firstly, the chocolate is abominable. Secondly, these eggs hold useless toys, which only add to clutter in the house. But wait, I’m not done yet. I mostly hate that they have eggs for boys and eggs for girls. Major eye roll. In a world which is getting increasingly complex and where it’s citizens should be making attempts to blend, a kid’s toy is making children believe in a two-toned world.