My daughter is 5 and starting kindergarten and music lessons. I cannot lie: in these and her future...I dunno, endeavors I guess you would call them, I want her to do well. I want her to put effort in and take pleasure in her efforts. But I don't know how to foster this in her and it's time I started figuring it out. [more inside]
I've never dated a dad before -- and now have a boyfriend with two children whose divorce isn't final. They are a very "low boundaries" family and I'm having a hard time dealing with what is said, discussed in front of his children... [more inside]
My daughter is starting kindergarten at Catholic school. We are atheists (although raised Catholic). She will be learning about god in school, learning prayers, etc. and I basically just realized that I have NO CLUE how to navigate this. Do I let her believe, or do I tell her it's all just pretend? Is there an in between? Please help. [more inside]
Is this normal? I often have anxiety about my kids. I need perspective. [more inside]
My daughter needs to increase her vegetable intake, but refuses to eat most veggies. What recipes will allow us to disguise her vegetables in other foods? [more inside]
I have an 8-year old who knows all the good swear words and understands on some level that it's not appropriate for him to use them most of the time. I'm struggling to give him some principled guidelines for using swear words. [more inside]
I was incredibly touched to learn that my goddaughter has decided that in lieu of a birthday party she's inviting all of her guests to a local book repository to sort, sticker, and bag books destined for low-income families. I love this and want to do something for her birthday to help encourage more of this kind of thing in the future. Help me choose from some options or suggest something else: [more inside]
My toddler (2 years old) has been regressing big time. She regressed on potty training a while back, but that's not what concerns me. Now she refuses to feed herself, she has stopped making verbal requests, she whispers instead of speaking aloud. I'm not asking why the regression, so much as how do I deal with it? [more inside]
Most of our friends have kids under age five. We're considering whether and how to make our wedding a kid-friendly event. Have you seen this done? Have you tried it? As a parent, what would help? Or do you just want a night out? Would anything make you more likely to stay overnight for more fun the next day? [more inside]
In the next few weeks, I will need to attend a series of late-running formal dinners... with a five-year-old in tow. Please recommend your most magical, engrossing, dinner-table-friendly activity books, games, small toys, etc. for the early school-aged set, so we can keep her quietly in her seat and out of everyone's hair. [more inside]
10-year-old that struggles with many things who, for a few years now, has, when feeling sad/depressed, talked about how no one likes him, he's not good at anything, has no special qualities, isn't smart... etc. Looking for ways to help him. [more inside]
I have a 3 1/2 year old who will be starting preschool in the fall. He currently attends a home daycare, where he has breakfast and lunch, and often dinner. Once he starts preschool, we will have to manage breakfast and dinner at home. He is an incredibly slow eater and when we eat dinner at home, it literally takes him until bedtime to eat. This makes breakfast a major challenge as well. Getting him up earlier doesn't necessarily help because then he's groggy and uncooperative and will spend that extra 20 minutes moving at the speed of molasses in terms of getting dressed and toothbrushed. Please help. [more inside]
My soon-to-be 3-year-old daughter is pretty timid, physically. It's nothing crippling or even worrisome, but still…c'mon kid, geez, just jump! You'll be fine! [more inside]
I would love some suggestions for science experiments with the Cambridge BrainBox electronics kit. [more inside]
Some friends and I would like to create (and work through) a reading list of current, thoughtful, thought provoking, but non-alarmist articles and/or books on helping kids create a healthy relationship with technology. The immediate focus is on elementary and middle school kids, but we'd expand it for general thought-provoking material on topic. [more inside]
Flying in the face of scientists' warnings, my wife and I allow our child to play with the iPad from time to time. She's outgrown most of the apps she previously played with -- does anyone have any recommendations for good puzzle, games, and educational apps that would be age-appropriate and interesting for a twenty-month-old? Thanks.
A recent AskMe thread and this answer in particular has me re-examining an experience I had a while back, when exhibiting at a show. One of the other exhibitors had her four-year-old child along. I'm sure that if she had any other choice she would have left her child at home. But I kept feeling like her attitude about her child and their impact on the rest of the show and the other exhibitors was....lax? And I'm trying to figure out if I'm being an unfair childless jerk. In part because I hope to have my own kids someday, and if I do, I may very well be in her same position. [more inside]
I've recently come to the conclusion that I need to spend more time with my 3.5-year-old boy/girl twins, and looking for some structured activities/things to do to help drive it and get them excited, as they generally prefer my wife over me... [more inside]
I'd like to convey as much wisdom/advice as possible to my kids before they become feral teenagers drenched in Axe and scorn. Please share the best lists/essays/articles you've ever seen on the theme of "Teaching Your Kids About ______". [more inside]
As a parent and father, how do I, or how can I or should I, deal with parents of other children whose badly behaved kids do something mean or nasty to my own kid? [more inside]
Parents: I'm wondering how your kids learned things like empathy, honesty, compassion, etc. I know that setting a good example is probably the #1 thing to do, and I plan to, but did you use other ways, like reading (fiction) kids' books with them that demonstrate these things? Am I overthinking this? I want to raise a kid with a conscience...
My daughter's on the other side of the ocean for a little while, but we keep up with daily video chats. We talk, goof around, make faces, play with puppets, but I sometimes wish I had more ideas to keep her entertained. Can you think of any other fun things we could do? [more inside]
I did something colossally stupid this evening: Put up some pasta on the stove and then fell promptly asleep for a little while on the couch. Woke up to a terrible smell of natural gas. Found the water in the pot had spilled over and doused the flame of the burner it was cooking on. With the gas on high. It was probably like that for about 10 minutes or so. And now, four hours later, the house still has a strong-ish odor. Here is my question: does the smell indicate that gas is still present in the house, and if so, should I be concerned for the health and safety of my small children, who are sleeping a hallway away from the kitchen? [more inside]
My ex-wife suddenly vanished over 2 years ago to her native Asian country, leaving behind a son (then 1, now 3) and daughter (then 6, now 8). Contact was intermittent (sometimes once a week and sometimes every three months). I asked her to commit to a regularly scheduled call and she refused to do so. I also found the phone calls to be borderline abusive to my daughter (the daughter would ask, "Mommy when are you coming back," and the mother would reply, "When are you going to come see me?" which caused the daughter to feel responsible for her absence - or the Skype video chats where the daughter would have the camera on but the mother refused to do so). I have since cut off contact with the mother in order to protect my daughter, though wonder if it is the correct decision. [more inside]
My four and a half year-old son has expressed an interest in blues music. Can you help me find enough great blues songs to fill a mixtape for him that are: a) electric; b) kinda rockin'; and c) not overly lyrically troublesome for a preschool-aged tyke? [more inside]
Boston MetroWest parent filter: I need an affordable full-time preschool in Needham, MA or between Needham and North Waltham. And by "affordable" I mean < $1000/month. My son will be 3 in October. [more inside]
My (boy / girl) twins will be entering kindergarten this September. We've been asked if we want them placed into separate classes, or left together in the same class. Need to give them our answer by Monday and frankly, I'm at a loss and have no idea what I should do. If you are a parent of school-age or older twins, can you please share what you did and why? If you yourself are a twin, how did your parents handle it? How did it work out? Other knowledgeable anecdotes and advice welcome. Links to any online resources I can read on the topic would also be appreciated.
My daughter is 10 and in the midst of puberty. She has noticeable armpit hair. She's also fairly naive/unaware of standard social stuff - not clued in to what's "cool" etc. She also gets teased about being weird pretty regularly. She's also going to sleepaway camp for the first time this summer, and will be wearing a bathing suit a lot... [more inside]
Are you an adult in a two-parent, dual-income family? Do you have kids of school age? Could you give me an idea of how much "adult" time you have in a normal week? I don't mean just sex, anything that's not kid-dominated would count: date night, beers, whatever. Pop culture makes having kids out to be all-consuming from just about conception until college but I don't have any real-world frame of reference for it so I'm trying to calibrate myself.
My precocious but angry 2.75-year-old and I just got fired from our home daycare situation. I feel like I need Super Nanny. What now? How do I get him to stop being so rude? [more inside]
My kids (currently 6 and 9) have become voracious readers. We have a large and varied collection of excellent fiction for them, but the non-fiction collection is more haphazard. They love learning new facts as they read (the type of thing that makes them look up from the book and say, "Did you know...?"). I want to make sure that the collection of books gives them a good introduction to fields where I myself may not have enough knowledge to judge the quality/accuracy of the book. So what's the kid's book in your field that makes you say, "If only every kid got to read this book, people would understand [topic] better."? [more inside]
My four-year-old son’s birthday is in late November. In our state, that means we can choose whether he starts (all-day) kindergarten this coming fall, when he’s 4-going-on-5, or next year, when he’ll be 5-going-on-6. I’m pretty paralyzed over this decision. I’m looking for insights, especially those with some sort of data behind them, to help. [more inside]
My preschooler is getting just old enough to have a proper social life (playdates, birthday parties, etc.). I've got some specific questions about the parental etiquette expectations surrounding these kiddie get-togethers. [more inside]
My kids (a boy and a girl) are now five years old, and my wife or I read to them every night before bed. I'd like to start reading larger books to them which we can stretch out throughout a week or more, by reading them a chapter a night. Please help me put together a great reading list of age-appropriate books that will capture their imaginations and inspire happy dreams. [more inside]
I don't think I want kids and that scares me. [more inside]
Tell me about your daily schedules, parenting logistics, etc., with a newborn plus a toddler or older child. [more inside]
I have a beautiful, curious, 8 month old daughter. I love her, but I don't know how to play with her. Help! [more inside]
How can I (should I?) thank parents for doing a fantastic job? [more inside]
What things should I be concerned about when it comes to our 11 year old having a 3DS? [more inside]
How did you decide when and if to have a second baby? [more inside]
At times my 3-year-old son deliberately misbehaves. Do I double down on the discipline, or shrug it off? [more inside]
It's time to switch my kids from regular car seats to booster seats and I can't figure out which to buy or what features I should be looking for. If you've gone through this, can you please share your experiences to help me make a decision? [more inside]
My child hates/refuses to wear outdoor clothing? HELP! [more inside]
How old was your child when you first started leaving her with babysitters who weren't relatives? How long would you leave them for?
AdviceFilter: What life experiences (or fun things) should my partner and I make time for, before having a baby? [more inside]
Vegetarian parenting, infant edition. [more inside]
I have a 4 yo and another on the way. We camp a lot. We have a VW jetta wagon, but it's getting cramped and we need something bigger. I like the Mazda 5 but my wife thinks it's "too minivan looking." ANy suggestions for maxi-wagons that have that third row of seating that can fold down into cargo space? We do not want an SUV but may have to consider something on the small end of the SUV range ... and we're hoping not to spend more than 24k. Used/new/prev lease all are options.
Help me build the best modular indoor blanket fort EVER. [more inside]
She's not into what she thinks girls her age are "supposed" to be into. How do we show her that what she likes is what's normal, and maybe encourage her to reach out to find the other kids that like that stuff too? Is that what we should be doing? [more inside]
I'm looking for websites that have cool, educational, entertaining and kid-safe stuff I can share with my two 4 year olds, perhaps similar to the kids should see this, and/or sites that suggest neat projects and how-to's my wife and I can work on with them to open their eyes to the wonders of the world around them. All suggestions welcome!