Okay, this may well be a false choice but I'm trying to sort this out in my mind -- I see two roads ahead of us, one in which we stay where we are currently living -- an underwater house in good shape in a middling-to-poor neighborhood (but with adjacent nicer amenities) -- which is affordable and where we are making enough money to save for all the things we need to save for (retirement, college, cash savings, etc.). OR, we can buy our way into a nicer neighborhood and school district, keeping this house as a rental. Right now my husband and I are both working at well-paying jobs and our 3-year-old is in full-time daycare. My goal, when she starts kindergarten in 3 years, is to work 3/4 or less time, so that I am home with her after school and do to this for the rest of her school years. [more inside]
Wifey and I are headed to Hawaii for our first vacation post-pregnancy. We've loved staying at B&B's in the past, but don't want our hosts or other guests to cringe when we show up with our 6-month-old daughter. Be honest: have we outgrown this mode of lodging?? [more inside]
Looking for books on baby care/baby development which don't focus on getting the baby into a routine. [more inside]
Our oldest child is about to turn 13 and desperately wants a cell phone and an email address. We see both good and bad in this, but we agree that he's matured a lot in the last year and he's old enough (and mature enough) to start learning how to use and live with these things. That said, we're a bit apprehensive, for all of the obvious reasons. With those things in mind, MeFi parents of tweens and young teens: how are approaching/handling your child's cell phone and email usage? [more inside]
Looking for specific recommendations for books on raising a gifted child. [more inside]
Three months ago we produced a new baby (yay us!). Toddler Nom (not quite three years old) has adapted as well as one might expect. But now she acts like she doesn't like her papa anymore. How do we react? [more inside]
I’m looking some age-appropriate media that will show my bright, sensitive 3 year old son (who seems to be more interested in all things femme every day) that his interests are okay. He has lots of female family members and friends who demonstrate to him that there are a million different ways of being a woman or a girl. But neither his dad nor I is feminine in the slightest, and most of the men in his life are uniformly masculine. I’d love it if he could see positive representations of boys and men in books and TV who have a wider variety of gender expressions. [more inside]
I have read articles about herd immunity and I understand the concept. But, boots on the ground, should I worry about my vaccinated son occasionally playing with a partially vaccinated 4-year-old and a completely unvaccinated 2-year-old? We're all pretty mindful of staying away when the children show signs of illness. I am interested in both medical information and how other parents have navigated this potential risk.
Many people I know who aren't global warming skeptics are still planning to procreate. Though I might like to have a kid someday, the thought of their future quality of life strikes me as a potentially decisive ethical objection to it. While I've seen plenty of arguments against procreation that deal with the ethics of creating more consumers, that issue is distinct from the ethics of creating new sufferers. Can you point me to any well-reasoned arguments--whether yours or something you've seen, on either side of the issue--that deal with the ethics of choosing to bring children into a hotter world? [more inside]
I've only seen my best friend outside of his house twice this year. He and his wife have a 15-month-old baby boy, and they ignore, decline or don't make it to every social engagement because the baby might cry, or the baby is sleeping. They've all but stopped communicating with me. Help me understand why this is so hard for them, and if there is there any advice I can use or pass on that can help? [more inside]
I'd like to get some recommendations on the basics of feminism, especially as it might relate to things a dad can do to help his daughters prepare for and deal with sexism in society and also do his part in understanding the world and making it a better place for women (and by extension all people). [more inside]
As I mentioned in this question, I'm a single mom of an 8 month old. My question in a nutshell is, how in the hell do working single parents do it? [more inside]
I have a 2 year old (26 months to be very precise). We have entered the phase of "I do it!", which is okay in and of itself, but a pattern is starting to appear. He wants to, say, put on his coat himself. Great! Usually one of 2 things happens: he puts it on himself (about 10% of the time), or as soon as I hand him the coat he insists that I do it. So I start to do it, but I get a tearful "MAMA I DO IT!" He creates an impasse where I can't help him but he refuses to do what he says he wants to do. [more inside]
Recently seeing a lot of disappointment from parents/ grown children regarding their parents/ grown children. Both sides disillusioned with the difference between who they want/ need the other to be/do and who they actually are/ do. What has kept you close to your parents/ children? [more inside]
My husband and I are expecting our first child, a girl, due in 2 months and are having a serious naming dilemma. We are both worried about the possibility of our chosen name leading to teasing. [more inside]
When I got pregnant, my brother and sister-in-law immediately offered SIL as our daycare provider as she'd be at home with their baby anyway. Sweet! Now I'm 2 months from going back to work, however, and she's getting (understandable) cold feet about the idea of caring for 2 babies at the same time. Not sweet. :( Looking for suggestions on how our families can make this work, because trying to figure out a different daycare/nanny option in the next 2 months is giving me hives (plus I'd love for my son to be cared for by family if possible). Wall o' relevant details inside... [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.
Please help me find a good book gift for my amazing manager who is leaving before Christmas - after fifteen years in HR, she has decided to spend some time with her two school-age kids, one of whom is disabled and needs more time of her than she can manage whilst working. [more inside]
While at a small family gathering in our friends' home, my coworker's 7-year-old son suddenly grabbed a 4-year-old girl, raised her up into the air over his head, and body-slammed her onto the living room floor -- in full and complete view of 8 parents, including both of his own. His parents never did or said anything to him about it that night, and we're all horrified. How do we get to a place of acceptance when folks make vastly different parenting choices than our own, and our kids see it? Details ... [more inside]
What can I do as a parent to help my child build persistence, self-discipline, high standards, and work ethic? [more inside]
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'm stuck in the town where I just finished university, because I'm engaged to Jake, who has a child here, Finn. Jake had Finn with Kaitlyn when she was 16 and he was 18. Finn is now 4. I could move anywhere I want and make a living. I'm happy with Jake, but I'm unhappy with life as a whole, depressed, have low self-esteem. Jake has only limited contact rights to his son and a whole lot of trouble with Kaitlyn, who hates me. We live together and I am the sole-earner in this household, in the awful UK economy. I haven't left the house all year, I've just been working yet I'm still in debt and I want to get away. On the other hand I love Jake, we have so much in common and we never even argue, even though the year that we've been together life has been very difficult. We really love and respect each other. I have great hope in him, I'm excited to meet his son and I think we could make a life together. Except it would all take years. And I'm at the end of my tether and want to leave now. [more inside]
I have a bright, funny middle schooler who now has little interest in anything or anybody. He has no behavioral problems but can't focus on anything or connect with anyone, and it's affecting his home, school, and social life. If he was happy to live in his head, I could understand that, but he is frequently bored and lonely, and he seems incapable of making connections, both to other people and to new ideas. Can anyone give me some strategies or guidelines for working with him? [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]
My son is currently applying to a service academy for college. This is all he has ever wanted since he was a small child. He has worked his tail off so far and is now frozen on the essays. I have no idea how to help him. [more inside]
MINML (metafilter is not my lawyer, but oh man, that would be one kick ass lawyer) Have you even been thru mediation with an ex-spouse over parenting plan stuff? If so, I have some basic quesitons...brief background below... [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]
My three year old has a very hard time waking up from his nap in the afternoon. Today he cried and screamed and complained for almost an hour. Help me find a way to avoid this. [more inside]
I need advice, a life coach, a parenting coach, a therapist. In the meantime, please help me to determine the seriousness and most of all what to do when my 11 yo son is so distraught over a series of seemingly trivial events. Please help me know what to say. [more inside]
I'm looking for advice for helping my 5 year old (new kindergartener) daughter deal with what looks like nascent perfectionist tendencies. [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...
I've looked at the archives but couldn't find much specific to my situation. I have been breastfeeding my nine week old since he was born, but recently things have gotten more painful. It's never been easy or pain free, but lately nursing has resulted in so much bleeding that my poor little guy is spitting up pink/red after a feeding. I have four days left of maternity leave and an appointment with my OB in two Thursdays, but is there anything I can do in the meantime to make feedings a little less upsetting for both of us? [more inside]
I am a 32 year old female and have a full-time job. I've been working from home for 6 years now. My boyfriend and I are talking about marriage and having a baby. We're trying to figure out if it's going to be possible for me to still work full-time from home while also raising a baby. I found a lot of articles about it being possible to cut back on hours or work part-time only, but I don't want to do that (insurance and financial reasons). He works full-time as well and not from home and we want to try to avoid day care (or at least use it minimally). Has anyone ever successfully done this? If so, I'd love to know how. What was good/bad about it?
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 have just found out that my ex and the father of my child did something twenty-odd years ago that has had permanent ramifications for both our child and his daughter with his former wife (the daughter is 9 years older than our son). I was unaware of this until Sunday, when I visited the former wife (who lives in another city) and we had a long and intense conversation under the shadow of the terminal diagnosis she received earlier this year. What do I do now? [more inside]
Our four-year-old is hell-on-wheels. We have an appointment this week with his pediatrician to discuss his behavior. What do I want to read up on before this chat? [more inside]
Little daughter and I were watching a birds' nest this morning where four little sparrows were getting fed by their mom (or maybe dad?) Each time the mother bird came back, all four sparrows would screech and open their mouths wide and the mother would give one of them some food. My question is: how does the mother ensure that each chick gets enough food? I can think of at least two theories: 1. The adult bird has enough working memory to know who got the last bit of food, or even who's gone the longest without food; or 2. Hungrier chicks screech louder and the adult bird gives food to the loudest screecher. Do we know which of these is right, or whether the real answer is something else entirely?
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 baby is getting to the age where taking care of him is a bit more complicated than just making sure he's fed and slept. I'm looking for your parenting hacks and habits -- things you've learned that make raising kids (toddler age and older) just work a little better. [more inside]
My first child is turning 6 months soon and I've been home with him since he was born. It's finally starting to settle in that this is my job now. Other stay-at-home parents: what do you do all day, and how do you stave off the boredom, loneliness, and exhaustion that come with the territory? Some snowflake details inside. [more inside]
I am, for the first time, in a relationship as a single father. So far it's going quite well, which brings up a variety of questions about what might happen in the future. One day I would like to be married again, which would put whoever I marry in the position of being my daughter's step-mother. How would I get from here to there? [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]
How disturbed should we be by our 5-year-old's sexual behavior toward her father? [more inside]
My ten year old wants to spend most of her summer days on the couch streaming TV over our roku. It is a zillion degrees outside with 200% humidity, so I sort of understand the couch potato impulse. How can I direct her so that her couch potato time doesn't spud her brain? [more inside]
OK, similar questions have been asked here but I'm looking for a very specific answer. My insurance covers two kinds of Medela breast pumps (which friends tell me are the best): The Pump In Style Advanced (at a cost to me of $89), and the Freestyle ($159). It also covers the Medela Advanced Personal Double Breast Pump, about which I know nothing including the cost to me. I've read mixed things about the two pumps: That the Freestyle is great, or that people have experienced reduced flow after using it; and that the Pump in Style is great, but that it's very inconvenient. If you're among the lucky ladies who've had personal experience with these pumps, can you tell me what you think? This is our first kid and I think I'd really benefit from your advice. Thanks!
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]
We'd like to at least consider cloth diapering twins, mainly for environmental reasons (which, by the way, Is it totally settled that cloth diapering is greener? We live in SoCal so water is more of an issue than in most areas). Has anyone tried it, either with singletons and multiples, and would you recommend it for twins? If so, any specifics on brands/methods/tips would be great.
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]