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You may call it poking, stalling, lollygagging, being slow as molasses, or going at a snail’s pace. Whatever you call it, it can be very frustrating when your child is moving slower than you want.

Some parents build in extra time, so the child can move at a pace they find comfortable. Some parents avoid activities they expect to be frustrating due to their child’s slow pace.

Sometimes my child’s behavior drives me wild. What is going on?

When children act out, they are usually trying to tell us something. That is, behavior is a form of communication. Sometimes it is intense communication, such as hitting, biting, throwing, screaming, or swearing.

Have you ever asked your child ‘why’, only to be met with a blank look? This can be very frustrating.  Then we may loudly demand to know what they were thinking or how they could have done that.

One simple solution is not to ask ‘why.’ Children often give no answer, shrug, or say something silly. No one feels good about that. In many cases there is no real answer. And what probably matters most to the adults is that the situation be dealt with or fixed.

Children often have difficulty differentiating small problems from bigger ones.  For many children, everything is one size – BIG!

Not getting a cookie before dinner is just as upsetting in the moment as having a favorite toy break or not going to the pool because it is raining. It can be hard on adults when children over react. We know there are cookies for dessert, or that we’ll go to the pool tomorrow when the weather is better.

How can we help our children ‘keep things in perspective?’

There are many sources of information for taking your children on vacation. You can read books, magazines, and blogs. You can ask your friends and relatives. You can search the internet.  So this blog post will not give details. My hope is to give you two overarching ideas that can guide you in incorporating and integrating all the information you come across and choose to use.

What can you do when you are too tired to insist on compliance? Or you are sick and can’t follow through? Or you are working on a big project and have no time to spare?  Most caregivers find themselves in these situations now and then. The temptation is to just give in. To say things like ‘never mind,’ or ‘fine, you win,’ or 'just do what you want.'

Do you ever worry about what you need to do next? Is it going to be hard or unpleasant? Maybe it is a long drive on unfamiliar roads.  Maybe it is a form to fill out or a phone call to make. Worrying about what they need to do next happens for children too. This can make transitions a challenge. Giving advance notice can help, as discussed in the last post.

How do you feel about surprises? Pleased or upset? Thrilled or confused? For example, how do you feel when your boss springs a new assignment on you? “I know it’s last minute, but could you please …” Are you excited at the challenge or dismayed that your own plans for the day must be put aside?

When a child is having difficulty managing their emotions or their behaviors, parents sometimes wonder if their child needs counseling. Would their child benefit from seeing a professional? Are their tantrums typical for their age? Do they worry more than other children? Is their attention too short or about right for their age? Asking yourself the following questions can help you decide if your child might benefit from counseling.

You may wonder why I am writing about summer in March. Summer vacation is a long way off.  However, now is the time to begin making plans for your children for the summer. It can be very stressful to suddenly realize in May that in a few short weeks, the children will be out of school. Just recently, my newspaper had an insert titled ‘Super Summer Camp Guide.’ Yes, it is time to start planning!

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Blog Disclaimer:  Please be aware that this blog contains general information. It is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended as treatment or a recommendation or prescription for a particular child. If you have questions about your child, please talk to your pediatrician or seek other professional services.

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