Parents May 2020

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Meredith Corporation
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12 期号


editor’s note

Getting to the Root of Misbehavior FOR THE PAST few months, I’ve been referring to my home (in my own head, at least) as the Land of No. “It’s time to get your jacket on,” I’ll say to my 5-year-old. “No!” Joey shouts back. Go ahead and reread that exchange ten or 20 times, apply it to every scenario under the sun (eating dinner, putting a toy away), and you’ll grasp how my days often play out. For an extra dose of reality, add a few failed tries at compromise, a little brother inching perilously closer to missing his naptime, and a maternal stress level that’s rising, no zenith in sight. I’ll come right out and say it: My sons are cooperative with the other adults in their life but are frequently headstrong with me.…

let’s get real

• MOTHER’S DAY Tell Us About It We asked five of our favorite moms: “What do you appreciate about your own mother now that you didn’t as a kid?” “I appreciate her eccentricities. As a child, I’d be embarrassed at times by how different our household was. As I got older and started to embrace my individuality, I realized she was being a role model for us by walking to the beat of her own drum and not conforming to the status quo.”—Laura Prepon, actress and author of You & I, as Mothers: A Raw and Honest Guide to Motherhood“I grew up in a family that teases, and Mom got teased the most. I never considered how that must have made her feel, two girls and a husband making fun of her, even…

the challenging gift of failure

UP UNTIL my son Sid was 5, his life was filled with flattery and validation for every endeavor he embarked upon. His artwork was likened to that of Basquiat, his dancing naked in the living room applauded as if he were Baryshnikov. Like so many parents, I’d indulged him and adored him and convinced him that there was nothing he could not do. As a result, Sid decided that he had no real need for school and even less need for after-school activities. What was the point? As far as he was concerned, he’d already mastered life. “What about a guitar class?” I inquired. “Naw. You already told me that I’m an amazing guitar player,” he reminded me. “But … you don’t even play guitar.” I looked at him, confused. “Air guitar, duh! It’s even…

your monthly dose of what’s new, novel, and need-to-know

Staring down Mother’s Day with no bouquet for your MIL? Use Instacart.com to shop from her local grocery store for fresh flowers and they’ll be delivered to her door in as little as an hour. Mission accomplished for a last-minute surprise. Only two months (or less!) of lunches to go! Create an assembly line of bread, nut butter, and jelly to make several sandwiches at once. Wrap each in foil; freeze. Toss one in the lunch box at breakfast and it will thaw by midday. Done! HOW TO BE A PERSON, by Catherine Newman, is an illustrated guide that teaches tweens (who aren’t eager to learn anything from you) life skills such as managing money, doing the dishes, and addressing an envelope. $12; out May 26 $30 To $50 That’s the average amount spent…

baffling body behaviors, explained

Your child’s bizarre physical habits—blinking her eyes repetitively, shrugging her shoulders over and over, clearing her throat—shouldn’t keep you up at night. “They’re called benign motor tic disorders and are quite common in first- and second-graders, but they usually go away as your kid gets older,” says Eileen Costello, M.D., a pediatrician in Boston and coauthor of Quirky Kids. In fact, kids often like to experiment by moving and bending their body in ways that look unnatural. You may be curious about these three behaviors, but they’re usually nothing to worry about. Knuckle Cracking Despite the cringeworthy sound it makes, there's no evidence that this causes arthritis or any other joint issues later on, says Dr. Costello. That popping sound you hear is actually air bubbles releasing, not bones cracking. Joint Contortions When a…

think like your kid

MY 5-YEAR-OLD daughter, Violet, was midway through kindergarten when she became obsessed with worry about missing the bus. We’ve never actually missed the bus—we always pick out her clothes and pack her backpack the night before, and allow plenty of time for getting dressed and eating breakfast. But it didn’t matter how organized we were or how well the rest of the morning went. In the final five minutes, when I needed my big girl to put on her coat and shoes while I strapped her younger sister into the stroller, she’d melt into a wailing puddle of frustration. I couldn’t figure it out: Why was she was so fixated on missing the bus but unable to do the one simple thing to ensure that wouldn’t happen? “Anxiety can make us…