Family & Parenting

Parents May 2019

Parents brings you expert advice you can trust to help you raise happy, healthy kids at every age, every stage! Celebrate the joys of parenthood! Say yes to Parents now and get all the family-focused fun, down-to-earth tips, and advice from the heart you need to be the best mom you can be!

United States
Meredith Corporation
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12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
the best moms lead with love

I NEED TO KNOW what my mom just said to make my daughter look at me with wide eyes—and Sophia is happy to spill: “Grandma told me that when you were in third grade, you had an outfit you loved and refused to wear anything else. She said that one night while you were asleep, she took it out of your room and threw it away!” I am shocked. First of all, I have zero memory of the outfit (apparently it involved a color-block shirt) or its disappearance. But mainly, I think: “That sounds severe. Why didn’t she tell me a story about a child who needed clothes more than I did? Was there no chance for a gradual phaseout?” I start to fall into my usual spiral, overthinking all the…

4 min.
let’s get real

RELATE. REJOICE. REACT. REMINISCE. Cards for Real Life Hey, Papyrus, we’d like to send these to the moms we love. HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY to the woman who doesn’t even flinch when someone pukes into her bare hands. Thank You for never asking me how sleep training was going. Roses are red, Violets are blue, Roses are red, Violets are blue … Wait, I got interrupted. What was I saying? GOOD LUCK getting that stain out of the rug! Congrats! You only had to cut out a small chunk of hair. Bon Voyage! Cover every surface in plastic and you’ll be fine. Way to Go! You got to work on time twice this week. My Deepest Sympathies to the family cat, who hides in fear of your toddler. —Liz Krieger • HAPPY TEARS Reclaiming Mother’s Day After a Loss The holiday can be harrowing for children whose mother has died. Cara Belvin is on…

3 min.
mom gossip hit me hard

WE ALL experience the pain of feeling like a social outsider at some point or another. But I assumed—naively, perhaps—that being viewed by my sons as a majestic demigod would allow me to cast off any feelings of inadequacy I’d carried with me from childhood. I would just walk around life with my biggest fans, giving zero forks and being an all-around Boss Babe. “Mommy, is that you?” my 4-year-old, Sid, will sometimes inquire as we walk past an outdoor ad featuring a twentysomething model wearing a bikini and cat-eye glasses, the only thing similar about us being our blond locks. “No, baby.” I’ll smile back, momentarily flattered. A part of me enjoys being on the outside, of being the Grendel of my apartment building and the mom who is too…

1 min.
you’re welcome 5 things that delight us this month

1. Instant Silliness Fun up the next blah day by adding googly eyes ($3.50 for 125; michaels.com) to a soap pump, a bowl of fruit, or any humdrum object. Then surprise your brood. Bonus: This takes two seconds! 2. Rent a Lifesaver Don’t have a grand to spend on a SNOO? No biggie. Now you can rent one by the month instead. The smart sleeper shushes and rocks your infant on demand when he cries, which typically leads to more consecutive hours of zzz’s for everyone. $149 per month; happiestbaby.com 3. Hand-Me-Down Parties! We found an easy and fun fix for that pile of kids’ clothes that no longer sparks joy. Just pick a date to host your pals and ask them to bring along their own gently used children’s clothes. At the get-together, organize…

7 min.

Myths About Eyes, Debunked “Don’t sit so close to the TV—you’re gonna burn your eyes out!” That’s what your own parents may have said to you as you played Super Mario Bros. as a child. But was their fear really warranted? Richard Golden, M.D., chairman of the public information committee for the American Association for Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus, explains what you should believe when it comes to protecting your own kid’s peepers. MYTH #1 Screens Will Damage My Child’s Eyesight. THE TRUTH: A screen won’t harm your kid’s eyes, but it may cause them to feel dry and strained. The bright light makes it harder for anyone’s eyes to focus, and we blink less when staring at our phone or a computer. Plus, the eyes’ natural focus is for distance, so when a…

9 min.
how pediatrician moms stick to the rules (most of the time)

HOW MANY episodes of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic can a preschooler watch before it curdles her brain? What’s the safe upper limit for feeding your kid boxed mac ’n’ cheese? In moments when you’re asking yourself these kinds of questions, it’s a relief to turn to the guidelines put out by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), whose research-backed recommendations on stuff like screen time and nutrition are truly the closest thing parents have to an official set of “rules” for raising kids. But nearly 80 percent of our Parents Panel of AAP Moms admit they have trouble following at least one of the AAP health rules at home. Here’s how they push past the struggle and make it work. Screen Time The recommendations: Children under 18 months should have…