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Tagempathy

The smarter way to deal with a crying child

The funny thing about kids is that they're the reason we lose our shit and the reason we keep it together.

Parenting is a lot like the bar scene; everyone’s yelling, everything is sticky, the same music plays over and over again and once in a while somebody pukes. There’s also a lot more yelling at people from the bathroom than I ever imagined.

Parenting was a lot easier when I was raising my non-existent kids hypothetically. Back then I didn’t know that I could ruin someone’s day by asking them to put pants on.

The standard toddler to-do list goes something like this:
1) Ask for waffle
2) Refuse offered waffle
3) Ask why your waffle was taken away
4) Cry because you don’t have your waffle

…and that’s on a good day.

I feel like every time I say “no” my kid hears “ask again, she didn’t understand the question”.

They say women average about 20,000 words a day. My toddler manages that before breakfast. I routinely find myself staring blankly at my husband because I can’t remember what we were talking about after being interrupted 178 times.

Somebody asked me what the hardest thing about parenting is, I said “it’s the kids”. Ever had a job where you had no experience, no training, weren’t allowed to quit and people’s lives depended on you?

I am a strong woman raising a strong child which is why I need a strong drink. One day I’ll be thankful that my kid is strong willed, but that will not be today. Not in this grocery store.

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How to help your child deal with strong emotions

Empathy not only matters; it is the foundation of effective parenting

Children need love – especially when they seem to deserve it the least. And that’s when it can be so incredibly hard to find a compassionate response.

Dealing with a developing brain and a human being learning how to hooman gets overwhelming at times. And arguing with a miniature version of myself, with the same shit-ass attitude, can get really frustrating.

When I say “Get dressed”, I don’t mean stand around watching TV with one sock on. Some days my mom voice is so loud even the neighbours brush their teeth and get dressed.

I can’t promise to fix all my daughter’s problems, but I can make sure she never faces them alone. Ultimately, I’m not dealing with just a tantrum, I’m training her in how to survive life and I’d like for my legacy to be the best advice she ever got.

This is but one mother’s quest to navigate the temper tantrums of a developing toddler brain, because life can get hard and things can go wrong, but no matter what, you’ve got to stay strong.

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Bully-proofing your kids is simpler than you think

Feelings are like waves we can surf

Dr. Seuss said, “Be yourself because the people who mind don’t matter. And the people that matter don’t mind”.

With anxiety and depression rates in young people growing at the same rate as smartphone adoption, it’s more important than ever to raise strong, self-aware children who can not only survive meeting a bully, but thrive in a world full of them.

By extension, raising bully-proof kids, will also raise kids who don’t bully. Compassion and empathy is the only way we have back to each other, back to a place where we can connect with each other and be part of something greater than ourselves.

Compassion is not a virtue, it’s a commitment. It’s not something we have or don’t have – it’s something we choose to practice every day, every challenge.

The earlier we begin to foster compassion in our children, the easier it will be for them to choose compassion over antagonism.

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6 ways introverts and cats are alike

How introverts and cats are alike

For the longest time I thought I was a dog person, just because I grew up around dog people.

But I always felt emotionally drained by dogs, constantly paying attention to me, always wanting me to go do something and never letting me make a trip to the fridge by myself.

Then, I discovered cats with their aloof ways and nonchalant manner, and I just bailed on dogs, like a rat getting off the Titanic.

Plus, when I complain about what a little sh*t my cat is being everyone agrees! Cat people totally know what I’m talking about and dog people think cats are little sh*ts anyway.

I totally get cats, they like to chill out and do their own thing and I can so relate to that.

All I need is a full tabletop of stuff to swipe to the floor and I’ll practically be a cat!

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How to prepare for birth as a new father-to-be

How to prepare for birth as a new father-to-be

If you’re feeling scared or nervous about becoming a father, remember this: fathering is not something perfect men do, but something that perfects the man.

As the father you are an essential part of the birth of your child, but men can easily end up feeling like spare parts when their own children are being born.

Labouring women aren’t the only ones who go through a deep transformation. You are also going through powerful inner changes in preparation for the littles feet to make the biggest footprints in your heart.

This article has everything new fathers wished they had known before the kids were born.

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How exhausting it can be to be a stay-at-home parent

How exhausting it can be to be a stay-at-hoome mom

Parenting is hard. Especially, when you’re trying to be patient with a little impatient versions of yourself.

Parenting is the easiest thing in the world to have an opinion about, but the hardest thing in the world to do.

If parenting came with a GPS it would just mostly say “recalculating”.

It often feels like 90% of parenting consists of thinking about when you can lie down again. It’s a constant battle between going to bed early to catch up on some sleep and staying awake to finally get some alone time.

And it’s hilarious when kids trundle up to you and tell you they’re bored. As if the lady standing in front of a full sink of dishes is where you get ideas about how to have a good time.

They say it takes a village to raise a child. Where can I get directions to this frickin’ village??

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How to celebrate giving birth, motherhood & being a woman the traditional way

African proverb about being pregnant

Birth isn’t just about making babies. It’s also about making mothers: strong, competent, capable mothers who trust themselves and know their inner strength.

As wonderful as modern technology is, the medicalisation of birth has distanced us from that inner strength and diminished our connection to ourselves during this transformational process.

The time following giving birth is one of openness and healing. You may feel leaky – both literally and energetically – and not quite like yourself yet.

Traditional midwifery has some wonderful traditions and bodywork techniques that will support you through this time of transitioning and aid in your healing.

Any time is a good time to celebrate birth, motherhood and being a woman!

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We should have children, but we shouldn’t look like we’ve had them

Postpartum body shaming is real

Nurturing life in your own body is no small task – after all, it takes 9 months before they’re even ready to come into the world.

You go through tremendous changes in your body, at times you’ll even feel like it has a mind of its own and you’re just along for the ride.

Unexpected things create bends and twists in your journey that further strain and damage your body in new ways.

Yet, many of us will soon start dreaming of going back to a physical state we possessed prior to beginning this whole process. And for what?

Most women will still look pregnant for a good while after giving birth (unlike what you can come across in the media). And your body will have changed, even if you do manage to get back to looking how you used to.

Focusing on looks, rather than the birth and new baby, only sends a message that women’s priority should be to look pretty and be easy breeders.

Are we setting unrealistic expectations for women after birth?

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How to know if your parent is a narcissist

How to know if your parent is a narcissist

Whenever I start talking about narcissism and being raised by a narcissist, I’m always overwhelmed by the response. It’s clear that not just one or two of use have been raised by at least one narcissistic parent.

Having a narcissist for a parent wreaks havoc on your self-esteem, feelings of well-being and safety, courage and confidence for years.

Your relationship with your parents is a very intimate one because you wholly depend on them at a young age to teach you (directly and indirectly) everything about life. Eventually, you go out to explore on your own, but the foundation for your expectations and capability to deal with everything is shaped by those early relationships.

The belief that you are never good enough implants itself deeply within your psyche when you’re raised by a narcissist. It also damages your boundaries and sets you up for a lifetime of bending over backwards to please others at your own expense and thwarts your ability to communicate authentically.

It distorts your self-image to the point where it damages your relationships as well as your capability to be successful both personally and professionally. Most people never get the help they need in order to recover and heal because they never realise that what they experienced as children was unhealthy and destructive.

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All children deserve to have good self-esteem

A diamond is a chunk of coal that did well under pressure

Behind every child who believes in themselves is a parent who believed in them first.

Strong self-esteem is the best defense your children can have against life’s challenges. But it isn’t passed on like a family heirloom and cannot simply be given, you need to teach your children how to build it in themselves.

It is far easier to build up the self-esteem of a child than it is to repair it in an adult. Having low self-esteem is like driving through life with the hand-brake on and you will never truly thrive until you discover the potential within yourself and realise that you can do the things you believed you couldn’t.

Children build self-esteem by doing things that are hard and learning what works. Self-esteem is the real magic that shapes your child’s future.

Every child is a star and has the right to sparkle.

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