When Mom and Dad are the Problem + Labeled Kids + Surviving Deployment

[amazon asin=1937134180&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest: 1: Vicki Hoefle, author of Duct Tape Parenting.
Topic: A less-is-more approach to raising respectful, responsible, resilient kids.
Issues: Why helicopter mothers and fathers are bad for kids; why it’s important for moms and dads to sit on their hands and stay on the sidelines so that children can step up, solve their own problems, and develop life-long confidence.


[amazon asin=030739543X&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest 2: Barbara Probst, author of When the Labels Don’t Fit/
Topic: A new approach to raising a challenging child.
Issues: Discovering your child’s essential nature and temperament; respecting your child’s inner world; changing the way you think, talk, and respond; knowing when and how to help; taking care of yourself.


[amazon asin=0965748375&template=thumbnail1&chan=default]Guest 3: Karen Pavlicin, author of Life After Deployment.
Topic: How military families prepare for, cope with, and survive deployment.
Issues: Types of deployment; emotional and psychological stages of deployment; ways to keep in touch across time and distance; the effects of deployment on the soldier, spouse, and children; keeping reasonable expectations when coming home.

Increasing Competence

I’m a new father. I haven’t had much experience with infants and I want to be involved in my child’s care, but every time I try to pick her up, she cries. How can I feel more competent and help soothe my child so she’s more comfortable when I take care of her?

Few things can make a man feel less like a man than feeling like an incompetent parent. And nothing can make a man feel more incompetent than a baby. Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to overcome these feelings.

First of all, let’s start with what NOT to do: Do not hand your daughter off to your wife. She may be able to get her to stop crying a little quicker than you do, but the truth is that whatever your wife knows about children, she learned by doing–just like anything else. And the way you’re going to get better is by doing things, too. Research shows that lack of opportunity may be one of the biggest obstacles to fathers’ feeling more comfortable with their children. In other words, the more time you spend with your child, the more competent you’ll feel as a parent.
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Building Self-Confidence and Self-Esteem

Dear Mr. Dad: I hear so much about the need for kids to have self-esteem and self-confidence, but I’m not sure how to go about instilling either one in my kids. They’re only four and six, so maybe it’s no big deal yet—but is there anything I can do now to raise confident kids?

A: Absolutely. It’s never too soon—or too late, for that matter—to think about your child’s future. But first, let me take a minute to hopefully eliminate some confusion. Self-confidence and self-esteem are related, but they’re not identical. Self-esteem is somewhat passive and has to do with how we see ourselves—what (or whom) we see when we look in the mirror. Healthy self-esteem is also crucial in developing positive attitudes and actions toward others. You’re much more likely to treat someone else with empathy and respect if you have a positive view of yourself.

Self-confidence is more active, and describes our willingness and ability to interact with the world around us.
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Hey, whose homework is it anyway?

Dear Mr. Dad: My ten-year-old son can’t seem to keep up with his homework. He often asks his mom and me for help, and we willingly provide guidance. But a few times, I think we’ve done most of the assignment for him, just to get him over the hump. Now he’s asking for even more help. How can we get out of this rut?

A: The good news—actually, it’s pretty bad—is that you’re not alone. A recent study commissioned by Askkids.com (which is part of search giant Ask.com) found that 43 percent of parents actually do their children’s homework for them. And those are just the ones who admit it.

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