Welcome to July’s Q&A episode! Today I dive right in with some excellent questions about whether to allow “sexy” dolls like L.O.L Surprise Dolls in imaginary play, being aware of which franchises and marketing campaigns your children are exposed to, and how to encourage your child to play independently. I break down the relatively recent phenomenon of children expecting their parents to play with them and keep them entertained all day, and what you can do about it, even if you have an only child. Boredom is the basis for creativity, and it’s okay to establish boundaries for time together versus adult time for you. I share the two simple, but powerful words you can use to stop a rude or sassy attitude in its tracks, and what to do if your child is “acting out” in physical ways but not necessarily melting down.
Finally, as we slowly return to our busy lives after the pandemic, remember that work, relationships, and parenting demands can drain our energy resources quickly. I offer my perspective on why it’s so important to rest, slow down, and pay attention to what activities feel restorative to you and your soul (reading, limiting social media, going for a walk in the woods) in this sometimes draining season of life.
Thank you for your listening, and I appreciate your patronage more than I can say. For more information on my potty training and parenting resources, please visit the links below.
The Finer Details of This Episode:
“We have to all be really cautious about what we let into our house, knowing that there's marketing attached and franchising attached.”
“I would watch the play… Is the play going into this weird sexy zone?”
“If your child's in their room playing with their stuff, and it's cool, I wouldn't worry about it.”
“It's really worth investigating what your kid is watching and making sure that the attitudes in the show are really great.”
“If you think about a typical sitcom, they do a zinger. They do a one-liner, and then it cuts to a commercial or it cuts to the next scene. And you hear the canned laughter or maybe even a live studio audience. But you don't get to see how the zingers land.”
“It's definitely worth watching stuff with your kids. Because what can seem really innocuous can create huge attitudes.”
“It takes almost as much mental energy for me to coerce him to go play. So what that tells me is, if it takes you a lot of energy to get him to scram, it means you keep moving the boundary.”
“If you move the boundary, then the kid’s going to push even harder.”
“This is the first time in history that adults have ever played with their kids or entertained their kids.”
“What I would do, especially for the summer, I would definitely set a time and say, It's noon. This is the time that you spend by yourself. And I spend by myself,. You can go do anything you'd like in your room or outside. And I will set the timer and at one o'clock we can meet up again. And we can play a game together.”
“Simply say, [Try] again. Generally speaking, when your kid is being rude or sassy, they are well aware that they are being rude and sassy. So you do not need to tell them they're being rude and sassy.”
“You don't need to bring home like, You're being rude. They know they're being rude! They're trying to be rude. In fact, they're doing it to see if they can get away with it. So when you say, Try again, they know exactly what you mean.”
“You can totally say, I see you stomping. I know you're upset with me. It's okay to be upset with me. And I'm really happy that you're doing the thing anyway.”
“One of the things you really want to do is recognize when your child is acting out their emotions, because they may not have the words or they may not have the capability to tell you the words, or they are afraid you might get mad.”
“We don't want them to be scared of us, we want them to use their words at all times.”
“Start paying attention to where you feel fulfilled, where you feel rested. Even though you might be full of action, it still might be restorative to your nervous system, to your soul.”
“It's not even about rest like that - you have to slow down everything - even though I highly recommend that. It's about figuring out your energy sources and where to put your best work.”
“It's not just rest in the typical, Stop moving your body. But think of what's restorative to you.”
“If we are constantly going, going, going, and if we are constantly providing stimulation for our kids and activities for our kids, they'll never know how to be bored.”
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