Here are notes from week two of a parenting class I recently took based on the principles of ‘Love and Logic,’ written by co-authors Charles Fay, Phd. and Jim Fay.
Three basic techniques for responding to misbehavior:
1)Change Your Location: Grocery store model- “Keep on trucking.” Always stay close enough to keep your child in view, but don’t let him know. Show happiness when he catches up with you, (“Oh, it’s great to see you.”) (“I am so glad you are with me.”) Helps them develop a sense of autonomy while teaching it is their responsibility to keep up with you.
Use very few words. Let consequences do the teaching. For example, when getting to the checkout line with items the child has put into buggy without asking, say “How are you going to pay for that?” Helps teach children accountability for their actions.
2)Change Location of Offending Object: Take away objects that are inappropriately being used by the child leading to misbehavior. Distract to another (safer) object.
Remember: Set limit once and enforce it with actions, not repetitive words.
It’s easier to establish this principle when they are young, and the price tag is small. It gets harder to invoke as they get older, and the price tag gets bigger. For example, teach them while they are young to respond to you, before they get in dangerous situations, such as in the parking lot of a shopping center, when the price tag and dangers are greater.
3)Change Location of The Child: Change location of the child if they are behaving negatively in their current environment. Distract to a different location/area. Make him go to his room.
Give the child a choice about his door staying open or closed. This allows child to feel that they are empowered in the decision making. If closed, make sure room is safe.
My advice: Every family has a different parenting style. And!…What works for one child may not work for another. The above are just tips from the class that I wanted to share.
One question that comes up frequently on the embryo donation and adoption support page is how do you pick a profile? I can appreciate the question and like to see everyone’s thought processes on selection. Some are looking only at embryo stage and grading. Others are looking at physical characteristics. Others look at the age and health history of the donor couple. And others look at some combination of all three.
For us, it wasn’t a question of embryo stage or grading. Honestly, I didn’t know a lot about either and didn’t do a lot of research. With the NEDC, we had instructions to select two profiles (a primary and a backup) and how we could mix and match the stages. Otherwise, this wasn’t a factor in our selection.
When we selected, we had about 40 profiles from which to pick and we looked at physical characteristics above all else. Even though the information we had was limited and genes can definitely surprise you, we thought there would be less questions if our children had some chance of being similar to us.
Once we narrowed it down to eight profiles (if I recall it was 4 at the blastocyst stage and four at either multicell or 2PN) we prayed. There was one that stood out to us and we referred to them as the giants because of their large stature, but otherwise had hair/eye/skin tone like us. I was leaning toward those. God had other plans. After looking at four of the special consideration profiles, we had placed one on our short list. God put them on the top of the list. Even though their medical history wasn’t squeaky clean, they were the ones for us.
I’ve seen many moms post that their embryos weren’t graded that well, but they made perfectly healthy and beautiful babies. I’m glad I didn’t know all the details of their embryo history, such as when they were frozen, grading, etc. I don’t know that it would have changed our decision, but given the fact that we had two beautifully healthy children, those other details just don’t matter.
We are thrilled. This also means that Sienna has priority when she’s ready for kindergarten.
As you probably know, Spanish is the second most used language in the United States. There are more Spanish speakers in the US than of Chinese, French, German, Italian, Hawaiian, and all the Native American languages, combined. According to the 2012 US Census, Spanish is the primary language spoken at home by nearly 40 million people. That is double what it was in 1990.
Spanish speakers are the fastest growing linguistic group in the US. By 2050 (Brae will be 41; Sienna will be 38; baby in the oven will be 36), the US will become the largest Spanish-speaking country in the world, and Spanish will be the second-most-spoken language in the world, surpassed only by Chinese. That means that English will be spoken less than Spanish.
More and more businesses are requiring bilingual employees. Bilingual employees can earn $20,000 more per year simply by being bilingual.
With all this data (and believe me, there’s more), you may see why it is so important for us that our children speak another language, particularly Spanish. But, it’s more than just all these figures. I began learning Spanish when I was in 7th grade, and continued formal education of the language through college. It has helped me immensely in my personal and professional life. My sister is a Spanish high school teacher. My mom speaks Spanish and is able to use her medical degree to travel the world with “Doctors without Borders.”
Tygh, well, el no habla espanol. Que lamenta.
There’s also another reason why it was so important for our kids to get a Spanish education early, particularly for Brae. Brae is a quarter Peruvian. We wanted him to be able to connect to his Latin roots and have the opportunity, if he wanted, to travel the world with the ability to converse easily with native speakers.
Even today, when Brae speaks Spanish with native speakers, the native speakers (and others watching) are absolutely dumbfounded. This 5-year-old, pale-skinned, skinny “white” boy is talking fluently in Spanish with them. They get a tickle out of it.
And I just have to smile at this gift he’s been given.
I had my appointment for lab work and an ultrasound this week at the NEDC. To my relief, everything went well, and I was given the approval to start the Estrace. There was just one embarrassing little hiccup that happened. I showed up a day early.
To be honest, I almost don’t want to post this, but when I signed up to do this blog, I told myself some things would be painful, like exposing my raw emotions about infertility. Blogging would also reveal vulnerabilities in me, I often wouldn’t like to admit. However, I believe, if we admit our flaws, it makes other people realize they too are okay, imperfections and all.
So having said that, I excitedly arrive at the NEDC at 7:55 AM to my 8:00 AM appointment and sign in, only to have the receptionist inform me, they had me scheduled for the next day, the 21st. I knew my appointment was on the 21st, but where I miscalculated, I had in my mind the 21st was on Thursday- not Friday.
My mom and I had arranged the week before to meet in Knoxville for dinner on the eve of my appointment. We would spend the night, then she would watch John Luke the next morning, while I had my check up. After glancing at the calendar previously, I had thought the 21st was on Thursday, and didn’t think about it any further. We had made our plans and that was that.
Easy mistake right? Except, this was an extremely critical appointment. Fortunately, the NEDC was very accommodating and worked me in on the 20th. I truly believe things happen for a reason. On the 21st, the day of my original appointment, I woke up having a sinus infection with nausea and vomiting. I was sick in bed for two days. Traveling would have been extremely difficult, especially with a toddler. It was not an appointment I could have rescheduled until Monday, given the time sensitivity of the protocol.
The take away – I need to check and re-check my schedule. Luckily, it worked out for me this time. Next time, I might not be so lucky. I laughed it off saying, “I’d rather be a day early than a day late.” I try to be an optimist and learn from each experience.
I’ve debated telling this story, but I would be dishonest if I didn’t. Some people might judge, but after sharing it with several people and hearing their own similar stories, I’m sharing. After all, it’s about the good, the bad, and everything in between, right?
We were on the way to church one Saturday evening when a car stopped short in front of us. I braked and went around this car that had apparently found the house for which it was looking. Neither Jeremy nor I said anything about the car and I didn’t really think much of it…until I heard a little voice from the back passenger side of the van declare “That guy is a dumbass.”
I looked at Jeremy and asked if he was proud, because there was NO doubt that Grant had heard that phrase from Jeremy while driving. Jeremy laughed and said “well, he did use it in proper context and if a three year old can tell you are a dumbass…”
I turned my head and looked out the window as I stifled a laugh. I sure this won’t be the first time they repeat something like this…
When I was pregnant with Sienna, I never posted anything about it on any social media site. In fact, after she was born, and I did post pictures of her, many acquaintances sent me messages, marveling about how they didn’t even know I was pregnant.
With this pregnancy, I’ve pretty much done the same thing. I have never posted anything about being pregnant, and don’t plan to.
This is deliberate. For me, I remember the pain each time someone I knew posted about being pregnant, and showed off their growing belly. It killed me inside.
Perhaps I’m more sensitive than most, but when I see posts about someone announcing their engagement, I immediately think of all the girls crying because they just broke up with their boyfriend. When I see posts about someone announcing their cool new job, I think of all the people who have just lost theirs. When I see posts about someone’s awesome vacation, I think of all the people who can’t afford to take one.
Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy seeing all these happy posts, and like to celebrate with others in their joy. There is nothing malicious in posting stuff like this. But my heart goes out to all of those who have been marginalized by this same celebration and joy.
With everything we’ve been through, I just cannot bring myself to announce this pregnancy or post belly pics on social media. Instead of basking in all of the uplifting messages I’m sure we’d get, I will be obsessed with the one girl whose day got a little darker because of that news.
Because I had many of those dark days, too.
Recently, I took a parenting class based on the principles of ‘Love and Logic’ by co-authors Jim Fay and Charles Fay, Phd. Here are some notes from week one:
How to handle a whining or begging child:
- Go Brain Dead- don’t over react, don’t talk or lecture, don’t try to reason in excess.
- Pick one statement and smile while saying it, such as, “I love you too much to argue.”
Remember, when you do the right thing by setting limits for children and enforcing them, it may feel like your doing the wrong thing in the short term. But, sometimes we have to upset children (in the short term) so they can be successful in the long term.
There is an epidemic of parents who don’t want to upset their kids (or don’t want their kids to be unhappy even temporarily), although it could produce long term gains in discipline.
Two basic beliefs kids have:
- My parents, the most powerful people in my life, cannot make me behave. Therefore, I must be really bad.
- My parents can handle me. Therefore, I must be pretty good. And! They make parenting look easy.
Characteristics of successful parents:
- Not permissive.
- Keep it simple, use few words to discipline.
3) Always communicate love and empathy before delivering consequences.
*Using empathy is the core of Love and Logic principles to parenting. Choose one empathetic statement such as, “How sad” or “That’s a bummer.” (That’s a bummer you mis-behaved, and now I have to take a toy away). Then, deliver consequences. This teaches cause and effect.
*The transfer effect will occur if parents are consistent. It’s hard for them to blame anyone else for their misconduct if they can see the cause and effect.
*Plan out consequences. Take time to plan and discipline. “Which toy will you give up for your mis-behavior?” Let actions and discipline do the teaching. Let the action of taking the toy speak for itself rather than talking about the situation over and over. Kids will tune you out, but they will remember having their toy taken for a time.
Everyone has a different parenting style. These are just notes from the class I wanted to share. Each family knows what works for them and each individual child.