“For most of us, it's weird to talk with our kids about sex because we don't have good models for it. Most of our parents didn't do a good job if they did it at all,” Jill says. “It's an inherently awkward topic, … everybody's anxious, both parents and kids. Another thing that makes this hard is sometimes we’re not clear on what our personal values are or not being comfortable articulating that. So it's a sort of hot mess of anxiety, that of course we want to avoid.”
“It’s conscious parenting … to help [our kids] learn the importance of these things,” Jewell says. “It’s conscious parenting to stop and realize I need to help my kids develop gratitude.”
“We give so much of ourselves to our husbands, our family, our children, even our extended family, our siblings, our parents. We’re caring for everybody and we always tend to put ourselves last,” Kerry said. “I really want to highlight the importance of making ourselves a priority. It’s really important for our mental state of mind just to stay healthier and happier. It makes everything just flow better when we take good care of ourselves.”
“It’s really hard especially for moms because it’s hard to put our own needs first and the kids are kind of like the squeaky wheels—so they get the grease. It’s easy to really neglect ourselves and our adult relationship with each other,” Rivka said. “I think for a lot of us, it’s hard to be in a relationship because it takes commitment and understanding and it’s just easier to distract ourselves with the kids and be busy so that we don’t even have time for each other,” Shlomo added.
“Co-parenting is even harder because you don’t have the benefit of just doing things on the fly. You have to be a lot more intentional. It takes more time and effort,” Paige says. “Ask the questions, foster curiosity, and then be the one who’s looking for the solutions and offering those up instead of trying to always make your case and being like two attorneys and just fighting for your cause.”
What is it about Halloween that can be so tricky for Christians? In this week's podcast, I talk about how our family handles the October holiday--and give listeners some food for thought as you craft your own decision about whether to trick or treat.
“I don’t think we should be making kids college and career-ready in this country. I think we should be making them career-ready period,” Mark says. “Sure, a whole bunch of those careers go through four-year universities and bachelor’s degrees and PhDs and MDs and JDs. But there are fantastic careers and occupations that are possible with a two-year associates degree through community and technical colleges. There’s great careers and occupations that are available through certifications and advanced certifications and licensures and apprenticeships, which are becoming huge in this country.”
“The mental health community said, ‘Obedient children, they’re like robots. They’re only following orders and so on.; In fact, we now know from very good research that the most obedient children are also the happiest kids,” John says. “Children have not changed. Children are no different in terms of their essence, their nature than they were in the 1950s. And parenting in the 1950s, a woman could raise 12 kids and not experience the stress that a mother today is experiencing in raising one child.”
“The biggest one that I've seen for myself is accidentally discouraging my child with my tone of voice or my words. Sometimes, I've used a tone that just sounded like I was annoyed or angry with the child and I wasn't,” Kathy says. “Maybe I was worried about my uncle in the hospital or angry that the repairman just tried to rip me off, but if I'm still annoyed about it and it comes through my voice, all the kids know is mom is mad and they think it's their fault. We can accidentally discourage them with that tone of voice, and sometimes, just even with our facial expression.”
“Our siblings are the people who are there with us from the beginning. Siblings can be our first playmates. Parents and caregivers are wonderful but they’re obviously on a very different age group. With siblings, you can start to build a shared history of family memories together,” Allison says. “We also learn how to resolve conflicts because of course we’re not always going to get along with our siblings. Our arguments can help us learn how to negotiate, how to resolve conflict. There’s lots of things we can learn from our siblings.”