Parenting kids, Seriously, Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses

Big Emotions With My 2 Year Old


Question:

I need some advice on how to teach a very emotional 2 year old about emotions, feelings, and calm mindfulness? I am in no way trying to stop her feelings or emotions. I just need help teaching what each emotion means and just helping her understand what feelings are. I could really use some resources or tools to help us!

The Judgemental Mom’s Response:

Start with helping identify her emotions. Talk to her about why she is feeling the way she is and what she “wishes”. Until she is older and commication is more established, I would say back to her what she says for both her sake and yours – to acknowledge you understand how she is feeling and why.

Try not to invalidate her feelings with statements like:
• “you’re okay”
• “it’s not that bad”
• “you just ate, you can’t be hungry”

These statements often don’t have the intention of disregarding their feelings, but this is how they are interpreted by our littles as they take things very literally.

You can respond instead by just acknowledging her feeling:
• “you’re still hungry after all that food”,
• “you sound really hurt”
• “You are frustrated because you still want to play”

You can help her connect with you in these moments and trust you by validating her feelings and letting her know that they have a big importance to her -regardless how miniscule the reason behind her feelings are to an adult.

Some connecting statements in example:
• It must be so FRUSTRATING when you want to finish your show but we have to get going
• I know it’s really DISAPPOINTING for you that you couldn’t have that toy from the store. I WISH that you can have that toy for your birthday!
• I bet when your brother took your book it made you so ANGRY. If someone just took something from me like I would be so mad!

The point in these examples is not encouraging the child’s tough emotions, but connecting WITH the child about their tough emotions.

At this age, your daughter may have a hard time understanding the different emotions. You could start simple, with 4 or 5 main emotions with a picture on the wall to help her find which one she identifies with (shown below).

Even letting them look in the mirror during their upset can be helpful so THEY can see how THEY look. Once you have talked about what happened, help her find how to do something differently or alternatively when possible.

To help her find her stopping point, consider these statements:
• How about you leave your game/show right here, so it will be waiting for you when we get back
• Let’s take a picture of that toy you really want so maybe I can get it for your birthday
• Your brother is still learning about waiting his turn for things. Let’s make sure your spot is saved in the book so when you get it back you can keep reading

Now is also a good age to start reading books about emotions together. Pick a calm time to learn about them though, as littles won’t absorb much in the heat of a feeling.

Some safe ways to express tough emotions:
• Stomping her feet
• Hitting the carpet
• Hitting a pillow
• If she wants to yell, show her how to yell what she’s feeling i.e., “I’m so ANGRY!!” and scream as hard as she can into a pillow.

You may find it beneficial to also begin teaching your daughter breathing exercises. A wonderful tool for guided breathing and meditation for both adults and kids is an app called Relax Melodies, found on the Play Store

Reccomended books about kids and their emotions for parents:

• The Whole Brain Child by Daniel Siegel
• How To Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish

Reccomended books about emotions for preschoolers:

• The Feelings Book by Todo Parr
• Happy Hippo Angry Duck by Sandra Boyington
• Moody Monster Manor by Jenn Simon (Scholastic book)
• Baby Faces by Kate Merrit
• When Sophie Gets Angry – Really Really Angry by Molly Bang

For more helpful information regarding children’s big emotions, selecting your response with your children, and guiding them to talk about their struggles, visit https://thejudgementalmom.com/kids-seriously/5/

Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses

Should We Get A Play Kitchen?


Question:

My son is very very interested in pretend cooking. He’s 19 months old. I am leaning towards getting a play kitchen. But at the same time I am aware that I don’t want to invest in another toy that takes up space and isn’t open ended. Any other ideas to offer the same experience without actually buying a play kitchen?

The Judgemental Mom’s Response:

Let him cook with you.
Show him how to take a piece of bread of out of the bag and put it in the toaster and push it down.
Let him try to butter his toast/crackers, what-have-you. Get him in on baking and mixing – get the the ingredients ready in their own dishes before hand so that when you start you just instruct your LO what to put in first and when to stir. If you’re making muffins or something, let him fill up the muffin tray with the batter he made. Let him help you put away some groceries. If you’re making a can of soup you can show him how to open the can, pour it into the pot, fill the can with water , add it to the pot, stir, then put it on the stove (I would do the stove stuff of course until they’re more familiar).
That sort of thing.

But if this is what you already do, do you have any extra cabinet or drawer space you could make available to him? Something that he could use as a pretend kitchen area for him when he wants to? We happened to have extra space in our kitchen for this, so we dedicated a lower cupboard and two drawers to our little one that he pretends is a fridge and stove. Then we put his table and chairs in there as well so that he could use them as “counter space” when he was in the kitchen-play mood.

If you want to get creative with it, you could even draw and cut out some appliance accents and tape them to the cabinet for added kitchen theme. Like making pretend knobs or fridge handles to put on the draws and cabinet doors. You could even print off pictures of some things and tape them the wall. Utilize a small carboard box and make it into a microwave. All the fancy toys out there do not always satisfy a child’s imagination and creativity! Often it is more fun for them when they get to use the real items in their pretend play.

Parenting kids, Seriously, Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses, Parenting Yourself, Seriously, Voice boxing it

Parenting Regimen and Origin


Hello everyone! I have created a short survey/questionnaire so I can learn more about other parents. It is completely anonymous and I would greatly appreciate all responses.

Thank you!

Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses, Voice boxing it

Things parents wished others would ask about more often


Today I asked the parents what they wished others would ask them about

These were some of the answers.


• The birth story
• How Dad is coping
• How they can be supported
• Learning about transgender children
• If they’re okay/mental well-being
• Permission before they promise a child something or set a limit with a child
• How their kids are and how they can help or spend time with them.
• If they need help cleaning
• Do you need a break?
• What their kids are learning or what they’re working on at home and how they can support that.
• What their parenting approach is – to respect it and reinforce it


Sometimes people forget about respect, permission, boundaries, sleep, self-care… the list goes on. Sometimes parents get forgotten about, simply because they’re the parent.

Sometimes, all we need is some acknowledgement and validation 💝

Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses

Weening Nursing To Sleep at 18 Months


Question:

I’m looking for a gentle advice for my almost 18 months old who will only fall asleep nursing. A little history: he is my second baby; and I had a birth injury and needed a long time to heal so we both got used to cosleeping and nursing to sleep, which worked out great at first, but there was a point when I realized what I created 😔. I’ve tried to gently break that habit earlier but it didn’t work and I gave up. I’m considering to just wean at this point because I’m tired of getting up several times at night 🥴😔. He just wants the breast to fall back asleep with (in his mouth). He sleeps in a floor bed in same room as his sister. I don’t believe in cry it out and looking for more of a gentle approach, if there are any. Thank you!

The Judgemental Mom’s Response:

Have you tried just giving him an actual cup of milk at bedtime? Thats how I weened my son off of nursing to sleep at this age. A 360 cup of milk and just rocking him. Which after turned into he was him laying in bed with his milk while I rubbed his tummy or back. Then it was he drinks his milk at, or around, bedtime, then he lays in bed and I rub his tummy. Then it turned into some nights he wouldn’t fall asleep so I would say “okay im going to let you settle down now I love you baby” and he would roll around for 5 minutes and pass out. Or I would sing a song to him over the monitor and he would pass out.

Growths spurts/sleep regressions are still hard on his sleep tho, hes 2.5 now. I dont see anything wrong with rocking him to being sleepy now. Any kiddo needs some extra connection from time to time. Keep in mind at/around 18 months its another big growth spurt so it might be even harder for you.

Take it slow and be easy on yourself and your expectations and remember that theres nothing wrong with co sleeping, nursing, or both!

Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses

What do you do about frequent stealing?


Question:

What do you do about frequent stealing? (Almost 13yrs old – Food, money, objects from other’s homes and stores)

The Judgemental Mom’s Response:

Stealing at this age has more to it than meets the eye. If you dont have the type of relationship that will let him feel comfortable opening up about whats really going, maybe consider a behavioural therapist. At 13, the act of stealing is usually satisfying a feeling or emotional need they are lacking in another area in their life. Whether its miniscule items that just make them feel invincible and “better” than others (because someone or something is actually making them feel like they are lesser than)
Or if its larger, more serious items that are fueling adrenaline and the naturally produced “reward hormone”. At 13, hes old enough to understand things are not just his for the taking, or an “oops oh well”.  This isn’t just “sneaking”. Hes a young teenager. Maybe its actually a cry for help and to get noticed because hes lacking communication skills to talk about whatever else is going on.