Posts Tagged: Parenting

To Sleep, Perchance to Scream

At three in the afternoon when my daughter was about four weeks old, I hit a wall. With my fist, though not very hard, because I was trying to be as quiet as possible. Another day that week, I went into the bathroom, all the lights turned off, and screamed into a towel. Again, I didn't want to make very much noise, because my four-week-old daughter was "sleeping."

There are lots of tiny and useless nuggets of wisdom parents-to-be are given. My favorite is: "Sleep when your baby sleeps." But in the early days, she was never clearly sleeping, and any moment of silence from her corridor meant that we [...]


Which Museum Did Your Evil Child Try To Destroy This Weekend?

Holy crap. Horrible kids, horrible parents. @tate

— Stephanie Theodore (@TheodoreArt) January 26, 2014

@TheodoreArt @hragv @Juddfoundation Maybe "You break it you buy it" — for $10mm — would have gotten her attention.

— Roberta Smith (@robertasmithnyt) January 26, 2014

And what did you do with your kids this weekend? Did you let them use an eight-figure Donald Judd as a jungle gym at the Tate?


Royal Sanctimummy

Kate and Wills will be doing this very differently from previous generations of Royals. The two are said to be planning to break with the long standing tradition of a formal nanny (or many nannies) taking control of childcare in the Royal household. Instead they advertised for a housekeeper to help with multiple household chores and help watch the Royal baby, with Kate and William expecting to do much of the hands on care taking themselves. — Daily Mail, July 22, 2013.

Just days after giving birth to the newest heir to the British throne, Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, is already eschewing royal custom and taking [...]


Girls Now Almost As Valuable As Boys

"For the first time in Barbie’s more than 50-year history, Mattel is introducing a Barbie construction set that underscores a huge shift in the marketplace. Fathers are doing more of the family shopping just as girls are being encouraged more than ever by hypervigilant parents to play with toys (as boys already do) that develop math and science skills early on."


Setting Records, Losing Children

"The Munich Oktoberfest may be heading for a new beer-guzzling record this year after 3.6 million liters were downed in the first week alone. But the number of people passing out or losing their children is up as well."


Terrible Parenting Creating A Generation Of Screen Addicts

"Parents who constantly check and use smartphones and iPads around their children may be driving them into a lifelong dependency on TV and computer screens, according to a leading psychologist. Dr Aric Sigman said such 'passive parenting' in the face of the new media environment is actually a form of neglect. He will tell a group of Britain’s leading doctors today that the growing addiction could leave a generation suffering damage to the body as well as the brain." —This is just the way The Machines planned it, right?

Photo by Anatoliy Samara, via Shutterstock


The Didion-Dunnes as Generation-Specific Awful Parents

Brace yourself. Caitlin Flanagan has an exceedingly perceptive and well-done essay in the Atlantic! Sure, there is a psychologically deep-seated and somewhat deranged whiff of/riff on gender essentialism (boys like Hunter Thompson and girls like Joan Didion!), but hey, that's at least a little true. For one thing, she draws well the obvious connections that Didion and John Gregory Dunne were the most extreme caricatures of their generation of parents (in short: rather terrible), the parents who made their childrens' generation into helicoptering nightmares.


How Not to Let Your Small Child Pee in a Public Park

People drop things on the Internet and run all the time. So we have to ask. In this edition, writer Gabe Roth tells us more about the perils of letting your preschooler pee in the park.

NY Parks cop who busted my three-year-old for peeing in the grass at a picnic: Thanks for the early lesson in the authoritarian personality!

— Gabriel Roth (@gabrielroth) May 28, 2014

Gabe! So what happened here?

We were at Brooklyn Bridge Park, at a picnic to celebrate the end of my daughter’s first year of preschool. It was about six in the evening, just starting to cool [...]


Why Is America Turning To Shit?

Toilet in Uganda, by Sustainable Sanitation.


My hand stayed on the bathroom door handle, unwilling to twist the knob that would let me in. Behind me was the hum and chatter of an art opening—this was at a now sadly departed radical Chicago cultural center called Mess Hall. On a table nearby were offerings of hummus and home-made brownies. Nearly everyone else was chatting and oblivious to my plight, but I could sense at least one other person impatiently waiting behind me. Then I went in, and, inside, next to a perfectly serviceable modern flush toilet seat, was a five-gallon bucket of [...]


The Five Worst Kinds of Co-Workers

So, according to New York magazine, a local woman has quit her job and, with her husband earning a "low-six-figure income," she has decided to raise children and not work at all! What an amazing specimen. But this isn't your grandparents' housewifery. "This is not the retreat from high-pressure workplaces of a previous generation but rather a more active awakening to the virtues of the way things used to be," claims New York magazine, discussing how said lady rubs her husband's feet when he comes home. ("Active awakening"! I'm really stuck on that language. I think it says that on a package of live yeast in my refrigerator? Also: [...]


Beat Your Kid Conservative

"Parenting style and childhood temperament might play roles in shaping one's political mindset, new research suggests. Specifically, kids who have fearful temperaments and are raised by parents who value obedience are more likely to endorse conservative ideologies as young adults, the study found."


The 40-Year-Old Reversion

Once a month I get together with half a dozen moms from Park Slope and Carroll Gardens. We call ourselves Hookers, Sluts and Drug Addicts. They dubbed me a Hooker because I wear tight clothes and smile a lot. Sally, a stay-at-home mom of boys, is a Slut, because she’s always touching her body. The Drug Addict is a therapist who can drink a bottle of Cabernet in one sitting. (All names and some details have been changed so I don’t lose more friends than I already have.) Some work and some don’t. The working ones complain about their jobs and the non-working ones complain about their husbands. We go [...]


Naming Things Sucks

Surprising news! "HuffPost Parents," formerly known as "ParentLode," after the Times' blog MotherLode, which disapproved far beyond the point of cease and desist, will now be known as… Parentry. (It could have been worse.)

Please make a note of it.


Ten Questions Parents Should Frantically Ask About Schooling

This coming weekend, the New York Times magazine looks at our children and what private and charter schools are doing for/to them! It raises so many questions for those of us who are concerned about our babies and if they will go to top-tier colleges after top-tier primary and secondary education, which is something you really do worry about especially if you're dropping half a million on K-12 and then having to make a sizable donation to an Ivy League to make sure that little Crayson, Effexor and Randomly get to go to the right college! Here's the top ten questions that a parent may form whilst reading [...]


How to Avoid Raising a Monster

People drop things on the Internet and run all the time. So we have to ask. In this edition, writer and ThinkUp cofounder Anil Dash tells us more about how raising a kid affords one all sorts of opportunities for mischief.

There are waaay too many moments that tempt me to raise a horrible child. Anyway, my son now says "Sous vide me!" to indicate it's bathtime.

— Anil Dash (@anildash) April 19, 2014

Anil! So what happened here?

The most immediate prompt for the tweet was that my wife was talking about dyeing Easter eggs with my son—a project that they’d never done [...]


5 Quick & Easy Ways to Boost Your Child's Self-Esteem

We all want confident children, but research indicates that effusive parental praise can backfire. In one study, 80% of kids describe their parents' compliments as "not really true," "overblown" or "completely full of shit." Does this mean we're doomed to raise a generation of children who doubt themselves? Not if we stop praising them unnecessarily. Instead, parents should give their children truly daunting challenges that actually do warrant a flood of praise. For example:

1. Teach your child to do the Heimlich maneuver. Then, pretend that you're choking on a chicken bone. When your child "saves" you, thank him profusely, through tears. Be sure to tell everyone in the [...]


How to Name Your Baby

Devices like iPhones have a unique name, a string that is usually called a "universally unique identifier." That the word "unique" doesn't ever need any modifier is, I guess, beside the point. It's not just unique, it's unique in the whooooole universe. Sometimes they call it a globally unique identifier. Heh. Anyway, a UUID is 32 characters and four hyphens. There are, according to the math whizzes on Wikipedia, 39 digits in the number representing 32 possible combinations of letters and numbers. That's a really big number, more than there are people, for sure.

This is a helpful thing, for obvious reasons. Wouldn't it be amazing if every human had [...]


Mom Gives Daughter An Early Start On Lifetime Sleep Disorder

At least she will have a book she can bring to the psychiatrist later on.


Man Can't Understand Why People Are Disdainful About The Video Of His Crying Child He Put On The Internet

I don't know, this use of the word "haters" seems like a bit of a stretch.


Oh No, a Child Molester Moved in Next Door!

When a kiddy-fiddler commandeers your cul-de-sac: "C. has a problem perhaps too serious to be called a quandary. A few months ago, she says, her family received a flier from the local sheriff. A registered sex offender was moving to her street of small, single-family homes. Hers is a long street, though, and she expected the offender to be some distance away and easily avoidable. Instead, he bought the house next door." What to do, what to do? The answer is simple, really: just move to Manhattan.