Beliefnet
Doing Life Together

I’m feeling blog lite today. So let me focus on a rather unimportant issue, well at least unimportant to most of us, but not to one little girl. One little girl will grow up with an unusually name that could be the brunt of teasing. Right now, her parents are not  married. Not sure if they ever will be. And she will grow up in an incredible spotlight, making it difficult to have any type of normal life. That girl is the new baby of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West. They named her North West!

Yes, you read that right–NORTH WEST.

I”m not even sure how to think of that name. It’s really a direction. Can you imagine how confused Siri will be?

With all the hype around the birth of this baby, the couple is still unsure about getting married. I know that isn’t a big deal in Hollywood anymore, but it is a big deal to children. They need mothers and fathers around to model a committed marriage. Marriage has benefits for both children and parents. And let’s not forget, that marriage is still God’s plan for raising children. But God isn’t consulted much these days when it comes to people having babies out of wedlock. What was a stigma years ago in my lifetime, has now become posh, at least among the wealthy. But what disturbs me most is this growing belief that both mothers and fathers are not needed to raise children.

If we follow the data, we find this isn’t true. Children, raised by single parents don’t fare as well as those raise by two. Money isn’t what makes it all OK. It’s the necessary roles both parents play in a child’s life. And I am sad when I read stories like the Kardashian-West relationship in which Kanye is given big points for being interested in his new daughter. Really, this child is his responsibility, not a new toy or gadget trying to interest him.

So here’s another child brought into the world in an unstable family. But we celebrate it because of celebrity, which has nothing to do with raising a healthy child.

 

 

 

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Modesty–a word that sounds like a throw back to another time.

But not every young person is shunning the idea of modesty despite the celebrity trend to bare all.

In fact, a friend sent me a link to a short video (about 9 minutes) of a young woman who has not bought the lie that taking off your clothes means power for women. When women are scantily dressed, they become nothing more than sexual objects to men. And she quotes brain science to prove her point. I could not agree more.

So, I am featuring this short FB video from Jessica Rey who not only powerfully presents her message but also took action to make a difference. Wait until you see how she responded and makes modesty fashionable again.

Moms of teens, we need more Jessica’s out there. Jessica, thanks for taking your message public and creating what you did.  CLICK ON THE PICTURE TO WATCH.

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2 anxious childYou’ve heard it said — face your fears. Well there is more truth in that sentiment then you probably know.

You don’t overcome anxiety by avoiding whatever makes you anxious. You overcome it by gradually facing it.

Children are no exception. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that approximately 18 million children under the age of 18 struggle with anxiety disorders. Sources of anxiety include bullying, problems at home, and personal coping styles. Anxiety can be so debilitating that it effects every day living. Parents try to protect a child by taking him or her out of the anxious situation. But is avoiding anxiety the best solution?

No, it is better to face the anxious situation rather than avoid it.

By slowing exposing him or her to things that make his/her anxious, the fear lessens.

Try this with your child:

1) Tell your child to take a small step towards facing whatever fear is present.

2) Allow your child to make a decision about how he or she will face that fear, e.g., walk towards it, get nearer to it, engage in part of it, etc.

3) Encourage the child to take a step in that direction and allow the anxiety to come.

4) Praise him or her once the step has been taken

5) Move on to the next step until more of the fear is faced.

Eventually, the child will engage in the behavior and not be so anxious because he or she has gradually been exposed to the fear.

 

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child and screenI’d love to hear from you on this question!

According to a survey conducted by Northwestern researchers, most parents answered, YES!

Despite the number of hours spent with TV, tablets, cell phones, computers and other devices, only 30% of the 2326 parents surveyed were concerned that their young children consumed too much media. Yes,parents acknowledged that all these screens are not good for physical activity, but most didn’t see screen use as a source of conflict in the home and are OK with overages.

Also TV remains a popular way to divert or reward kids.

Could it be that the reason the concern is not there is that parents are also heavy users? Parents do have control over very young kids and in many cases, TVs are in the kid’s bedrooms along with other screen devices.  

The American Academy of Pediatrics says this is a NO NO and strongly recommends screen time be zero for children 2 and under and only 2 hours a day for older kids.

It doesn’t appear that every family is following that advice. Some think the AAP is out of touch with reality, but the organization is basing its recommendations on evidenced-based practices. So parents, decide for yourself if you want to get those kids off screens and more active.

Maybe the answer is that the entire family needs to rethink how they use screens.

Maybe we all need to be more active.

Maybe we just won’t care and will continue to be heavy media consumers.

Your thoughts?

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