Supporting Children Through Tough Times

One of the most challenging aspects of parenting is knowing that you can’t shelter, shield and protect your child from every potential threat, traumatic life event or obstacle. Even the most diligent parents can’t be there 24-hours-a-day to prevent their child from coming to harm, and life is full of challenges for adults and kids alike. While some hurdles can be overcome easily, others have long-lasting implications. If you’re a parent, and you’re keen to make sure you’re there to support your child through the tough times, here are some helpful tips. 

Image credit: https://pixabay.com/photos/girl-mother-daughter-mum-people-2480361/

 

Talk to your child as openly as possible

Mental health is a subject we talk about a lot in this day and age, but it hasn’t always been this way. Many people who are now parents grew up in households where it wasn’t ‘normal’ to talk about how you feel or share thoughts or worries. As a parent, it’s beneficial to try and encourage your children to chat and engage with you, and to really get to know them, so that they feel able to come to you if they’re feeling down or they’re dealing with problems, for example, a classmate picking on them at school or a bad exam result. You don’t have to open the floor to a deep discussion every night, but take time to talk. Chat about your day, have fun together and make sure your kids know that the lines of communication are always open.

 

Recognizing signs of distress and behavioral changes

Children deal with all kinds of challenges, but some are much more difficult than others. While most will bounce back from an argument with a friend or a poor performance in a test, there is a risk that more profound problems or events can contribute to behavioral changes. If a child has been through prolonged, severe bullying or abuse, or they have behavioral problems, they may display signs that you shouldn’t ignore as a parent. Use your intuition, try and approach the subject with them very tactfully and gently, and be prepared to seek expert advice. There are people and organizations like Youth Villages that specialize in supporting families and children who are dealing with emotional and behavioral disorders. If your child does have behavioral issues, or they have been through an ordeal, which has taken its toll, it’s perfectly natural to experience a whole raft of emotions yourself. Talk about how you feel with a friend or family member or see a therapist if you feel more comfortable speaking to somebody you don’t know. 

 

Working together

Every family goes through ups and downs, and often, the best way to tackle the lows is to pull together. Talk as a family and make sure every individual knows that they’re not alone. When times are tough, for example, a child is coming to terms with bereavement, or they’ve been bullied at school, children might want to speak to other kids in the same boat or to experts or advisers, but they’ll always benefit from knowing that you’re there for them. 

Picture from https://pixabay.com/photos/silhouette-father-and-son-sundown-1082129/

 

Being a parent can be tough, especially when your children go through hard times or they find life difficult. Being supportive, listening and learning to recognize symptoms and signs of distress can help you protect and build your child back up.

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The Little Signs That Your Elderly Parent Needs Help

Having aging parents is both a blessing and a curse. Naturally, you want to have your parents around for as long as possible. But it can be difficult to watch them age, and unavoidably degrade and lose some of their abilities. Besides the emotional involvement of suddenly having to care for your parents – whether you need to be a full-time care or to manage their living arrangements – , there is a much more urging matter. Indeed, elderly people may fail to notice that their health is degrading. As people age, they rapidly lose focus of their health to concentrate on everyday routines, such as their favorite TV show, the morning tea or even a sweet sugary treat before going to bed. But without any reference to health, they can become weak in front of your eyes without even noticing. It’s exactly why you need to pay attention to all the little signs that your elderly parent might show.

Flickr image

 

#1. The TV Is Too Loud

When was the last time you’ve had a phone call with your elderly parent? If you’ve found yourself having to repeat constantly the same thing because they couldn’t hear you, it might be a sign of hearing issues. Although, before you rush to read all the latest hearing aid faq, you may want to check if this could be simply due to an old device. Seniors are, after all, not renowned for changing their tech devices as regularly as younger generations. You may want to investigate a little more, especially by checking how loud the TV generally is at your parents’ place. Old people tend not to notice that their hearing is getting worse, especially as all it takes is to turn the volume up. Additionally, there are other signs that can help you to notice the issue before it gets too late. For instance, you may find conversations difficult with your elderly parent. They may not ask you to repeat, but their answers might indicate that they didn’t hear you properly.   

 

#2. They Are Losing Weight

Appetite loss is a common issue with aging people. After all, they do need fewer calories, and consequently, it’s natural that their appetite is not the same than yours. However, there is a thin line between natural reduction of appetite and unhealthy behavior. There are many factors that can lead to eating less in seniors. They could be experiencing denture troubles, and consequently, might find it more difficult to eat. They might feel lonely and be lacking appetite as a result of their mental mood. They may even become forgetful and not notice that they haven’t eaten all day. Whatever the reasoning, you need to be very attentive to the first signs of weight loss. It is a difficult topic to discuss, but it can be helpful to first discuss the issue with a doctor, who can help you to identify the cause of their weight loss.

 

#3. They Become Very Clumsy

Everyone can have moments when they tripped on the carpet and fall. Even you. Or sometimes you accidentally drop a glass, and it breaks. So don’t get too nervous if it happens to your elderly parent too. However, if they fall a little too often, or things break too regularly, it might be a sign of something more serious than just clumsiness. The inner ear is responsible for your balance. The labyrinth of the ear contains many nerves and hairs that work together to coordinate your movement in space and against the pull of gravity. However, researchers have shown that the body starts losing nerves in the ear. This might result in a loss of balance. Eye problems such as cataract or glaucoma, which are common in old age, can also cause issues in moving in a room or seizing objects.  

 

#4. They Don’t Remember Where They’ve Put The Keys

Okay, the big worry about old age is Alzheimer’s disease or another case of dementia. There’s no denying that these diseases exist and are strongly related to memory loss. However, forgetfulness is not always a case of Alzheimer’s. Lack of attention or mild age-related memory loss is natural, and it isn’t anything that you should worry about. Serious memory loss, such as not being able to stick to the same routine activities or to form reasonable arguments, can be an indication of a deep loss of mental ability. Do pay close attention to your parent’s behavior, if you begin to suspect that they may be suffering from memory loss. Dementia doesn’t need to show its worst side for you to notice it. It can be little signs, such as mentioning a talk with someone who is already dead, or a sudden change of routine. If it is identified early enough, memory loss related diseases can be managed easily and successfully for a very long time.

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How To Plan The A Baby Shower For A Friend

Throwing a baby show for a friend is one of the greatest, heartfelt gifts you can give them. It’s a rite of passage for many women, who are pregnant for the first time, and what better way to celebrate an upcoming birth of a baby, than crossing the line into womanhood surrounded by friends. But this in itself, poses a huge challenge for friends and family, as the challenge is to differentiate your party from every other baby-related gathering or celebration. Luckily there are a few common codes of conduct that are flexible enough to give you creative control and allow you to make a truly bespoke baby shower.

 

The location

There is a whole range of differing locations that present contrasting vibes for baby showers. You could rent out a luxury apartment in the city, in a high-rise building so you can sip wine and enjoy the view while your pregnant friend opens presents. You may find renting of a 40×60 steel building cost is less than a hall venue in a grand hotel, yet provides bigger room and more options for facilities, such as a band, outdoor play area for visiting children of other moms, and a large main room for a large guest list. Parallel to the seating arrangement, you could have tables set up with a buffet food offered to the attendees. If you’d rather do it at your own home, that’s a great decision too, because it’s more personal and provides you with a chance to show the mark of a great hostess.

Image by – Lori

Setting the tone

It’s pivotal to the select a theme that your friend will relate to and enjoy. It’s got to be expressive of their nature, or perhaps from a childhood memory, and possibly even a theme that’s reflective of their baby’s gender. The easiest way to lose a grip on the overall look and interior design of the party is to move forward with just a vague hint, perpetuating a stride with no clear direction. Set out the day and what you want to achieve. For example, the catering, you could start out with a light brunch, reminiscing about the past with a close, tight-knit bunch of friends. Next onto an afternoon tea or lunch, where each person could swap stories about the first time they had a child and exchange tips and tricks on how to cope with a newborn.

Source – TerriC

The plentiful bounty of gifts

Make sure you brief your guests before they come to shower, and inform them well in advance that gifts should be baby proof and practical and something that will be detrimental to raising a baby. Apparatus like a breast pump, advanced guide to the stress calls and crying a baby makes life hacks that will save her time and money with the proper planning advice, clothing for the baby such as hats, mittens, and footwear, etc. These gifts should be given to make the life of the pregnant woman easier and less stressful, so try to steer away from food items and makeup.

 

 

 

 

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Top 15 Things Your Child Should Know Before Entering Kindergarten Free printable packet!

   

Be able to state first and last name when asked.
Be able to write first name with first letter uppercase and remaining letters lower case.
Use appropriate three-finger grasp when using writing instruments (pencils, crayons, and scissors)
Count to at least thirty and tells what number comes before or after a given number to 20.
Know all the letters in their first name.
Identify basic geometric shapes (triangle, circle, square, rectangle, oval, star, rhombus (diamond) and heart)
Know basic colors (red, blue, green, yellow, orange, purple, black, white, brown, pink)
Identify numerals 1-10 in random order.
Make most letter/sound matches.
Identify most upper and lower case letters.
Use finger to accurately touch count items to ten.
Knows concepts of print (front and back of the book, which page comes first, track words left to right).
Be able to rhyme words.
Retells simple stories in sequence.
When given a word (“man”) and a new beginning sound (/f/), creates the familiar word (“fan”)
Socially Your child should be able to…
Adjust own clothing before and after using the restroom.
Use restroom independently including washing hands without a reminder.
Take off and put on outer clothing
Sit for a story for 5-10 minutes
Clean up after themselves
Shares materials and toys with other children.
Attend kindergarten with a positive attitude
Be confident and ready to separate from the parent.
Be able to listen and follow 2-3 step directions.
Be able to solve problems without aggression.

Help Prepare Your Child by…

Going to interesting places such as the beach, park, zoo, airport, farm or lake. (Example: Use car rides to play I Spy, this encourages children to identify shapes, colors and helps develop their vocabulary in fun ways.)
Encourage your children to observe and talk about their experiences, as conversations with adults who care enrich a child’s vocabulary and understanding of the world.
Make eye contact with your child while listening to them speak, showing them that you value what they say.
Expose your child to many kinds of literature by reading to them daily.
Praise and encourage your child’s efforts and curiosity, knowing that from mistakes come learning and confidence. Criticism can discourage children from trying new things and lower self-confidence.

Here is a great free printable packet to help your little one get ready for that first day!

 

 

 

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