Parenting is one of the most rewarding experiences you will ever have in life, but that doesn’t mean it’s an easy task. Are you up to the challenge?
From temper tantrums to unhealthy cell phone addictions, there are many challenges that face parents today. Children today may have issues with discipline, listening to the rules, dealing with their siblings and the list goes on and on.
Every day is a new surprise, leaving many moms and dads looking for parenting tips to help them get through the newest problem.
Parenting Problems? How to Tackle Them
That’s why we’re taking a look at 5 of the most common parenting problems and revealing what you can do to nip them in the bud.
Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire
Every child is going to tell a little white lie at some point in their lives. This can be extremely frustrating to deal with as a parent and can develop into a bad habit down.
The Solution: Don’t ignore it. White lies may seem like they aren’t worth addressing, but you must call your child out on their lies early so that they don’t make deceit a pattern in their speech.
Encourage them to talk to you about wrongdoing, not to lie about it. You can’t help them fix the problem at hand if you don’t know there is one.
Try and find out why they lied. If a child has broken a valuable household item and blames the family dog, it can be easy to see why he would lie about it. But, if your child is lying just for the sake of it, it is in your best interest as parents to find out if this will lead to similarly poor behavior down the road.
Don’t yell or overreact. Even if what your child is telling you is very upsetting, yelling or overreacting will only discourage them from telling the truth in the future.
Unhealthy Eating Habits
There is no denying that overeating and unhealthy food options are an issue these days. Statistics show that 32% of children in the United States are overweight. Of these, 17% are obese.
With these stats in mind, you may decide that your family’s diet could use a little tweaking. The only problem is, now that you’re introducing healthy brain-food into your regular meal routine, your little one is having none of it!
The Solution: It may feel like a fruitless effort to try and force your children to eat healthier, especially when they keep ignoring their supper.
Take three bites. This method involves the rule that if your little one doesn’t like what’s on their plate, they can take three bites of it and be done.
This will encourage your child to try something new, help them to follow the rules, and open their palettes to new foods and tastes.
Another one of our favorite parenting tips is to keep healthy food in the house. It can be extremely helpful to have healthy snacks meal-prepped and ready to go for when your child is in the mood to munch. Apple slices with peanut butter, carrots and hummus, oatmeal energy balls, and small fruits like berries are sure to satisfy their cravings.
If all else fails, communication will be your go-to opportunity to talk to your little ones. Simply explain, in age-appropriate terms that are non-judgemental, why junk food should be considered a special treat and not an everyday meal.
If you have two or more children, you know that it is only natural for little ones to get jealous of their siblings every once in a while. Whether they’re eager not to share their toys or feel envious of the time their sibling gets to spend with you, the occasional fights will happen.
The Solution: When it comes to sibling rivalry, one of the best parenting tips we can offer is to do your best not to take sides unless someone is obviously in the wrong (hitting or verbally hurting their sibling).
Explain that the best way to work out their problems is to talk to one another.
Separate your kids. As much as you wish your children would use their words, this isn’t always going to happen. In these cases, separating them and letting them cool down for a bit will be a lifesaver.
Make and stick to rules. If your children know that there are firm rules in place that will get them in trouble if they start fighting, they will be less likely to instigate an argument with their sibling.
Cell Phone Addiction
The internet is a wonderful place for kids to learn, socialize, and find entertainment. But it can also be a dangerous place. Social media can have a negative effect on your child’s self-esteem and wellbeing, and with 59% of young people admitting to cellphone addiction, you may find that your child is glued to their screen more than you would like.
This addiction can be distracting from their social lives, family time, and school work.
The Solution: One of the best parenting tips regarding their children and smart devices is to keep computers in a family room. It is not your intention to make your child feel like they have no privacy, but it is also your job to ensure that they are being safe when using the internet.
Having your computer in a common room where the screen can be plainly seen is helpful in discouraging bad behavior online.
Institute a tech-free time. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends children should get no more than 2 hours of screen time per day, for their health.
Explain to your children that they can use the computer for school and on weekends, but during the week they will follow tech-free time each day for at least an hour (or however long you choose) in which their phones and computers will stay turned off.
Conflict between you and your partner
If your child has been witnessing you and your partner fight often, this can lead to behavioral problems in them. Children tend to become rebellious, disobedient, and aggressive when they look at parents bickering frequently.
The Solution: While arguing a little isn’t intrinsically harmful for the partners and for their children for that matter, too much of it can have damaging effects. If you can be mindful about managing your conflicts you should be able to tackle the situation yourself.
If you think you or your partner or both of you have anger issues you can seek help from a marriage therapist. A therapist can help you deal with the situation slightly better which in turn will help you parent your child effectively.
Parenting is a thrilling learning process that can bring great joy, but it can also bring a little unnecessary stress into your life.
Unhealthy eating habits, lying, dealing with uncomfortable social situations, and dealing with discipline are all issues parents face with their children. By following these parenting tips you’ll be on the road to earning your mom/dad of the year award any day now.
Rachael Pace is a relationship expert with years of experience in training and helping couples. She has helped countless individuals and organizations around the world, offering effective and efficient solutions for healthy and successful relationships. She is a featured writer for Marriage.com, a reliable resource to support healthy happy marriages.
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