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47

Since you're not thrilled about the depiction of violence in the book, but are reluctant to have your child singled out as different, maybe you could read it with him and discuss the violence and brutality. Use this as a teaching situation, where you can listen to his interpretation of the violent themes in the book and add in your own two cents.


40

First, I think it is worth noting that gender identity and gender roles are not the same as sexual orientation--liking girly things is not the same as being gay. As far as your specific issues go, I agree with Rhea that these are not big signs that your son is experimenting with an alternate gender identity. Hanging out with girls, using female avatars in ...


30

I'm an autistic adult, the parent of an autistic adult, and a teacher of autistic children. The reason your daughter laughs when you're really angry with her is because your anger is frightening her. This might seem counter-intuitive to the neurotypical mind, until one considers that neurotypical laughter is frequently in response to someone being hurt, ...


28

You might consider that children are affected by violence differently than adults, especially violence in books. Their imagination isn't as horrible as ours. A lot of what makes the book impactful to adults will go right over a child's head, due to their inexperience and lack of maturity. If you've ever reread a book as an adult that you first read as a ...


26

I think my input on this matter should be quite useful, as I'm currently 17 (on the verge of 18, but that's irrelevant), and have done some drinking over the past year or so. My parents have no idea, or at least I assume they don't, and I don't intend for them to find out anytime soon, as I know I'll be punished to some extent. My father is an alcoholic, and ...


21

My first answer comes from the addiction treatment, and says this: Don't bring the enemy into your home. That is to say, don't have sweets and junk in the house, or buy them for the children when outside. Opportunity is necessary for any crime. The second answer goes to motive. If the child is full and satisfied, she'll eat less junk. A nutritionist I know ...


20

If you have 3 rooms for the children, then give each their own room, but with one condition that when guests sleep over, they must give up one room for the guests. That room should be the 20-year-old's because she's the only one not using it full-time in the first place. She's also the only legally adult person whom you are not obliged to house. Do not ...


17

Adolescent behaviour (the official term for teenage years) can start as young as 10, so I wouldn't worry that this is more than that, especially as that's going to be enough to deal with over the next 6-15 years (yes, it'll happily keep going into the mid-late 20's). There are millions of lines of text on how to deal with teenage misbehaviour, from the ...


15

Here is a slightly different answer: "If you don't teach your children how to drink responsibly and how to effectively deal with alcohol, who will?" Assuming a mostly US audience (it's quite different in other countries that I lived in): Alcohol is illegal for anyone under 21. Providing alcohol to teenagers or enabling teenage drinking may get you into ...


15

If he is 12 then it is a PERFECT time to have the sex talks with him. When my boy was 4 he walked in on us in the middle of the night, should have still been asleep. He is now 12 and still remembers but he doesn't seem to be any more or less interested or disturbed about that subject matter than other kids his age. He talks about it as if it was mater of ...


14

From my experience growing up bilingual, the problem won't be that your kids don't want you to speak the "foreign" language, but that they will refuse to speak the "foreign" language. (The fact that you will do uncool things is a given: you're the parent, anything you do is by definition uncool.) The only way to counteract this is to build up a good ...


14

I remember reading Lord of the Rings when I was 11. It opened my eyes to a whole world of wonderful literature that was genuinely interesting. Books with war and violence evoke strong emotions. While I agree that not every child is necessarily ready for dealing with those emotions at that age, I would say that it's up to parents and teachers to support ...


14

(Warning: Spoilers) Whereas the Hunger Games is a violent book, it is probably one of the few that shows the consequences of that violence. The death of Rue, the moral dilemma of kill-or-be-killed and the sacrifice of Katniss taking her sister's place all offer something for a child to learn. Even the death of foxface (I forget the character's name) was a ...


14

Stephen King wrote a description about this once. "You're one of those people that, when King Laugh knocks, you can't keep the door closed." I'm the same way: laughter overwhelms me at sometimes very inappropriate times, and especially when I'm emotionally overwrought or very fatigued. It's apparently fairly common with folks on the autism spectrum. And ...


13

Every family will need to decide the age for wearing make-up for themselves. It seems that marketers target, younger and younger children with beauty/make-up toys and products including glamour make-up dolls, "play" make-up and glamor photo shoots for very young children, and glamor magazines for preteens. Perhaps rather than set a precise age, parents ...


13

No. Based on personal experience, I'm going to answer no because it's a matter of family style. My family also had a liquor cabinet and it was not even high up so even a kid could reach it. But we were never tempted. We knew that liquor is adult stuff, and at some point we'd been offered something that tasted horrible. We just weren't interested. We ...


13

Some straight people have feminine tendencies like Cross Dressing and it could be a case of your son exploring an identity, or your son could be gay. Either way is a different lifestyle choice that will make his life more difficult. In every society in the world being gay is a negative and will expose gay people to ridicule at best and death at worst ...


12

It depends on the privileges they have. Sometimes, giving them extra chores is appropriate (say, if they've broken something and you want them to make restitution.) Many times, though, you'll want to take something away from them. Anything short of food, clothing, and the roof over their heads is fair game-- depending on the severity of their rule ...


12

YES! Not only is it reasonable, it is IMHO parental malpractice not to limit video games, the internet, and telephone usage. Clearly, the video games have tremendous value to him. Among other things, that gives you powerful leverage! Use it well. My practice with video games, movies, texting, and any other similar amusement was: A daily limit is ...


11

Are you paying rent to your mother? If you are paying rent, you should ask for a reduced rent since you are no longer getting your own room. Is there a basement? Another room on the main floor - something like an office or a den? Consider moving to one of these rooms. If you are not paying rent, you are unfortunately going to have to abide by her rules. ...


11

This sounds like fairly common behavior for a boy that age. In fact, it sounds an awful lot like me at around 13-14. It may just be that he is testing boundaries, or it may be that he genuinely has an issue with doing his homework. The first step I'd suggest is finding out why he hasn't been doing his homework. Is he bored? Is it too tough? Does he ...


11

It depends on the kid actually. Many kids will "play" even as toddlers and in elementary school and just experiment with the different sensations that happen in that area of the body. However, most kids hit puberty and start masturbating with an actual result sometime during the Middle-School years or between 11 and 15. Of course there are exceptions that ...


11

Obviously, the first decision is to determine if the individual child is ready or not for the book in any one form of reading it - alone, with a teacher and class, and/or with a parent. That really is a personal and individual decision as the answer for any given child will depend upon that child's particular sensitivities, reading abilities and moral ...


10

I agree with Torben. You don't need to secure the liquor, at least at the age range you are asking about. Education is more important than physical barriers. A lock on the liquor cabinet won't help you when your children go to a friend's house, and the liquor there isn't locked up. Teaching your child not only that they shouldn't drink at that age, but ...


10

Sounds to me, like you and your daughter had a very healthy and honest conversation - and trust me when I say, those are the kind that work. I worked with adolescents for ten years as a health and science teacher as well as was advisor to a class of about 20 eighth grade kids each year. Considering the fact that I had around 100 kids each year I taught, ...


10

Laughter is a big emotional response. My son does this to me too. (And my body is also wired to laugh inappropriately in extremely high-tension situations, so I can relate on that level too.) Now the weird part and the part I don't understand is that she claims she cannot control the laughter. She says that she doesn't want to laugh but she can't help ...


10

Call the police. Call child protective social services. Edit: Some people may be confused about how the chold is getting access to these men. A ten year old child is not within eyesight all day. The parents may be as protective as they can be but they are no there all the time. Grooming creates a psychologically very strong bond between the abuser and ...


9

The primary thing here has to be your daughter's welfare. If you and the mother have an actively hostile relationship, then you need to shield her from it as much as possible. When you spend time with her, avoid all mention of her mother, except in a supportive context (e.g. if she's complaining about her mum, remind her that her mother loves her, and ...


9

Another approach is to ask why you wouldn't allow your daughter to wear make-up, as social stigmas around make-up use are largely generational. That also means that what worked for your mother, what worked for you, and what will work for your daughter don't have to be similar at all. Make-up has a number of different varieties and applications, and these ...


9

If you want him to be "normal" treat it NORMAL. Kids at school will make fun of him and will be a bigger impact on his decision to act girlie or not than what you could say to him. Making him feel abnormal will lead to way more problems in his life than being gay. I live in Utah and have a cousin that recently said she was lesbian. Her parents are super ...



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