Many experts tout breast milk as the best food a mother can give her baby. Posters and pictures all depict a rosy image of breastfeeding – a smiling mother and a contented-looking baby latching on to her breast. No one thing indicated that breastfeeding could be problematic; nothing that showed it could be nightmarish.
“Breast milk is best for babies up to 2 years.” Placed on every formula milk packaging and heard on every formula milk commercial, this official statement reinforces a fact everyone already knows. Breast milk is the most reliable nutrition for babies, from newborns to toddlers.
Breast Is Best
Exclusive breastfeeding (EBF) is recommended for the first six months. Mixing breastmilk with formula and solid foods can follow after that time. Some parents continue to nurse even after the first year, which is a choice called extended breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is a choice you make for you and with your baby. As long as both of you wish to continue, you can nurse for as long as you would like to.
Breastfeeding does not work for everyone, however, and parents switch to formula for several reasons. Among them are low milk supply, problems with nursing efficiently, work schedule of parents, lack of desire to express milk while away from baby, lack of sleep due to nighttime feedings, health problems, lack of caregiving support from family or the community, and public policy particularly in the form of short maternity leaves.
With these concerns, breastfeeding may even become a cause of stress and may even seem one-sided. Your baby gets to eat, but you barely do. They get to sleep, but you hardly do. They get what they need—do you? Claire McCarthy, MD says “We need to remember that formula isn’t evil. In fact, sometimes it can be a tool to support breastfeeding — by supplementing newborns that have lost a risky amount of weight, by supplementing the milk supply of mothers who would otherwise give up entirely, by allowing working mothers who can’t pump enough milk for all their hours of work to keep breastfeeding as long as they would like. ”
Convenience is another reason for parents to choose formula. Your child’s food source is not biologically tied to you as the breastfeeding parent. Choosing to formula-feed provides more room for parents to accomplish other essential tasks in their lives while allowing other people in their lives to look after their child. According to Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, “The entire family can immediately become intimately involved in all aspects of the baby’s care, including feedings, allowing the mother to get more rest.” It is understandable to want this kind of leeway in movement, especially for new parents. After all, they juggle caring for a newborn, going to work, and adjusting to this massive change in their lifestyles.
Making this choice away from breast milk toward formula is unfortunately heavily stigmatized. The common argument against it is how milk substitutes are “less nutritious” than human milk and how your baby will then be “less protected” from health problems. Alexandra Sacks MD asserts this point, “I think that the social pressure on new mothers to breastfeed can, at times, be psychologically unhealthy. If you experience more stress than satisfaction from breastfeeding, it can be healthier for you and your baby to supplement with or switch fully to formula.” Hospitals in one city were even encouraged by public officials to hide their formula milk for more mothers to breastfeed.
The health value of breast milk for babies is virtually indisputable, but for many parents, formula milk is a sensible alternative whether by choice or by circumstance.
Fed Is Best
Your baby is fed and never goes hungry—that’s the most important thing. All parents have the right to feed their baby as they choose, regardless of whether to breastfeed exclusively, to supplement with formula, or to completely bottle-feed formula to your baby. The “mom guilt” of needing to be the perfect mother by providing the best nutrition possible is easy to overcome once you experience the benefits of formula feeding.
Parents have a lot of reasons why they decide to exclusively formula-feed their baby, with the most notable being how they had a choice to do so. You do, too.
For breastfeeding moms out there, your sense of fashion doesn’t have to take the back burner now that you have a baby and you’ve decided to breastfeed him or her. This post is about how to look fabulous and fashionable even with your tiny tot in tow and without denting your budget.
Many moms somehow feel more excited when they find out their baby is going to be a girl. In their mind, they begin to imagine the mother-daughter bonding bound to happen during cute toddler dress shopping, playdates, and braiding sessions, among others.
Let’s admit it: the mother-daughter bonding is unparalleled, but the mother-son bonding is a whole new experience altogether. For mothers at any stage in their son’s lives—whether it be in their toddler, high school, or college years—it’s never too late to be closer to your son. “Parent-child relationships develop over time, influenced by child characteristics, parent characteristics, and the contexts in which families operate.”, Neil Farber M.D, Ph.D., CLC, CPT explains.
Speak Your Son’s Language
If girls bond through tea dates and dolls, boys do it in an entirely different manner. Boys (especially young ones) bond through physical activities with loads of energy to spare.
If you are genuinely dedicated to forming a deeper relationship with your son, then you should learn and speak his language. It means compromising on your end by trying to engage in activities that your son loves. It could be as simple as playing ball outside, enjoying a simple video game together (check here some of the recommended video games: FamilyHype), or teaching him stuff only “dad would teach him.” Knowing that what matters to him matters just as much to you, you will notice the difference in your relationship in no time.
Just the same, try and introduce him to the things that you love doing too. It will teach him new stuff outside of his comfort zone. He will also learn excellent social communication skills that will help him in the long run.
Gently Teach Him About Women
The parents’ role in their child’s development is of great consequence. For mothers, that comes with the responsibility of being the primary source of what their boys should know about girls and women alike.
Be ready, however, because boys are quick to dismiss the idea of emotions. But that’s just because their environment teaches them to be that way. Gently reminding them how to be respectful, how to act appropriately, and how to treat girls will ensure that they grow up as the best sons every parent can hope for. It will help them to be more sensitive towards all the women in their life, including you.
“Learning respect for women starts at home, when boys watch how their mothers, sisters, and other women are treated and talked about by men. So when men at home treat women like they’re equally worthy and valued as people with needs, feelings, intelligence, skills, and power, boys are much more likely to grow up to do the same.” Brian D. Johnson, Ph.D. and Laurie Berdahl, M.D. discuss.
Boys tend to be shyer when it comes to showing emotions. They express themselves strongly through playful aggression that most mothers may not be used to.
Asking them what hurt them might take a little longer compared to girls. But remember that you are dealing with your child, and it is essential to let them have their own time to sort out what they feel. Do not rush them to confide because this will only push them to shut feelings away. Instead, slowly but surely coax them into trusting you enough to hear what they have to say.
Take note of what their language is, and approach them accordingly. After some time, they will come around too. “If you don’t have a good relationship with your child, they’re not going to listen to you. ” reminds Ruby Natale PhD, PsyD.
Each child is different. There is certainly no one-size-fits-all method when it comes to parenting. But for mothers looking to strengthen their relationship with their sons, these helpful tips might be a good start. Soon enough, they’ll all be mommy’s boys too!
For soon-to-be mothers, carrying a baby for nine months is stressful enough as it is. However, the moment after giving birth poses even higher risks not only for the baby but also for the mother’s health.
Women’s hormones go into a highly unstable state after birthing. It causes a couple of psychological issues such as mood swings, feeling of isolation, helplessness, and lack of self-esteem, among others. These, along with other stressors right after giving birth, make up for what is now commonly known as postpartum depression (PPD). To understand more about this condition, visit BetterHelp.com for helpful information.
Postpartum depression is severe in that it can last longer and can include suicidal thoughts or being unable to take care of their newborn. Usually, it happens right after giving birth due to sudden hormonal changes that the woman experiences. To add to this, the stress of going through drastic physical changes, lack of sleep, and the process of healing after childbirth contribute to the development of postpartum depression.
At the onset, it may seem like postpartum depression only affects mothers. But it affects the entire family in a myriad of ways.
First, it will cause a disconnect between the woman and her partner since the woman may feel like she is not getting the support she needs. The emotional gap will soon take over their lives negatively.
Second, the newborn/child will not get the attachment and bonding s/he needs to grow healthily. Ellen Hendriksen, PhD, wrote that “this goes way beyond taking awhile to bond, which is normal.” Studies even show that it has long-term effects on children. This behavior from the mother may contribute to the child growing up with cognitive disorders, lack of social skills, and issues with emotional attachment. It may stem from the mother forming an irrational dislike for her child or neglecting tasks like feeding and taking good care of the baby.
Lastly, it also influences the mother’s relationship with her other social circles. PPD isolates the mother and disallows her to rebuild meaningful connections even with long-term friends.
How To Treat Postpartum Depression?
Despite the severity of PPD, it can be effectively treated once diagnosed. The most vital way is to create a secure bond with your baby, which can be as simple as holding your baby as much as you can. Respond gently and kindly whenever the baby does something, as it will spark the connection between you and the child.
Remembering that you are not alone in motherhood is also a great help for mothers. Rosalind S. Dorlen, PsyD, suggests that you “talk openly about your feelings with your spouse, family, friends, and healthcare professionals.” Mothers need to make time for their friends by inviting them over for coffee or letting them help take care of the baby. Doing so will not only help ward off the feeling of isolation in the mother but can also aid in relieving her stress.
Aside from support from friends, it is the best time to rely on the mother’s partner instead of braving the stress alone. They are sure to help through this tough time, and the mother should maintain trust and confidence, however hard it is.
Of course, do not forget to take care of yourself too. It is a necessity that you need to prioritize. Several triggers for postpartum depression are also related to physical changes happening to the woman’s body, such as hair loss and weight gain. To help with this, mothers can try slowly easing back to mild exercise or taking vitamins.
Motherhood is stressful, but with the proper support system, it certainly doesn’t have to be depressing. Congratulations, new moms!
We’re all too familiar with the motherhood archetype. It depicts a prim and proper woman who has it all together. She is a great wife, an excellent cook, and a diligent PTA meeting attendee. She does everything over again the next day. She is a woman who knows all the how-tos of motherhood and doesn’t complain one bit. How many mothers haven’t rolled their eyes or got pressured by this picture-perfect idea once in their lives? Let me tell you—just a few to none.
So What’s The Deal?
For the longest time, society has told women several times that motherhood is a job and a vocation. And there has just been too many lunch dates with veteran mom friends that turned into self-doubting sessions. Instead of catching up with friends, it turned into thinking whether we’re doing worse or less compared to them. There had only been enough “You’re a mother. Own it!” and “Why aren’t you staying at home with your kids? Why are you using that product? Enroll your kid in this and that. Quit your job! Don’t neglect motherhood!” before you get so beat down by all these external pressures. But one thing they do not tell you is this: it’s okay. Surprise! You’re not just a mother.
It happens way too often—you spend years on your career only for your peers to ignore you once you push out a baby. Suddenly, you are solely a mom. You’re no longer a doctor, a writer, an artist, an engineer, or whoever you were nine months prior.
There is nothing terrible with accepting that maybe you are defined by your motherhood at the moment. If you have chosen to quit your job for your baby, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. But just the same, owning who you are and acknowledging that being a mom is only one part of you is just as acceptable. It doesn’t mean that you love your child any less; it’s just that you have the mental capacity to know you are someone more.
High expectations cause many mothers to get so unnecessarily guilty, thinking that they aren’t enough for their children. But in reality, they are doing just fine. Own yourself. You’ll realize sooner or later that that is more important than just owning motherhood.
Remember that you can be so much more than only being a mother. The bottom line is you are not JUST a mom. You are also a sister, a daughter, a friend, a wife, or a professional. You are not defined by how many diapers you were able to change, how many playdates you were able to do, or how often your kid cries at night.
Let us do away with caging women in motherhood because being caged is what they are going to feel—trapped instead of fulfilled. Rather, let’s begin looking at motherhood as what it is—a regular part of a woman’s life. It’s not her title and never what defines her.
According to therapists, seeing parents give everything that their kids ask for gain mixed views in society. The negative thinkers tend to say that that’s what causes children to become spoiled and turn into bratty teenagers. They also assume that it prevents them from seeing the value of what they have, considering they can get anything after a little whining or persuasion.
Although no one can discount the truth in such words, it is wrong to say that all kids who get everything they want to grow up as significant sources of headache for the parents. I am a mom of three, and my children are fortunate enough to have the means to buy their needs and wants, but they only get material things as a reward for their good deeds.
My eldest daughter (11), in all honesty, is just getting a grand piano now after three years of taking lessons. Why? It’s because I know that she wants to become a pianist at this point. The instrument is expensive, yes, but who am I to hinder her development as a musician? Has it made her bratty? Not at all. She is well aware of the fact that the grand piano is now in our living room because she has earned it, and she can’t be more grateful because of it.
Considering you want to buy a grand piano for your little pianist as well and become the mom of the year in your children’s eyes, pay no mind to the people who think you are spoiling them. Nevertheless, let me give you some points on how you can buy the best one.
To-Do List Before Buying A Grand Piano
Often, buyers, beginners and intermediate musicians alike, get too excited with the idea of buying a grand piano that they just purchase the first piano that they set their eyes on without even checking if it has some dents. Such marks cannot be seen from a distance, you know. You cannot even tell if the keys are working well from afar.
As I have mentioned above, grand pianos do not exactly come cheap. Every single penny is important, so you better take a deep breath first and remember to write the following things down on a paper before you enter a music store as a part of your to-do list.
Ask For Assistance
Even though you are either a novice or expert piano player, ask for the assistance of a sales agent before you pick and pay for a certain grand piano. Whoever that sales agent is, he or she surely knows more about the model that you are looking at than any other person in that place. After all, they are getting paid to talk about the advantages of having one piano over the other. Aside from that, if you are shopping for yourself, it will be nice if you can have the agent’s opinion as well so that you can be sure that you are on the right track.
Know The Background Of The Grand Piano
People say that to know what a person’s like, you should know where he has come from first. The same thing goes with grand pianos: know its background, its manufacturer, what it’s made out of, the craftsmanship incorporated to it, and its age, if possible. This way, you can feel if it is the kind of piano that can become bequeathed to your great-great-great grandchildren in the future.
Ask About Warranty
The warranty is probably one of the most important things that you should ask about before you even start looking for specific grand pianos. The reason is that there may be some unavoidable circumstances that may happen at home, and the piano may endure some damages because of it. Ask the agent about the number of years that the warranty will be valid for, the possible fees that you will have to pay for certain repairs, as well as the included and excluded services in that warranty.
Ask About After-Sale Services
If you now have a great interest in buying a piano, ask about the aftersales services that they can offer to you. To be precise, find out if those services are free of charge. Aside from that, try to know if they can tune the instrument after some time, move it to a different location, and have ways to protect the piano in a hot climate. Do not be shy to ask for such things because you are buying a grand piano from them and, admit it, getting freebies from time to time is nice.
Play A Song
This is the deal-breaker part of your to-do list. Playing some tunes on the piano can tell you whether the sound it produces is of rich quality, the keys are too difficult to depress, or your child is comfortable with playing this particular grand piano. It is highly suggested to buy an instrument that is not just good on the outside but also the inside. I kid you not, that is the main thing that you should be concerned about. Hit all the keys and listen carefully to every sound it makes before you say that your piano-searching days are over.
Don’t worry about the naysayers who think you are spoiling your kids too much for buying a grand piano or whatever they want. As long as you don’t ask money from them and your babies are happy, your actions are justifiable.
Working in the world of psychology for years and being a mother at the same time can never be a walk in the park. Some people might say, “It can’t be as difficult as what we deal with every day. At least, you know how to soothe a kid who throws a tantrum or handle stress well because of your profession.” Others also tend to think that being a psychologist entails that the latter always has a few tricks up their sleeves to coax a child to do as they are told since that is a part of their training.
Despite that, people might be forgetting that psychologists are not baby whisperers. A few may specialize in working with children, but many typically understand what adults are going through only. A more significant issue with having this profession is that they become mentally and emotionally exhausted at work, but then those areas need to function at home to understand what the kids want and need. Hence, like a lot of parents out there, psychologists do not have it easy.
This is one of the reasons why such professionals have started turning to arts and crafts to alleviate their stress. One specific activity that gains attention these days is embroidery.
What Makes Embroidery Special?
Picking up embroidery as a hobby is not a random fad that bored people have started. A lot of moms have decided to knit and sew because it allows them to put their phones down and do something with their hands. This form of distraction seems to be better than using a fidget spinner or solving a puzzle since you get to create something useful with a needle and a bunch of threads or yarns.
How Do I Find A Reliable Embroidery Machine?
Assuming embroidery is more than a pastime for you now and you want to start a side business that involves selling embroidered shirts, mug sleeves, beanies, and many more, you want to opt for practicality. You need to find a reliable machine that will help you produce such items. Here are a few tips on how you can do that.
1. Study The Sewing Surface
Take into consideration the kind of designs that you wish to embroider. If you are a new mother, then you may want to do a bit of monogramming on your baby’s bib and onesies. If you sew for a living, you require an embroidery machine that has a larger surface so that you will not have problems with the size of the design that you are going to create.
2. Find Out If Designs Are Built-In Or Not
A lot of apparatuses, specifically the digitalized ones, have patterns built into the system to make the embroidering process more stress-free for the crafty individuals. The number of designs that an embroidery machine has mostly depends on how generous the brand is instead of the dimensions of the sewing field. Some devices with bigger surfaces have smaller design counts and vice versa. This is vital to know beforehand since getting an embroidery instrument that has over a hundred stored patterns means that you do not need to upload extra in the machine.
3. Check The Functionality Of The LCD Screen
Modernized devices for embroidery are equipped with LCD to let you scrutinize every bit of the design before and during the embroidering procedure. Such screens should be touch-capacitive as well because it is impractical to only have a little window for display.
The basic idea is that you should be able to carry out most or all of the commands through that LCD. A few things that you are supposed to do with embroidery machine are enlarging the design, turning the cloth over, automatically cutting the thread, putting pressure on the foot presser, and placing the thread mechanically on the needles, among others.
4. Get One With A USB Port And Memory Bank
Although it has been mentioned that it is favorable to obtain an embroidery machine that has many in-built designs, it will not hurt to purchase an apparatus that has its memory, too. That is especially essential if you have come across the latest pattern and you would like to keep it in there. Having a USB port is also an excellent as it will allow you to plug and unplug your design-filled flash drive whenever it is time for you to sew. Due to these features, you can make sure that all the patterns you embroider are up-to-date.
In The End
An embroidery machine needs to make the procedure less taxing for your body and mind, in general. If the device gives you an urge to unwind the threads and plan the designs yourself, then that is not the right one for you. Choose the best embroidery machine now with the help of the tips above.
Single mothers are accountable for conceiving over 20 million children in America. A lot of these mothers have become or remained single because of a broken relationship, the death of her partner, or other difficult situations that psychologically impact families, especially children. Yes, even single mothers who don’t struggle with sadness, trauma, loneliness, or guilt still bear the burden of being an only parent. A single mother’s family develops its strength and resilience through her emotional health, so she must not only attend to her child’s needs but her own needs as well. “The challenges facing single parents are not that different from those of all parents. But it may be more difficult for them to create the community of support we all need to function as parents. “says Leah Klungness, Ph.D.Read more
As a parent, it is essential that we have an idea on our teen’s behavioral health. We don’t have to know everything they do though. We have to become the parent who contributes to their developmental growth. So how would we do that? Good thing some ways can help us achieve a better understanding of our teens’ way of thinking and responding to their environment.
Most teens feel their thoughts are sometimes scary. That’s because most of them instill this idea that no one in the world understands them. These young individuals assume that they are the only ones who struggle from emotional instability and that others don’t see their suffering. The reason why most of them are rebellious, impulsive, and unreasonable is due to their shared belief that they are always alone. “The message we give teenagers is that they’re only ‘good’ if they’re not doing ‘bad’ things, such as doing drugs, hanging around with the wrong crowd, or having sex,” Richard Lerner, PhD explains. It becomes impossible for them to share their deepest secret because they get afraid of all the judgment they could receive. Most of the times, their decisions in life often fails. From there, they try to convince themselves that there is something wrong with the way they are. That kind of mentality damages every aspect of their health.
Even in the early years, society managed to create an environment where being different is not acceptable. That’s perhaps why most teenagers see isolation as an escape. Since they can’t handle and manage the challenges in their lives, these young individuals struggle in adapting their thoughts, emotions, and behaviors. “Adolescence is a pivotal time for all teenagers — as they form self-identity, plan for the future, and move into adulthood. Steven Gans, MD says. That’s the reason why teens don’t try to embrace their imperfections because they know that society won’t allow them to be the person they want to become. And since our culture only focuses on right and wrong and don’t consider what’s in between, it creates a stigma. That even though these kids already understand things, they will remain incapable of doing what society thinks is appropriate.
Teen Mental Health
Experts from BetterHelp often say that people know that teenagers find it hard to handle different kinds of emotions, especially when the emotional turmoil gets accompanied by mental illness. The condition becomes a big deal because it creates a distance that somehow lasts for an extended period. So once these young individuals get uncomfortable and unattached, they begin to lose control. The most challenging problem then arises as they continue to lose self-confidence and self-trust. From there, everything around them looks unnecessary. That even personal growth becomes a word that no longer serves its purpose.
Teen Life Outlook
With more access to the internet and social media, most teens believe that it’s not okay to be just fine and that people only live through perfection. Most teenagers are obsessing about fame, getting hopeless with their achievements, trying so hard to fit in, and becoming someone they are not. They do quite a lot of things that encourage self-disposition. As a result, it negatively impacts their emotional and mental health. And sometimes, even if they already know that there are things bad for them, they still do it anyways. These young teenage kids feel entitled to do whatever they want because they believe that they only live for themselves. It’s understandable that they sometimes wish to have everything. But the fact that they can’t have it all destroys them.
Most teens often develop an issue with the people around them. That’s because they don’t listen. They often assume they know everything that’s going on. They believe that people who contradict their decisions are enemies. These young kids feel they are mature because they always handle environmental pressure. They think that what others know is just a piece of what they only experience. That’s the reason why most teens are often agitated and angry all the time. Some of them don’t value the relationship that much because they have this idea that people can’t be trusted. With that, they only look out for themselves because they feel terrified to get hurt by the people they love. Thus they favor isolation.
Teens’ behavioral health is the most crucial part of their development. “Teens experience a ridiculous amount of cognitive and emotional variance and development.” Suzanne Degges-White Ph.D. wrote. If we parents don’t know how to tweak and handle some of its factors at an early stage, it will be too late to manage it over time. So we have to understand that it is our responsibility to help them, care for them, and do everything for the sake of their overall wellness.