What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood

By Margaret Ables and Amy Wilson

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Subscribers: 178
Reviews: 2


 Jun 13, 2021

donna
 Apr 23, 2021
Best parenting podcast out there! Every episode is interesting, even if it's a topic I wouldn't think relates to me. Treats Moms as competent adults, doing their best. And live Margaret and Amy's very different approaches to parenting. Just listen - you'll be hooked!

Description

Hosted by funny moms Margaret Ables and Amy Wilson, “What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood” is a comedy podcast about the never-ending "fresh hells" of parenting. Amy and Margaret are each moms of three, dealing with the same hassles as any parent– but with completely different parenting styles. Margaret is laid-back to the max; Amy never met a spreadsheet she didn't like. We offer three episodes each week: "Question of the Week" on Mondays regular weekly episodes on Wednesdays "Fresh Take" interview with experts and authors on Fridays Join us as we laugh in the face of motherhood! Winner of the 2018 Mom 2.0 Iris Award for Best Podcast and the 2017 Podcast Awards People’s Choice for Best Family and Parenting Podcast, and finalist for the 2019 Romper's Parent's Choice Award. whatfreshhellpodcast.com

Episode Date
Ask Amy- When The Other Kid Wants To Play But Yours Doesn't
366
This week's question came from Instagram: What do you do when another parent wants to set up a playdate with your kid, but you know your kid doesn't want to play with them? Nothing harmful in the past- just kids who knew each other but don't have anything in common anymore. It seems rude to say my kid doesn't want to, but... my kid doesn't want to. Making scheduling excuses only goes so far... Most parents have been on both sides of this– trying to make friend connections on behalf of our own kid, who is feeling left out, and fielding "but he's so ANNOYING!" from that same child, feeling suddenly less than gracious to a friend they used to like perfectly fine. While there are no one-size-fits-all answers for this situation, Amy gives her been there, done that advice– including the notion that spending a little time with someone who's not our absolute favorite might be a life lesson worth learning.  Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 02, 2021
Fresh Take: Lenore Skenazy on Free-Range Kids and How To "Let Grow"
2271
Lenore Skenazy is the author of Free-range Kids: How Parents and Teachers Can Let Go and Let Grow, the hugely influential parenting bestseller with a newly released second edition. The free-range movement really got started 12 years ago after Lenore's newspaper column “Why I Let My 9-Year-Old Ride the Subway Alone” created a media firestorm. Now Lenore is co-founder and president of Let Grow, the national nonprofit promoting childhood independence. In this "Fresh Take" interview we discuss the "back in our day" style of play we grew up with, and why having a free-range kid these days is more complicated than clearing their schedule and opening your back door. We talk about the crucial role of free play with kids of various ages in our children's development, and how to foster that idea in our schools and neighborhoods. Lenore is full of wit and insight, and you'll feel empowered to "let go and let grow" after listening to this episode! To find out more, check out letgrow.org, and follow Free-Range Kids and Let Grow on social media: Twitter: @freerangekids, @letgroworg Facebook: @Free-Range Kids Book, @Let Grow, @Raising Independent Kids, @Lenore Skenazy Special thanks to this month's sponsors: Design like a pro with Canva Pro! We use it for all our images– we've upped our game and saved time too. Right now,  you can get a FREE 45-day extended trial when you go to canva.me/fresh. The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Some other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Bobby Wonder is a kids' podcast from GoKidGo that the whole family can enjoy. Bobby Wonder is a typical guy who just found out he's from another planet. If your kid also loves to laugh, save the world, and eat waffles, subscribe or follow "Bobby Wonder" wherever you're listening right now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 30, 2021
Am I Making This Harder Than It Needs To Be?
2620
Why are some things hard for us but not our partners or our friends? Do we make things harder than they need to be? Or are some things, like picking up the phone and talking to a stranger to order pizza, just stupidly difficult for everyone? We asked our listeners: What seems harder to you than it needs to be? What's something you struggle with that you suspect you might be making a little more complicated than it needs to be? In this episode we discuss all the things that are perhaps overly hard for at least one of us, like packing for trips back-to-school shopping having people over cleaning out the car making new friends Is there hope? Can we learn anything from our friends for whom these same things are not at all hard? Listen and find out! Special thanks to this month's sponsors: Design like a pro with Canva Pro! We use it for all our images– we've upped our game and saved time too. Right now,  you can get a FREE 45-day extended trial when you go to canva.me/fresh. The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Some other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Bobby Wonder is a kids' podcast from GoKidGo that the whole family can enjoy. Bobby Wonder is a typical guy who just found out he's from another planet. If your kid also loves to laugh, save the world, and eat waffles, subscribe or follow "Bobby Wonder" wherever you're listening right now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 28, 2021
Ask Margaret - What Do I Do About My Kid's Poor Hygiene?
403
Our kids may be adorable and fresh-smelling when they are little, but somewhere along the way (thanks puberty!) they transform into oily stink-monsters. Once our kids reach a certain age, keeping up with our kids' hygiene feels like it shouldn't be a parent's job. But if we give up all oversight, some kids might walk around with bad teeth and frightening body odor. Most kids are capable of managing their own self-care, but they need to be taught the proper way to wash themselves brush their teeth take care of their skin apply deodorant Don't skip the step of really sitting your kids down and explaining HOW to do all of these things. If your kids are having trouble keeping up with their hygiene routines, or you find yourself constantly reminding them to brush their teeth or shower, consider making a schedule so these routines can happen without your involvement. If Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday are shower days then you don't have to constantly discuss whether or not your kid needs to shower. They just do, 'cause it's Tuesday. If teeth need to be brushed before kids come down in the morning, you don't have to nag them about whether or not it's happened. If they show up downstairs with funky teeth and bad breath, they already know they'll be going back upstairs. Putting rules and expectations around hygiene may be a little more work in the beginning, but in the long term it will truly help establish your ultimate goal: kids who can manage their own self-care. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 26, 2021
Fresh Take: Nikki Weiner on What's Changed in College Admissions
2208
Nikki Weiner is the founder of Building Bold, and has served as a guest speaker in the U.S. and abroad on writing and the college admissions landscape. Nikki’s ultimate goal is to provide students with the tools to thrive through the admission process and beyond to reach their full potential.  She tells Amy what's changed in the college admissions landscape– and it's a lot. Is test-optional here to stay? Why are so many schools suddenly so much harder to get into? What makes an application stand out? How can a student and her parent get through this process and still like each other on the other side? Whether you're going through the admissions process, are about to, or just wonder how it's all changed since you applied, you'll love this informative and reassuring explanation of how to navigate today's college admissions process. Follow Building Bold @buildingbold on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, or at buildingboldstudents.com. Nikki and Amy both recommend the blog written by Jeff Schiffman, Director of Admissions at Tulane, in this episode. Coincidentally, this blog had its final post just last week, but its advice remains extremely useful: http://tuadmissionjeff.blogspot.com/ Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Some other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Bobby Wonder is a kids' podcast from GoKidGo that the whole family can enjoy. Bobby Wonder is a typical guy who just found out he's from another planet. If your kid also loves to laugh, save the world, and eat waffles, subscribe or follow "Bobby Wonder" wherever you're listening right now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 23, 2021
Handling the News With Our Kids
2744
The news is hard for anyone to escape these days– and that includes our kids. Even the littlest ones might see a stray notification on a parent's phone, or overhear something scary from a television that was left on. A lot of us struggle with what to tell our kids, how much, and when. But if we don't give the kids any context, some older kid in the cafeteria might become their primary source of (mis)information. We discuss what age is old enough for difficult topics, what to do when the story is close to home, and how we can always lead with reassurance– plus the best ways to consume the news with, and in front of, our kids. Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Paul Underwood for NYT: Is the News Too Scary for Kids? NPR Parenting: What To Say To Kids When the News Is Scary Liz Gumbinner: No, I Don't Know. Please Don't Tell Me Common Sense Media: Best News Sources for Kids Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Some other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Bobby Wonder is a kids' podcast from GoKidGo that the whole family can enjoy. Bobby Wonder is a typical guy who just found out he's from another planet. If your kid also loves to laugh, save the world, and eat waffles, subscribe or follow "Bobby Wonder" wherever you're listening right now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 21, 2021
Ask Amy- My Kid Loses Everything!
399
All kids lose stuff sometimes. Some kids lose stuff all the time. Sometimes it's ADHD or general inattention. Sometimes it's just a slower development of executive function. No matter what, it's frustrating (and expensive). What's a parent to do? A member of our Facebook group asked:  Any suggestions for the kid who loses everything? My son is 9. He lost three sweatshirts in the two months he was in in-person school, a tennis racquet at tennis camp, baseball glove at baseball practice, shin guards at soccer camp… and don’t even get me started on water bottles!  The “lost and found” turned up one of the many things he has lost, but that is it. He swears each time that he put the things in his bag. Unless, there is a sweaty shin guard thief, this obviously is untrue.  We’ve tried charts and check lists. We’ve tried making him earn the replacement items, but nothing seems to stop the constant misplacing of items. HELP! For the truly forgetful kids, the oft-cited "natural consequences"– if he doesn't have his shin guards, he won't be able to play, and he'll sure remember next time!– rarely work. Your child will feel chagrined, but be just as likely to forget the next time. In this episode Amy suggests what has worked in her household, like making reminders unmissable (put the reminder ON the doorknob, not hanging above it) labeling everything that costs more than the label would (Amy uses oliverslabels.com) use list-making apps and model using them yourself (Amy uses Workflowy) and check out Carolyn Dalgliesh's ideas for helping forgetful kids get organized: http://www.carolyndalgliesh.com/ Kids do well if they can. Don’t give up on the checklists and the reminders if they don’t work right away. Keep your support system consistent– and non-shaming– and eventually your child will check for those shin guards before he leaves the field.  Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 19, 2021
Fresh Take: Heidi Murkoff on Maternal Health (And What We Can Do To Protect It)
2217
Heidi Murkoff is a mother, a grandmother, and the author of the legendary What to Expect When You’re Expecting, with more than 19 million copies in print. Heidi is also the creator of the What to Expect Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping all moms expect healthy pregnancies, safe deliveries, and healthy babies. In this interview we discuss maternal health for all women– and the clear and present need for improved maternal health care both in the U.S. and globally. An easy way to help raise awareness: July 21 is Bump Day! Tag your "bump" (past or present) on social media with the hashtag #bumpday and tag @whattoexpect. To find out more about the What To Expect Project and how you can get involved, go to https://www.whattoexpectproject.org/resources. Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 16, 2021
Best Advice We'd Give Our Younger Selves
2755
Youth is wasted on the young. We wasted our youth taking the wrong classes in college and layering imaginary agendas onto other people's dopey behavior. Sound familiar? We asked our listeners: If you could time travel, what advice would you give your younger self? Here's the best advice we all learned from doing things the wrong way! Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 14, 2021
Ask Margaret - What To Do When Kids Say They're Bored
497
One of the most important lessons from the pandemic may be "It is OK for kids to be bored". A lot of parents fear boredom because of the whining and complaining that comes along with it - but in this episode Margaret argues that one thing we learned from all of our downtime during the pandemic is that there IS something on the other side of boredom. Resist the urge to become the "cruise director" all summer long. Structure the day in loose blocks (yes - you can use your white board!) such as: Clearly defined screen times Clean-up time Reading time Kids choice (but no screens) Movie afternoon Family book club Kids only sports Board game time (kids only) Board game time with an adult Outdoor time (yes - even it is raining!) Parent/Kid time (a time when parents are fully involved and active in their kids' play) Bucket list activity (a fun activity that your child or your family has chosen - i.e. 'make Harry Potter chocolate frogs') It doesn't matter what these times are but these kinds of categories will make it easier to "fill" the day without always listening to complaining about boredom - or having mom being always in charge of "what's next". When mom's presence is requested you can point out out that you are busy right now - but you will see your kids at "Family Sports Time" (for example) You'll be sure to have a couple of exciting fun-filled days (like beach days or pool outings or a planned vacation) and that will break up the monotony of less-planned days but don't fear those "boring" days! Lean in to the boredom a bit and see what your kids discover! Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 12, 2021
Fresh Take: Olivia Martinez-Hauge on Special Needs Parenting
2205
Olivia Martinez-Hauge is a marriage and family therapist specializing in the treatment of families, couples, and individuals who are caregiving for children or adults with neurodiversity. She is also a licensed occupational therapist with over two decades of experience helping children and their families. She is also a mother of three children, two with neurodiversity. In this "Fresh Take" interview, Olivia explains the grief and isolation that might come with special needs parenting her own journey moving past those emotions by parenting "from a place of present" the team of support that a parent of a special needs child needs how we can change our friend groups, schools, and societies to be more supportive of families with children who have special needs Whether you're a parent of a special needs or neurodiverse child, or just want to be a better friend to someone who is, you'll learn so much from this interview. Find out more about Olivia and her work at The Center for Connection and Neurodiversity here: https://www.thecenterforconnection.org/ Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 09, 2021
Super-Awesome Mom Hacks
2672
Time for some easy wins! Here of some of our (and our listeners') favorite hacks for naptime diapers laundry kitchen sibling squabbles and General Sanity Preservation. This stuff really works! Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 07, 2021
Ask Amy - My Kid Just Doesn't Want To Talk About It
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When we have a child who chooses to withdraw and "not talk about it," rather than unpack his disappointment, is that a reason for concern? This week's question comes from Facebook: When my seven year old gets upset, he refuses to talk to us even to describe the event that led to his reaction. He seems to prefer to process things internally. And so his immediate reaction is to shut down and say, I don't want to talk. My spouse and I have both made a strong and conscious effort to validate his feelings and to be open and available for the times he does want to talk, but more often than not, my son just prefers to bury the experience and move on without talking about it. Sometimes this means him concluding after one bad experience that an activity is horrible and he will never try it again. Therapy is probably a direction we are heading in. But do you think we should start with the school social worker? Some kids, like some adults, are more emotionally expressive than others. That a 7-year-old processes internally is not necessarily a bad thing. It really depends on the intensity of the precipitating events, their frequency, plus how often you see these reactions from your child. If your kid is spending half his time at home in tears, then you do need to encourage opening up. If he's obviously expressing unhappiness, frustration, anger– expressions of bottled-up emotion– then yes, that is something that has to be dealt with. But a seven-year-old's ability to express himself might be frustrated by his own vocabulary and emotional maturity. Some kids benefit from drawing pictures of their feelings. As parents, the best approach may be to talk, in his presence, about. the things that you and your spouse do to move past disappointment and hurt feelings. You don't need to draw a direct line from your own experiences to what you're asking your son to do in order for the point to come across. That a child has one "bad experience," and then displays refusal of what's not easy or comfortable, is also very common and developmentally appropriate. If there's actual panic at the notion of going back to a place or activity– if there are tantrums or bedwetting other forms of acting out– that could be a sign of anxiety that your child needs help with. But while frustration tolerance is something you might need to work on with your child, it's probably not something to be deeply concerned about at this stage. Keep an eye on it, push back against it, and over time you will hopefully see some growth in these areas. Send us your parenting question and we might answer yours next! Email us: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 05, 2021
BEST OF: What Kind of Monster?
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It's a "Best Of" episode that launched a movement: What Kind Of Monster? Or #WKOM, as the Fresh Hellions in our Facebook group call it. Our highest calling here at What Fresh Hell is to serve as a safe space for our listeners to tell us what really, truly drives them up the wall. What kind of monster listens to videos on speaker? Keeps the keyboard clicks on their phone? What kind of monster takes up two parking spots? Puts empty cereal boxes back in the cabinet? (Disclaimer: there is a monster in the mirror, as well. But we're not talking about that today so much... or ever.) Special thanks to this month's sponsors: The Cozi Family Organizer is for anyone juggling camp schedules, practices, meetings, doctor’s appointments, and maybe a date night once in a while. Download Cozi for free from the app store! Green Chef’s expert chefs design flavorful recipes that go way beyond the ordinary. Go to greenchef.com/laughing100 and use code laughing100 to get $100 off including free shipping! Italic is a new kind of everything store. They offer quality goods from the same manufacturers as leading brands for up to 80% less. Sign up for an Italic membership at italic.com/join and use code WHATFRESHHELL for 30% off. Magic Spoon cereal gets protein into your kids’ breakfast- and with 0 grams of sugar. Go to magicspoon.com/FRESH and use the code FRESH at checkout to get $5 off! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 02, 2021
Birth Order: Can We Fight It?
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We see birth order play out pretty clearly, both in our own families and in our families of origin. But is it a bad thing? Is it a thing to fight back against? Is there a way to make the older child less stressed, and the baby maybe a little *more* motivated? And is it a problem if our own birth order has shaped who we are as adults and how we parent? We think the answer is: not really. These stereotypes are so ingrained because the effects of birth order are real. But that's not to say the things that result are all negative, or completely determinative, or that your middle kid is doomed to a life of unhappiness just because she was unlucky enough to get a younger sibling. Still, awareness of the effects of birth order seems important, if only to catch ourselves when we're inadvertently reinforcing those roles. That's when we can give the youngest a little more responsibility, the oldest a little less– and let the middle kid pick what’s for dinner once in a while. Interested in hearing more? Check out two of our past episodes: "Birth Order- Parenting Each Child Best (More or Less)" "Middle Kids" Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Special thanks to this month's sponsors: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 30, 2021
Ask Margaret- When Is It Okay For Kids To Keep Secrets?
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We sometimes feel nothing should be kept secret between us and our children, but that's not really true. We do need to talk often with our kids about the difference between inappropriate secrets (an adult asking them to keep something secret from their parents) and appropriate ones (the present we are hiding in the garage for Dad's birthday). Today's question comes from our Facebook group: How do teach kids when to keep secrets? Like not telling other kids about Santa, or how babies are made? Or how twhen not to talk about a topic, like puberty, with others? Conversations about secrets should be ongoing. What is the difference between tattling and telling? When is it appropriate to keep a friend's confidence? What if you know a friend is in trouble, but you've been asked to keep it secret? Your child will likely need help navigating these types of dilemmas throughout their childhood. One way to make this easier is to define a spectrum of secret-keeping. On side are secrets that are always inappropriate: Adults asking you to do things that make you uncomfortable, and to keep that from your parents Friends doing things that worry or scare you, and telling you not to tell anyone On the other side are secrets that are always OK: Surprises (We're taking Mom on a trip for her birthday next week but don't tell her yet) Keeping magic alive for younger kids (Not telling little kids there is no Santa) Private Things (Things that are going on with your body that are private) Neither of these categories is absolute, which is why an ongoing dialogue is important. Help kids think about different types of secrets they might be asked to keep in advance. Talk with other family members and caregivers about the language used around secrets. Discourage grandparents from saying things like "This is a secret! Don't tell Mom!" when they take the kids out for treats. Check out our earlier episode on secrets here: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/when-should-kids-tell/ In this episode Margaret references this link from Fatherly.com: https://www.fatherly.com/parenting/how-to-teach-a-kid-to-keep-a-secret/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 28, 2021
Fresh Take: Dawn Huebner on Sibling Rivalry (And What Parents Usually Do Wrong)
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Dr. Dawn Huebner is a psychologist, parent coach, and the author of 10 books for children, most of which we have on our bookshelves at home. Her new book is The Sibling Survival Guide: Surefire Ways to Solve Conflicts, Reduce Rivalry, and Have More Fun with Your Brothers and Sisters, which helps kids acquire the skills they need to get along with their siblings. Dawn believes that sibling rivalry is best quashed by the kids themselves, not by parents coming in to settle scores. She tells kids that they truly have the power to "stop feeling so bothered and start having more fun."  In this episode, Dawn explains the difference between treating siblings fairly and treating them equally, the difference between tattling and telling, and how our stepping out of the role as referee can lead to a seismic shift in how our kids get along. Follow Dawn on her Facebook page and website: dawnhuebnerphd.com and get The Sibling Survival Guide here: https://www.dawnhuebnerphd.com/the-sibling-survival-guide-surefire-ways-to-solve-conflicts-reduce-rivalry-and-have-more-fun-with-brothers-and-sisters/ Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Special thanks to this month's sponsors! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 25, 2021
Can We Be More Inclusive Parents?
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Can we become more inclusive as parents? Inclusivity has great benefits for everyone involved. We loved this explanation from Bright Horizons: "Too often, inclusiveness is described as something we should do to benefit others. Being inclusive is more than a moral obligation—although this alone is enough reason to practice it. When we are inclusive we aren’t divided. Instead, our world becomes enlarged. We gain relationships and experiences that enrich us. We recognize that we are all different, and that those differences bring joy to living." In this episode, we talk about how to get "wider" (more intentionally inclusive) in our family lives and in our communities. and how to bring our kids into that conversation. Here are links to some writing on topic (plus our own episodes) that we refer to in this episode: Melissa Hart for Parents: 5 Ways to Help Children Be More Inclusive of Other Kids Bright Horizons: Raising An Inclusive Child welcomingschools.org weneeddiversebooks.org Fresh Take: Judith Warner Talking With Our Kids About Race: Deborah Porter Fresh Take: Ellen Kahn Fresh Take: Radha Agrawal Two other podcasts we're loving right now: StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Hosted by Faith Salie, this podcast is about the ups and downs of parenting life. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Home.Made. podcast: inside every home, there’s a story. Hosted by Stephanie Foo (This American Life, Snap Judgment), each episode of this 10-part series explores the meaning of home and what it can teach us about ourselves and each other. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Special thanks to this month's sponsors! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 23, 2021
Ask Amy - Is Childhood Stuttering Something To Be Concerned About?
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It can be confusing and a little concerning when a toddler suddenly develops a stutter or a stammer. A member of our Facebook group asked: My daughter (27 months) seems to have recently developed a stammer/stutter, or maybe it has just gotten to the point where we notice it now. Instead of saying "Can I have that?" like she used to, she now says "Ca- ca- ca- can I have that?". It's usually only at the beginning of a sentence or thought, and most often when she is excited. But it's happening a lot. Part of me thinks it's nothing to get too worried over as she is only two, she's still developing her language skills, and it's more prevalent when she is excited. And the other part of me is a little worried. I've heard it's best to just wait patiently for her to finish her thought and that's what I usually do, although my husband keeps telling her to think about what she wants to say before saying it. If anyone has gone through this with their little one, did it resolve itself? How? When? What's the best approach? Stuttering in toddlers is very common, because children's language acquisition skills are more like a zigzag than a straight line. Sometimes stuttering can show up when a child's speech and language development lags behind what he or she needs or wants to say. It's definitely best for you and your partner to be on the same page about ignoring the stutter. Don't finish her sentences, tell her to slow down, or do other things to draw more attention to it. Your daughter may not even be aware it's happening, which is actually a positive indicator. But "ignore it" doesn't necessarily mean "never get a professional opinion or seek therapeutic support." Sometimes speech therapy is required. But at your daughter's age it's too early to make that call. You're in the collecting information stage. Don't worry about the stuttering– it's a typical stage in childhood speech development– but do keep a few notes about when it comes and goes, and mention it at your next pediatric visit. Two useful resources: http://www.coloradostutteringtherapy.com/childhood-stuttering/ https://www.stutteringhelp.org/differential-diagnosis Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 21, 2021
Fresh Take: You're Doing It Wrong! (with Bethany Johnson and Margaret Quinlan)
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Margaret "Maggie" Quinlan and Bethany Johnson are the co-authors of the book You’re Doing it Wrong! Mothering, Media and Medical Expertise. This book investigates the history of mothering advice in the media, from the 19th century to today, and the processes by which mothering has been defined, from getting pregnant to being pregnant to giving birth to whether "that baby" needs a hat on. Like most moms, Maggie and Bethany questioned their own parenting decisions because they understood their choices would be met with scrutiny exercised in few other arenas. They suggest that the first step to freeing ourselves from the socially prescribed perfectionism of motherhood is to realize that no matter what you decide, there will always be someone telling you "you're doing it wrong." Margaret "Maggie" Quinlan is a Professor of Communication at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She explores how communication creates, resists and transforms knowledges about bodies, and critiques power structures that marginalize certain people both inside and outside of healthcare systems. Bethany Johnson is a PHD candidate at the University of South Carolina. She studies how science, medical technology, and public health discourses are framed and reproduced by those with structural power. Get YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG! in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/books/you-re-doing-it-wrong-mothering-media-and-medical-expertise/9780813593784. To find out more about their work: http://johnsonquinlanresearch.com. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 18, 2021
Admitting Things Aren't Perfect
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It's hard to admit things aren't perfect. It's especially hard for moms. Psychologists Paul Hewitt and Gordon Flett described three types of perfectionism in the 1990s: self-directed (I must be a size 2), others-directed (do that piano exercise again until you get it right), and "socially mediated" perfectionism, which comes from society making unrealistic demands of a person or a group and punishes that person when she falls short. Sound familiar? Turns out the amount of socially mediated perfectionism a parent feels is directly related to her level of "parental burnout," defined as exhaustion in one’s role as a parent, feelings of being fed up as a parent, and even emotional distancing from one’s children. Not the place any of us want to get to. So why is it so hard to admit things aren't perfect? And how can we start? Here are links to some of the research on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Fatemeh Ghanbari Jahromia et al: The relationship between socially prescribed perfectionism and depression: The mediating role of maladaptive cognitive schemas  Paul Hewitt and Gordon Flett: Perfectionism in the Self and Social Contexts Matilda Sorkkila and Kaisa Aunola: Risk Factors for Parental Burnout among Finnish Parents: The Role of Socially Prescribed Perfectionism Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 16, 2021
BONUS: Danger Babies– Why Are Some Kids Natural Risk-Takers?
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It's another bonus episode of TODDLER PURGATORY- and the last one you'll be seeing on What Fresh Hell, at least for now! Subscribe or follow "Toddler Purgatory" wherever you listen to podcasts, so you'll never miss an episode. You can find links to lots of places to listen at toddlerpurgatory.com. Kids are bananas. Some particularly so. But why are some kids seemingly born to scale the kitchen cabinets before they can walk? And are there are any future upsides to having been a “danger baby”?  In this episode of Toddler Purgatory, Molly and Blaire discuss the many benefits of “free play,” the differences between danger and risk, how we can teach our little ones to be safely courageous, and what child development specialist Rebecca Weingarten calls “constructive failure.” Here are links to some of the writing on the topic and other things discussed in this episode:  https://health.usnews.com/wellness/for-parents/articles/2017-05-11/9-ways-to-cultivate-courage-in-kids https://www.todaysparent.com/kids/kids-health/why-our-kids-should-take-risks-sometimes-even-slightly-dangerous-ones/ Shakira’s song “Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)” https://youtu.be/pRpeEdMmmQ0 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 15, 2021
Ask Margaret - When Grandparents Undermine Your Parenting
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One question we get over and over again is about dealing with grandparents who say to our kids, "I want to– but your mom won't let me." We have a general guideline that you only have three times available to speak to your parents or in-laws about things they do that bother you. This "Rule of Three" forces us to consider whether any given issue is worth discussing, and most importantly, whether it is the rare behavior that might actually be changed by having a confrontational conversation about it. With the issue of undermining, Margaret thinks it might be worth a try. Sit down and have a conversation where you simply say, "When you say that you'd like to do something that my kids wants, only I won't allow it, it hurts my feelings, and it makes it harder for me to enforce the rules that are important to me." If this simple statement doesn't change this behavior long-term (spoiler alert: it probably won't) then the next step is to respond by restating your rules and your reasoning to your children, each and every time this happens. When Grandma says, "I would love to buy you ice cream, but your mom won't let me!" you respond, "That's right, because the rule in our house is that we have one dessert a day, and you had ice cream after lunch." As you calmly and directly restate your rules, you neutralize any attempt to undermine you. It may also help to restate rules before things come up, and in front of the undermining grandparent, "We're going to Target to get a new bathing suit but let's remember we're not buying any toys today." It's important to remember that the occasional annoying comment where Grandma sides with your kid will have few actual consequences. Your kid is not going to be led wildly astray by Grandma's remarks. The best thing to do about it is probably to vent (briefly) to a friend or Facebook group about how annoying it is, and then move on. If you keep your own rules clear, and restate them when contradictory statements are made, your kids will stay clear on who is really in charge. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 14, 2021
Fresh Take: Ellen Kahn On Supporting Our LGBTQ Kids
2358
Ellen Kahn is the Senior Director of Programs and Partnerships at the Human Rights Campaign. In her role, Ellen provides national leadership and expertise in public education and advocacy efforts on behalf of LGBTQ youth and families. Ellen is nationally recognized as an expert on LGBTQ family life and LGBTQ youth. She's also a proud mom of two teenage daughters. In this interview, Ellen explains how parents can create a home environment that affirms and accepts LGBTQ children, and how to advocate for LGBTQ kids in the larger world– whether they're our own children or not. As Ellen explains: "It's all of us together, chiseling away at the reason parents can be fearful when they find out their child is LGBTQ. Let's just not raise bullies anymore." Here are a few additional resources mentioned in this episode: Human Rights Campaign's welcomingschools.org pflag.org "Serendipitydodah- Home of the Mama Bears" Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Serendipitydodah Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 11, 2021
Our Parental Achilles Heels
2767
Our merch store is live! Get your T-shirts, hoodies, onesies, and notebooks: bit.ly/whatfreshmerch. An "Achilles Heel" is a weakness in spite of overall strength. If exploited by our enemies, that small area of vulnerability can be responsible for our total, tragic downfall. This week we asked the members of our Facebook group to tell us their greatest weaknesses as parents and humans. From whistling to growth spurts to the constant, constant talking, in this episode we (and our listeners) fess up. We figured this out while recording this episode: our weaknesses and strengths are two sides of the same coin. Amy's superpower is organization; her downfall is an inability to relax amidst even mild chaos. Margaret's superpower is fun; her weak spots include the unfortunately large parenting categories of Things That Aren't Fun. Whatever your Achilles heel may be, keep in mind the "in spite of overall strength" part. All in all, you're doing great. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 09, 2021
Ask Amy: How Do I Protect My Newborn in a Post-Pandemic World?
329
How can a mom whose only parenting experience has been during Covid feel okay about protecting her newborn in a post-pandemic world? A listener emailed us to say: I am pregnant with my second baby, due in September. Now that we are starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel I don't think I know how to be a mom in a post-COVID world. I have learned how to be a parent during a pandemic and that is my family's "normal," it's all we know!  Our family and friends have already started talking about how they can't wait to be able to come to my house and hold the baby when he's born, now that COVID is "over". We've been invited to huge family Thanksgiving and Christmas celebrations (to make-up for missing last year) and I am already freaking out! Company with a newborn? Nope, not for me. After explaining my feelings to my husband, he and I agreed we will not allow visitors to our home for [at least] the first month after I have the new baby. Give it to me straight... am I being ridiculous and unfair? I realize my family and friends did not get to experience my first born's first months because of the pandemic, but I am feeling pretty strongly about doing it without company again. Second question... how do I learn how to be a post-pandemic mom? Do I go back and listen to old episodes you both taped before the world turned upside down, or do you think parenting has changed forever!? -Sincerely, Isolated, Stubborn, and Not Sorry We think there are only a few times in your life when what you say goes: your wedding, your big birthdays, and what happens with your newborns when they come home from the hospital. You are entirely entitled to make the decisions that feel safest for your family, and others are entitled to like those decisions or not. But we suggest that it's too early to decide what will happen at the holidays this year. You shouldn't be receiving undue pressure to attend, but you don't have to rule it all out yet, either. We're still very much in a "still collecting information" phase. Once the calendar says November, then you can make a decision about Thanksgiving, based on the most up-to-date information– and your comfort levels– at that time. Becoming a "post-pandemic mom" might be a very gradual process for you, and that's okay. Take advantage of warmer weather to do things outside; keep masks on if that makes you more comfortable; and don't accept the burden of Other People's Feelings About That. Better days are already here and are almost certainly in our future, and you will feel more comfortable– but on your own timeline. Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. By shopping at jane.com, you support small businesses, 1500 of which are women-owned. And you will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 07, 2021
Fresh Take: Future Focused Parenting With Kira Dorrian and Deana Thayer
2422
Kira Dorrian and Deana Thayer are parent coaches and authors who are passionate about preparing families to thrive on their parenting journeys. They're the co-founders of Future Focused Parenting, the parenting philosophy that starts with the end in mind, thereby encouraging families to make intentional parenting choices. They are also co-hosts of the Raising Adults Podcast where they discuss parenting with a long-range view. In this "Fresh Take" interview, Kira and Dorrian explain the benefits of future-focused parenting, and how it can make our daily parenting decisions clearer– both for ourselves and for our kids. Follow Kira and Deana, and find out more about their work, at http://bit.ly/raisingadultspodcast. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 04, 2021
Reestablishing Friendships After This Weird Time
2911
The pandemic shrunk our social circles, first literally and then metaphorically. Our time for ourselves evaporated, and with that any chance of catching up with our best friend– even if she lived two blocks away. We lost the once-a -month lunch friends, the "micro-interactions" with strangers, and even the overheard conversations that spark our curiosity and feed us more than we ever realized. But picking something back up, after you've put it down for a long time, can make it seem surprisingly heavy. As the restrictions end, and we can see all of the people all of the time, we've been surprised by our own conflicting emotions about it all. Dr. Marlee Bower, a loneliness researcher at the University of Sydney, explains that "an extended period of loneliness can make social interaction feel more challenging in the longer term." In this episode we talk about how we're alternating periods of social-butterfly celebration with days we still want to hide under the covers. It's a process, and we're all feeling it. Here's how to get a little more intentional about reestablishing those friendships we have missed the most. Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Arthur Brooks for The Atlantic: A Once In A Lifetime Chance To Start Over Celina Ribiero for BBC Worklife: How lockdowns are changing our friendship groups Catherine Pearson for HuffPost: Moms Have Held Everything Together This Past Year, Except Their Friendships Kelcey Borreson for HuffPost: Some Friendships Are Taking A ‘Pandemic Pause’ And That’s All Right Anna Goldfarb for New York Times: “How to Deal With a Friendship ‘Quiet Season,’ Kat Vellos on Twitter Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 02, 2021
BONUS: What's Up With Toddler Obsessions?
2466
Help a new podcast out! Hit "Follow" or "Subscribe" wherever you listen to Toddler Purgatory! Why are little kids obsessed with the most random things? If your little one has ever insisted on sleeping with a hairbrush, or going to preschool every morning with the same tiny school bus clenched in her fist, you know exactly what Blaire and Molly are talking about in the latest episode of "Toddler Purgatory." Little kids' brains are wired for what psychologists call "extremely intense interests." These obsessions offer dependability; order and control, in a world where our kids don't have much of either; and even social icebreaking, since that other 3-year-old playing with dinosaurs is probably just as interested in a deep-dive discussion of their many types as your kid is. In the case of construction vehicles and garbage trucks, there's also "cathartic destruction," and who can't use a little of that when they're having a bad day? In this episode, Blaire and Molly discuss their own kids' extremely intense interests and why they make their little ones tick. They also refer to the "Dinosaurs and Trains and Superheroes and Nerf Guns: Boy Obsessions" episode of our podcast, which you can find here: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/dinosaurs-and-trains-and-superheroes-and-nerf-guns-boy-obsessions/ Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Looking for another great parenting podcast? StrollerCoaster: A Parenting Podcast is created by Munchkin, the most beloved baby brand in the world. Follow or subscribe wherever you listen! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Usual Wines come in single-serve six-ounce bottles– about a glass and a half of wine. They’ve got a red blend, a rosé, a sparkling white, plus Usual Spritz, a low-calorie wine cooler. Each has just 83 calories- and they're fermented until there's no more sugar. Get $8 off your first order at usualwines.com with the code FRESHHELL. Hooked on Phonics is the learn-to-read program that has helped over 6 million kids learn to read. And now it offers a multi-sensory approach, which uniquely combines an amazing app with hands-on learning materials shipped to your home every month. Get your first month for just $1 by going to hookedonphonics.com/laughing. Olive gets you consolidated, cardboard-free deliveries from over 100 of your favorite fashion sites. No cardboard-box waste! Returns are a snap. Best of all, you can sign up for free, at shopolive.com. Literati delivers their monthly book picks straight to your door, so you can spend less time finding a good book and more time actually reading one. And their app lets you chat about the books with the whole Literati community. Redeem your FREE trial at literati.com/whatfreshhell. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 01, 2021
Ask Margaret: How Do I Talk to My Kids About Consent?
475
Conversations with kids about consent are tricky. It can be awkward or uncomfortable to talk with kids of any age about sex, but the more often we have these conversations, the more likely our kids will be able to navigate difficult situations. Have conversations about peer pressure, sex, consent, and personal safety as early and as frequently as possible, while keeping these conversations age-appropriate. This week a listener on our Facebook page asks: When and how do I have conversations with my kids about consent? Regarding their bodies.... touching and allowing touch from others (their peers?) How to be safe – physically, emotionally, and with their devices? How they can safely explore their questions and curiosities around sex and sexuality? The notion of consent is important for kids, and useful well before the idea of sex enters their lives. Play is a great place to start having these conversations. Set rules around play that emphasize consent such as: Is everyone playing, or are you shooting Nerf darts at people who are not in the game? When someone says "stop," all play comes to an end, whether or not you think the person saying "stop" actually means it When we play games with our friends, are we reading their social clues well about whether they are enjoying the game as much as we are? Once we help our kids define clear language and rules around consent, then we are ready to include sex, control of their own bodies, and respect for other people's bodies into these conversations as they grow. We can expand our conversations around consent into: the role consent plays in sexual and romantic relationships how peer pressure plays out as kids mature the way drugs and alcohol can complicate consent Margaret cites this article from the Child Mind Institute in this episode: https://childmind.org/article/how-talk-kids-sex-consent-boundaries/ For another great conversation about how to talk to kids - listen to our Fresh Take episode with Michelle Icard: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/fresh-take-michelle-icard-on-the-14-talks-parents-need-to-have-with-their-kids-before-they-turn-14/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 31, 2021
Fresh Take: Radha Agrawal on Creating Community
2191
Our new podcast Toddler Purgatory is live! Life with little ones isn't all bad. It's just... intense. Subscribe or follow wherever you listen so you never miss an episode! Radha Agrawal was named by MTV as “one of 8 women who will change the world.”  She is the co-Founder of Daybreaker, the early morning dance and wellness movement with a community of almost half a million people around the globe. She's recently launched DOSE, a new community with the goal of making joy the same sort of intentional practice as yoga and meditation. And she's the author of the book Belong: Find Your People, Create Community & Live A More Connected Life.  In this Fresh Take we talk to Radha about the intentional practice joy, and the possibilities that exist for us to find our people and build our dream communities from scratch. Find out more about Radha's new project, D.O.S.E. by Daybreaker, at https://collectivejoy.com and find her book BELONG in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781523502059 Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 28, 2021
So What Are We Doing This Summer?
2617
Our kids’ summer plans keep evolving– for the better and the more confusing. We fill out forms. Then we get emails saying "Forget the old rules, and fill out these three new forms indicating you agree with these new rules." Then things change again. To be clear: thank you, camps and programs and town pools. We're not blaming the people who are most certainly doing their best to keep up, and to give our kids the most typical summer experience possible. But we're all building the plane while we fly it, and figuring out the new rules for this semi-normal summer seems, once again, to be kind of up to us. This week we're talking about our summer plans, our summer maybe-plans, and how we'll decide. Here are links to some of the things we mention in this episode: Mary Laura Philpott for Washington Post: As the world starts to open up, it’s tough to let go Gürbüz Doğan Ekşioğlu's "Venturing Out" https://www.newyorker.com/culture/cover-story/cover-story-2021-05-24 Kathryn Hymes for The Atlantic: Why We Speak More Weirdly At Home Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Betterhelp Go to betterhelp.com/fresh to get 10% off your first month of counseling. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun– and best of all, kids of all ages can work on them independently! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 26, 2021
Ask Margaret - My Kid Wants All the Things
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Do you have a kid at home who obsesses over collecting or acquiring the right kinds of things or just all the things in general? If so you are not alone. A listener had this question: What do you all do with a kid who wants ALL the toys? I've got a second grader who insists all his friends' parents buy all the Pokemon cards, and my husband and I are the worst because we refuse to buy every single thing he asks for. He's got a pile full of Pokemon cards, but they're not the cool ones, I guess. We're not going to change our buying habits, but how do we talk about this with him? All kids express a need for control by having strong opinions about things they want and need, but some kids are particularly prone to obsessing over acquiring - ALL - THE - STUFF! Margaret has labeled this phenomenon "the grabby greedies" for her kids. One way to help kids with this is to give them some context. It's important to make a distinction between things that are important to your kids (things they might want to save up for and buy with an allowance) and things that are just shiny and new (things that are being marketed to them through the TV or in their video games). Help your kids understand that things like collectibles (example: Pokémon cards) are designed to make them want to buy more and more, but resist the urge to be dismissive of these kinds of collections by recognizing that they actually have value to your kids. Give kids more control over the things they acquire. Consider a rule where your kid can make independent decisions over what they want for their birthday, even if it's things you consider junky. Give your kids an allowance and allow them to save up for things they want to buy. Have (tough) chores they can do around the house to earn things they want. It's hard when we see our kids obsessing over things we consider to have no value. But the real lesson to impart to kids in this situation is that acquiring the things they want means budgeting, making choices about the value of things, and earning the things they want through patience and/or work. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 24, 2021
Fresh Take: Carla Naumburg Tells Us How To Stop Losing It With Our Kids
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Our new podcast Toddler Purgatory is live! Life with little ones isn't all bad. It's just... intense. Subscribe or follow wherever you listen so you never miss an episode! Carla Naumburg is a mother, clinical social worker, and author. She is the author of three parenting books, including the bestseller How to Stop Losing Your Sh*t With Your Kids, which not only explains WHY we explode at our children, but also teaches us everything we need to know to decrease stress and increase patience, even in the most challenging family moments. Kids are hard-wired to push our buttons. We are hard-wired to freak out when they're pushed. In this Fresh Take interview, Carla explains how managing our triggers can help us stop the meltdowns. This episode will make you feel less ashamed, more empowered, and a whole lot better. Find How to Stop Losing Your Sh*t With Your Kids in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781523505425 Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Quince is a game-changer for your wardrobe and your home, with high-quality essentials at prices 50-80% less than other brands. Free shipping and 365-day returns at onequince.com/fresh. Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 21, 2021
Useless Metrics For Life
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These days we're surrounded by trackers– on our wrists, on our water bottles, on our phones. On the one hand, they help us pay attention to the things in our lives that are important to us, and to create new habits. On the other hand, they're crazymakers that give us new reasons to feel bad about ourselves. In this episode we discuss some of metrics for life we do and/or don't live by, like 10,000 steps a day 8 glasses of water a day inbox zero perfect attendance BMI and giant baby head circumferences. Behavioral scientist James Clear says one should "measure to see if you're actually spending time on the things that are important to you." We agree with him– as long as we make room for remembering that 9,000 steps is great, inbox one thousand is totally fine, and "perfect" is always a lie. Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Michelle Woo for Lifehacker: Your Baby's Head Is Probably Not Gigantic The Conversation: Do We Really Need To Walk 10,000 Steps a Day? John Murphy for MDLinx: 8 glasses of water a day: Myth or medicine? Jackie Spinner for the Washington Post: Perfect attendance awards no longer belong in U.S. schools Lauren Johnson for Slack: Inbox Zero and Other Productivity Myths Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 19, 2021
Bonus: Toddlers: They're The Worst!
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Aren’t toddlers just the best? Are they not also, at times, the WORST? Blaire Brooks and Molly Lloyd welcome you to Toddler Purgatory, where life with littles is not all bad, but definitely less than perfect. In this premiere episode Blaire and Molly discuss the many challenges of life with the tiny, ruthlessly honest, tantrum-having, often stinky carbon copies of themselves they have running around their respective homes. Check out the first three episodes of Toddler Purgatory right now- and help a new podcast out hitting "subscribe" or "follow" for Toddler Purgatory in your favorite podcast player: Apple Podcasts: https://bit.ly/toddlerpurgatory Spotify: https://spoti.fi/3nYMJbs Google Podcasts: https://podcasts.google.com/feed/aHR0cHM6Ly9mZWVkcy5tZWdhcGhvbmUuZm0vV0ZIMTcyMzIwMDk5Mg== iHeart: https://iheart.com/podcast/81711771/ Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/show/toddler-purgatory You can also find the show at toddlerpurgatory.com or on the socials at #toddlerpurgatory. New episodes every other Tuesday! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 18, 2021
Ask Amy- I Can't Take The Noise!
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Does the combination of your kids' squabbling, the repeated clinking of your spouse's cereal spoon, and the Mister Softee jingle send you into a rage-panic? You are not alone. Farrah had this to say on Facebook: Someone talk to me about PARENTAL sensory overload. We have 6 kiddos ages 5-12. I have found that the older I get (or maybe the older they get?) the noise level is less and less tolerable to me. I want to enjoy being around my kids they way I used to, but I find myself simply overwhelmed with the noise. Has anyone else dealt with this or something similar? Any suggestions on dealing with this sensory overload so I can get back to enjoying the company of my kids/ family? Some people really are more sensitive to noise. Dr. Elaine Aron describes "highly sensitive people" and their reactions to auditory input this way: "Highly sensitive persons process information more thoroughly, are more easily stimulated, are more aware of subtle stimuli, are more empathic, and have higher emotional reactivity." In other words, we don't habituate to noise exposure like other people do. Our highly attuned senses are more affected by our environments. And when our nervous systems are already amped up for other reasons— can you think of anything you might have been feeling anxious about over the last year?!– the auditory information on the way to the brain becomes augmented, and it can feel like too much to bear. Amy's a fellow noise-intolerant, and in this episode she goes through the three-step process of control the noise if you can't do that, control your location if you can't do that... time for an intentional reset. Listen for the full rundown, and read more here: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/articles/200804/i-cant-stand-noise https://highlysensitiverefuge.com/ordinary-sounds-overwhelm-highly-sensitive-person/ Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 17, 2021
Fresh Take: Ilyse DiMarco on "Mom Brain"
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Dr. Ilyse Dobrow DiMarco is a clinical psychologist in private practice in Summit, New Jersey. She specializes in helping women use cognitive- behavioral therapy and related evidence-based strategies to navigate the myriad challenges of motherhood. Her writing has been featured in places like Psychology Today and Scary Mommy, as well as on her own blog, www.drcbtmom.com. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and two sons. Her new book is Mom Brain: Proven Strategies to Fight the Anxiety, Guilt, and Overwhelming Emotions of Motherhood. Ilyse's definition of Mom Brain is "the profound cognitive and emotional changes that occur when you have a child and the many aspects of your life (identity, relationships, work life, self-care) that are strongly impacted by these changes." In this episode we discuss the seismic shifts in our priorities that occur when we become mothers, the anxiety that can often result, and the evidence-based strategies that work best to keep us present-moment-focused. Mom Brain is composed of easily digestible sections, so even if you only have 10 minutes to read, you’ll be able to pick up at least one or two solid coping skills. Find it in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781462540266 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 14, 2021
Let It Go? Or No?
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This week we're reviewing listener grudges, large and small, and deciding once and for all if those listeners should let it go, or no. Letting it go doesn't mean you're wrong to be annoyed. Sometimes you are totally right and you STILL have to let it go. And sometimes nursing a tiny bonsai grievance for a decade is sort of fun... but that works better when you aren't related to that person. Sometimes shifting our perspective is the best choice we have. As Margaret's Aunt Terry likes to say: you can't get pizza from a Chinese restaurant. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 12, 2021
Ask Amy- Company's Coming. How Am I Going To Feed Everyone?
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Find yourself stuck in the kitchen 24/7 when family comes to visit? You’re allowed to feel overwhelmed and even a little resentful, even if you’re really happy they came. Jenna emailed us to ask: Since both of you have big families, how does everyone get fed when you get together for a few days? Do you get takeout for every meal? Do people take turns cooking? I am the only person in my husband's family who can cook, so I end up doing all the cooking when we get together, and I end up exhausted and don't get to spend time with everyone. Resetting expectations around who's doing the cooking and cleanup can be a little tricky. If you're a do-it-all hostess who really does make it look easy, you haven't been sending clear signals that it's hard. Amy gives tips in this episode about the systems that work when her extended family group gets together. But if you've been heading up meal prep because you're the "only one who can cook," a resetting of your own expectations may be required as well. If you're chopping fresh herbs for Monday night's dinner, and then your brother orders pizza for Tuesday night? And everyone gets fed? Take the win. If there are a few too many hot-dog lunches and everything you have been doing is more appreciated in retrospect, so much the better. You deserve to enjoy time with family as much as everyone else does, so have the difficult conversation. It can be really refreshing to lay down some of the burdens we shoulder, and see the world continue to revolve, and realize no one was really asking us to do it all in the first place.  Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 10, 2021
Fresh Take: Judith Warner on What Grownups Get Wrong About Middle School
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Toddler Purgatory is launching this month! Help us support the launch of our new podcast by checking out the sneak-peek trailer and following now wherever you listen. Grab all the player links at toddlerpurgatory.com.  Judith Warner’s book AND THEN THEY STOPPED TALKING TO ME: MAKING SENSE OF MIDDLE SCHOOL investigates what can be a truly painful period in any adolescent's life. Warner explains that our "personal fable" is deeply affected by our own experiences during that developmental period, even if our memories may rely on flawed or incomplete information. That matters because it can affect how we parent our tweens as they enter the middle-school stage themselves. Are parents sometimes inadvertently reinforcing the narrative that middle school is a Thunderdome of social aggression? In this interview, Judith tells Amy the history of middle school, the brain science behind its intensity, and what parents can do to make their children's path through these years an easier one. Check out all of Judith Warner's books in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/shop/whatfreshhellcast Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 07, 2021
When Your Kid Doesn't Fit The Mold
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Toddler Purgatory is launching this month! Help us support the launch of our new podcast by checking out the sneak-peek trailer and following now wherever you listen. Grab all the player links at toddlerpurgatory.com. Sooner or later, most parents discover that their kid doesn't fit society's mold in one way or another. But there's "quirky" kids with unusual haircuts, and then there's the kids who really do their own thing, with or without peer approval. In this episode, we're talking about the latter. Those parents will recognize what Dr. Perri Klass calls "the pivotal moment": "not just one moment of extreme behavior in your kid, but the last in a series of impossible-to-explain-away behavior that resonates with the parent's long-considered and long-avoided fears. It crystallizes in a parent's mind all the floating anxieties and worries of many months." It’s especially challenging for us when our kids are outside the norm because we can't help but think what will become of this kid? But at those times, we're forgetting two things: not only do our children have the ability to grow and develop, we're going to become better parents along the way, as well. When it comes to our non-mold-fitting kids, there's reason to hope that the world will someday be wide enough. Albert Einstein didn’t fit the mold either, and things worked out pretty well for him. Which isn't to say he didn't cause his mom some sleepless nights along the way. Here are some links to writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Drs. Perri Klass and Eileen Costello: Quirky Kids: Understanding and Helping Your Child Who Doesn’t Fit In greatschools.org: How to support your unique, quirky child childmind.org: Sensory Processing FAQs slate.com: What About Kids Who Don't Fit The Mold? Dana Basu: How to Cope When Your Child is Different Andrew Solomon: Far From The Tree: Parents, Children, And The Search For Identity Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Magic Spoon is breakfast cereal that's keto-friendly, gluten-free, grain-free, soy-free, low carb, and GMO-free. Go to magicspoon.com/fresh to grab the new limited edition Birthday Cake flavor today! And use code FRESH at checkout to save $5 off. Public Goods is the one-stop shop for high-quality everyday household essentials made from clean ingredients. Get $15 off your first Public Goods order, with no minimum purchase! Go to publicgoods.com/fresh, or use the code FRESH at checkout.  Green Chef is a USDA-certified-organic company with meal plans including Paleo, Plant Powered, Keto, and Balanced Living. Go to greenchef.com/90laughing and use code 90LAUGHING to get $90 off, including free shipping! Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 05, 2021
Ask Margaret - My Son Can't Keep His Hands to Himself
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Kids often struggle to keep their hands to themselves– and this can be especially true for boys, who love to punch, tackle, and poke at anyone who gets near them. This week Emily asks: As a mom of boys, I am finding that my five-year-old son is very handsy with his friends and boy cousins. It's like my younger son and other boys are magnets that cannot keep their hands off each other. It's not aggressive, it's just constant touching, tickling, purposely running into each other, etc. I am not sure how to curb it,or if it's even possible. And even if I get my son to break the habit, how would I keep other kids from putting their hands all over him? It's not that I am any more of a germaphobe than anyone else, I just feel like it's a recipe for disaster... and when he goes to school in the fall ,I don't want him to be off task and missing directions. Is there anything I can do, or is this just a boy thing? Watch any nature show with a group of young lions and you'll see the cubs wrestling, biting, and tussling with each other (often to the non-delight of their mama). The same holds true for our own kids. Roughhousing and other forms of physical contact serve many purposes, helping youngsters find and test boundaries, express anxieties, manage aggression. So Margaret is extremely pro-touching among kids as long as a few simple guidelines are followed: All physical contact and especially roughhousing should be among "equals" - no big kids whaling on little kids, and no little kids pawing at uninterested bigs. Keep an eye on consent - make sure that everyone involved in the physicality is comfortable with it. Spaces and places- wrestling, roughhousing, and physical play is appropriate in the yard but not in the living room. Kids tend to get less physical as they get older and keeping "touch-free" spaces (this will probably happen naturally at school) is a great way to help kids start to gain control over their physicality. By the way: when it comes to germs, once Covid is taken out of the equation, there's not too much to worry about. While Covid is still a threat physical distancing should be maintained– but post-Covid, check out this article for a reality check on germs. In this episode Margaret also cites this article by Anne-Marie Gambelin for Motherly: Relax, Mama- roughhousing is good for your kids–really Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 03, 2021
Fresh Take: Michaeleen Doucleff on Raising Happy, Helpful Little Humans
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Dr. Michaeleen Doucleff is the author of the New York Times best-seller Hunt, Gather, Parent: What Ancient Cultures Can Teach Us About the Lost Art of Raising Happy, Helpful Little Humans. In this interview, she tells us about the circumstances that inspired her own "aha" parenting moment, and then the book. While on assignment in the Yucatan as a reporter for NPR's Science Desk, Michaeleen saw children helping around the house, unprompted and unapplauded. She wondered how her own life back in the United States, with a tantruming preschooler and chaotic household, could be so different. It inspired Michaeleen's exploration of how the tenets of WEIRD parenting (Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic) differ from those of more ancient civilizations, and how we might all restore a little sanity by unlearning some of our Western ways. Follow Michaeleen on Twitter @foodiescience and on her website: michaeleendoucleff.com. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Audible has everything you love to listen to, INCLUDING this podcast, all in one app! Try Audible free for 30 days by going to audible.com/fresh, or by texting FRESH to 500-500. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 30, 2021
Wait, We're Not Ready
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We thought we were ready. We were in fact quite excited for all of this to be over, white-knuckling it until we could run outside and hug everyone we saw. But as freedom comes nearer, we’re less sure we want things to go back to how they used to be. Why is that? This reticence feels like it might go beyond issues of measuring risk. If a Fauci godmother showed up right now to wave her wand and magically declare the world to be fully safe, some of us would probably still stay cozy under our blankets. As it turns out, we've grown accustomed to our Zooms. So what are the things making us feel less than ready for a return to the world? And are some of the things we're dreading a return to things we don't *have* to resume at all? Here are links to some other writing on the topic that we mention in this episode: Adam Grant for The New York Times : There’s a Name for the Blah You’re Feeling: It’s Called Languishing Christine Koh for Washington Post: The pandemic has caused parents to slow down. Here’s how to preserve that pace. Steven Petrow for Washington Post: I’m vaccinated, but I’m really not ready to leave my pandemic cocoon Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Audible has everything you love to listen to, INCLUDING this podcast, all in one app! Try Audible free for 30 days by going to audible.com/fresh, or by texting FRESH to 500-500. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 28, 2021
Ask Amy- My 4-Year-Old Hates Transitions
450
The most important part of addressing our little ones’ challenging behavior is to get curious about what's causing it. For preschoolers struggling with the Covid-Plus restrictions of the moment, it's easy to identify the dysregulation that might accompany post-pandemic expectations. For a 4-year-old who's spent 25% of her life hanging out at home with Mom, all of these new rules are a lot to expect. Our listener Corey wrote in to ask: I'm wondering if you have some tips for helping my 4 1/2 year old in transitioning classrooms at school. She has regressed at home and school... tantrums, arguing everything, crying at dropoff, pouting in class. She has never been easygoing, and always had strong emotions..Today, her teacher called me at work to ask me to calm my daughter down over the phone... she was sitting on the floor crying and refusing to participate. She's been going to daycare since 3 months old, and this is the first time I've ever had to do that. The thing is, she was actually going through a blissful period before this. Mature, helpful, listening, not arguing every little thing. And then this transition happened, and it's like she regressed back to 3. In the "before times" I believe she would have been excited about moving to the older class. Any advice on helping her get excited about school again? And maybe reversing this regression and getting back to that 4 year old I had two months ago? In this episode Amy offers tips on how Corey might support her daughter at home and at school during this time. Getting curious about the "iceberg" underneath the surface tantrums will probably help a great deal. Here's the bottom line: it's developmentally appropriate for kids to cycle between periods of regulation and dysregulation. While this might be a tough season, with a loving and attentive parent, it will get better soon. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 26, 2021
Fresh Take: Christina Martin on How Children Learn Through Play
2326
Christina Martin is the Director of Curriculum and Instruction at The Children's School, an independent progressive K-8 school in Oak Park, Illinois. She has taught elementary, middle, and high school, with special areas of interest in play and project-based learning, math, social justice, and democratic practices in the classroom. Progressive education has its roots in play– but for many parents the connection between play and learning is not soobvious. Christina explains why play as simple as building with blocks can teach kids real-life skills from cooperation to physics! "Rich" play doesn't need to (and probably shouldn't) involve expensive toys. Instead, rich play often happens most effortlessly outside, where kids can make a mess, use their imaginations, and learn by exploring their world. When we guide children towards rich play and set up expectations around play in our homes, we offer a world of opportunity to our kids. In this conversation Christina explains why play is central to education at The Children's School, and how all of us can use the progressive-education concepts of play to help our children learn at home. Find out more at www.thechildrensschool.info or on Facebook @TheChildrensSchoolIL. For further resources regarding progressive education, check out these articles: Alfie Kohn, Progressive Education: Why It's Hard to Beat, But Also Hard to Find A Conversation with Vivian Guss Paley on Children's Play  Play-Based Learning by Daniel P. Ryan DEY #Teachers Speak Out, a mini-documentary on the importance of play Carol Black, A Thousand Rivers Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Audible has everything you love to listen to, INCLUDING this podcast, all in one app! Try Audible free for 30 days by going to audible.com/fresh, or by texting FRESH to 500-500. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 23, 2021
Are You the 'Good Parent' or the 'Bad Parent' In Your Home?
2685
Are you the “bad parent” in your home? The enforcer of bedtimes, the keeper of deadlines, the stern shusher in the church pew? Or are you the “good parent,” the authority figure more likely to agree that time is a construct and that ice cream not only can, but should, be what’s for dinner? This week we’re breaking down  how this dynamic plays out in each of our homes whether the primary caregiver has to always be stuck with the Killer of Joy role how this can play out when parents are divorced how drill sargeants can ease up on the oversight how the “good time Charlies” can become more aware  As in most things, change is possible when we watch our stories. These aren’t roles that have to harden in amber and then never change. The Carrier of the Diaper Bag and The Worrier of All Potential Outcomes deserves to kick back once in a while too.  Here are links to some of the writing on this subject that we discuss in this episode:  Isaac Watts’ poem “Love Between Brothers and Sisters” Julia Austin for Madame Noire: How The Good Cop/Bad Cop Parenting Dynamic Ruins Marriages Megan Glosson for moms.com: Why 'Good Cop, Bad Cop' Parenting Ultimately Hurts Everyone James Lehman for Empowering Parents: Good Cop/Bad Cop Parenting this clip from the movie The Great Santini and our episode Parenting as a Team Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Parade makes creative underwear and bralettes in a variety of sizes from extra small to 3 XL. Supersoft, super-cute, and prices that start at $8! Get 25% off when you spend $40 or more at yourparade.com/wfh with code WFH.  Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Audible has everything you love to listen to, INCLUDING this podcast, all in one app! Try Audible free for 30 days by going to audible.com/fresh, or by texting FRESH to 500-500. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 21, 2021
Ask Margaret - My Spouse and I Disagree About Discipline
433
When we choose a spouse we look for someone we're attracted to, someone we love, and someone we can have fun with. Then we have kids and find ourselves co-running a household with competing viewpoints that we may not have discussed before. On FB Kelly asked: How should my husband and I navigate differences of opinion on parenting situations? There are a LOT of hills my husband is willing to die on. If I have a difference of opinion on importance, he then gets frustrated with me. The most important relationship in the family is between the parents, so it is crucial not to let disagreements about parenting lead to marital discord. One solution is to use Nick North's number system: when you or your spouse expresses a strong opinion about discipline, give it a number: "I want our kids' rooms kept clean at all times. On a scale of 1 to 10, that's a 9 for me." "I want there to be no cursing in our house, and that's about a 5 for me." When it comes to discipline, if one spouse is finding they have a ton of 8s, 9s and 10s on this scale, it might be an indication that they have unrealistic expectations. It's important for us to support our parenting partners, but equally important for either partner to recognize when their own expectations are a little too intense. This is the kind of marital issue couples can spend a lot of time fighting about if they've never actually had a proper discussion about it. It's worth acting from your place of maximum generosity, but by coming together to set understandings around rules and discipline, this issue doesn't have to lead to ongoing conflict. Listen to these episodes of our podcast which further explore these topics: Making It Worth In the Long Haul Parenting as a Team and check out the book Marriage-ology by Belinda Luscombe Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 19, 2021
Fresh Take: Julie Lythcott-Haims on Becoming An Adult
2638
Julie Lythcott-Haims is the author of the parenting bestseller How to Raise an Adult, which opened the minds of loving but hovering parents everywhere. Her new book is Your Turn: How To Be An Adult, which Julie calls "a compassionate beckoning into the freedoms and responsibilities of adulthood." Adulting is a mindset. That might explain why many of us whose drivers' licenses indicate grown-up status still don't feel ready to be in charge of anything– including the children with whom we have somehow been entrusted. But trying and failing doesn't mean you're not ready to be an adult. Failing and trying again, Lythcott-Haims argues, is what makes us adults in the first place. This episode is full of advice on how to move the parent/child paradigm (gradually) from vertical to horizontal– and on why becoming an adult is actually a path to joy. As Julie explains in this episode: "Whether we're 8 or we're 18, or 28 or 38 or 48, we are yearning to make our way down a path that is ours to lay. We want to be loved and cared about along the way, but we do not want someone else to lead our lives for us." Find out more at julielythcotthaims.com, on social media @jlythcotthaims, and find YOUR TURN in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781250137777. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Audible has everything you love to listen to, INCLUDING this podcast, all in one app! Try Audible free for 30 days by going to audible.com/fresh, or by texting FRESH to 500-500. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 16, 2021
Asking For Big Help (And The Best Ways To Give It)
2766
We’ve all been in moments when we have to make a Big Ask. As in: it’s 2 a.m. The baby is throwing up and spiking a high fever. Your partner is out of town. Your other kid is asleep upstairs. Who are you going to call in the middle of the night? Making that ask is never easy. But why? Why is it so hard to ask for big help, especially when we’re usually grateful to be able to assist a friend in need? Anyone who’s been a parent long enough has been on both the giving and receiving side of that Big Help ask. And when we’re on the receiving end of that kind of request, from a friend we know is struggling, we’re usually really happy– even grateful– to be able to help.  So how can we become “askable friends” and better helpers? And how can we prepare for the big help times in our own lives before they arrive?  In this episode, we discuss the reasons why asking for help can be so hard, especially for mothers when asking for big help is “justified” (and making asking for small help okay) acute needs vs. chronic needs how to really help a struggling friend, rather than saying “let me know if you need anything” some useful ways to help a friend grieving a loss and how we can make that short list of friends, and offer to BE on that short list of friends, before the time comes. In the end, asking for big help is about showing up for ourselves. Here’s how our listener Jennifer put it:  “I can ask for help, even if I can technically handle it, but I just want, or need a break. I don't need to drive myself to the edge of the cliff before I ask.” Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode:  Mayday: Asking For Help In Times Of Need, by Nora Bouchard lotsahelpinghands.com (@lotsahelpinghands on Twitter) Enjoli fragrance commercial Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Zocdoc has you covered! Whether you need a primary care physician, dentist, dermatologist, psychiatrist, eye doctor, or any other specialist, you can find top doctors at zocdoc.com.laughing. Audible has everything you love to listen to, INCLUDING this podcast, all in one app! Try Audible free for 30 days by going to audible.com/fresh, or by texting FRESH to 500-500. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 14, 2021
Ask Margaret - Should I Ever Let My Kids Use "Bad" Words?
392
Cursing is one parenting dilemma that people have different takes on. Some feel that cursing has no place in the home and some feel that cursing falls firmly in the "no big deal" category. This week's Question of the Week addresses Brooke's dilemma from our Facebook page: How should I handle “bad” words with younger children? My husband wants our children never be exposed to cursing at all. I view them as words with functional meaning beyond their use for disrespect. I want to educate my kids on these words, but my husband fears our kids may use them socially and be punished. Our kids are 4 and 6. While both approaches to cursing (limiting their use at home vs. normalizing cursing at home) may be valid, it is unrealistic to believe that your children will never be exposed to cursing. If you choose to keep a tight reign on cursing (which Margaret is all for) it cuts down on the work of monitoring the "spaces and places" where using "bad" words is allowed as kids move out into the world. On the other hand, cursing, as a fairly low-stakes behavioral issue, can be an area where parents choose to allow more leeway. As long as you and your spouse are comfortable with the way your child is using language in your home and in public you are probably doing fine - but look for a few warning signs: A child that is using curse words frequently, in defiance of your rules A child that is using curse words towards other parents or caregivers A child that is getting in trouble at school for using bad language These uses of "bad language" can be examples of boundary-seeking behavior, and can indicate a child or a family relationship that is veering out of control. If you see these behaviors around language it may be time to revisit and reset your boundaries or seek the help of a professional in resetting the rules at home. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 12, 2021
Fresh Take: Debbie Reber on Parenting Kids Who Are "Differently Wired"
2380
Debbie Reber is a parenting activist,  bestselling author, speaker, and the founder of TiLT Parenting, a top podcast, community, and educational resource for parents raising differently wired children. Her most recent book is Differently Wired: Raising an Exceptional Child in a Conventional World. At least twenty percent of today's children have differences: anxiety, ADHD, autism, giftedness, processing disorders, and learning disabilities, to name just a few. As Debbie puts it, “It's becoming increasingly clear that different ways of being are more 'normal' than most people realize, and that is truer with each passing year.”  In this "Fresh Take" interview we discuss why the expectations and limitations for neurotypical kids, and some of the suggestions for parenting them, can be inadequate when your kid is differently wired. Debbie suggests that such kids might be better served by finding opportunities to "tilt" our parenting, rather than struggle to straighten the child. Small changes can have big impacts for differently wired kids. Debbie's work is full of concrete, actionable ideas that will allow both parents and kids to thrive. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 09, 2021
I've Figured Something Out...
2841
Have you ever figured out a thing and thought everyone must know about this? In this episode we discuss the things that we (and our listeners) have figured out about how to pack freezer organization deciding once (this idea is from the Lazy Genius, and this Instagram thread is full of lazy genius) making yourself want to clean a messy room recognizing your best day deciding where things belong unloading a dishwasher always knowing what’s for dinner finishing what you start snack stashes making lists and how to discern between good ideas for somebody, and good ideas for you Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 07, 2021
Ask Amy- My Teen Has Zero Interest In Getting A Driver's License
356
Teens today are driving less, and later, and are far less motivated to drive than we were. The number of 16-year-old licensed drivers in the United States decreased from 46.2 percent in 1983 to 25.6 percent in 2018. But shouldn't our teens learn how to drive? Isn't that a skill they're going to want to have at some point? And how do we get them to buy into that, instead of it becoming something else for teens and parents to fight about? This is how a listener put it on our Facebook page: My almost 17-year-old does not want to drive. We put him through drivers ed, and it was like pulling teeth to get him to practice. He has ADHD and is terrified of wrecking.  My question is, do we push him to at least get his license or let it go? I’ll give you one guess which parent wants to push…. ADHD is an additional risk factor for young drivers, particularly in the first months of their driving. But ADHD in itself doesn't cause bad driving– it's the risky behaviors to which teens with ADHD are more prone that cause more accidents. This can become a teachable moment to talk with a teen about those behaviors and why they're more dangerous once he's behind the wheel. But giving our kids a sense of self-efficacy isn't just good for them– as Jess Lahey argues in her new book THE ADDICTION INOCULATION, it can be protective, putting them at lower risk for addiction and other risky behaviors. In the long run, a driver's license might help a teen with anxiety. Consistent encouragement, rather than forcing the issue, will hopefully lead to a driving teen– and more independence for everyone in the house– a little sooner. Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that Amy mentions in this episode: Healthline: Teens with ADHD 62% More at Risk of an Accident in First Month of Driving Katharina Buchholz for Statista: Americans Get Driver's Licenses Later in Life American Academy of Pediatrics: Traffic Crashes, Violations, and Suspensions Among Young Drivers With ADHD Jess Lahey for The New York Times: How to Lower Your Child’s Risk for Addiction Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 05, 2021
Fresh Take: Kim Williams on the Systems That Work For Single Moms
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Kim Williams is a change agent and community-builder for single moms. As the host of the podcast Experiencing Motherhood: Single and Black, Kim aspires to help single moms live the lives they desire without feeling alone. Through the podcast and her work on social media, Kim has built a large community of single moms that support one another both online and offline. In this episode, we discuss what systems Kim thinks are particularly essential for single moms– and how single moms can find, ask for, and get the support they need. Find Kim online @singleblackmotherhood, and listen to her podcast here. Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH to unlock 75% off monthly and annual subscriptions. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 02, 2021
Two Kinds of People: Family Debates
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What are the consistent and ongoing family debates in your household? Our Facebook group came through with their most heated family debate topics, and this week we give the ultimate answer for questions like: Should dishes be rinsed clean before they go in the dishwasher? Is it acceptable to call someone after 8 pm? Is a garage for storing stuff, or for storing cars? When you're making a bed, which side is up for the flat sheet? What is the correct pronunciation of "Reese's Pieces"? Here are links to two things we discuss in this episode: Reese's Pieces ad, 1984 (note the repeated and correct pronunciation) "Doorbell" by Sebastian Maniscalco Special thanks to this month's sponsors:   Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Pharmaca is a source you can trust for herbal and homeopathic formulas, high-quality vitamins, and organic cruelty-free beauty. Go to Pharmaca.com/laughing right now to save 20% off your first order! Workplace Comedy Podcast is a hilarious new improv podcast set in a fictional water bottling company, hosted by Emmy Laybourne and Tracy Vilar and a lineup of amazing comedy guests. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts! Betterhelp allows you to connect with a counselor over text, phone, or video — and everything you say is confidential. Start living a happier life today! Get 10% off your first month by visiting betterhelp.com/fresh. KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun! Get 50% off your first month plus FREE shipping on any crate line at kiwico.com with code MOTHERHOOD. StoryWorth  gives your loved ones the gift of spending time together, wherever you live! Go to storyworth.com/whatfreshhell to get $10 off.   Bright Cellars is the wine subscription box that pairs you with wine you'll love, delivered to your door. Get 50% off your first 6 bottle order by heading to brightcellars.com/fresh. Membrasin is the totally natural, estrogen-free, clinically proven feminine dryness formula. It works! Go to membrasinlife.com and use the code FRESH to get 10% off. Prose is the healthy hair regimen with your name all over it!  Get 15% off your first order today! Go to prose.com/laughing.  Barre3’s workouts combine cardio, strength conditioning, and mindfulness in one workout. Go to barre3.com/FRESH and enter promo code FRESH30 to unlock 15 free days plus 30% off your subscription. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 31, 2021
Ask Margaret - How Can I Get My Kids to Get Rid of All the Stuff?
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One of the greatest obstacles to keeping our houses in order is the sheer amount of stuff that arrives on a daily basis. Kids have a hard time letting go of things, but moms have a hard time having their houses filled with endless clutter! This week Jennifer asks: How do I help my kids (10 and 12 years old) get rid of all the stuff? We have so many toys and books and cardboard creations. They want to keep everything. EVERY. THING. I’ve tried getting them involved in picking stuff to donate to those less fortunate, and they just absolutely flat out refuse. We've all had the experience of trying to get rid of a long-neglected toy, only to have our kid announce suddenly that it is their most beloved possession ever! Four things to do to cut down on "the stuff" are: Cut it off at the source: limit the amount of items coming in to your house by limiting purchases, and taking pictures of school projects instead of saving them. Hold a firm line: decide before you begin a clean up that for every four things you keep, one must go. Cull when they're not around: When you are cleaning without your kids around, you are allowed to get rid of things like cars with broken wheels and forgotten Happy Meal toys without asking permission. Limit collections: Everyone is the family is allowed two, not twenty. Your kids' strong feelings about their stuff does not mean they get to make all the decisions about what remains in your house. It's okay for parents to enforce rules that make your living situation more pleasant for everyone involved. Special thanks to our "Question of the Week" sponsor: Jane.com is a boutique marketplace featuring the latest in women’s fashion, accessories, home decor, children’s clothing, and more. You will not believe the prices! Visit jane.com/laughing. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 29, 2021
Fresh Take: Michele Borba on Kids Who Thrive
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Dr. Michele Borba  is a renowned educational psychologist and an expert in parenting, bullying, and character development. Her latest book is THRIVERS: The Surprising Reason Why Some Kids Struggle and Others Shine. This book offers practical, actionable ways to help kids develop the traits they need to thrive from preschool through high school, teaching them how to cope today so they can thrive tomorrow. In this interview, Michele explains the "seven teachable traits" that allow kids to roll with the punches and succeed in life. Michele says the best parenting starts by meeting any kid exactly where they are, then giving them these tools to struggle less and shine more. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 26, 2021
When Can We Start Saying Yes?
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Vaccines. Mandate-liftings. Scaled reopenings. All of these things are great and long wished for. But we were kind of thinking there'd be a bell, or something. A hard deadline. A day when we'd all dance out into the ticker-taped streets and make out with strangers in Times Square. Without a "you are now free to move about the cabin" announcement, how will we know when it's okay for grandparents to visit? To fly to that wedding? To toss our masks once and for all? When is it okay to start saying yes? Our listener Heather put it this way: I think seeing a light at the end of the tunnel can be unsettling. We've been living in this weird way for a year now. And as much as it seems crazy, we've gotten used to it. Psychologists call the stress this is making us feel the “third-quarter phenomenon.” For people forced to endure long stretches of isolation– astronauts, Arctic explorers, submarine sailors– the most difficult part, regardless of the length of the assignment, has been proven to be about 75% of the way through, precisely when the end of the assignment first comes into distant focus. As things start to open up and some of us don't feel ready, or wonder if the world is ready, it's a new source of stress that we were saved from when we were all apart. Past scientists and astronauts who suffered from the “third-quarter phenomenon" were advised to refocus on their mission- why they were doing what they were doing, and the great worth of seeing it through. Seems like great advice for the rest of us. Focusing on the mission might be what will get us through this last part of the tunnel. Here are links to writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Tara Law for Time: We're in the Third Quarter of the Pandemic. Antarctic Researchers, Mars Simulation Scientists and Navy Submarine Officers Have Advice For How to Get Through It Robert Bechtel and Amy Berning: The Third-Quarter Phenomenon: Do People Experience Discomfort After Stress Has Passed? Nathan Smith: The third-quarter phenomenon: the psychology of time in space "Beautiful City" from Godspell (1973) "Brand New Day" from The Wiz (1978) @neilochka on Instagram * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 24, 2021
Ask Amy - The Return to In-Person School Isn't Going Great
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What should parents do when the return to in-person school, after a year of being home with Mommy, is sort of a disaster? This week's question comes from Carrie on Facebook: My 3-year-old just started in-person preschool after being home with us during the pandemic. I figured it would be an adjustment, but it's been brutal. As soon as you so much as mention "school," she starts crying - actual, big tears. She’s been waking up too early and hardly eating. She's never been good with change, and thanks to Covid, she's lived in this tiny bubble up until now. (Her teacher is lovely, by the way.) Will this pass? PS: I'm 31 weeks pregnant with baby number two, so there's also that. This is a lot of change for a little one all at once. Amy offers several different approaches for making this better, including books like SORRY, GROWN-UPS, YOU CAN’T GO TO SCHOOL! by Christina Geist using a three-year-old's love of defying expectations and of knowing more than grownups to your advantage working with the teacher scaffolding the transition By leading with compassion for your daughter's struggle, you'll both make it through. This is a season, and it’s definitely made more complicated by the last year. Have patience with her and with yourself. The dress-up corner is kind of a wonderful place, and we hope that pretty soon your daughter will be pulling on your hand to get inside the classroom faster. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 22, 2021
Fresh Take: Joe "Mr. D" Dombrowski on the Fresh Hells of Teaching During a Pandemic
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Joe "Mr. D" Dombrowski is a professional comedian. He also teaches kindergarten. In other words: he knows how to work a tough crowd. You probably know Joe from his viral YouTube videos, his many appearances on Ellen, or his Social Studies podcast. In this hilarious and insightful interview, Joe tells us how this crazy school year has gone from a teacher's point of view, what skills our kids might need to relearn as they reenter a classroom, and why kindergarteners are the very best. Follow Joe on all the socials at @mrdtimesthree, and sign up to find out about all his upcoming tour dates at mrdtimesthree.com. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 19, 2021
Mom Rock-Bottoms
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What’s your mom rock-bottom? The moment when you thought I’m just going to head for the border and start a new life?  We asked you all for the worst mom moments you were actually willing to share in open court. About 45% of your stories involved vomit and poop, which makes sense, since about 45% of motherhood overall includes those same two factors.  But rest assured, the variety in our rock-bottoms is vast, and our listeners came through with many series of unfortunate events that, in our eyes, are all winners. At being the very worst mom life has to offer.  * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 17, 2021
Ask Margaret - How Do I Get My Kids to Play Together?
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When we have multiple kids we dream of them romping together all day in the yard as joyful playmates! The reality is often a little more complicated. Ashley asked: How do you encourage older siblings to play with younger ones? Covid has made this even more challenging, since we're all around each other a lot. My kids are four years apart: boy age 9, girl age 5. We need to manage our expectations that siblings will be best friends. It is understandable that our kids are tired of each other's company, especially during the pandemic. But there are ways that we can encourage our kids to play together, and the best way is to model play for them. When we get in there and play with our kids, we set up an expectation that play is part of what we do together as a family. Whether it's simple card games that both older and younger siblings can play together, or showing them how to play H-O-R-S-E at the basketball hoop, we can help our kids improve their ability to play together. Once you've introduced group play to your kids, you need to create expectations around it. Set aside times of day as "playtime," during which your kids are expected to play together. Those expectations need to be consistent to overcome any protestations of "We're bored! We don't know what to do!" If it's really not working, spend the first 20 minutes playing with them. Then step out of the play with the expectation that they will continue for a set amount of time. We think of "play" as something that kids do naturally. In fact, playing together is something that needs to be modeled and encouraged in order for it to happen. Don't be afraid to have firm expectations around play, and spend some time modeling play for your kids, so that they come to value playing together as an important part of their day. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 15, 2021
Fresh Take: Janice Johnson Dias on Raising Joyful, Change-Making Kids
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Janice Johnson Dias is a professor of sociology at John Jay College. She is co-founder and president of the public health and social action organization GrassROOTS Community Foundation and its SuperCamp for girls. Her collaborative work on black girls’ mental, sexual, and physical health issues earned her a special Congressional recognition. Born in Jamaica, Janice moved to the United States at age twelve and now lives in New Jersey with her husband, daughter, and dog. Janice's new book is PARENT LIKE IT MATTERS: HOW TO RAISE JOYFUL, CHANGE-MAKING GIRLS. In this conversation, Janice explains how we can embolden both our daughters and our sons to find their passions– but only by finding our own passions first. Janice argues that change-making is the path to true joy. You can find PARENT LIKE IT MATTERS here in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781984819628 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 12, 2021
Letting Kids Make Mistakes
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There are benefits to our kids making mistakes, even when it’s hard. Maybe especially when it’s hard. Some kids have tons of flexibility and safety around trying new things, around failing. Others not so much. In this episode we discuss: how the brain lights up when a mistake is made, paying extra attention why being very wrong about a fact once ensures you will always remember it thereafter the difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset– and how mistakes encourage the latter Carol Dweck and what she calls the power of "not yet" how we can make our homes "mistake-friendly environments" Here are links to writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Claudia Wallis for Mind/Shift: Why Mistakes Matter in Creating A Path For Learning Dr. Janet Metcalfe, Columbia University: “Learning from Errors,”  Carol S. Dweck for TED: "The Power of Yet" Carol S. Dweck: Mindset Jo Boaler for youcubed.org: Mistakes Grow Your Brain Melissa Taylor for Brightly: What Is a ‘Just Right’ Book? Reading Levels Explained Dr. Jason Moser for Frontiers In Human Neuroscience: On the relationship between anxiety and error monitoring: a meta-analysis and conceptual framework Sesame Street: Mary Had a Little Lamb * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 10, 2021
Ask Amy- When Your Kids' Creative Projects Are Also Huge Messes
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How can I encourage my kids’ creativity and self-directed play while also setting limits on the messes they make? Erin emailed us to say: My kids are 3, 5, and 7 and during the pandemic they’ve really played together well and have learned to entertain themselves. BUT they are driving me crazy with all of their “great ideas” and huge projects. I’m talking about packing for an imaginary camping trip with all of their real clothes that I will have to sort and fold later.  Putting on swimsuits on the first warm day of fake spring and filling the kiddie pool with water and ending up covered in mud in 60 degree weather.  You get the idea. I love their creativity and ambition but I can’t manage and clean up these huge messes every single day. How can I put boundaries around it so it’s not such a disaster afterwards? Anyone who's ever renovated a kitchen or made a short film has heard of the "Golden Triangle" of project management. On the triangle's corners are three goals: Good. Fast. Cheap. You can pick any 2. You can't have all 3. When it comes to kids having fun, the three points on that triangle are Child-Led. Exciting. Neat. Once again, going for all three is not usually a reasonable goal. If the kids' messes are really getting to you–no shame in that, by the way– a little more parental oversight might be required in the planning stages. If you really need an hour to yourself, and they're playing happily, there might be an entirely emptied bookshelf waiting for you on the other side. Even then, there's a difference between a messy playroom and muddy footprints in the kitchen. The latter require immediate and focused effort; the former, if you can stand waiting it out, can be something the kids are in charge of cleaning up, before their next desired activity. It's okay to put parameters around your kids' big plans that work for you. When it comes to cleanup, why not let these big thinkers and team-planners come up with a group solution? Then be sure to "catch them being good" and heap on the praise when they are actually helpful in getting things back to one. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 08, 2021
Fresh Take: Michelle Icard on the 14 Talks Parents Need To Have With Their Kids Before They Turn 14
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This week we're talking to Michelle Icard, middle-schooler whisperer and author of the new book FOURTEEN TALKS BY AGE FOURTEEN: The Essential Conversations You Need to Have with Your Kids Before They Start High School.  Michelle says that tweens have begun "the necessary and difficult work of pulling away," but they're still at an age where what their parents say can have enormous impact. Michelle's work helps parents position themselves so that our kids trust what we have to say, and that we won't freak out when they come to ask us questions or seek guidance. In this episode you'll learn what to say and how to say it when it comes to all the conversations you need to be having with your kids. The conversations in Michelle's book go well beyond the ones we all know and dread (sex, alcohol, drugs, consent) to equally crucial topics you might not have considered (friendships, creativity). You'll find tons of resources and confidence in this book and in this episode. Find FOURTEEN TALKS BY AGE FOURTEEN in our bookshop.org store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780593137512 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 05, 2021
When It's Okay To Be Emotional In Front of Our Kids
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Is it okay for us to be emotional in front of our kids?  Julie, one of our podcast listeners, asked this question in our Facebook group:  Is it good for kiddos to see their moms have emotions? And how can we talk through our emotions with our kids? My grandmother lost her husband when my dad was 11 years old. She had four kids, no job.She had to take care of everything. Once I asked her how she coped with all of that, and she said she just held it together, always, except when she cried in the shower at night. At first, I thought, wow, how strong of her. Now that I have kids, I kind of wonder: is shower crying always good? Never good. Sometimes good?  Shower crying is definitely better than swallowing emotions entirely. And there are times when our emotions, and/or the situations causing them, are too unsettling for our kids to handle. Sometimes it's good for kids to see our emotions, but we shouldn't be asking kids to hold them for us. But studies show that children whose mothers express emotions like sadness or loneliness in their presence are more emotionally literate as they grow. By serving as “emotional coaches” for our kids, and modeling how we process difficult moments in our own lives, we can raise kids more able to handle such moments themselves.  In this episode we discuss when it’s okay to be emotional in front of our kids, why suppressing our emotions entirely might not work as well as we think it does, and when shower cries are most certainly called for. Good news: we don't have to fear that showing our vulnerability is a bad thing. Our listener Jennifer summed it up best: "I don’t hide the most intense parts of being human from the people I’m trying to help on their journey as humans.” Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode:  John Lamble for The Conversation: Should you hide negative emotions from children? Gottman Institute: Parental Meta-Emotion Philosophy and the Emotional Life of Families Bonnie Le for Personality and Social Psychology: The Costs of Suppressing Negative Emotions and Amplifying Positive Emotions During Parental Caregiving Judy Dunn and Jane Brown for Developmental Psychology: Family Talk About Feeling States and Children's Later Understanding Of Others' Emotions Woody Harrelson explains how to handle unpleasant emotions on Cheers "Turn it Off" from The Book of Mormon Toilet-Training Toddler Declares, 'I Didn't Poop, I Peed!' * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 03, 2021
Ask Margaret - How Should I Talk to My Child's Caregiver About Discipline?
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Leaving our kids in the care of others is stressful and tends to bring out a strong need for control. But when it comes to working with a nanny or a day care provider, this may not be the best approach. Rather than trying to control everything your nanny or caregiver does, try to be clear from the very beginning about your expectations about discipline and any other issues that are important to you. Prepare questions when you interview a caregiver that explore a range of scenarios that may come up. Some examples: When a child doesn't listen to your instructions, how would you respond? Have you worked with children who you had to discipline repeatedly? How did you handle it? What are your favorite kinds of meals to prepare? What foods do you think it's important for kids to eat? Once you've employed your caregiver, revisit these conversations often. Strategize at the end of the day about behavior problems that are coming up and how to handle them. Another good idea is to write down your expectations and then prioritize them. For your family, wearing seatbelts and using sunscreen might be non-negotiables, but when it comes to eating healthy, there might be room for the occasional ice cream cone after a day at the park. Being clear with your own expectations means you don't have to have the same conversations over and over– and allows your caregiver to feel more secure in his or her role with your child. A caregiver is not a computer that accepts "if/then" instructions. Being extremely clear on your absolutes and then allowing your caregiver to function with some degree of independence will lead to a happier relationship for everyone. In this episode Margaret cites this article from Very Well Family: https://www.verywellfamily.com/how-to-get-your-nanny-on-board-with-your-discipline-1095068 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 01, 2021
Extremely Achievable Family Traditions
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What are some small traditions we can lean on right now to create more joy and meaning for our families? We’re talking LITTLE. Preferably free. Not exhausting. Super fun. Lifetime of memories created. Our listener Lee inspired this topic in our Facebook group:  What about an episode about fun or special traditions for the rest of the year? When I was growing up, the “birthday person” always got breakfast in bed. I’ve brought the tradition to my own family as an adult, and it’s such a fun and special way to start the day. I’ve been trying to build more traditions for my young family (my kids are 3 and 6), especially during the pandemic, since we haven’t seen our extended family much, and a lot of our other markers are missing. In this episode we discuss some of our (and our listeners’) favorite family traditions. A few Rules of Traditions we discovered while recording this episode: Giving the ordinary a special name, song, day of the week is part of what makes it a tradition. Pizza Friday! Porch Popsicle Time! It’s all in the branding.  Traditions are like leprechauns: if you go looking for one, you probably won’t find it, but you can tell when one has appeared. Keep your eyes and ears open for fun moments that can become traditions simply by repeating them. Limitations are where the ingenuity– and the fun– comes in. What Rube Goldberg creation can be made exclusively with what’s in this junk drawer? What famous painting can we recreate using old bedsheets?  This moment we’re all in is tough. It’s also a crucible where family traditions might be formed. Even thinking about tradition-making has lifted our spirits– the idea that we can find “little fun” that might somehow become what will be remembered of this year we’ve all spent mostly at home.  * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 24, 2021
Ask Amy- Should I Be Worried About My Teen's Isolation?
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When is a teen happily isolated– or at least content– and when is it something a parent should be concerned about, particularly during the pandemic?  This week's question comes from Kate in our Facebook group: When should one worry about a teenager's lack of desire to be with friends? For my 15-year-old it’s always been an issue, but since we moved two years ago, he’s been even more in the “I don’t care” camp than before. Outside of soccer and school, he doesn’t ever see friends, and says he doesn’t want to. All this is only made worse by the pandemic. Over the last year most of us have had more access to our kids' moment-to-moment existences than we had previously. That means we’re seeing more of things that might have always been there, and are therefore fine– and things that are new to us and actually should spark our concern. Some introverted children really are more content right now. If an adolescent is not expressing signs of depression and anxiety, than a teenager in his room all the time might be a content hermit, even if that has not been his parent's pandemic experience. Some sadness is fine too. Sadness makes sense right now. So how can a parent tell the difference between content self-isolation, some sadness about this tough moment, and depression? NYU child psych Dr. Aleta Angelosante offers this checklist of what to watch for in a teenager's mood: https://nyulangone.org/news/checking-your-teenagers-mood-during-covid-19-pandemic In this episode, Amy discusses some of the behaviors to watch for, and how to address concerns you might have with your teen. Don't put off the conversation because it might go poorly; it very well may, but your loving concern will be heard. I’m putting resources in the show notes- reach out to pediatrician- get a telehealth appointment with a professional if necessary, it can work a lot better than you’d think. one thing the pandemic has actually made easier. Dr. Angelosante further suggests these resources for parents. If you have concerns, don't hesitate to reach out to your child's pediatrician, or to a mental health professional. Anxiety and Depression Association of America: Watch, Ask and Listen: How to Tell if Your Child or Teen Is Anxious or Depressed Society of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology: Effective Child Therapy U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Resources to Support Adolescent Mental Health Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! Email us- questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 22, 2021
Moms Are Not Okay
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How we doing, moms? If you're anything like us, your domestic situation has blown past “getting old” to “seriously guys, we cannot do this anymore” to fetal-position numbness and beyond. And there’s nothing for dinner, and the 5th grader is failing math, and our boss just asked if that wasn’t “someone’s kid” he just heard on the background of our work Zoom call. (Why yes. Yes, it was.) The New York Times recently released a series called “The Primal Scream” examining the pandemic’s effect on working moms in America. As we come up on the one-year anniversary of this crisis we thought would take a couple of weeks, let's face it: all moms are kind of falling apart. As Dekeda Brown, a mother of two profiled in the Times’ stories, explains:  “We are holding together with the same tape that we have been using since March.”  In this episode, we discuss how it’s going for us (not great) and offer a few solutions for making this Groundhog-Day time a tad more survivable.  Here are some of the articles we mention in this episode: Jessica Bennett for NYT: Three American Mothers, On The Brink https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/02/04/parenting/covid-pandemic-mothers-primal-scream.html Jessica Grose for NYT: America’s Mothers Are In Crisis https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/04/parenting/working-moms-mental-health-coronavirus.html Laurel Elder: Parenthood and Politics in the Era of Covid-19 https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3762600 Pooja Lakshmin for NYT: How Society Has Turned Its Back On Mothers https://www.nytimes.com/2021/02/04/parenting/working-mom-burnout-coronavirus.html * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 17, 2021
Ask Margaret - Do I Get a Say On Who My Kids' Friends Are?
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This week's listener question comes from Kristen in our Facebook group: How much input should I have on my kids' choice of friends? This is a hard one. Ceding control over our kids' lives is anxiety-producing, and one of the first ways we need to practice letting go is when our kids choose friends that - let's say - wouldn't have been our first choice for them. So that's the bad news. The good news is that we do still have a role to play in this situation. Just as with our own kids, when we address the behavior of our kids' friends, rather than their character, we'll get better results. We can (and should!) verbalize things like "I don't like when I see [insert friend's name] using bad language." That message will be heard by our child with a lot less defensiveness than if we say "That [insert friend's name] is such a bad kid!" Here are other things you can consider doing if you're worried about the kinds of friends your kid is choosing: Keep your child involved in a range of activities, so they're exposed to a wider potential friend group. Have gatherings at your house so you can get a better sense of your child's friendship dynamics and how they're playing out. Help your child develop "prospecting" by talking about behavior and consequences frequently. Implement concrete consequences for a friend's inappropriate behavior. If your child knows she'll lose her phone for the day if her friend sends her an inappropriate text, she might be more motivate to set her own boundaries on that friend's behavior (or that friendship). Our kids' friends can sometimes seem to have an outsized amount of influence over our kids. Hence our concern as parents. But if we are consistent with our own expectations and discipline, we can help our children navigate a range of friendships successfully. Hear more about this topic in our episode "Kid Friend Breakups": https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2018/05/kid-friend-breakups-episode-55/ And if you have a question for Margaret or Amy you can submit them to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 15, 2021
From the Vault: Anger Management for Kids
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This week we're introducing a "From The Vault" series, reconsidering some of our favorite episodes of the past four years. Our kids still get angry (imagine that) so time to revisit this one. The best way to handle our children’s anger is to equip them with the tools to handle it themselves. You don’t have to smother children's emotions in order to calm them down; as your kids get older, you really can't. But you don’t need to throw up your hands and accommodate their anger and everything that comes with it, either. We talk at length in this episode about an excellent book for kids on this topic: “What To Do When Your Temper Flares: A Kid’s Guide To Overcoming Problems With Anger.”by Dawn Huebner. The book is aimed at grade-schoolers, but there’s much to learn in here for kids of all ages (and their parents)!  Whether your kid is 4 or 14, this episode will help you stand outside their storms and get your calm house back a little sooner.  If you’d like a transcript of this episode, you can find it here: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2021/02/angermanagementtranscript/ If you’d like to do a deep-dive on anger management for parents, check out our “Sometimes We Lose It” episode here. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 12, 2021
Setting Boundaries
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It often becomes clear to us where our boundaries should have been set only after those lines have been crossed and left far behind. But whether it's with overbearing extended family members or partners who leave socks on the floor, how do we create effective boundaries? Especially after it's been established that we're not very good at it, and especially in a world that doesn't very much like women who aren't afraid to set them? In this episode we discuss why boundaries should be set early and often– and not just in problematic relationships, either. Healthy boundaries with our spouses, partners, and co-workers are what make long-term relationships possible. And don't forget positive boundaries. Want to start setting aside more money each month? Having one date night a week, or one weekend morning when you get to sleep in? It starts with saying so. Living in a pandemic has made it unavoidable: we all have to say out loud what feels safe for us and our families. We can seize that opportunity to practice the difficult conversations. Those on the other sides of those conversations are entitled to their reactions and opinions. But that doesn't necessarily mean that setting the boundary was wrong. Here are links to some writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Fatherly: 16 Tips For Creating Healthy Boundaries With Your Extended Family Mark Manson: Boundaries Elizabeth Earnshaw for Mind Body Green: A Therapist Explains 6 Things People Get Wrong About Setting Boundaries Sarah Saweikis for Medium: Scared to Set Boundaries? How to Set Boundaries to Improve Your Relationships and Increase Peace of Mind Brianna Wiest: The Honest Truth About Why Some People Can't Set Boundaries * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 10, 2021
Ask Amy- Surviving The "Only Mommy" Phase
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This week's listener question comes from Rosie in our Facebook group: My little guy is in the “only want mommy” slash “must be touching mommy” phase. Any advice on how to not go insane and to still get things done with a 26-pound, 17-month old attached to my hip? Disclaimer: of course i give him all the snuggles, and I know it’s just a phase. But I’m going a little crazy. Yes, the "only mommy" phase isn't forever– and it's not something you have to train out of your kid. But it can be overwhelming while you're in it. It's okay for you to take breaks, and it's okay for your toddler not to like it. But understanding where it's coming from might make getting through this stage a little easier. Toddlers sticking close to their primary caregivers is a biological imperative: if the cave toddler lost his parent, he wouldn't eat. These days, the stakes are more akin to "might not have my cinnamon raisin toast buttered to my exact specifications," but routine and structure and control over the little things are what your toddler is focusing on right now as he figures out his world. If you have a spouse or co-parent, lean in to that person doing some of your toddler's very preferred activities. That partner might also be feeling hurt if the toddler is rejecting them; support them in that disappointment and reassure them that it's temporary. And if there's any small part of you secretly happy to be so indispensable to your child, that’s only human. Just make sure you’re not leaning in to it too much. Hear more about this topic in our episode "When Kids Prefer The Other Parent Over You (Or You Over Them)": https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2019/07/preferotherparent-ep115/ * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 08, 2021
Fresh Take: Dr. Harold Koplewicz on the Best Way To Support Our Kids
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This week we're talking to Dr. Harold Koplewicz, one of the nation's leading child and adolescent psychiatrists and the founding president of the Child Mind Institute, a national nonprofit dedicated to transforming the lives of children  struggling with mental health and learning disorders. Dr. Koplewicz is also the author of the new book THE SCAFFOLD EFFECT: Raising Resilient, Self-Reliant and Secure Kids in an Age of Anxiety, which guides parents through strategies for raising empowered, capable people. In this episode, we discuss Dr. Koplewicz's suggestion that we create scaffolding around our children as they create their own lives. We're not the architects, we're not the builders– as parents, we're there to support the cantilevered balconies of our children's passions and interests, even if they're not at all what we imagined things would look like, or what we would build ourselves. Miscalculations are part of the plan for our children to learn resiliency and self-reliance. Dr. Koplewicz suggests scaffolding as the best way to encourage kids to climb higher and try new things, in order that they can grow from those mistakes. Find The Scaffold Effect in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780593139349 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 05, 2021
The Things We're Never Going Back To
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This last (almost) year has been full of challenges. On the other hand, so many things that we thought had to be a certain way– weekends packed with travel sports, weddings with hundreds of guests, the wearing of Spanx– have been proven surprisingly optional. In this episode, we discuss the things that we and our listeners are hereby declaring we’ll never do, or wear, or worry about again. From pants with buttons to touching strangers, we are here to say that a new path forward is eminently possible. We mention our episode "What This Has Taught Us About Our Kids"– you can listen to that episode here: https://bit.ly/WFHep162 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 03, 2021
Ask Margaret - Talking to Kids About Death
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Today's question comes from our Facebook group: "My son is 5 years old and in pre-K. One of the kiddos in his class lost his dad when he was very young. Since learning this, my son has started asking us about death, and has started worrying that something is going to happen to me or my husband. I'm not sure how to talk to him about it. I want him to know that it does happen, and we need to be compassionate to his friend, but also don't want him to worry every day. How can I bring this hard topic down to his level?" Five years old is a developmentally-appropriate age for kids to start having significant questions about death, along with real worries about dying themselves or losing one of their parents. That's true whether or not they've experienced the death of someone close to them. These questions can be hard for parents because, unlike most of the other questions our kids ask, we don't have any perfectly satisfying answers to provide. Questions like "Why did my friend's dad die so young?" or "Are you going to die, Mommy?" can rattle us because we find these questions frightening and difficult ourselves. The solution is to talk openly and honestly with our children about death. Avoid metaphors and imagery like "He's gone to a better place," or "He's sleeping with the angels," which can confuse kids or make them think death is temporary. Instead, try to speak plainly about death, even if you find it very difficult. Explain that when people die, they don't come back. That is why death feels so sad for those who are still living. These discussions can– and should– also involve your own beliefs and religious traditions. Margaret also cites Anya Kamanetz's NPR article "Be Honest and Concrete: Tips for Talking To Kids About Death." Kamanetz reminds us that kids take in knowledge the way they eat an apple - a few small bites at a time. It's a great reminder to avoid overburdening kids with too much information. Instead, answer questions as they come up, read books that deal with death in an age-appropriate way, and discuss them openly– so your kids always feel that they have a chance to talk out things with you, even if those things feel scary. Margaret praises the book 'Tuck Everlasting' in this episode, which is available in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780312369811 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 01, 2021
Fresh Take: Dr. Christine Koh On Building a Family After Adverse Childhood Experiences
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Dr. Christine Koh, in her own words, is a "music and brain scientist turned multimedia creative." Christine creates content to help people live better, happier, and with elevated purpose and intention, including the Edit Your Life podcast. She's also someone who grew up with adverse childhood experiences, and has experience in building a family when our family of origin was not the kind of family we want. In this episode we discuss the measurable physiological detriments of toxic stress; the importance of safe, stable, nurturing environments; and most importantly, that it is possible for significant challenges of early adversity to be met once they are no longer cloaked in shame. As Vincent Felitti, co-founder of the ACE Study, explains: “When we make it okay to talk about what happened, it removes the power that secrecy so often has.” Here are links to some of the writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Christine Koh: The Adults Who Saved Me And What You Need To Know About ACEs Donna Jackson Nakazawa for Psychology Today: 8 Ways People Recover From Post Childhood Adversity Syndrome Dr. Nerissa Bauer for healthychildren.org: ACEs- Adverse Childhood Experiences NPR.org: Take the ACE Quiz- And Learn What It Does And Doesn't Mean CDC.gov: Adverse Childhood Experiences and follow Christine and her work at christinekoh.com * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, TikTok @whatfreshhellcast on Twitter @WFHpodcast questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 29, 2021
How To Stop Having The Same Fight
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Having the same fight doesn’t mean your relationship is broken. But it is totally annoying. In this episode we discuss the modes of negativity at play when we repeat the same conflicts- and what we can do to break the cycle, whether it’s our partners or kids. Conflict may be unavoidable- but it can be at least a little more productive. Here are links to some of the takes on this topic that we discuss in this episode: We The Norths on YouTube: How We Avoid Stupid Fights: The Number System Esther Perel for Cosmopolitan: How to Stop Having the Same Fight With Your Boyfriend All the Time Kristine Fellizar for Bustle: 7 Hacks To Avoid Having The Same Fight Over & Over In Your Relationship Charlotte Latvala for Good Housekeeping: More Fun, Less Fighting Ted Lasso on Apple TV Eckhart Tolle on Oprah Super Sunday: How To Identify And Stop Your Pain Body * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 27, 2021
Ask Amy: When Your Kid is Super-Clingy
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This week's parenting question comes from a listener in our Facebook group: I have a clingy 9-year-old. I love her more than life itself, but I am having a hard time with feeling totally smothered. I go for a walk every morning for about 30 minutes (for sanity) and every morning she asks, "How long will you be gone? 30 minutes? Can I come? Pleeease?" I stress the importance of alone time for me and that it makes me a better mama. She watches for me out the window. It's like having a puppy. Yes, it's anxiety related. I had anxiety as a kid and I recognize it, but we are together 24 hours a day and I feel like I'm starting to crack. You're right to suspect that your super-clingy kid is motivated by anxiety. We can meet anxiety with empathy, but we need to beware accommodating it. Don't let those goalposts get moved: a half-hour walk is definitely good, both for your parental sanity and for your kid's realizing she can survive 30 minutes without you. Amy offers a few suggestions that worked with her own clingy kid: "catch her" being independent and offer praise, rather than provide negative attention for the clinginess offer quality time doing her preferred activity when she doesn't complain about your alone time earlier in the day create "special time" for this child and another adult during which No Mommies Are Allowed get your child a pet (a big ask, for sure, but for kids who are physically clingy, something cuddly can be an effective Mom substitute) There are more great suggestions in this Very Well Family article by therapist Amy Morin: https://www.verywellfamily.com/ways-to-deal-with-a-clingy-child-3863401 Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 25, 2021
Fresh Take: Dr. Edward Hallowell on the Newest Science and Essential Strategies for ADHD
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This week we're delighted to be talking to Dr. Edward M. Hallowell– one of the world's leading experts on ADHD. Dr. Hallowell's new book, co-authored with Dr. John J. Ratey, is ADHD 2.0: New Science and Essential Strategies for Thriving with Distraction--From Childhood Through Adulthood. Dr. Hallowell gives us concrete strategies– and tons of optimism– for those lucky enough to possess what Dr. Hallowell calls the "Variable Attention Stimulus Trait." Whether you have a child with ADHD, suspect you might, or even have had some lingering thoughts about your own ability to focus– Dr. Hallowell's cutting-edge research and surprising new strategies will fascinate you. Read the transcript of our entire interview with Dr. Hallowell on our website: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2021/01/dredwardhallowell/ grab your copy of ADHD 2.0 from our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780399178733 and connect with Dr. Hallowell: https://drhallowell.com * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 22, 2021
Okay, We Annoy Ourselves Also
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This podcast is always here to support moms in their righteous anger at all the completely infuriating and totally trivial things that people all over the world are constantly doing to annoy us. Usually someone related to us. But this week, we're looking inward– because sometimes we totally annoy ourselves also. In this episode we come clean about the things we do that are so irksome that we even annoy OURSELVES. (And then keep doing them anyway.) We also explore some of the confessions of self-annoyance from some of our listeners, like Alexa, who rarely refills the Brita pitcher and so then has to stand there getting old waiting for her next glass of water; or Rachel, who ruins her own life by only ever pulling out of parking spots in a single direction; or Karen, who loads the kids in the car and then goes back inside to do one more thing and who, for all we know, is still in there doing who knows what. Who knows why we do these things? We see you. We feel your self-annoyance. Special thanks to Heather, who wrote in to tell us that if you keep a small bottle of isopropyl alcohol in the car, and have anyone who feels carsick take a deep sniff, you can usually head the vomiting off at the pass. Really!  https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/13/well/live/a-cure-for-nausea-try-sniffing-alcohol.html * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 20, 2021
Ask Margaret - How To Turn Off Screens Without Tears
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Today's question comes from Crystal in our Facebook group (facebook.com/groups/whatfreshhellcast): My six-year-old son is very difficult at the end of screen time. He gets one hour in the afternoon, but always fusses, grunts angrily, or melts down when time is up. I feel like in a normal world, I'd just take screen time away when he gives me attitude. But these days, we are home all the time, and it’s the one thing he enjoys. How do I help him develop the ability to regulate his emotions in this situation? The biggest thing a parent can do to help a child regulate their emotions around transitions is to provide runways. Doing this will ensure that the transition of getting off screens isn't a sudden splash of cold water for your kid. Try using a visual timer - so that kids who struggle with the hypothetical concept of "one hour" can easily see how much screen time they have left. You can also verbally count down the hour by saying "45 minutes left", "30 minutes left," et cetera, but we think it's always better to let the timer be the bad guy. Once it's time to turn screens off, allowing a brief grace period for your child to finish their current level or video helps give them some sense of control. Once that happens, transition immediately to another preferred activity. This does not have to be elaborate; it can be as simple as "let's have a glass of milk together in the kitchen." If your child still melts down after you've implemented these strategies, then it's time for consequences– but make them immediate. Saying "if you fuss now, you'll have no screens later" provides a delayed consequence that doesn't work as well, especially for younger kids. Try addressing the behavior with an immediate consequence– a time out, or loss of access to the preferred activity that was coming up next. Finally, apply all of these techniques consistently. Keep the time remaining clear, allow for grace periods, enforce immediate consequences when necessary, and this behavior should improve. Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 18, 2021
Fresh Take: Mirna Valerio Tells Us How To Find Our Fitness
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Mirna Valerio is a runner, adventurer, speaker, and anti-racism educator. In this Fresh Take interview, Mirna tells us how she fell off the fitness wagon after becoming a mom, how that first mile went once she made herself lace up her running shoes again, and her path to becoming an endurance athlete since then. Even if we’re not all cut out to run 100 kilometers in the desert– or even want to– Mirna tells us why fitness is worth it, and how to reacquaint ourselves with fitness, no matter how long we’ve been out of the game.  “I believe in having the long view. Look, I'm still a big girl. I’m going to be a big girl. But my long view, my overarching goal, is long-term health and wellness. What am I doing to put long-term health and wellness in the bank for later? What am I doing today to ensure that I have long-term health and wellness?” We also discuss how we, as women, are entitled to name what we need– and how that well-timed help, especially when we ask for it, is the very thing that will allow us to get back up and keep running. Acknowledge how you're feeling. Give yourself some grace. Start today. Find Mirna on her website: https://themirnavator.com/ and at @themirnavator on Instagram and Twitter Catch Mirna’s winter workout on @thev1ve: https://www.instagram.com/p/CKCGndXj-oS/ and join the Fatgirlrunning group on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Fatgirlrunning-939724599403584 Here are links to some of the other things we discuss in this episode: Mirna Valerio for Self: Open Letter To Women Who Aren’t Putting Their Needs First https://www.self.com/story/mirna-valerio-open-letter-to-women-who-arent-putting-their-needs-first Kate Martin at Unheard LA: The Rescue https://www.thekatemartin.com/storytelling Caravaggio’s Conversion on the Way to Damascus  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Conversion_on_the_Way_to_Damascus * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 15, 2021
The Mom That Covid Has Made Me
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We asked our listeners to tell us how life with Covid has affected their own parenting. Some of us have gotten more socially anxious; others, like the moms of kids with severe allergies, have found the isolation reassuring. Some of us have treasured the extra time with our children; others are nearing their breaking point. Some of us are stressing about the screen time; others are thrilled we’re not interrupting our kids to go to travel soccer for a change.  This topic was inspired by Kristen Howerton’s essay for The New York Times, “I Hate The Mom That Covid Has Made Me.” Kristen explains how she’s become THAT mom, the kind who spies on her own teenagers and yells at them for not wearing masks. She thought she hated that kind of parent– and now it’s her.  How has Covid changed your parenting? Will those changes be longer-term than this pandemic?  Here are links to some things we discuss in this episode: Kristen Howerton for The New York Times: I Hate The Mom That Covid Has Made Me https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/28/opinion/covid-parenting.html Tomas Pueyo: The Hammer and the Dance https://tomaspueyo.medium.com/coronavirus-the-hammer-and-the-dance-be9337092b56 Neil Kramer’s photograph series of life in quarantine: https://petapixel.com/2021/01/09/a-photographers-hilarious-photos-of-being-stuck-in-quarantine-with-ex-wife-and-mother/ David Foster Wallace: This is Water https://fs.blog/2012/04/david-foster-wallace-this-is-water/ as well as our episodes with Katherine May, author of Wintering: http://bit.ly/WFHwintering and "What This Has Taught Us About Our Kids": http://bit.ly/WFHep162 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 13, 2021
Ask Amy - My Kid Thinks There Are Monsters Under The Bed
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This week’s question comes from Jaclyn in our Facebook group (facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast): "Would love some advice for the "monsters under the bed" phase. My three-year-old is worse than he was as a newborn, waking me up 30 times at night! If I ignore him, he will scream and cry, then come into our room. I could let him sleep with us, but he doesn't sleep well when he is in our bed, and neither do we. I tried to put a bed for him on the floor of our room, but he kept asking for more items-water, blankets, pillows, etc. Help!" In his book The Happiest Toddler on the Block, Dr. Jonathan Karp considers kids' developmental stages as a replay of humanity's evolutionary stages. A 12-18 month old is a "charming chimp-child," 18-24 months is a little Bam-Bam, and by 3 years old, kids have gotten about as sophisticated as someone alive during the Middle Ages might have been. To people alive in the Middle Ages, vampires were real. They didn't have the luxury of going to therapy to unpack what was behind their fear of someone coming to drink their blood; they put some garlic around their necks and went to bed feeling a little better about their chances of waking up in the morning. For kids who still believe in magical things as being fully possible, the best "protection" parents can offer them from something scary but imaginary might be something equally unreal and totally wonderful. For Amy's daughter, drawing a picture of her guardian angel to put next to her bad was enough to move her past her absolute certainty that Edward Scissorhands was coming to get her. All the rationalizing that Amy had tried before that faile, but to her daughter, the angel's protection was real. Instead of talking her daughter out of it, Amy found that a little "good magic" was the far more effective response. To be clear: a preschooler waking up at night that much might have something else going on, from a soaking-wet Pull-Up to something that might be worth mentioning to your pediatrician. But a spray bottle full of water, also known as No-Monsters-In-Here Magic Elixir, might be more effective than you'd think. Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 11, 2021
Fresh Take: Ned Johnson on The Self-Driven Child
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This week we’re talking to Ned Johnson, co-author (with William Stixrud) of THE SELF-DRIVEN CHILD: THE SCIENCE AND SENSE OF GIVING YOUR KIDS MORE CONTROL OVER THEIR LIVES, which explores how fostering children’s autonomy can help solve two challenges seemingly endemic to kids today: handling anxiety and developing intrinsic motivation.  Ned's research underlines a surprising paradox: when we try to remove stress from our children's lives by smoothing over the bumps in their paths, we inadvertently create MORE stress for our children. As Ned explains: “A sense of control strengthens the regulation of the amygdala. It is by successfully handling stressful situations in a supportive environment that kids develop strong stress tolerance and resilience." In this episode we discuss how one's levels of stress are affected by novelty, unpredictability, and our overall sense of control the difference between "tolerable stress" and toxic stress how to be "homework consultants" for our kids without controlling the outcome why "radical downtime" is so crucial for kids' development Not sure when you should back off, or not? Here's Ned's overall takeaway: "When we talk about kids having a sense of control, it's not that we want to put a toddler in charge of the household, or tell her "you've got to go hunt for your own food" or something. It's simply that we don't want to do for kids that which they can do for themselves." The Self-Driven Child is available from our What Fresh Hell Bookshop page: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780735222526 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 08, 2021
Your Life Begins Again When... (The Second Half of Parenting)
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This week we bring a hopeful message from your parenting future: it gets easier. Our listener Kristen went on our Facebook group page with this challenge: The second part of your life begins when your kids can get dressed to go outside in the snow by themselves and play out there without adult supervision. What's your version of “the second part of your life begins…”?  In this episode, we talk about when your life of pre-parenting ease comes back into focus. Is it when your kids can go upstairs, take a shower, and put on their own pajamas?  Or when you no longer have to push the swing at the playground?  Or when they can navigate a flight of stairs safely? Or when they can turn on a screen at 6:30 a.m. without waking you?  The answer to all of the above is YES. And we celebrate them all. In this episode, Amy mentions the study "Car Seats as Contraception," and Margaret touts these disposable vomit bags for the carsick kiddos: https://amzn.to/38PHMKU It’s a new year! What better way to start it off than by making sure your kids (and therefore, YOU) are getting more sleep? Make bedtime less stressful with soothing bedtime audio stories set in the magical, moonlit world of Moshi. The Moshi app features hours of bedtime “stories" created by an award-winning team of writers and composers. Download the Moshi app on Apple’s App Store or Google Play Store, and you’ll get access to a 1-week free trial of Moshi Premium, so you can try Moshi Sleep for your family.  * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 06, 2021
Ask Margaret- My Kid Is Sneaking Food and Screens Up To Her Room
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Today's question comes from Elizabeth: How do you address sneakiness? Having some trouble with rule-breaking lately. Things that are not totally off-limits but do have limits, like candy or screens, are appearing in bedrooms after the adults go to sleep. It's driving me batty and I'd appreciate any advice! Sneakiness in our kids can really set us off as parents. The idea that our children would directly defy our carefully established rules is often really upsetting. The good news? Our kids, especially when they are young, tend to be really, really bad at being sneaky. This means that we're going to discover the wrappers or the left-behind screens they've been attempting to hide pretty much every time. So how do we react? Margaret suggests a three-step approach: React calmly. Don't give your kiddo the satisfaction of seeing you blow your top. Offer an alternative. ("If you are hungry at night, let's start having something right before bed.") Respond with consistent consequences. ("Every time I find a screen upstairs in your room, you will have no screens at all the following day.") By taking the emotion out of your interaction, and giving your kids consistent negative outcomes, you'll remind them of the boundaries that exist, and make the sneakiness and boundary-testing less interesting. Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! Email us- questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 04, 2021
2020: What Was That?
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2020: seriously, you guys. What was THAT? In this episode we look back at a very problematic year, and toast our survival as we acknowledge our many struggles. We review what we've learned/ hope to learn/ hope to one day never ever think about again. We also discuss what we learned from some of our favorite episodes of 2020, and have gathered them in a playlist here:https://open.spotify.com/playlist/4UCfa2pUXKYB653bJVcKsO We also give special thanks to those who work behind the scenes to make this show possible: editor Christy Haussler of Team Podcast: https://www.teampodcast.com/ producer Sarah Levithan social media support from Christina Hart: https://www.instagram.com/itschristinahart/ branding by Jake Lang Digital: https://www.jakelangdigital.com/services cartoon logo by Emily Pelton: https://emilypelton87.wixsite.com/emilypelton * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 30, 2020
We Ask Each Other Burning Questions
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After four years of doing this podcast, we know a lot about each other. In this episode, we ask the burning questions that remain, like: If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life what would it be? Who is your celebrity crush? (warning: #oldilocksalert) What was your worst job ever? What do you, in 2020, want to be when you grow up? What would you grab in a fire? We also mention a few of our favorite books, all of which are always available in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/shop/whatfreshhellcast * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 23, 2020
Ask Amy- How Can I Help My Reluctant Pooper?
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This week’s question comes from Sarah:  My 22-month-old daughter is an infrequent pooper. She regularly goes 3-5 days between bowel movements, but recently she's started holding it. She's been sitting on the potty to pee for the last month or two, but she'll jump up and say, "no!" when she feels a bowel movement. This means that when she does finally go, it’s… a lot. She had a bit of diarrhea a few months ago and got a rash, so maybe she's remembering that it hurt? We praise her whether she poops in the potty or in her diaper, but she gets distraught when she goes in her diaper. Sometimes she holds onto us and cries. The few times she's gone in the potty, she seems less upset, but you can tell she doesn't like going. We don’t think this is a constipation issue. I am immensely anxious about this and worry that my anxiety is rubbing off on her. I'm constantly keeping track of the last time she pooped and wondering whether she needs prunes/Restoralax to help her go. These things have helped in the past, but I know they're not addressing the issue of her not wanting to go. How can we help her feel better about pooping without making it too big of a deal? We talk about how everybody poops and that it's okay to go, but I'm not sure that's helping.  I keep trying to tell myself that this is a phase she'll grow out of, but it's hard to see past the worry of whether she's going to poop this week when you're in the middle of it. Thanks for any advice you may have! This is almost always a phase– but one toddlers need a little help with, especially if it's distressing them or causing them discomfort. Keep in mind that while some kids are ready to start potty-training before their second birthday, others are not ready for another year or more. (Ask me how I know.) It's also common to have a kid who pees on the potty without a problem, but finds pooping more difficult. Sarah's overall instinct is right: if you have a reluctant pooper, you need to make it less of a big deal. Turn down the focus on the potty-training until things are a little easier. Praise sitting on the potty itself, the act of sitting and being patient, instead of the results that may or may not occur. And don't force it if your child isn't ready. If pooping does happen in a diaper, make sure that's not being perceived as a "less-than" outcome by your toddler. Pooping in a diaper is definitely better than not pooping at all! Keep the prunes going (we called them "giant raisins" in our house) and make sure your child is getting plenty of fluids. Ask your pediatrician before supplementing with fiber– if your kid is already backed up, it might be counterproductive. And make sure to mention diarrhea or soiling to your pediatrician as well- it can be something called "encopresis," which is a paradoxical symptom of severe constipation. Finally, this list of potty-encouraging books from kindercare.com has all the classics. Make storytime part of potty-sitting, and pretend that what else is happening is so "regular" that it's not a big deal. https://www.kindercare.com/content-hub/articles/2017/june/poop-and-pee-on-every-page-8-adorable-pottytraining-books-to-read-with-your-kids Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! Email us- questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 21, 2020
Extremely Achievable Holiday Traditions
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This topic came from Bradie on our Facebook page, who asked: What is one simple, basic, Christmas tradition that your family has? Don't come at me with baking gingerbread houses or cutting down your Christmas tree. I'm talking things like a favorite meal, the order and manner in which you open presents, a book you always read. Standards are low over here, people. Don't we all deserve an easy holiday season this year? This episode is full of ideas for wrapping gifts (and other things), easy cookie recipes, and more. These ideas are Christmas-based, although holiday lights and red flannel jammies probably have pagan roots anyhow, so come one come all! Two main takeaways for your holiday season:  When in doubt, add hot cocoa. Let the laws of holiday attrition work in your favor. Here are links to some Christmas favorites discussed in this episode: saltine toffee cookies: https://www.allrecipes.com/recipe/11376/saltine-toffee-cookies/ Rachael Ray's Christmas pasta: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/christmas-pasta-recipe-2013437 "Christmas Island": https://open.spotify.com/album/3GK2W9eAOQ6585VCGKvKkh?highlight=spotify:track:4y8qmJFYisrLsWzfOjNbxi and the new-to-us Christmas pickle: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christmas_pickle * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 16, 2020
Ask Margaret - When Your Parent-Teacher Conference Doesn't Go So Well
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This week Margaret’s talking about parent-teacher conferences, after writing about her own most recent conferences on our social media. At one of the conferences, Margaret heard amazing things: her child is thriving, reading above grade-level, adored by all.  But she's also had conferences when she heard her kids were struggling, not sitting still, NOT performing at grade level. (Amy has also had both kinds of parent-teacher conferences, by the way.) Some kids are built for school, and they will thrive in that environment. Others will find it much harder. But your kid’s A-plus, or C-minus, is not your own. As a parent, you're in communication with the teacher as an advocate for your kids, but you’re not there to make sure your kid's school experience– or life– turns out perfectly. It's crucial to keep that in mind when we have parent-teacher conferences: we’re not there to find out whether WE passed the test. Link to Margaret's thoughts here: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast/status/1336079462941806592 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 14, 2020
Fresh Take: Susan Katz Miller on Interfaith Families at the Holidays
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This week we’re talking to Susan Katz Miller, author of THE INTERFAITH FAMILY JOURNAL, a hands-on journal that helps families learn how to best honor one another’s spiritual and cultural needs.  The holidays are always intense, and if your family is an intersection of multiple traditions, it can really ratchet up the pressure for perfection times two. Which is when it’s time to maintain perspective. As Susan explains: “I try to help people to understand that if they're having conflict often, it's not about religious difference. It's not about theology. It's not about whether there was an actual physical resurrection or not. It's usually about whether to put the fried onions on the green bean casserole or not.” In this episode we discuss why every family is an interfaith family how to reduce conflict about traditions with your spouse’s extended family how to help your spouse when the hard feelings are on your family’s side how to push back on the pressure to do “both” traditions perfectly how to help your kids navigate being of a different faith than most people in your community how to handle it when you’re observant but your spouse is not (or vide versa) the resentment that can occur when the mom in a family is expected to carry the weight of passing on a religious tradition that's not even hers It’s worth it to have the conversations, do the work, and delineate a “sacred circle” that works for your immediate family. As Susan explains, when you and your spouse come from different traditions, “you’re going to be doing the work anyhow.” But challenging your own mindset and context is also an incredible opportunity for growth– even if the way your spouse’s family opens their holiday gifts is completely and totally wrong.  Here are links to some other writing on the topic we discuss in this episode:  Pew Research Center: Why America’s ‘nones’ don’t identify with a religion https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/08/08/why-americas-nones-dont-identify-with-a-religion/ Stina Kielsmeier-Cook: Blessed Are the Nones: Mixed-Faith Marriage and My Search for Spiritual Community https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780830848270 and you can buy THE INTERFAITH FAMILY JOURNAL here: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781558968257 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 11, 2020
What's Your Mom Superpower?
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This episode topic was suggested by Pam Marie in our Facebook group:  What's your mom superpower? We often talk about what we get wrong, but what about the things you're really good at? Time to flex, What Fresh Hell community! Everyone needs an ‘Attaboy!’ every once in a while. And when you’re a mom, you usually have to give it to yourself. In this episode, Amy brags about her X-ray recall of exactly where the shirt definitely *is* hanging in her son’s closet. Margaret explains that she’s a “super sniffer,” and you’ll have to listen to know what that’s all about. We discuss some of our listeners’ powers, as well. Whether you’re Eileen, whose kids have not been late to school once in seven years, or Sue, who has the superhuman ability to resist shouldering her children’s emotional burdens for them, we are truly impressed by all of your superpowers. Attaboy. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 09, 2020
Fresh Take: Katherine May on "Wintering" and the Power of Rest and Retreat In Difficult Times
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This week we're talking to Katherine May, author of the tremendous new book WINTERING: THE POWER OF REST AND RETREAT IN DIFFICULT TIMES. Written before the pandemic but perfectly relevant to the moment we're in, WINTERING explores how the natural world prepares for and survives winter, and how we can apply the lessons of actual winters to the metaphorical winters in our lives where, as Katherine puts it, "we feel like the world has pushed us out. We feel isolated, depressed, locked out in the cold, and that the rest of life is drifting away from us." We all go through personal winters. Sometimes they're for terrible reasons (an unexpected death); sometimes they're for happy ones (a newborn who needs to be fed every two hours). Sometimes they're brief and not too unbearable; sometimes no end is in sight. Winter is cyclical, it's part of life, and it can be understood as a time of rest and of waiting, rather than of stillness and death. There is much that winter can teach us, and we loved both this conversation with Katherine and her profound book. You can find WINTERING: THE POWER OF REST AND RETREAT IN DIFFICULT TIMES here or in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780593189481 You can follow Katherine on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/katherinemay_/?hl=en and Twitter: https://twitter.com/_katherine_may_?lang=en and you can listen to her podcast THE WINTERING SESSIONS here: https://podnews.net/podcast/1516642192 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 04, 2020
It Takes A Village (But We're Doing It Alone)
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For the last 1.8 million years or so, children were raised village-style. But 2020 has meant a lot of us raising our kids without the usual help of grandparents or schools or caregivers or friends. As New York Times parenting writer Jessica Grose explains:  "Throughout basically all of human history, parents have never, ever raised children in isolated nuclear units the way they have been doing for much of 2020, with little to no hands-on family or community support." And now we’re on month nine of no village. And it’s getting cold. And here come the holidays. Yes, this is as hard as you think it is. The village doesn’t just benefit the kids– it helps the parents keep going, too. So make your own village, even if you don’t feel like it. Whatever community you can create right now counts, whether it's on Zoom or on social media or on a group text or in your podcast listening, or by posting your #danishbaby photos to our Facebook group, never apologize for what that village looks like.  Here are links to the research and other writing on this topic that we discuss in this episode:  Jessica Grose for NYT: Parenting Was Never Meant to Be This Isolating https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/07/parenting/childcare-history-family.html Sarah Blaffer Hrdy for Natural History Magazine: Meet the Alloparents https://www.naturalhistorymag.com/htmlsite/0409/0409_feature.pdf Lynn Steger Strong for Time: Women Value Their Group Texts in Normal Times. During the Pandemic They've Become a Lifeline https://time.com/5894745/group-texts-women-coronavirus/ Stephanie Coontz for The New Republic: The Way We Never Were https://newrepublic.com/article/132001/way-never * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 02, 2020
Ask Amy- Can You Discipline a One-Year-Old?
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This week Lindsay asks: How do you discipline a 1-year-old? Specifically, with pulling my hair and dropping his food on the ground. I say “no" in a firm way and he laughs at me. Any advice you could provide would be much appreciated. Thanks for all you do- love your podcast! You can't discipline a 1-year-old. They don't get it. But you can redirect, and in this episode Amy explains how that can work. Toddlers drop food on the floor because they’re fascinated by cause and effect, and in repeating the few things they can control. It's a behavior kids will bore of sooner than you can correct it. But if the parental reaction is swift and predictable, it can actually encourage more food-throwing. The challenge is to make throwing food on the floor more boring than NOT doing it. Pulling hair is another brief but intense stage of toddler behavior, and the quickest way to discourage that might be by adding an incompatible behavior– something that can't happen at the same time as the hair-pulling. If you hand a toddler a toy he loves before picking him up, he can't pull your hair. If you untangle your hair, put him down, and otherwise blank-face it, that's another incompatible behavior. So is pulling your hair back until this stage passes. To come up with ideas for redirecting undesirable behaviors, consider the strategy Carolyn Dalgliesh suggests in her book THE SENSORY CHILD GETS ORGANIZED: "What can you add? What can you take away?" Think about what dial you can adjust on the situation to refocus your toddler's attention. It takes patience and a little outside-of-the-box thinking, but you'll find something that really works for you. Find Carolyn Dalgliesh's book, and all the books Amy and Margaret recommend, in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/shop/whatfreshhellcast * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 30, 2020
Super-Secret Amazing Things We Want You To Know About
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We asked all of you to tell us your super-secret awesome things: the life simplifiers that you think everyone else needs to know about. This episode has an incredible collection of indispensable condiments and doo-dads, portable boredom busters, and things that will keep any kid happily busy for a surprisingly long time. Head to our website for links to everything you hear about in this episode- you can find it all here: https://bit.ly/WFHep183 Most are affiliate Amazon links– but we encourage you to shop local if you're buying! * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 25, 2020
Ask Margaret - My Child is Terrified of the Doctor's Office
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This week our listener Raya asks, "How do I deal with a 4-year-old who is afraid to go to any doctor's office?" Doctors' offices are scary! There are shots, there's vulnerability, and there's an adult in charge who might be really intimidating to a little one. No kid is ever going to dance off to the pediatrician. The goal is to make your child's experience as manageable as possible– by communicating openly about why the visit is necessary, discussing what is going to happen during the visit, and placing a little emphasis on the reward (okay, you might call it a bribe) that your little one can look forward to for good behavior. Margaret quotes this article in this episode :"Fear of Doctors" (whattoexpect.com) Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! Email us: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 23, 2020
Fresh Take: Ali Wentworth on Pandemic Family Survival
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In our latest “Fresh Take” episode we’re talking to Ali Wentworth, host of the "Go Ask Ali" podcast. If you're raising teens during this pandemic, you definitely want Ali's funny, wise, and useful interviews with experts on your podcast playlist! Ali Wentworth is perhaps best known from her iconic roles in Jerry Maguire, Office Space, and Seinfeld. She’s the host of the Daily Shot on Yahoo!, has also written several books filled with wry self-help observations and tips, and regularly stops by Good Morning America to chat with hubby George Stephanopoulos. Ali and George have two teenage daughters. In this episode we discuss Ali's family's experience with Covid how to parent teenagers during a pandemic how to create "space" in your relationship when you're stuck together 24/7 just how much ice cream is allowed during lockdown Follow Ali on Instagram @therealaliwentworth and find the "Go Ask Ali" podcast here: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/go-ask-ali/id1523352034?at=11lo6V&ct=podnews_podcast * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 20, 2020
Parenting as a Team
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Parenting as a team is an ongoing challenge– even when your relationship with your co-parent is usually harmonious. But matching headspaces with your co-parent about a problem your family, or one of your children, is dealing with doesn't have to be the goal.  Parenting as a team can often mean taking turns, whether it's with the pancake-flipping, the hard talks with teenagers, or the 3 am worried Googling of ICD-10 diagnoses. In this episode we talk about what’s worked for us in moments of disagreement or struggle with our spouses, and how we found common ground. If getting through the pandemic means zooming in, just getting to the next lamppost, parenting as a team means zooming way out. If you know you're on the same page about the adults you want your children to become, it's a little easier to chill out about how they’ll get there.  In this episode, Amy and Margaret discuss their "Pre-Cana" experiences in the Catholic Church, and the usefulness of the Engaged Encounter program in particular. To find out more: engagedencounter.com Margaret also mentions the book WHAT CHILDREN LEARN FROM THEIR PARENTS' MARRIAGES, which you can find in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780060929305 * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 18, 2020
Ask Amy- My Toddler Is Waking Up Way Too Early
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This week's question is from Rachel in our Facebook group: Help! My 2-year-old used to sleep from 7 pm – 7 am. It was glorious. We recently had to start quarantining again due to exposure at my job. Since then, she has started waking up earlier and earlier. We pushed her bedtime back to 7:30 but it hasn't made a difference. This morning she was up at 5:30! I was thinking about one of the clocks with the light in her room but would she understand that yet? Kids' sleep patterns can change for a number of reasons. Rachel's probably on to something with the quarantine being a factor– that might have led to less sunshine, or exercise, or a loss of other guideposts in the day that made sense to her little one. But Rachel's goal isn't really to get her daughter to sleep later; it's to get her to roll over and close her eyes after that first early-morning stirring. Amy suggests several techniques to make that option more inviting, including these paper blackout shades that are super-easy to install and make bedrooms nice and dark. Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! Email us: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 16, 2020
Fresh Take: Calysta Watson on "Food Memories" and Dealing With Food Allergies
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In our latest “Fresh Take" episode we’re talking to Calysta Watson, creator of Epicurean Therapy. Calysta combines her love of cooking and her training as a LCSW and psychotherapist to create awareness of the connection between food and our mental and emotional health. As a mom raising a child with multiple anaphylactic food allergies, Calysta also talks about the challenge of enjoying creating meals and making great food memories with our kids, no matter the obstacles. In this episode we discuss what the obstacles are to us enjoying creating meals for our families how to avoid using food as a punishment or a reward how to create "food memories" our children will carry with them how to make food work for kids with specific food challenges (from rigid preferences to serious food allergies) Follow Calysta's Instagram at: on https://www.instagram.com/epicureantherapy * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 13, 2020
Actually, We've Changed Our Minds About That
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There are quite a few things we’ve changed our minds about over our years as parents. From minivans to Minecraft, moms on phones to kindergarten dress codes, focus meds to front-yard holiday inflatables, in this episode we discuss them all.  As always, here's our main takeaway: it's worth it to step away from the rushing stream of Other People's Opinions in order to do what's right for your family. Special thanks to our listener Jana for suggesting this episode. Join the conversation in our Facebook group about this topic, or whatever you'd like to talk about– 3500 no-judgment parents are waiting for you! * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast * questions and feedback: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 11, 2020
Ask Margaret - All I Hear is "Me First!"
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This week Margaret answers this listener question: "All I hear is "me first!" I have two boys, 4 1/2 and 2 years old, both constantly insisting on being first and having meltdowns when they aren't. Doesn’t matter what it is–first to be handed their applesauce pouch, first to be unbuckled from the car seats, first to get out the door, down the stairs... help!" Competitiveness is developmentally appropriate behavior for these kids' ages– it's reasonable behavior to expect at this age. Even so, there are ways to work against it. It's a good idea not to respond to demands to "be first," to talk with your kids about why this behavior is frustrating (when it's not happening), and to keep working on the concept of taking turns. In this episode, Margaret cites Karen Levine's article "Why Kids Are Competitive" for parents.com. Read it here: https://www.parents.com/kids/development/behavioral/why-kids-are-competitive/ Send us your parenting questions– we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com * Leave us a rating or review in your favorite podcast app! * Join us on Facebook: https://facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast * Instagram: https://instagram.com/whatfreshhellcast * YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/WhatFreshHellPodcast * Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/whatfreshhellcast * Twitter: https://twitter.com/WFHpodcast Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 09, 2020
When To Be 'That Mom'
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We asked all of you to tell us about the times you had to be "that mom." You responded with tales of IEP meetings, and airplanes full of tiny sacks of peanuts, and kindergarten bullies– all the times you went full mama-bear because advocating for your kid (or someone else's kid) was more important, in the moment, than being liked. In this episode we discuss: whether there's such a thing as "that dad" (what do YOU think?) how to pick your battles how to come prepared for combat but ready to listen how to bring solutions, and not just problems An unexpectedly touching side topic: many of you wrote in with memories of your own mom standing up for you. That's important to remember when you're being "that mom" and the biggest eye-rolls are coming from your own kid. They'll look back on that moment a lot differently. This was such a terrific discussion on our Facebook group- join us and check out the full thread: https://www.facebook.com/whatfreshhellcast/posts/3745278268817917 Here are links to two of our other episodes that we mention in this one, and where being "that mom" is definitely part of the picture: Bullies (Episode 103): https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2019/05/bullies-episode-103/ How Do We Handle This When Everyone Is Doing It Differently? (Episode 160): https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2020/06/ep160/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 04, 2020
Ask Amy - What's The Right Age To Get a Cell Phone?
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This week's question is from Britnee: How long should we wait to get our kids a cellphone? I have a 13 year old boy who begs for a cellphone because ALL kids have one. He has a tablet and a computer so it's not like he can't contact his friends or me if need be. But I'm just not comfortable with him having access to the world– or the world having access to him–24/7. Phones are lifelines to peers for adolescents– and more than ever during this pandemic. Kids usually get phones when their increasing independence means they need a way to contact you while they're apart from you. But even if you're spending every moment together these days, if your child is remote-schooling, social media is an important means of connection. Britnee also mentions that her son has access to a tablet and computer, so his access to the internet (and all its wondrous horrors) already exists. The phone adds a constant-access factor, to be sure, but there are ways to put controls around that, and Amy discusses a few in this episode. One of our favorite tools is Bark, which proactively monitors text messages, YouTube, emails, and 30+ different social networks for potential safety concerns, Use our referral code to try Bark for a week for free: https://www.bark.us/?ref=2R4XYRK. Still, getting your child a smartphone is an intensely personal family decision, and you have to take into consideration your own child's maturity level, mental health, peers, executive function and resilience. Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 02, 2020
Oh No, It's Fall! (With Guest Biz Ellis from One Bad Mother)
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Do you love crunchy leaves and chunky sweaters? Or do the shortening, darkening days fill you with nothing but pumpkin-spiced dread? Amy's hiding under her weighted blanket with her pandemic gloom. Margaret's doubling down on the backyard firepit and everything that's spooky. And our guest, Biz Ellis of One Bad Mother, is turning the entire outside of her home into a candy-covered Halloween wonderland. We talk about our various approaches to this year's Halloween and Thanksgiving plans- and how involving our kids in thinking creatively might just be what gets us through this very unusual fall. Get One Bad Mother's book- and all the books you hear about on our show- in our Bookshop store: https://bookshop.org/shop/whatfreshhellcast. Here are links to some of the things we discuss in this episode:  CDC's Halloween guidelines for 2020: "If screaming will likely occur, greater distancing is advised." Amy's Instagram Live conversation with Sarah Powers of The Mom Hour Sears Wish Book  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 28, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Can I Keep My Kid Safe While He's Gaming?
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This week Margaret answers the question: I know Margaret has talked about giving in to Fortnite at her house. Well I have too. My question is how do I discuss internet safety with my son (7) who wants to play online with his friends when I have no clue what playing online entails. I have never been a gamer and neither has my husband and I feel like we are flying blind. I don’t want to hold him back from socializing with friends, especially now, but I don’t want him to get into a bad situation either. Thank you guys! In this situation (especially at 7 years old) it's important to dial in and be involved in how your kid is playing. Make sure the gaming setup is in an area you (the parents) frequent. You don't need to know how to game to overhear inappropriate comments and keep an overall eye on how your gamer is behaving. Set strict expectations around your rules for gaming and outline the consequences if they are not followed, and have conversations around violence and language that your gamer may encounter. If you have questions for Margaret or Amy send them to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 26, 2020
Bonus Episode: Ask Us Anything!
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We told you to ask us anything.  You kept it PG (thank you) and we’re giving you the answers: What shows are we binging?  What gets us dancing in our kitchens?  What do our kids think of this show?  Listen and find out... ver3d5zqf4UsaO0gU0rz Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 23, 2020
Never Thought I'd Say This (Pandemic Edition)
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“Don’t you dare hug Grandma.” “Stop playing on the floor and get on screen.” “Yes, we can go to the playground, but you may not play with the other children.” We asked our listeners in our Facebook group to tell us all the things never thought we’d say– and now are. Not all of these things are bad. Amy has become a fan of dog walking, now that it's a guaranteed 15-minute respite from Zoom. Others, of course, are not so great. Life on the coronacoaster can be pretty surprising sometimes. (One correction: Amy makes a half-remembered Biblical reference to sparrows who neither toil nor spin. It's actually the lilies of the field.) Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 21, 2020
Ask Amy- My First-Grader is Giving Me Homework Grief
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This week's question is from Melissa, who says: Sweet mother of pearl, my five-year-old is in grade 1 and I’m already getting a LOAD of sass at homework time. Things I have tried and said to make it go more smoothly: 1. Telling him: “Everyone in your class is doing their homework right now too" 2. Sending him straight to bed after supper for yelling at me during homework... twice 3. Positivity and encouragement 4. Reasoning with him: “homework will be done as soon as you write out your words twice” 5. “Would you act like this with your teacher?” 6. Pure bribery- candy and/or tablet time. Help- I need some new ideas! Melissa doesn't say whether her son is attending school in person or remotely. Either way, the pandemic offers unique challenges that make the school day even more exhausting than usual, particularly for a first-grader who is only five. Amy offers some tips on making homework time less of a burden for kids and parents, including some great ideas offered by our listeners. There's also room for a whole lot of compassion here, especially right now. A five-year-old might just be too exhausted or overwhelmed to meet these expectations. Especially right now, our children's emotional health is more important than one more math worksheet. Amy also references our episode on homework, which you can find here: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2017/10/episode-27-the-homework-slog/ Send us your parenting questions- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 19, 2020
Fresh Take: Dr. Jill Stoddard Tells Us How To Manage Our Anxiety
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In our latest “Fresh Take” episode, we're talking to Dr. Jill Stoddard, author of BE MIGHTY: A Woman's Guide to Liberation from Anxiety, Worry & Stress Using Mindfulness and Acceptance. Jill's mission is to share cutting edge, evidence-based tools based on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy to help people find meaning and vitality in their lives even as they struggle with anxiety. We talk about why anxiety is a particular concern for women, especially right now– and how we an change our relationship to our anxiety and stress by becoming more flexible around it, rather than trying to shut it down. If you'd like to find out more about Jill's book and the tools of ACT, you can sign up for a 4-week Virtual Book Club about Be Mighty, including Live Q&A sessions with Jill, here: https://www.jillstoddard.com/pages/virtual-book-club. Jill Stoddard is a clinical psychologist and director of The Center for Stress and Anxiety Management. She is the author of two books: Be Mighty: A Woman’s Guide to Liberation from Anxiety, Worry, and Stress Using Mindfulness and Acceptance and The Big Book of ACT Metaphors: A Practitioner’s Guide to Experiential Exercises and Metaphors in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. Dr. Stoddard is an award-winning teacher, peer-reviewed ACT trainer, and co-host of the Psychologists Off the Clock podcast. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 16, 2020
Getting Better At Saying 'No'
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Saying no is a lot harder for women. We’re conditioned to be compliant; studies show that by middle school, girls shy away from expressing authentic preferences in order to fit in. And when we do say no, the world holds that against us more than it would a man. Perhaps that explains how we might find ourselves running the grade school bake sale *again,* and being resentful, when we could just have said no in the first place. In this episode we discuss the difference between a hard no and a soft no where to practice your no how to decide once what's a no why you should say you “don’t” want to do something, instead of that you “can’t” In order to let go of our people-pleasing tendencies, the best place to start might be by looking within. Are we really the only one who can keep her finger in the dam in this particular situation? If not, saying 'no' might be worth the discomfort; it makes more room in our lives for the things we want to be there. Here are links to the studies and other writing on this topic that we discuss in this episode: Jackie Ashton for Washington Post On Parenting: The art of saying no: How to raise kids to be polite, not pushovers Jessica Bennett for NYT: Welcome to the 'No' Club Brené Brown for oprah.com: 3 Ways To Set Boundaries Meghan Keane for NPR's Life Kit: How To Say No, For The People Pleaser Who Always Says Yes Sarah Mendekick for LA Times Op-Ed: Men can’t hear it, women don’t say it — the everyday importance of ‘no’ Katharine Ridgway O'Brien: "Just Saying "No": An Examination of Gender Differences in the Ability to Decline Requests in the Workplace." Samantha Radocchia for women2.com: LEARNING THE ART OF SAYING ‘NO’ Kristin Wong for NYT: Why You Should Learn to Say ‘No’ More Often ...and finally, the legendary E.B. White, who never had any problem saying no, reading Charlotte's Web Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 14, 2020
Ask Margaret - Is There a Nice Way to Say “I’m All Touched Out"?
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This week Margaret tackles the question: "I’ve been really wanting my own space lately. I have two preschoolers and I’m nursing a baby. Basically, I’m touched out. I feel terribly bad because yesterday when I got everyone down for a nap, my husband (who is working from home) asked if he could snuggle with me. I said sure, but then asked him to leave so that I could rest. He caught me red-handed scrolling on my phone a couple of minutes later, and I had to admit I just didn’t want to snuggle. I really hurt his feelings. What can I say? Feeling really guilty… but I just want my own space! Is there a nice way to handle it when you don’t want to be touched?" The problem here isn't the snuggles - it's the communication! It's 100% reasonable to feel all touched out but also understandable for your spouse to feel hurt when he is cuddle-rejected. Having a conversation around both of your expectations while working from your maximum point of generosity will solve this problem in no time. The Parents.com article Margaret references in this article can be found HERE. Send us your questions- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 12, 2020
Fresh Take: Jessica Lahey on "The Gift of Failure"
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In our latest “Fresh Take” episode, we've got an interview with Jessica Lahey, author of the bestseller THE GIFT OF FAILURE: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed. The Gift of Failure came out in 2016, when giving our kids healthy doses of autonomy and outdoor exploration felt a little more possible. But even during pandemic life, there are opportunities for us to be less protective as parents and to let our kids learn by failing. Jess tells us how to apply the book’s ideas to pandemic life, at-home learning, and living together 24/7. Jess also tells us a little about her next book, The Addiction Inoculation: Raising Healthy Kids in a Culture of Dependence, coming in April 2021. We can't wait! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 09, 2020
Why The Pandemic is So Hard On Moms
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After a listener on our Facebook page declared “This is a sexist pandemic!” we got to thinking: what are the quantifiable ways in which life has gotten even harder for moms in 2020 than it has for our spouses? We all know it HAS, but why? And how? A study from Syracuse University found that four out of five adults who have stopped their usual work schedule due to the pandemic are women.  Another study followed the possibility that, as the "invisible workload" became more visible to male spouses and children, it would spur more equal participation in household duties. That study's answer? No. They see it, they just don't care. The increased demands of this time have indeed fallen on women more. If it's taken a million small interactions to get to the place where everybody just assumes that if there's 40% more work to do, Mom is going to do it all, it's going to take small interactions to reset that expectation as well. In this episode, we talk about how to get started. Here are links to the research and other writing on the topic discussed in this episode: Elamin Abdelmahmoud for Buzzfeed: How The Pandemic Has Exacerbated The Gender Divide In Household Labor Claire Cain Miller for NYT: Nearly Half of Men Say They Do Most of the Home Schooling. 3 Percent of Women Agree. Jessica Grose for NYT: They Go To Mommy First Danielle Rhubart for Syracuse University: Gender Disparities in Caretaking during the COVID-19 Pandemic Thébaud, S., Kornrich, S., & Ruppanner, L. (2019). Great housekeeping, great expectations: Gender and housework norms Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 07, 2020
Ask Amy- How Can I Get My Kid To Take Her Medicine?
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Our listener Sabrina asks: My 4 year old daughter has a nasty ear infection. the medication she got is nasty and she wont take it. Attempting to force it ends with her spitting it out.  We tried hiding it in applesauce but she wouldn't eat it all and said it was yucky.  We've reasoned with her, bribed her, nothing works! Any ideas? Amy's top advice for getting kids to swallow meds is... teaching them to swallow pills. You can start earlier than you think, and it doesn't have to involve tears. Listen to this mini-episode for Amy's tips, including the "duck-shake technique," plus lots of other ideas from our listeners! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 05, 2020
How Mad Should I Be About This?
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You know how sometimes a loved one or friend will do something that annoys you, but then you think: is it me? How mad should I be?  Our listeners told us what past “crimes” they’re currently holding grudges about– infractions committed by their spouses, children, mothers-in-law, and even dogs. This week we are rating each of these grudges on a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is “you have no right to be angry at all,” and 10 is “no jury would convict you.”  Excluded from family photos because you’re “not really family”? Given a suspicious regift of corporate-branded popcorn for your anniversary? Told that you look tired, and should therefore exercise more? Oh, you get to be angry. And this episode is just for you.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 30, 2020
Ask Margaret - My Husband is a Bad Disciplinarian
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Margaret answers this week's listener question: "How do you handle it when one partner is not a good disciplinarian? My husband is a caring and involved parent, definitely not the type to do things badly so I'll just have to do everything. Problem is, he has a really difficult time keeping our five-year-old in line, which means that anything he's in charge of turns into a huge struggle that's frustrating for everyone involved. For example, he's in charge of bedtime. She does all kinds of things to avoid going to sleep, which is understandable, but he doesn't seem able to handle it and actually get her to sleep. I don't know what to do in situations like this. If I step in he won't figure out how to do it himself, but he also doesn't seem to be learning how to handle her!" The rule that governs this situation is "All conversations about parenting happen when no one is parenting." You should not correct your partner while he's is the middle of trying to get your child to sleep, but you can find a calmer moment to seek out solutions to make the bedtime routine less stressful for everyone. It's also important to "watch your story" here. Help your partner discover resources to make himself a better disciplinarian (rules such as 'only saying things once' and 'putting a time limit on bedtime interactions'). Then, forget the story of "he's not good at this," and open up the story of "he's capable of this, with a little guidance". Submit your parenting question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 28, 2020
Fresh Take: Meredith Masony of "That's Inappropriate"
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In our latest "Fresh Take" episode, we're doing an extended interview with Meredith Masony, author of the new book ASK ME WHAT’S FOR DINNER ONE MORE TIME: Inappropriate Thoughts on Motherhood. You probably already know Meredith as the comic genius behind That's Inappropriate, an online community of 3 million+ moms and strong-minded women who are not afraid to own the fact that when it comes to parenting, the struggle is real. We discuss the crisis in Meredith's life that inspired her to tell the truth about her life as a parent, her hilarious new book, and the Hot Mess Express that is every Tuesday morning. Grab Meredith's book here: https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9781982117962 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 25, 2020
Things We Can't Live Without (Fall 2020)
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By popular request, we're back with another list of the things that are getting us through the days right now. Some of these are for our kids (since a happily occupied kid equals a mom with one less problem). Some of these are just for us. Here are links to the some of the must-haves we discuss. If your podcast app doesn't support hyperlinks, you can also find this list at https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2020/09/ep174/. The Vow Uncover podcast Gorilla Gym Slack line Etsy shops like Speck Custom Woodwork Kids' subscription kits like KiwiCo Wall-hanging file folders Wireless earbuds that don't cost $100 Mini trampoline   Zero gravity chair  Pendleton blanket Weighted blanket  Pete’s A Pizza by William Steig Totally Rudy's DIY American Girl YouTube channel Selling Sunset (Margaret's current "secret shame show") AllTrails app Disclosure: some of the above links are affiliate links, and What Fresh Hell may receive commissions for purchases made through them. But these are all products we highly recommend! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 23, 2020
Ask Amy: My Tween Has Suddenly Stopped Speaking To Me
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This week's question is from Stacey in our Facebook group: My 12 year old daughter, seemingly out of the blue, won’t talk to me or look at me. I don’t mean talk like serious topics. I mean talk to me at all, about anything, unless I ask her a direct question.  We’ve always been close so I’m feeling very hurt. She acts fine with my husband.  Everything I read is how we aren’t supposed to take it personally, that it’s normal but I’m finding that impossible, especially when she’s joking around with her dad.  I keep reading I should just act like everything is fine but I really want to tell her she’s hurting my feelings. Should I? It's a tween or teen's job to differentiate from their parents, to get ready to leave the nest. And if your relationship with your child was formerly very close– as Stacey's was– this separation by your teen can be even more swift and sudden, as well as way harder on the suddenly rejected parent. Amy offers some tips on how Stacey might speak up for herself, some perspective on why this is happening, and some ways Stacey's spouse can help. Being the rejected parent can really sting. But your child's rejection means, above all, that you've done a good enough job of loving her to make her feel safe stepping away from you, even temporarily. In this episode, Amy refers to Janet Lansbury's writing on this topic. You can hear more about all of this in our podcast episode "When Kids Prefer The Other Parent Over You": https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2019/07/preferotherparent-ep115/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 21, 2020
The Back-To-School Hell (Pandemic Edition)
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We are always a little reluctant about transitioning back to school. This year that reluctance was more properly called dread (despite the truly heroic efforts of the teachers, administrators, and staff in our children's lives. THANK YOU.) We feel this way because we were supposed to be done by now, have this all figured out, have our kids skipping back to hug all their friends. But Back-to-school 2020 is not the finish line we thought it would be; instead, it’s a reminder that the finish line is very much not in sight.  But for us, a lot of our anxiety around this was actually anticipatory anxiety- the masks and the Zooms and School With More Rules seemed scarier in concept than it really has been in practice.  We may have fallen into "uncertainty distress," what Dr. Mark Freeston and his researchers at Cambridge call the "subjective negative emotions that one experiences in response to the as-yet unknown aspects of a given situation." In other words, what we are dreading as our kids begin school is not actually that they have to wear a mask during PE– it's what else might happen next that we don't even know about yet. It's possible to separate out uncertainty and threat in our minds. If we think what if school closes this winter? and feel our hearts start to race, we are reacting to the uncertainty, not to a direct threat. Worrying about each potential bad outcome before it happens will not make those things less likely to happen, but it may make us a little less nimble and ready to pivot if a threat does occur. Whatever happens, lean on your mom friends, and remember that, as developmental psychologist Stephanie Grant explains: "Our priority as parents this fall is to remain regulated for our kids, much more than to provide academic instruction.” Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: AL Inclusive Therapy on FB: https://www.facebook.com/ALinclusivetherapy/posts/369922694400517 Dr. Mark Freeston et al, Cambridge University Press: Towards a model of uncertainty distress in the context of Coronavirus (Covid-19) https://www.researchgate.net/publication/340653312_Towards_a_model_of_uncertainty_distress_in_the_context_of_Coronavirus_Covid-19 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 16, 2020
Ask Margaret -My Daughter Says She Thinks She Looks Fat
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Margaret answers this week's listener question: "My daughter (5 years old next month) has started saying “I look fat in this sweater” and “I don’t want to look funny” when getting dressed. My daughter is a healthy weight and she is VERY active. I am unsure of how to manage/navigate these comments. I really don’t want her to have body image issues or to be dealing with this at such a young age. I have been very conscious since her birth not to comment on her appearance, and instead to reinforce the things her body does, saying things like “your legs are so strong to bike up the hill” or “your body needs to rest now because it worked so hard today." I rarely say “you look so pretty"; instead I say “that’s a great outfit you picked”. I didn’t think I would have to deal with this so soon. Help!" Almost all of us have struggled with eating and body issues at some point in our lives and it is important for us as parents to reframe the way we talk about food and our bodies and to model body acceptance (put on that swimsuit and get in the picture mama!) It's also important to answer questions asked. Don't shy away from responding to kids who ask if they look fat– talk honestly about how bodies come in all different shapes and sizes, and why and how our bodies change. In this episode, Margaret this article from A Mighty Girl. Submit your parenting question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 14, 2020
Fresh Take: Tina Payne Bryson on "The Bottom Line For Baby"
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This is the first of our new "Fresh Take" episodes, in which we'll offer longer interviews with some fascinating parenting experts. (And some super-hilarious people as well.) We loved this chat with Tina Payne Bryson, author of the new book THE BOTTOM LINE FOR BABY: From Sleep Training to Screens, Thumb Suck to Tummy Time—What the Science Says. This book is an A-Z guide for common childcare controversies and questions—and the science (or lack thereof) behind them. Should you swaddle? Is circumcision necessary? Is breast really best? We discuss it all in this episode, but here's what Bryson says is the REAL bottom line: “Ultimately, knowledge is power. Inform yourself. Then trust yourself. After all, you know your child better than anyone.” Dr. Tina Payne Bryson,is the Founder and Executive Director of The Center for Connection, a multidisciplinary clinical practice. She is the co-author of two New York Times best sellers, The Whole-Brain Child and No-Drama Discipline, as well as The Yes Brain and The Power of Showing Up. Dr. Bryson keynotes conferences and conducts workshops for parents, educators, and clinicians all over the world. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and three children. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 11, 2020
The Constant Negativity Is Getting Old
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Negativity is a biological imperative–we're wired to pay more attention to the bad things around us in order for us to survive. Still, some among us are a little more Debbie-Downer than others. And the problem is, that negativity is contagious. After six months at home with a whining preschooler and an eye-rolling tween, the negativity is getting old. Real old. Our listener Keri posed this question: "How do y’all deal with the constant negativity of having little kids? I just finished dealing with my 5-year-old’s whining and attitude (“I’m getting tired of you, mommy!” Feeling’s mutual, kid!) and now the toddler is whining and crying. It feels like they take turns and there’s very little time when one or the other isn’t bringing the negativity. As someone who doesn’t do well in a negative atmosphere, it really gets to me." In this episode, we discuss strategies both for stopping negativity in its tracks and for resisting its pull. There's lots to be down about right now. But if there's going to be a reset in our homes, it's probably going to have to start with us. Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Dr. Daniel Amen for Additude: Why We Crave the Drama That Sabotages Relationships Catherine Moore for Positive Psychology: What Is The Negativity Bias and How Can it be Overcome? Kevin J. Roberts: Negativity Dr. Stuart Shanker for The MEHRIT Centre: “Reframing” Challenging Behaviour, Part 1: Blue Brain, Red Brain, and Brown Brain Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 09, 2020
Ask Margaret - My Two-Year-Old's Tantrums Are Breaking Me!
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Margaret answers this week's listener question: "I’m struggling so much with my 2 1/2 year old's behavior. She can be really sweet and fun, but her tantrums and clinginess have become really hard for me to deal with mentally. It feels like everything is an argument, everything I say is “NO!” I’ve tried ignoring her tantrums and she just continues to scream for upwards of 30 minutes and follows me around throwing herself at the ground. I’ve tried empathizing with her and comforting her through tantrums and she continues to scream. I make sure she is fed regularly, naps, has a consistent bedtime. I have ended up in tears multiple times this week just because I’m so emotionally drained dealing with her all day. Am I doing something wrong? I’m having such a hard time being a stay-at-home mom when others seem to have it more together than me. Please tell me this gets better, I’m really struggling." Tantrums are to be expected in toddlers, but frequent tantrums that are leaving both mom and toddler in tears? Not so much. A great technique is to verbalize what your toddler is upset about while otherwise remaining neutral. With this technique, consistency is key - making sure that you don't get into a dance with your toddler - and that tantrums shut down the "mommy machine". In this episode, Margaret mentions Dr. Harvey Karp's book The Happiest Toddler on the Block. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 07, 2020
We Did Not Sign Up For Being With Our Spouses 24/7 (with guest Damona Hoffman)
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Uh, we did not sign up for this. Did we? Yes, in sickness and in health, yada yada yada, but nowhere in our long-term commitment plans with our spouses was there any indication that we would spend months on end working from home and together 24/7. Studies prove that absence really does make the heart grow fonder. The time apart makes us biologically motivated to mend that separation. Plus, a partner who's been traveling for a week might come back with some interesting stories. When you're already sharing every moment of every day, the sparkle in your relationship might be a little harder to come by. Remember when we had to plan date nights? The best tip we've heard for getting through these times may be to flip that on its head: put a YOYO dinner on the calendar. You're On Your Own. Frozen lasagna or cereal or nothing. Doesn't that sound heavenly? It's okay to schedule a little separation right now, whenever and wherever that can happen. We talk other quarantine love lessons with our guest Damona Hoffman, host of the podcast Dates and Mates. Damona suggests getting through this time by structuring self-care– the kind that helps us bring our best selves to these challenging times, more than the kind that's the chardonnay that makes us cranky and tired by 8:15. (Hmm, maybe she's on to something.) Start listening here: https://damonahoffman.com/dates-mates-podcast/ Here are links to other research and writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Jessica Grose for NYT: Missing the Partner You See 24/7 MIT Technology Review: Data Mining Reveals First Evidence That Absence Really Does Make the Heart Grow Fonder Jennifer A Theiss, Ph.D for Psychology Today: Factors That Prompt Turbulence in Romantic Relationships Heidi Stevens for Chicago Tribune: Dealing with conflicts and teen angst Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 02, 2020
Ask Amy- I Feel Guilty Not Playing With My Only Child Right Now
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Amy answers this week's question: "I’m the mom of a three-year-old only child and I HATE playing pretend. I understand that our parents didn’t play pretend with us. I understand that under normal circumstances it isn’t necessary for parents to play pretend with their kids. But I'm raising an only-child in the midst of a pandemic where there aren’t any other social outlets besides myself and It makes me feel like I’ve entered into a bad improv class that I can’t escape. HELP!" Under normal circumstances, parents can (and should) push back on the expectation that they be their children's constant playmates. But right now, things are different. Here are some strategies on how to make the playtime you spend with your child more enjoyable, as well as some ways to make the times you have to say 'no' easier for your child. In this episode, Amy.mentions Dr. Lawrence Cohen's book Playful Parenting  as well as our episode "Do We Really Have To Play With Our Kids? When Parenting Feels Relentless" https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2019/05/do-we-really-have-to-play-with-our-kids-when-parenting-feels-relentless-episode-105/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 31, 2020
Okay, We Might Have Overthought That One
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All mothers overthink sometimes. But isn’t that our job description? To look at our baby and whatever she’s holding and think: how is she going to injure, burn, ruin or cause disaster to herself by interacting with that object? There’s an industrial complex set up around motherhood that makes its money when we feel off-balance and insecure. If we “want what’s best” for our baby, then shouldn’t we make sure that everything around him is superlative?  Then the rest of society mocks us relentlessly for the very helicoptering and overthinking that all those stories about murder hornets caused us to undergo in the first place.  But okay, yes: from redshirting to breastfeeding to left-handed scissors, here are are a few of the parenting topics that, looking back, we and our listeners just MIGHT have overthought.  Amy’s book When Did I Get Like This? is on this exact topic. Have you read it yet? Grab it here:  https://bookshop.org/a/12099/9780061963964 Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 26, 2020
Ask Amy- Why Does My Kid Always Want To Pretend He's the Bad Guy?
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This week Amy answers a question from Danielle on FB:  Does anyone else have a kid that always wants to play the “mean” guy? My almost 3 year old son always wants to play the villain, and hardly ever the hero or “nice guy”. Is this normal? Or am I raising a future bad boy? Yes, this is very normal. Psychologists call these preschool preoccupations “extremely intense interests,” and studies have proven they are much more common among boys than girls. We talk about little boys and their obsessions in this episode, if you'd like to hear more: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2018/10/dinosaurs-and-trains-and-superheroes-and-nerf-guns-boy-obsessions-episode-77/ The obsession with Jafar and Captain Hook won't last forever. In the meantime, Amy has ideas on how to frame it for your little one! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 24, 2020
Ditching What Doesn't Matter (With Guest "The Lazy Genius")
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Momming is hard. Whether we’re stressed perfectionists or hot messes, our homes and relationships get happier when we do what matters, skip what doesn’t– and clarify what goes in what pile for each of us. Our guest, Kendra Adachi, is better known as "The Lazy Genius." Her new book is THE LAZY GENIUS WAY: Embrace What Matters, Ditch What Doesn't, And Get Stuff Done. Kendra says we don't need a new productivity plan; what we need are new ways to see. In other words: stop feeling bad that you're not adhering to All The Systems. Make a just-good-enough system that works for exactly you. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 19, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Can I Get My Kid to Be Interested in More Activities?
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This week Margaret advises a listener who is worried that her 8-year-old does not seem to have a wide enough range of interests. Is there anything she can do to help him expand his interests beyond screens, half-hearted participation in Scouts and basically chilling out most of the day? Check out this episode and see if you agree with Margaret's advice. Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 17, 2020
Our Family Had Covid! Here's How It Went For Us (Bonus Episode)
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In our back-to-school episode Amy dropped some news: her immediate family had Covid-19 back in March. Thankfully, Amy's family had "mild" or "moderate" cases of coronavirus. (Those terms officially include any course of illness that does not include inpatient hospitalization.) But even in a single household, their experiences ranged from asymptomatic, to 36 hours of fever, to three weeks in bed, to months and months of continuous long-term Covid-related illness. Because listeners expressed interest in hearing more from a fellow parent who's actually gone through Covid-19, in this episode Margaret interviews Amy on how their symptoms progressed what their recovery has looked like and what she thinks you should have ready at home before you need it Here's what we want you to know: it's worth it to have your kids wearing masks and taking other precautions. Their risk of serious illness is lower; it's not non-existent. As always, if you have concerns, discuss them with a medical professional! To find out more about "long Covid," search "long haul Covid," #longhaulers, or go to longcovid.org. Ed Yong wrote a great overview for The Atlantic: Covid-19 Can Last For Several Months- https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2020/06/covid-19-coronavirus-longterm-symptoms-months/612679/ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 14, 2020
Should I Send My Kids Back To School?
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Our kids’ schools have sent plans. And revised plans. And codicils to the plans. Now it’s time to make our own decisions: if the choice is available to us, are our kids going back to classrooms this fall? Here are the factors that are driving our own decisions– knowing that the ‘right’ answer is fundamentally non-existent, and that this calculus is by definition personal. As Adrianne La France writes for The Atlantic: "All along, this disaster has been simultaneously wholly shared and wholly individualized, a weird dissonance in a collective tragedy that each person, each family, has to navigate with intricate specificity to their circumstances." Amy drops some big news in this episode: her family has had coronavirus. We'll be following up with a bonus episode specifically about that later this week. Here are links to some other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: New York Times: What Back to School Might Look Like in the Age of Covid-19 Ann V. Klotz: This Is The Song That Never Ends Claire Cain Miller for the NYT: Nearly Half of Men Say They Do Most of the Home Schooling. 3 Percent of Women Agree. Adrianne La France for The Atlantic: ‘This Push to Open Schools Is Guaranteed to Fail’ WGBH: Harvard Epidemiologist: 'Hybrid' Model For Reopening Schools Is 'Probably Among The Worst' Options Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 12, 2020
Ask Amy - My Kid Is a Know-It-All!
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Amy takes a question from a listener who wants to encourage her know-it-all daughter to speak up while discouraging her constantly correcting everyone in the family. Is there a way to support her daughter's knowledge and self-confidence, while correcting her annoying habit of having absolutely all the answers? Check out our other episodes on the topic: Asking for What We Want and Encouraging Our Daughters' to Do the Same: bit.ly/WFHWhatWeWant Teaching Our Kids Empathy: http://bit.ly/TeachingKidsEmpathy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 10, 2020
Asking For What We Want, And Teaching Our Daughters To Do The Same (with guest Marisa Porges)
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From board rooms to town halls to IEP meetings to doctor's offices, there are places where women speaking up for what they want or need are either ignored, resented, or just not taken seriously. (Anyone who's ever had been told by a contractor to "put her husband on the phone, and I'll explain it to him" can tell you that.) That's why our girls need to be trained in the arts of asking and negotiating– not only because those are things we don’t teach our daughters as well as we teach our sons, but also because the world often doesn’t reward women who speak up. We discuss how to value our daughters' voices– and teach them to do the same– with Marisa Porges, author of the new book WHAT GIRLS NEED: How to Raise Bold, Courageous, and Resilient Women. Here are links to other writing on the subject that we discuss in this episode: Women Don't Ask: Negotiation and the Gender Divide by Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever  Deborah A. Small et al: Who Goes to the Bargaining Table? The Influence of Gender and Framing on the Initiation of Negotiation Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 05, 2020
Ask Margaret - Is There Any Way to Get My Kid to Stop Throwing Stuff?
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Margaret answers a question from a mom who is pretty freaked out by her 20-month-old's habit of throwing stuff when he's angry. If you have a question you'd like Margaret or Amy to answer submit to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 03, 2020
Advice We Totally Hate
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As soon as you become a mother unsolicited advice-givers are everywhere, telling you to “sleep when the baby sleeps.” Or “it gets easier.” Or “enjoy every moment.” Out of all the advice (parenting and otherwise) that we and our listeners have ever received, here is a selection of the very worst. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 29, 2020
Ask Amy - How Can a New Mom Make Friends Right Now?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers one listener's most pressing question. This week Amy answers the question, "How can an introvert make new friends especially during the complicated social limitations of coronavirus?" Check out our Finding Your Mom Tribe episode: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2019/06/finding-your-mom-tribe-episode-110/ Here's the link to the Catherine Price's Screen/Life Balance site Amy mentions in this episode.  http://screenlifebalance.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 27, 2020
Two Kinds of People- Which Are You?
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We asked our listeners to divide the world into two kinds of people, and to stake out their claims on one side. Sleep cuddler or stop-breathing-on-me? Book finisher or life-is-too-short-er? Shoes on or off in the house? Many of you gave slightly judgmental “there’s me, and the crazy people” types of responses. Others gave "there's the right way to do it, and the way my spouse does it" sorts of answers. All of which, in this episode, we are totally here for. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 22, 2020
Ask Margaret - When Does This Get Easier?
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Margaret answers a question from the What Fresh Hell Podcast Group from a listener who asks when (if ever) life with her 2 and 1-year-olds is ever going to get easier. Submit your question– we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 20, 2020
Hitting the Wall: Get Us Off This Coronacoaster!
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Even the cheeriest and sunniest of parents are hitting the wall. We're over it. This stinks. Even the most ‘We’ll make a fun obstacle course in the yard!’ moms are suddenly thinking ‘No. NO. I don't want to do this anymore.’” Somehow we've traveled past denial, to bargaining, then circled back to anger, without seeing so much of the acceptance part. That’s life on the coronacoaster. We think this is particularly hard for parents, because we have to hold together some semblance of certainty for our kids that everything's going to be fine amidst our own complete uncertainty. Saying "you don't have to be scared" even when we feel scared. Taking on the anxiety and frustration and boredom and irritation of our littles when we haven’t worked out our own. We don’t have a ton of solutions this week, but we review some rules for zen living and figure out how we might do those a bit more. In the meantime, knowing we’re not alone in feeling this way definitely helps.  Here are links to the things we discuss in this episode: Dylan Buckley for BetterHelp: Understanding The Stages Of Grief Deb Perelman for NYT: In the Covid-19 Economy, You Can Have a Kid or a Job. You Can’t Have Both. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 15, 2020
Ask Amy - My Kid's Friend Is Now Bullying Him. Should I Get Involved?
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This week Amy answers the question, "At what point, if ever, do I attempt to help my 8-year-old with a conflict he is having with another boy in our neighborhood?  Each week Margaret or Amy answers a listener's most pressing parenting question. Send us your question- we might answer yours next! Email us: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 13, 2020
Bad Mom Moments (with guest Arianna Bradford)
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Fess up: everyone's got a Bad Mom Moment. Or twelve. We tend to hold these things really close, our shame rooted in deep certainty that no other mother has ever temporarily forgotten their baby in the toy aisle at Target. Guess what? You're not alone. Here are some of our listeners' Bad Mom Moments– and more than a few of our own. Our guest this week is Arianna Bradford, the brains behind The NYAM (Not Your Average Mom) Project, a website dedicated to helping parents -- moms especially -- celebrate the person they are outside of their role as a parent. Her new book, SHAME ON YOU: BIG TRUTHS FROM A BAD MOM, is a hilarious collection of parenting essays that focus as much on a mother's mental health as they do on kids, and how very, very strange they are. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 08, 2020
Ask Margaret - I'm So Worried About Being Away From my Kid
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Every week Margaret or Amy answers one listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers the question, "I know it's silly but I'm really worried about being away from my child for three nights. How I can deal with this?" Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 06, 2020
What This Has Taught Us About Our Kids
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This extended pause has been really hard for some of our kids, and actually sort of good for others. For every lonely preschooler who just wants to finally have someone to play “bad guys” with, there’s a formerly rambunctious middle-schooler who became a real scholar without all the distractions of the in-person classroom.  And the happiest kids have sometimes surprised us. The family Eeyore is sunnily certain things will be back to normal soon, while the happy-go-lucky one is taking more naps. We've learned (again) that our kids are more complicated than we imagined. In this episode, we discuss the things we’ve learned about our kids and will take forward as parents, both for the kids who have weirdly thrived and for those who have struggled.  Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Aaron E. Carroll for the NYT: The Coronavirus Has Made It Obvious. Teenagers Should Start School Later. Nora Fleming for Edutopia: Why Are Some Kids Thriving During Remote Learning? Randy Kulman, Ph.D. for Psychology Today: Will Distance Learning Produce a Coronavirus Virus Slump? Debbie Meyer for Education Post: It Was Hard Being a Dyslexia Mom Before Coronavirus, And Now It's Even Harder Debbie Meyer for Education Post: Here’s How Remote Learning Could Help Struggling Readers Caroline Preston for The Hechinger Report: ‘A drastic experiment in progress’: How will coronavirus change our kids? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 01, 2020
Ask Amy - How Do I Get My 8-Year-Old to Read a Real Book?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers on listener's most pressing question. This week a listener asks: "Any thoughts on how to get my 8 year old son to listen to/ ead anything outside his go-to genre?" Amy suggests the "You Wouldn't Want To Be" series as particularly appealing AND educational for grade-schoolers... you can find those books here: https://www.youwouldntwantto.be/ Submit your parenting question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 29, 2020
Helping Kids Feel Secure In a Scary World (With Guest Dr. Abigail Gewirtz)
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No joke: this is a particularly anxiety-provoking time. And even if our kids are little, and we manage to keep the TV off most of the time, they're still picking up on a certain hum in the house, a new and different frequency.  But our job as parents is not to make it feel like like the pandemic, the social unrest, the climate change, and the coarsened social discourse of this moment isn't happening. Our job is to talk with our children about these times in age-appropriate ways. Here's the good news: we're not supposed to present our kids with the solutions to all the things that might scare them. We're supposed to meet them where they are, help them discuss their feelings, and then ask them what feels like the right thing to do next. Our guest this week is Dr. Abigail Gewirtz, a professor at the University of Minnesota. She’s an award-winning child psychologist and leading expert on families under stress,  Her new book is WHEN THE WORLD FEELS LIKE A SCARY PLACE: Essential Conversations for Anxious Parents and Worried Kids. There couldn't be a better book for right now! It offers parents a clear and practical guide to discussing sensitive topics in a calm, reassuring, and productive way, that will help kids comprehend and process the world around them.  We also mentioned The Week Jr. as a great resource for your 8-14 year old child to receive clear and non-terrifying information about these newsworthy times. If you have a kid who is asking questions, it's a relief to be able to offer them accurate information that won't be more than they can handle.The latest issue is available for free download here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1aqNTPKKk7fs6iNMX2zvCuDRiPJzxHbyC/view Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 24, 2020
Ask Margaret - My Husband is a Terrible Gift Giver!
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Each week Margaret or Amy answers one listener's most pressing question. Today Margaret answers the question, "What can I do about my husband who gives terrible gifts?" Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 22, 2020
How Do We Handle This When Everyone Is Doing It Differently?
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Shutting it all down was definitely hard, but the parameters of the assignment were clear. Reopening is more like: do what you want when we think you can, or at least aren't fully convinced that you can’t. Most of us are probably going to need to leave our houses before vaccines are available at your neighborhood Walgreens. But how do we do that safely when kids touch seriously everything? When masks are optional? When all we are learning about this virus is how little we know?  We live in a world where we are entitled to make our own decisions, for ourselves and for our families. But other people's decisions affect us, including some people we are closely related to. How do we understand and mitigate the actual risks? How are we going to do this when everyone’s doing it differently? Here are links to writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Carolyn Hax: Balancing snowbird migration and virus mitigation German Lopez and Amanda Northrop for Vox: How to weigh the risk of going out in the coronavirus pandemic, in one chart Emily Oster: Grandparents & Day Care Roni Caryn Rabin for NYT: How to Navigate Your Community Reopening? Remember the Four C’s Leana S. Wen for Washington Post: Four concepts to assess your personal risk as the U.S. reopens Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 17, 2020
Ask Amy - My Toddler Doesn't Listen When I Say "Stop!"
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Each week Margaret or Amy answers a listener's parenting question. This week Amy answers the question, "How do I get my incredibly active 2 1/2 year old to stop when I tell her to?" Submit your parenting question– we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 15, 2020
Talking With Our Kids About Race (with guest Deborah Porter)
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The idea that our kids are colorblind, and that we therefore should put off talking to our kids about race because they’re too young to understand its complicating factors, is wrong. And mothers of color could have told us that a long time ago. As parents, we should be talking about race with our kids early and often. Dr. Erin Winkler’s work shows that when parents are silent about race with our kids, or use "colorblind" rhetoric, we may actually reinforce racial prejudice. Yes, exploring race and racism and its many implications makes many of us uncomfortable. But it may be a lot easier than we're making it, as this week's guest, Deborah Porter, explains:  “You have to be able to tell the truth in an age-appropriate way. To not discuss race is not being truthful. We can be truthful with our children about what race looks like in an age-appropriate way, where for them, it's just the thing that we're talking about today." We've created a Google doc with lists and articles and videos and social media accounts that can help us all in our work of raising anti-racist kids. You can find the list at bit.ly/raisingantiracistkids. If you see other resources you'd like us to add, tag us or send us an email: info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Here are links to writing and research on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Mellody Hobson’s TED Talk: Color Blind, or Color Brave?  Dr. Erin Winkler: Children Are Not Colorblind: How Young Children Learn Race Sierra Filucci for Common Sense Media: How White Parents Can Use Media to Raise Anti-Racist Kids prettygooddesign.org: Your Kids Aren't Too Young to Talk About Race: Resource Roundup "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack" by Peggy McIntosh Margaret Hagerman for Time: Why White Parents Need to Do More Than Talk to Their Kids About Racism Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 10, 2020
Ask Margaret - Dealing With My Kids' Coping Mechanisms
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Each week Margaret or Amy answers one listener's most pressing question. Today Margaret answers the question, "What should I do about my kids' troublesome coping mechanisms during the coronavirus outbreak?" Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 08, 2020
Uh-Oh, Here Comes Summer (with guests Ashley and Keri from the Momtourage Podcast)
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Here comes the summer of nothing! For older kids, camps and sports leagues and internships and jobs are canceled. For little kids, even "Camp Grandma" isn't a sure thing this year. We usually look forward to summer as a lazy-living, sleep in and lie around break from our usual hectic lives. But our kids have already *had* three months of lying around doing nothing, and the thought of three more months of cranky pajama time is not reassuring. How are we going to make July different from March this year? Our guests this week are Ashley Hearon-Smith and Keri Setaro from the Momtourage podcast. We talk with Ashley and Keri about the "special hard" of each age group when you're looking at a summer calendar with basically nothing on it. No matter how old your kids are, we think the answer is pretty much the same: give your kids the gift of free play, also known as the Land On The Other Side of Boredom. Here are links to writing on this topic that we discuss in this episode: Melissa Bernstein for Thrive Global: How Screen Time is Edging Out Play Time – and Why It Matters Esther Entin for The Atlantic: All Work and No Play: Why Your Kids Are More Anxious, Depressed Peter Gray: Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life  Michael E. Ruane for Washington Post: The coronavirus wrecked spring. Will it claim summer, too? Sydney Trent for Washington Post: Summer jobs for teens are scarce, but a little boredom has its benefits Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 03, 2020
Ask Amy - My Toddler is Mean to Her Older Sibling
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers one listener's most pressing question. Today Amy answers the question, "What can I do about my toddler who is giving a hard time to my older child?" Submit your question to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 01, 2020
This One Thing Is Actually Going Well
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What’s the one thing that’s actually working right now?  Not grading on a curve, not a barely acceptable Band-Aid for these crazy times, but something you have found during these last months that you actually love and will totally keep doing?  Our listeners told us all the things, from walking the dog to Grateful Dad cover shows, that they’re doing by themselves, with a socially distanced friend, or with a loved one at home, that are really enjoyable right now.  The light-bulb moments for us in this episode were in order to have fun socially-distanced friend time, you need to have a shared secondary activity. Even if it’s a beer pong app.  in order to have renewing personal time, you need to have a fully engrossing, sensory-filling activity. Even if it’s mowing the lawn.  keep it bite-sized. We don’t have to talk to our friends for half an hour, or not at all.  What all these discoveries have in common is that it took what our listener Mollie calls “the leisure to dwell on little things” in order to find them. We love that. For that one thing, we are pretty grateful. Here are links to a few things mentioned in this episode: Nowhere Comedy Club Grateful Dead “Dead and Company” tribute shows TableTopics "Family Gathering" topic cards Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 27, 2020
Ask Margaret - The Bedtime Routine is Out of Hand!
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers one listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers the question, "What Do I Do With a Four Year Old Who is Making Bedtime Last Forever?" Send your questions to questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 25, 2020
New to What Fresh Hell? Start Here...
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Welcome to What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood! We're Margaret and Amy, both moms of three kids, both comedians, both married to guys named David... and that's where our similarities end. In each episode of this podcast we discuss a parenting topic from our usually completely opposite perspectives.  We duke it out, discuss the expert advice that may or may not back us up, and then we come up with concrete solutions- while making each other laugh, cause that's always the best solution. We're happy you're here! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 23, 2020
The Great Regression: Why We're All Acting Like Babies Right Now
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Potty training back-sliding? Pacifiers showing up at breakfast? Preschoolers in your bed? Tweens suddenly engaging in baby talk? Welcome to The Great Regression. It's no surprise that regressive behavior shows up in times of stress. Sometimes it's not as easy to spot, but whether it's more clingy behavior or more temper tantrums, regression is our kids' way of communicating that they are feeling insecure. As child development specialist Claire Lerner explains, "When kids feel out of control on the inside, they lose control on the outside." In this episode, we discuss how regressive behavior can manifest, including for grownups when we should let it be what works to address it, and what definitely doesn't Does it matter if your kid is still sucking her thumb in first grade because she was involved in a global pandemic? It does not. But addressing the underlying need for reassurance is the best way forward, for your kid and for you. Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Caroline Bologna for HuffPost: 10 Mental Health Signs To Watch Out For In Kids In The Age Of COVID-19 Claire Lerner for Psychology Today: Regression in the Time of Coronavirus Hermioni N. Lokko, MD, MPP and Theodore A. Stern, MD: Regression: Diagnosis, Evaluation, and Management Heather Marcoux for Motherly: Why your big kid wants to be a 'baby' right now Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 20, 2020
Ask Amy - How Can I Get Over My Disappointment at Not Having a Girl?
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Each week Margaret or Amy answers one listener's most pressing question. Today Amy answers the question "How can I get over my disappointment at not having a girl?" Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 18, 2020
Getting Literally Anything Done (with guests Laura Vanderkam and Sarah Hart-Unger)
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We're now on YouTube! Subscribe and catch our video shorts here: http://bit.ly/WFHyoutube After eight weeks in this new normal, our to-do lists have started to get a little lengthy. These days, we're all full-time stay-at-home AND work-at-home moms, and while the larger world seemed willing to let things slide for a while, we're feeling a lot more pressure to actually get stuff done. How do we get to what's most important in the extremely limited bursts of kid-free productivity we might have? Our guests are Laura Vanderkam and Sarah Hart-Unger, co-hosts of the Best of Both Worlds podcast, on how to get more out of life at work and at home. We're featured on their podcast this week too- you can find that episode, on how to find humor in parenting right now, here! Here are links to research and ideas discussed in this episode: the concept of extinction bursts Strangers Drowning: Impossible Idealism, Drastic Choices, and the Urge to Help by Larissa MacFarquhar Alice Boyce for Harvard Business Review: How Working Parents Can Let Go of Perfectionism Michaeleen Doucleff for NYT Parenting: Turn Your Demanding Child Into a Productive Co-Worker Jennifer Wallace for Washington Post's On Parenting: Life in lockdown is testing parents’ bandwidth, but there are ways to protect your mental energy Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 13, 2020
Ask Margaret - Should I Sleep-Train During the Pandemic?
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Every week Margaret or Amy answers one listener's most pressing question. Today Margaret tackles the question, "Should I sleep-train my baby while we're all stuck at home?" Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 11, 2020
We'll Call It a Win! Microscopic Mom Victories
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We asked all of you to tell us your “mom wins” since quarantine life started- the smaller, the better. We're all taking success wherever we can find it these days. Whether it’s synchronized napping, picky eaters trying meatballs, or a 5-year-old who finally slept past 7 a.m., we salute all these successes, no matter how miniscule. Thanks to all of you for making our own mothering journeys so full of community and laughter. Happy Mother’s Day! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 06, 2020
Ask Amy - How Can I Help My Child Who is Having Nightmares?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener's most pressing question. This week Amy answers the question, "How can I help my three-and-a-half year old daughter who is having nightmares?" Submit your question to quesitons@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 04, 2020
Maintaining Momentum (Or Not)
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Six weeks in, and most of us are having a lot of trouble with what one of our listeners called this "very strange limbo." That listener asked in our Facebook group what she might do to make herself get off the couch, stop looking at her phone, maintain momentum. Because that is the usual goal: we all know that once we stop running and rest, we won't be able to run as far when we try again. A body at rest tends to stay at rest. But here's the thing: when you run a marathon, and mile 19 gets really hard, you know what mile you're in. You know how much farther you have to go. And the people on the sidelines aren't small children yelling at you. Do the usual ideas we have about productivity and energy and momentum even apply in this moment? And if not, what are the new strategies we can put in place to help us make it to the next lamppost? Here are links to research and other things we discuss in this episode: our own Episode 142: Letting People Into Our Mess Brené Brown's podcast Unlocking Us The Lancet: The psychological impact of quarantine and how to reduce it: rapid review of the evidence Paul Ollinger for Forge: Your Only Goal Is To Arrive Judson Brewer for Harvard Business Review: Anxiety Is Contagious. Here’s How to Contain It. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 29, 2020
Ask Margaret - I'm Burnt Out on Trying to Get My Kids to FaceTime with Relatives
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers one listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret tackles the question, "What Can I Do About Relatives Who Constantly Want to FaceTime with My Kids?" Send your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 27, 2020
What Kind of Monster? Quarantine Edition!
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Back by popular demand: an all-new Quarantine Edition of What Kind of Monster? What kind of monster decides to go keto during a pandemic? Trades away toilet paper for sourdough starter? Finishes Mom’s chocolate stash, her razor-thin tether to sanity? Slices an avocado horizontally? Our listeners weigh in with the straws that will break their quarantine backs. It goes without saying that during these unprecedented times, we must greet other humans- particularly those with whom we share close quarters- with our maximum generosity. But THEN... come and vent about #WKOM is ruining your quarantine in our Facebook group! https://www.facebook.com/groups/whatfreshhellcast And if you'd like to download Margaret's quarantunes playlist, it's here: https://music.apple.com/us/playlist/covid-19/pl.u-78dpTpN1MZ Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 22, 2020
Ask Amy - My Teenagers Are So Done With Quarantine Life!
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This week Amy answers a question from a listener whose 17 and 15-year-olds who are "finally starting to lose their minds" with this extended no-school lock down, and time away from their peers. Dr. Lisa D'Amour did an excellent interview on the NYT Book Review podcast on how to help teens through this moment- you can find it here: https://www.drlisadamour.com/2020/04/05/april-2020-parenting-under-stay-at-home-orders/ Amy also mentions Bark as a good way to monitor your teens' online activity without snooping- here is our affiliate link: Bark.us/?ref=2R4XYRK Submit your question- Amy or Margaret might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 20, 2020
Stay-At-Home Revelations: Things We've Learned
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As we round the curve into what’s been a full month of Uno, math worksheets, and never going anywhere, we’ve all learned a few things. Here are our stay-at-home revelations about our homes, our cooking, our relationships, and our kids. We’re undergoing a Big Reset about what our families “need,” whether it’s another box from Amazon, family dinner conversations, or maternal interference in sibling squabbling.  The head of school at Amy’s daughter’s elementary school called this moment a “semi-colon for their childhoods.” Some parts of it have been pretty good, actually. Some parts horrible. It’s okay. We don’t have to pretend that this isn’t significant; we just have to do what we can to make it all a little easier.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 15, 2020
Ask Margaret - My Kid Won't Play Alone
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers the question, "What Should I Do When My Kid Won't Play Alone?" Send your questions to questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 13, 2020
What's Working Right Now
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Don't get us wrong: in most ways, we've gone feral. But here’s what’s actually working during this stay-at-home time, for us and for our listeners: for our anxiety for our family chore buy-in for our kitchen ennui for laughter for exercise and for our senses of hope. Above all, we offer you this: never interrupt a happy quarantined family member while they are doing... whatever it is that is making them happy. We love this quote from our listener Shannon: “Instead of having a schedule for your day, consider having a routine. If you have a nice routine of activities you do each day, you get into a comfortable rhythm. If you try to stick with a time to schedule, you might miss out on some lovely moments. Five minutes before we were supposed to be starting schoolwork, my kids built a blanket fort where my son read to my daughter. What a gift! School will start, but this moment is more important for their relationship and this mama's heart.” Here are links to things we mention in this episode: Power Within Fit family workouts on Facebook Cosmic Kids Yoga Sibling Revelry Project 5-4-3-2-1 Grounding Technique Lazy Genius on Instagram: Become an Energy Detective Helen Dodd for The Conversation: Coronavirus-just letting children play will help them, and their parents, cope Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 08, 2020
Ask Amy - How Do I Talk to My Kids About Missing Milestone Events?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Amy tackles the question, "How Do I Talk to My Kids About Missing Milestone Events?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 06, 2020
It's a Marathon, Not a Sprint!
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We’re still collecting data, but from our limited household samples, the realization that we’re all in this for somewhat longer than we had bargained for is having some ramifications. Homeschooling feels doable when it’s a snow-day novelty. It feels different when you’re relearning middle school math while also learning how to work from home and provide three meals a day instead of two.  On the plus side, a lot of things we usually spend our precious bandwidth on have become blessedly hypothetical. Anything that isn't this doesn't matter. Anything that is this? Is not something for which we are yet required to have any perspective at all. In the meantime, here's how we're coping and keeping it going. As always, laughter is helping, and that's why, more than ever, we're so grateful for this podcast community. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 01, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Seriously Should I Take This Homeschooling Thing?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Margaret tackles the question, "How Seriously Should I Take This Homeschooling Thing?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 30, 2020
How Are We Going to Keep These Kids Busy?
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The Great Stay-Home Experiment continues, and no matter how many kids you have or how old they are, if you're a mom, your life just got more complicated. This episode is full of ideas for keeping kids busy, both indoors and out, with stuff you probably already have around the house. Some of these projects involve parental setup, but *not* parental participation, which is particularly clutch right now. Grab that videoconference time wherever you can! Lots of this episode's ideas came from our listeners. Our Facebook group is the perfect community right now! Tons of resources, laughs, and support. Join us! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 25, 2020
Ask Amy - How Can I Get My Big Kids to Pitch In In the Kitchen?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Amy tackles the question, "How Can I Get My Big Kids to Pitch In In The Kitchen?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 23, 2020
Gaming: Not All Bad! (Thank Goodness)
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If your kids are home more right now, chances are they're gaming more. Part of that is just going with the flow of this moment. But as any mom whose kid can game all afternoon will tell you, the problem comes when it's time to turn them OFF. There's never a good time (and no, your kids aren't lying; the games are designed that way). And there's no question video games are addicting- in a recent study, 6 out of 10 teens said they'd made their own attempts, apart from parental influence, to cut back. But the evidence linking gaming to hyperactivity, aggression, and worse grades at school is more tenuous than you might think. And there are distinct, significant advantages that gaming can give kids. In this episode, we discuss the good and bad of gaming, plus how to set household policies around gaming that will make everyone happy. Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Adam Lobel et al: Video Gaming and Children’s Psychosocial Wellbeing: A Longitudinal Study Dawnthea Price Lisco for Slate Parenting: Decide What Age-Appropriate Means To You Science Daily: Video game ratings work, if you use them Science Daily: School, health and behavior suffer when children have TV, video games in bedroom Pew Research Center: Teens hold mixed opinions about whether they spend too much time in front of screens … Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 18, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Do I Get My Kids to Help Keep the House Clean?
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Each week Margaret or Amy answers a listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers the question, "How Do I Get My Kids to Help Keep the House Clean?" Submit your questions to questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 16, 2020
Real Self-Care for Moms
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Does self-care mean ice cream? Facial serums? Leaning in? Saying no? Taking yoga? According to our listeners, it means all of the above. In this episode, we talk both about how to arrive at your personal definition of self-care, and how to prioritize it, so your self-care practice will be there for you when you need it. You can't just meditate extra on the day your kids both get the stomach flu. Self-care is a program you kind of need to have running in the background all the time. Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Jacqueline Baker for The Mighty: When Self-Care Means Saying 'No' Tim Herrera for NYT Smarter Living: How to Make ‘Self-Care’ Actually Feel Like Self-Care Jenny Odell: How To Do Nothing: Resisting the Attention Economy Deanna Zandt: The Unspoken Complexity of 'Self-Care' Claire Zulkey for Romper: The Hardest Thing To Do Is 'Less' Of All That Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 11, 2020
Ask Amy - How Do I Get Grandma to Limit Screen Time When She's Babysitting?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Amy answers: "How do I get Grandma to stop plopping the kids in front of screens?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 09, 2020
Do In-Laws Get a Bad Rap?
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In-law relationships are close by design, not by choice. No wonder they're complicated. We heard from listeners who have fantastic in-laws, and others for whom no contact at all is the only option. In this episode, we discuss whether mothers-in-law, in particular, get a bad rap how many sit-downs you're allowed to have ever (spoiler alert: three) how to operate from a standpoint of maximum available generosity how to "watch your ratios" to improve your relationship with your spouse's parents Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Madeleine A. Fugère Ph.D. for Psychology Today: Why You and Your Mother-in-Law May Not Get Along Karen L. Fingerman, Megan Gilligan, Laura VanderDrift, and Lindsay Pitzer: In-law Relationships Before and After Marriage Margarita Tartakovsky for Psych Central: How Healthy Couples Deal with Their In-Laws The Naked Marriage Podcast: Healthy Boundaries with In-Laws Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 04, 2020
Ask Margaret - Should I Take My Child to a Funeral?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Margaret tackles the question, "Should I take my child to a funeral?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 02, 2020
Where Did This Kid Come From? When Our Kids Are Nothing Like Us
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There are times when we say "Where did this kid come from?!" and it's totally exciting, like: I'm kind of a shy person, and my kid can talk to anyone. I am completely uncoordinated, and my kid's on the all-state gymnastics team. Then there are the times when perceiving our kids as nothing like us can make us apprehensive, as in: I am the most outgoing person in the world, and my kid won't even make eye contact. I loved being on the softball team, and my kid cries if she strikes out. As parents, we can get a little stuck on figuring out how to close that gap, by clamping down on the things that feel unfamiliar, trying to change the ways our kids are differently wired so that their lives will be easier (as in, more like our own). But we risk missing the kid that's there in front of us while we try to parent the kid we thought we were going to have. In this episode, we talk about how to be okay with that gap, rather than wishing it away, and how to support our kids' dreams even when they slightly baffle us. We also discuss the excellent book Far From The Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity, in which Andrew Solomon tells the stories of parents who not only learn to deal with their exceptional children, but also find profound meaning in doing so. We're going to be okay. So are they. Here are links to other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Associated Press: Non-athletic parents may have best advantage with sports-minded kids Julia Ries for Family Education: My Kid is Nothing Like Me Erin Zammett Ruddy for Real Simple: How to Parent a Kid Who's Nothing Like You and for an opposite point of view, this episode of our own podcast: What To Do When They're Just Like You Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 26, 2020
Ask Amy - Helping Kids Deal With a Move
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers one listener's question. This week Amy answers a question from a woman who is preparing for a family move and wants to know how to explain it to her four-year-old. Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 24, 2020
Letting Kids Be Little
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In a world where kids get big praise for hitting their developmental milestones ahead of schedule- he sat up before six months! She was talking in sentences before her second birthday!- there are still times and places to let kids be little. Letting kids be little means maybe they are wiggly worms when you'd like them to be sitting still. Letting kids be little means letting them come back and touch base with you, and then leave, and come back, and then leave, and come back. Letting kids be little means letting them still have those things that the world says they’re too big for. It means encouraging them to do and to have what they love, even if it isn't cool. Here’s how we try to let our kids be little, and how it has made our kids’ lives (and ours) more joyful. We find that we have the most fun in our families when we're the silliest-and when we let the kids be the littlest. Here are links to research and other writing we discuss in this episode: Dr. Ned Hallowell for Parents League: Protecting Childhood Meredith Ethington for Scary Mommy: I Finally Get What They Mean By ‘Let Them Be Little’ Dr. Perri Klass for The New York Times: Offering Kids a Taste of Alcohol Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 19, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Should I Deal With Potty Talk?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Margaret tackles the question, "Should I try to put a stop to my kids' constant potty talk?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 17, 2020
Letting People Into Our Mess (with guest Kristina Kuzmic)
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Every mom has struggles. Every mom has dark times. Too often, those are the times when we stop showing up in our lives, thinking that our problems make us less worthy. As psychologist Dr. Susan Silver explains, “Women often don't feel that they deserve help— or they think something is wrong with them, and that they've failed in some way, if they have to go to somebody else for help.” But our personal unsolvable crisis might be perceived by a friend as a challenge. And allowing ourselves to say "I stink at this a lot of the time" opens us up to a better, richer life experience than when we only share our carefully curated selves. There are risks to being authentic. The payoffs are worth it. Our guest is Kristina Kuzmic, author of the new book HOLD ON, BUT DON’T HOLD STILL: Hope and Humor from My Seriously Flawed Life. Kristina offers hard-won wisdom to all of us who have ever struggled to feel good enough, and her book is full both of hilarity and of serious wisdom about staying in community, even when our lives are messy. Here's how Kristina puts it: “We are not meant to walk through this life alone. Name any situation you want to improve, and I guarantee you you'll get there faster and more effectively if you reach out to others.” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 12, 2020
Ask Amy- Help! There's a Biter at My Kid's Daycare
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Amy tackles the question, "What can I do about a biter at my kid's daycare?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 10, 2020
When to Go With Your Gut: Doing What's Right For Your Kid
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We asked our listeners if there was a time in their lives when they had to make the hard or unconventional choice in order to do what was right for their kids. From potty-training to red-shirting to homeschooling to adoption, these are some of the times the moms in our tribe had to go with their guts. If there's anything we've learned as parents, it's that that "nagging feeling" is something that should usually be acknowledged. (That goes for when it's the doctor or teacher having that nagging feeling, too, even if we ourselves do not.) Whether it's with doctors, teachers, coaches, or well-meaning relatives, here's how to have the tough conversations and stand up for your kid. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 05, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Can I Increase My Child's Self-Esteem?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Margaret tackles the question, "How can I increase my child's self-esteem?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 03, 2020
When Is This Going to Be Fun Again? Lighthearted Parenting
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We all fall into the trap of thinking that every day with our kids has to contain a “snowglobe moment,” a social-media-worthy image of perfect joy for our entire family. And even if part of us knows that’s not realistic, another part of us thinks that it’s all supposed to be fun. That there must be something wrong with us if we don’t love every single moment of our chaotic lives with little ones. But once we kick that shame to the curb, there really are ways to make our lives as parents more fun and lighthearted. Even on a regular Tuesday. In this episode, we discuss: How we can be lighthearted, even when things aren’t fun How we can have fun even when things aren’t easy How we can have fun even when our kids definitely aren’t Our basic takeaway: parenting definitely gets a little more fun as our kids get a little bit easier… and by “easier,” we mean “not throwing themselves into mortal danger every ninety seconds because they don’t know any better.” The first step to having more fun may simply be to wish that it were so. As motivational speaker Danielle LaPorte explains: “Knowing how you want to feel is the most potent form of clarity you can have.” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 29, 2020
Ask Amy - How Can I Get My Child to Do More for Herself?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Amy tackles the question, "How can I get my daughter to do more for herself?" Submit your question- we might answer yours next! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 27, 2020
What Kind of Monster?
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There are these things that you just don't understand why anybody would do. But some people do them. We aren't about judgment at the What Fresh Hell podcast, but we do sometimes have to ask: what kind of monster? What kind of monster listens to videos on speaker? Or keeps the keyboard clicks on their phone? What kind of monster takes up two parking spots? Puts empty cereal boxes back in the cabinet? Gives small children toys with one hundred tiny pieces? We went to our Facebook page and we asked people to share what kind of monsters they were encountering on a daily basis. In this episode we explore quite a few. And here's a disclaimer: we may each have been one or more of these monsters before. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 22, 2020
Ask Margaret - What Should I Do When Friends Exclude My Kid?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener question. This week Margaret tackles the question, "What should I do when my kid's friends are excluding him?" Submit your questions to: questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 20, 2020
Toddlers: The Great Equalizer (with guest Clint Edwards)
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Toddlers are the great equalizer: no matter how strong you think you are, the short fat dictator has what it takes to break you. If you're in the throes of toddlerhood, we salute you. Knowing that it won't last forever can help. Knowing that tantrums are a biological imperative also helps. Still, it's a good thing their adorable faces and fat little dimpled hands activate pleasure and reward regions in literally every human brain, cause they BETTER be cute, is what we're saying. In this episode, we commiserate and troubleshoot life with toddlers with guest Clint Edwards, author of Silence is a Scary Sound: And Other Stories on Living Through the Terrible Twos and Threes. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 15, 2020
Ask Amy - How Can I Deal With This Fussy Baby?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener's most pressing question. Today Amy answers the question, "How can I deal with this fussy baby?" Submit your parenting dilemmas to questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 13, 2020
Anger Management for Kids
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Take our listener survey! Here's the link: https://bit.ly/whatfreshhellsurvey The best way to handle our children’s anger is to equip them with the tools to handle it themselves. You don’t have to smother children's emotions in order to calm them down; as your kids get older, you really can't. But you don’t need to throw up your hands and accommodate their anger and everything that comes with it, either. We talk at length in this episode about an excellent book for kids on this topic: “What To Do When Your Temper Flares: A Kid’s Guide To Overcoming Problems With Anger.”by Dawn Huebner. The book is aimed at grade-schoolers, but there’s much to learn in here for kids of all ages (and their parents)!  Whether your kid is 4 or 14, this episode will help you stand outside their storms and get your calm house back a little sooner.  If you’d like a transcript of this episode, you can find it here: https://www.whatfreshhellpodcast.com/2020/01/angermanagementtranscript/, If you’d like to do a deep-dive on anger management for parents, check out our “Sometimes We Lose It” episode here. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 08, 2020
Ask Margaret - How Can I Help My Kids Care About Things I Think Are Important?
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Each week Margaret or Amy tackles a listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers the question, "How can I get my kids to care about things I think are important?" Submit your questions at questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 06, 2020
Back to One: Things We're Starting Over This Year
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One of our very favorite things to say on this podcast, “back to one," is a term you'll hear dozens of times a day on any television or film set. It means resetting everything about a scene-- the cameras, the actors, the extras, the dollar bill that gets handed over, the coffee cup that gets picked up-- in order to do another take of that same scene. There's never any sense of disappointment or whose-fault-was-it judgment involved in doing a "back to one." It's just a reset so you can try it all again. We apply "back to one" to all areas of our parenting lives that need a reset, whether it's twice a month or once every ninety seconds (take that deep, cleansing breath). And as we look to a new decade, we're making this new year's goals "back to ones" as well. We're skipping the part where we feel bad that we didn't read all the books we said we would last year. We're just saying "back to one" and resetting that intention for the coming year. Here are what our listeners told us their "back to ones" for the new year are, plus a few of our own. We'll be resetting a lot, including what it means to have resolutions and goals for the new year in the first place. A reset is not a failure. It’s just what happens next. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 01, 2020
Ask Amy- How Early Should Kids Learn How To Share?
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Each week Margaret or Amy tackles a listener's most pressing question. This week Amy answers the question, "How can we teach our three-year-old son that he has to share his toys with his soon-to-crawl baby sister?" Amy mentions this article by Sarah S. MacLaughlin for Zero to Three- it's full of great suggestions on this topic: http://https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/1964-helping-young-children-with-sharing Submit your questions at questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 30, 2019
Ask Margaret - How Do I Navigate Splitting Time When Visiting Family?
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Each week Amy or Margaret tackles a listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers, "How do I handle splitting time between my parents and my husband's parents at the holidays?" Submit your questions to info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 23, 2019
Holiday Fails
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Experts say happiness is often purer in the anticipation of an event. The reality can be a little more messy. And at no time of year is that sentiment more true than during the holiday season. We asked our listeners to tell us their holiday worsts, and in this episode we discuss them all, plus a few of our own. Hams glazed with norovirus! Toddlers sleeping in airports! And of course, everyone's favorite Yuletide treat: The Vomiting Christmas Baby! And yet those are the holidays we remember best. Which makes it (almost) all worth it. Think your holiday season has been a little crazy? Hold our eggnog. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 18, 2019
Ask Amy - Dealing with the Kids in the Car
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Each week Amy or Margaret tackles a listener's most pressing question. This week Amy answers the question, "How deal with the kids driving me crazy in the car at the end of a long day?" Send your questions for Margaret or Amy to questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 16, 2019
Is Everyone Having Fun Without Me? Motherhood and FOMO
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FOMO, or the “fear of missing out,” was a term coined around 2011 to describe the feeling you get when you see friends on social media posting about lives just a little more exciting than your own. Behavioral researcher Dan Ariely calls it "the worry that tugs at the corners of our minds, set off by the fear of regret." It's a feeling definitely made worse by the constant ability we all have to check in on what other people are doing. According to a 2016 survey, three-quarters of parents use Facebook; 61% of those parents check it several times a day. "We get online to check on what everyone else is doing on a wonderful summer afternoon," writer Susan Narjala explains, "and it takes about ten seconds to feel worse about ourselves and our lives." But even when we succeed in unplugging, FOMO can rear its head in real life. And once we become parents, the FOMO we feel on our kids' behalf-- the party invites that don't come, the Disney World vacations we can't afford right now-- can seriously interfere with our happiness. In this episode, we discuss when we've felt FOMO in our own lives, why we tend to feel more envious of our neighbor's house than, say, Beyoncé's, and how to stop the compare-and-despair when it all gets to be a little too much. Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Jason Goldman for Scientific American: Why Bronze Medalists Are Happier Than Silver Winners Susan Narjala for Motherly: Five Ways To FOMO-Proof Your Parenting Jenny Evans for Scary Mommy: We Have FOMO For Our Children, And We Need To Get Over It ASAP Jenna Wortham for The New York Times: Feel Like a Wallflower? Maybe It's Your Facebook Wall. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 11, 2019
Ask Margaret - How Do I Get My Baby Sleeping Through the Night?
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Each week Amy or Margaret tackles a listener's most pressing question. This week Margaret answers the question, "How can I get my newborn sleeping thought the night?" Send your questions for Margaret or Amy to questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 09, 2019
What Are You Grateful For? (with guest Nancy Davis Kho)
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Do you respond to the idea of "practicing" gratitude with a heavy dose of nope? In this episode we discuss the science behind the gratitude>>happiness>>more gratitude>>more happiness loop. Studies have proven that regularly expressing gratitude actually changes the structures of our brains to make us healthier and happier, thanks to something called "positive recall bias." In other words, if you start looking out for yellow cars, you'll suddenly see them wherever you go. Wouldn't we all be better off living in a happier, yellowier-car world? And what if getting to that point was 1) not that hard and 2) kind of fun also? Our guest this week is Nancy Davis Kho, author of the new book The Thank-You Project: Cultivating Happiness One Letter of Gratitude at a Time. Nancy's book is a lovely meditation on gratitude, and also a how-to guide to starting your own thank-you-letter-writing project. We loved this book! If you'd like to hear more about raising grateful kids , we've got an episode for that too! Just click the link- or if you're not seeing a link, go to bit.ly/WFHgratefulkids. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 04, 2019
Ask Amy - Should I Care If My Teenagers Curse?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener's most pressing parenting question.  Today Amy tackles the question, "Should I try to make my teen stop cursing??" Submit yours! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 02, 2019
The Whining is Killing Us
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Whining is what experts call a “low-power strategy of dominance.” Kids do it because it’s what’s available to them. Since it drives parents bonkers, it’s remarkably effective. And it turns out whining really is as annoying as we think it is. A recent study tested whether adults (non-parents and parents both) were more distracted by whining than other sounds. The result? Everyone in the study, whether they had kids or not, found the sound of a whining toddler twice as distracting as the sound of a table saw screeching at full volume. As effective as this "auditory sensitivity" is, no wonder most humans between the ages of two and four learn to take full advantage. Still, there are things we can do to make the whining bother us less, which will make it less effective, which will make our kids do it less, and look who's got a strategy of dominance now? In this episode, we discuss the best ways to deal with whiners, and how to perhaps greet it with a bit more generosity. We might as well; we're probably stuck with it. As parenting specialist Bonnie Harris puts it: "Whining is as developmental and normal in a toddler’s life as discovering the pleasure of saying “no." Don’t think about teaching your child not to do it. Do think about ways you can help yourself deal with it calmly and perhaps shorten its duration." Here are links to research on whining that we discuss in this episode: Bonnie Harris for Christian Science Monitor: Five parenting tips to put a stop to your child's whining Dr. Guy Winch for Psychology Today: A Simple Trick to Get Your Kid to Stop Whining Erin Leyba for Motherly: It’s science: Kids whine for a (very good) reason Jonathan Allen for Reuters: Study: Child's whining one of life's most distracting sounds Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 27, 2019
Ask Margaret - Should I Throw Away the Diapers?
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Each week Amy or Margaret answers a listener's most pressing parenting question.  Today Margaret tackles the question, "Should I throw away the diapers to encourage my kiddo to commit to potty training?" Submit yours! questions@whatfreshhellpodcast.com. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 25, 2019
Meeting Our Kids Where They Are
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It's hard not to be a little nervous when your kid is the only one still crying at preschool dropoff. Or the only one still spelling everything wrong in third grade. Sometimes it turns out to be a late bloomer situation, nothing to worry about. Sometimes it's an early indicator of something your kid might struggle with for a long time. How do we move beyond our own stress about what our kids are and aren't doing like the rest of the bunch? How do we adjust our demands to meet what our kids are actually capable of? How do we set our parental expectations so that our kids will be motivated to try harder without feeling bad about themselves? It's a tricky balance, best summed up by parent coach Sarah Wayland: "If we never had expectations that were beyond our children’s current abilities, we wouldn’t teach them anything.... But I’m at my absolute worst as a parent when my expectations are far beyond my kids’ abilities." Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Joanna Faber: Manage Your Expectations, Not Your Child Terri Mauro for Very Well Family: Backward Chaining for Special-Needs Children Dr. Sarah C. Wayland for Guiding Exceptional Parents: Meet Your Kids Where They Are Elaine Taylor-Klaus for Impact ADHD: Shift Your Expectations to Manage Complex Kids Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 20, 2019
The Small Things That Drive Moms Insane
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We asked the listeners to tell us their extremely minor annoyances of motherhood-- the smaller and more seemingly inconsequential, the better, because it turns out those are things that really make us loco. From soggy bath toys, to pushing swings, to the toddler who spins around and offers the wrong arm to be put into the held-up coat sleeve, here are many of the teeny-tiny things that drive moms insane. Join the fun on our Facebook page! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 13, 2019
Why Kids Tell Lies (and When It's Okay)
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There are all kinds of reasons that kids lie, not the least of which being that it is sometimes quite clearly the assignment: "Tell Aunt Clara how much you love your new pencil case!" But sometimes kids lie a lot-- about seemingly inconsequential things-- and we're left wondering, as parents, how much it matters, and how to respond. In this episode we discuss when kids are developmentally ready to lie, all the reasons that your kids might try it, and what are and are not useful parental responses (we especially love Dr. Carol Brady's "truth check" idea). If your child's frequent lying is of concern, don't despair that your child is a Liar with a capital L, but do look more closely at what else might be going on. As Dr. Harold Koplowitz of the Child Mind Institute explains: "habitual lying is a symptom, not a diagnosis." Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Beth Arky for childmind.org: Why Kids Lie and What Parents Can Do About It Hollee Actman Becker for Parents: Lying Is a Sign of Healthy Development in Kids (Yes, Really!) Xiao Pan Ding et al for Hangzhou College of Preschool Education: Theory-of-Mind Training Causes Honest Young Children to Lie Harold S. Koplewicz, MD for childmind.org: When should you get help for a child who’s a habitual liar? Susan Pinker for Wall Street Journal: Children’s Lies Are a Sign of Cognitive Progress Jennifer Soong for WebMD: Lies, Truths, and Your Preschooler Zawn Villines for Good Therapy: Why Do Children Lie? Normal, Compulsive, and Pathological Lying in Kids Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Nov 06, 2019
Better Then or Better Now?
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Anyone old enough to remember TV antennas and New Coke usually says that things were way better in the free-wheeling, simple-living, “don't come home till it's getting dark outside” days of our childhoods. But were they really? And what about for our parents? From maternity clothes to snow days to school nights to movie nights, in this episode we decide whether the things that loom largest in our lives as kids (and now as moms) are Better Then or Better Now. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 30, 2019
Changing the Invisible Workload (with guest Eve Rodsky)
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The "invisible workload" has become shorthand for the never-ending to-do list that moms keep in our heads-- because much of that work is invisible to the people we do it for, let alone the larger world. That work falls to us because moms tend to be the default parent, whatever our outside-the-home workload (or that of our spouses) might be. Are you the one who leaves work when the baby throws up at day care? Do you know which closet the wrapping paper is in- and if you're almost out? Is it your calendar that keeps track of when your kid has to bring the snack for soccer? Yup, us too. Most of us get majorly resentful about this invisible work. Some of us make lists of it all (to make it more visible). Those lists make us mad. Not very much changes. We start to think that this is just the way it has to be. But we don't have to fall for the old chestnut that women are just better at multitasking, and so we might as well keep doing it all. As professor of neurogenetics Dr. Pat Levitt explains: "I don't know of any research that shows women are better multitaskers than men. In fact, multitasking is bad for everyone because our brains are not built to deal with more than one complex thing at a time." This week's guest tells us how to effect actual change in our household distribution of labor by putting new systems in place that work for everyone. Eve Rodsky is author of the new book Fair Play: A Game-Changing Solution For When You Have Too Much To Do (And More Life To Live), and she's showing us all a path forward to create the relationships and households that we deserve. Don't miss this interview! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 23, 2019
When We Should (And Shouldn't) Rescue Our Kids
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No matter what ages our kids are, when they need rescuing, they look to Mom. And whether we rescue them or not, we’re left second-guessing whatever it is we just did.  Did you bring that forgotten lunch to school? Nice helicoptering, loser!  Did you leave your kid to figure out his own way home from baseball when it was getting dark? Really, how can you live with yourself?  In this episode, we talk about all the situations our kids have (and will) want rescuing from, and whether or not each requires our stepping in-- and how to know.  We discuss: why “natural consequences” for your forgetful kid doesn’t mean she’ll remember her cleats next time; the structures and scaffolding you can put in place so kids can start rescuing themselves; and why “muscle confusion” isn’t just for the gym. Basically, we think that if your kids blow it once in a while, you should go ahead and bring them the right shoes. But don’t forget to give your kids the gifts of solving their own problems once in a while.  As parenting expert Dr. Robin Berman explains: "If you want to have happy kids, you have to teach them to tolerate being unhappy." Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Dr. Robin Berman for Goop: The Misguided Desire of Wanting Our Kids to be Happy Carolyn Dalgiesh: The Sensory Child Gets Organized: Proven Systems for Rigid, Anxious, or Distracted Kids Dr. Sarah Sarkis for Hey Sigmund: ‘I Just Want Them to Be Okay’ – Why Rescuing Our Kids Can Get in Their Way Dr. Michael G. Thompson: When Should A Forgetful Nine-Year-Old Suffer Consequences? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 16, 2019
Parenting With An Audience
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Have you ever felt coerced into parenting in a way you usually wouldn’t because you were in public? Does the tsk-ing disapproval of Aunt Joan feel even worse than eyerolls from strangers? Do you discipline your kids differently in front of friends who might hold a tighter line, even if it's in your house? Do you ever give a "now you listen to me, young man" lecture to one of your kids primarily for the benefit of his or her siblings? For better and for worse, parenting with an audience means doing things differently.  In this episode we discuss what to say to well-meaning (but still interfering) onlookers with front-row seats to your kid's tantrum without making What That Lady Must Think your primary focus. As parenting columnist Sarah Coyne reminds us, we should focus on strengthening our connections with our kids rather than pleasing the onlookers. Kids need consistent, reliable, trustworthy parents who don’t change their game plan based upon who’s acting as witness." Here are links to other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Sarah Coyne for The Joplin Globe:  Parenting with an audience changes the rules Dr. Laura Markham for Aha! Parenting: 14 Tips for Parenting in Public Odd Loves Company: Parenting For An Audience Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 09, 2019
When Other Kids Are Bad Influences
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What is it about the kid who throws sand that other kids find so irresistible? How do we keep our kids away from bad influences in their lives, especially as they get older? And why do parents sometimes peg exactly the wrong kids as good influences? In this episode we discuss what age groups are most susceptible to peer influence (good and bad), how to approach the parent of a suspected bad-influencer, and how to teach our kids to approach these situations on their own. As Timothy Verduin, a professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at NYU, explains: "If you want kids who are resilient, you can’t isolate them from social pathogens. Think about the long view, that you’re training them to handle less-than-ideal people and solve their own problems." Here are links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Jennifer Bleyer for Real Simple: 9 Bad Influences on Your Child (or You) Diana Simeon for Your Teen Mag: When to Call Another Parent About Teenage Behavior Problems Laurence Steinberg and Kathryn C. Monahan, Developmental Psychology: Age Differences in Resistance to Peer Influence Laurence Steinberg, Temple University: Peer influence on risk taking, risk preference, and risky decision making in adolescence and adulthood: an experimental study George Packer for The Atlantic: When The Culture War Comes For The Kids Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Oct 02, 2019
Hot Takes and Unpopular Opinions
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We asked the members of our Facebook group for your "hot takes"- that is to say, the things you feel insanely strongly about while the rest of the world is seemingly indifferent.  From athleisure to mayonnaise to french-fry consistency to the enduring fame of Coldplay, these are your extremely fervent hot takes and unpopular opinions.  Should pizza ever, under any circumstances, be topped with pineapple? Should trophies for mere participation be forever banned? Was Dr. Seuss not that great of an actual writer? Here's what all of you really, really want the rest of us to know.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 25, 2019
When One of Our Kids Is Taking All Our Bandwidth
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There are a lot of reasons that one of our kids might end up getting most of our attention. Some are positive: Sophia is the best 12-year-old pitcher in the state!  Some are decidedly negative: another hospital stay. Some bandwidth-hogging choices are freely made; some are obligations.  Sometimes focusing on just one of our kids is temporary, and sometimes it's the sort of “new normal” that can radically reshape family dynamics.  In this episode, we talk about the times in our own parenting lives when one of our kids has taken up all (okay, 99%) of our bandwidth, and how to manage our other relationships- including with our partners- during the tough or crazy times.  In our experience, identifying and being honest about what’s taking up the bandwidth is the key to making sure everyone survives it. Here are links to the research on this topic that we discuss in this episode:  Leigh Anderson for Lifehacker: What to Do If Your Child's Behavior Is Ruining Your Relationship With Your Partner Carson Crusaders Foundation Antoinette Deavin, Pete Greasley, Clare Dixon for Pediatrics: Children’s Perspectives on Living With a Sibling With a Chronic Illness Dean E. Murphy for NYT: Watching Them Watching Me Lisa Rapaport for Reuters: Healthy kids with sick sibling may hide emotions Nicole Schwarz for imperfectfamilies.com: When The Siblings of a Difficult Child Feel Ignored Andrew Sullivan for NYT: How Do You Raise a Prodigy? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 18, 2019
Managing the Grandparent Relationship
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What should we as parents do when the well-meaning grandparents in our lives are overindulgent of their grandchildren? Or undermine our parenting choices? And what do we do with our own hurt feelings when our parents don't seem very interested in our kids at all? In this episode we talk about how to create a grandparent relationship that works for everyone. It's worth the effort. Take it from our friend Belinda Luscombe, who when it comes to navigating this relationship, reminds us of the ever-present upside: "Don't let the opportunity of getting to know your in-laws or parents in a different way pass you by." Here are links to some writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode: Susan Newman, Ph.D: Little Things Mean a Lot: Creating Happy Memories With Your Grandchildren Jaycee Dunn for Parents: What to Do About Uninvolved Grandparents Jo Piazza for Parents: From Toxic Mother to Loving Grandmother: How I Learned to Forgive My Mom After My Son Was Born Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 11, 2019
How To Prepare Our Kids Now to Be Grown and Flown (with guest Lisa Heffernan)
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Kids don't usually seek to lose their dependence on us as parents- and why should they? Doesn’t a grilled cheese taste so much better when Mom makes it?  So it’s up to us to teach our kids independence, and that means showing them how an ATM works sometime before they leave for college. How do we start the nest-leaving process early and often? Our guest is Lisa Heffernan, co-creator of the parenting-older-kids website Grown and Flown. She and Lisa Heffernan are the co-authors of the new book Grown and Flown: How to Support Your Teen, Stay Close as a Family, and Raise Independent Adults. Lisa says yes, we should start preparing our kids now to survive without us— but she’s not arguing for tough love as the only answer, whether our kids are three or twenty-three. “Being involved in your kid’s life does NOT make you a helicopter parent,” Lisa says. "It makes you a loving, supportive parent.”  It’s often harder, longer, and more complicated to make our kids do something than to just do it for them. But this week we’re going to find a moment, allow a bit of extra time, and walk our kids through a task they are eminently capable of doing for themselves. The pride they’ll feel— even if the results are imperfect— will be worth celebrating.  Here are links to some other writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode:  Melissa Deuter for Psychology Today: 5 Steps to Help Your Teen Leave the Nest Rachel Martin for Your Teen Mag: The Perfect Present: Fostering Teen Independence Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Sep 04, 2019
Parenting Styles: Which Ones Are We (And Should We Care?)
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Helicopter moms, snowplow moms, tiger moms, free-range moms… we usually define all of these parenting types in the negative: well, at least I’m not THAT. But are there useful takeaways from each of these parenting styles that we can combine cafeteria-style to create our own? Can we reject some of the judginess of free-range parenting, or the tyranny of tiger momming, and still find things to love? What do we miss when we reject other moms' ways of doing things full-stop?  Here are links to the books and articles we mention in this episode: Frank Bruni: Where You Go Is Not Who You'll Be: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania Amy Chua: Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother Foster Cline and Jim Fay: Parenting With Love and Logic Nancy Gibbs for Time: Roaring Tigers, Anxious Choppers The Grammarphobia Blog: The Original Tiger Mother? Dr. James R. Laider for Autism Watch: The "Refrigerator Mother" Hypothesis of Autism Heather Marcoux for Motherly: 'Snowplow parents' and the lessons we can take from them Jessica McCrory Calarco for The Atlantic: 'Free Range' Parenting's Unfair Double Standard Claire Cain Miller and Jonah Engel Bromwich for NYT: How Parents Are Robbing Their Children of Adulthood Arti Patel for Global News: ‘Panda parenting’ is all about giving children more freedom — but does it work? Katie Roiphe for Slate: The Seven Myths of Helicopter Parenting Lenore Skenazy: Free-Range Kids: How to Raise Safe, Self-Reliant Children (Without Going Nuts with Worry) Emma Waverman for Today's Parent: Snowplow Parenting: The Latest Controversial Technique Esther Wojcicki for Time: I Raised Two CEOs and a Doctor. These Are My Secrets to Parenting Successful Children Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 21, 2019
Husband Crimes: Can This Marriage Be Saved?
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We asked you to tell us your spouses’ most unacceptable-- and also extremely minor-- household infractions. 356 of you responded. Whether it’s turning off the AC because it's "too cold" at 75 degrees, creating a Sock Mountain of not-quite-dirty-enough laundry, or pausing Netflix to point out plot holes, this episode explores everything spouses do that is trivially horrible. It must also be said: while these offenses are most often properly termed as Husband Crimes, this episode proves that Wives can also be guilty of using ten water glasses in one day, or of eating potato chips too loudly. It seems that no marriage is entirely free of Spouse Crimes.  You are heard. You deserve justice. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 14, 2019
When Should Kids Tell?
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Most little kids have an ironclad sense of right and wrong and are most happy to report on whoever might not be sharing in the dress-up corner. But as they get older, the stakes get a lot higher- for them, for us, and for the kid being "told on." When should kids tell? In this episode we discuss: the difference between "tattling" and telling, and whether telling kids "no tattling" is causing other problems; the difference between surprises and secrets; what to do when kids say, "I'm not sure if I should tell you this"; and whom kids should tell when they can't (or won't) tell you. Here are links to some of the research and writing on the topic discussed in this episode: Amy Morin for Very Well Family: Why Parents Shouldn't Tell Kids to Keep Secrets Marisa Cohen for Real Simple: How Much Privacy Should You Give Your Kids? Valerie Reiss for Great Schools: Does Saying "Don't Tattle" Send Kids the Wrong Message? Heidi Stevens for the Chicago Tribune: Tattling is bad, except when it's not Together Against Bullying: Telling vs. Tattling Teachers Pay Teachers: Tattling vs. Telling Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Aug 07, 2019
Imaginative Kids: Is It Ever Too Much of a Good Thing?
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Is there such a thing as a too-imaginative kid? Parenting experts say no. Dr. Paul Harris, professor of education at Harvard and author of The Work of the Imagination, says that kids’ active imaginations are “essentially positive” and represent cognitive work, the way that children make sense of the world.  But if you’ve got a kid who prefers her imaginary friend to making real ones— or who terrorizes the first grade by explaining how zombies can get into one’s home through the radiator— you might still wonder whether there comes a time to tamp it all down and force our kids to deal with reality.  In this episode we talk about  the considerable upsides of a huge imagination  why some children have imaginary friends  why some kids engage in “worldplay” for their imaginary worlds long after the other kids have moved on  how to help anxious kids whose imaginations can become overly active  how to encourage kids to engage in more imaginative play  And here’s links to the books, articles, and research we discuss in this episode:  Lauren Child's Charlie and Lola book series, featuring the kind-of-visible Soren Lorensen Louise Fitzhugh: Harriet the Spy Dr. Robin Alter: The Role of Imagination in Children with Anxiety Paul L. Harris, The Work of the Imagination Joshua A. Krisch for Fatherly: Brilliant Kids Visit (and Create) Imaginary Worlds Michelle Root-Bernstein: The Creation of Imaginary Worlds Marjorie Taylor: Imaginary Companions and the Children Who Create Them Deena Skolnik Weissberg: Distinguishing Imagination From Reality Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 31, 2019
When Kids Prefer the Other Parent Over You (Or You Over Them)
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Most of us have been (for better and for worse) recipients of the “only Mommy” level of attention from our little ones-- the sort of singular devotion that leaves our partners decidedly out in the cold. Many of us have also been on the outside looking in, with "Daddy’s girl" giving us none of the love, just eye rolls and the distinct impression that we rank not only second, but dead last.  Why do kids prefer one parent over the other? Why do those allegiances shift? Are we supposed to ignore it, and our hurt feelings, because it’s normal and developmentally appropriate? Or are there times when we should push back against this behavior? Will it get even worse if we don't?  Here are links to research and other writing on the topic we discuss in this episode: Janet Lansbury: When Children Prefer One Parent/ Ellen Weber Libby Ph.D. for Psychology Today: IS THERE A FAVORITE PARENT?/ Carl Pickhardt for Psychology Today: Adolescence and the Case of Odd Parent Out/ Kendra Cherry for Very Well Mind: The Oedipus Complex in Children Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 24, 2019
The Mom Gap: Getting Back Out There (with guest Christina Geist)
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According to the US Department of Labor, more than a third of college-educated women pause their careers for some amount of time to raise their children. But the jobs we leave behind aren't usually waiting for us with open arms. How do we own the time we've spent out of the workforce raising kids without apologizing for it? How do we re-enter careers that have shifted in our absence- or create entirely new opportunities for ourselves? We talk it all out with guest Christina Geist, a brand strategist, entrepreneur and children’s book author who lives in New York City with her husband, NBC and MSNBC host Willie Geist, and her two children. Her second children's book, Sorry Grown-Ups, You Can't Go To School!,is just out from Random House.  In this episode Christina tells us how she bridged the mom gap and launched "a 2.0 version of myself in my 40s that my 20s self would have been so relieved to meet." Find out more about Christina, her new book, and Boombox Gifts on her website: christinageist.com. Here are links to the research and writing on the mom gap that we discuss in this episode: Katie Weisshaar for Harvard Business Review: Stay-at-Home Moms Are Half as Likely to Get a Job Interview as Moms Who Got Laid Off Dorie Clark for Harvard Business Review: How Stay-at-Home Parents Can Transition Back to Work Lisa Evans for Fast Company: 5 Ways To Eliminate The Stay-At-Home Mom Gap Lisen Stronberg: Work PAUSE Thrive: How to Pause for Parenthood Without Killing Your Career Wendy Wallbridge: Spiraling Upward: The 5 Co-Creative Powers for Women on the Rise Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 17, 2019
When Your Kids Take Everything Out On You
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Most parenting experts say being our kids’ safe space includes letting some amount of their snarkiness roll off our backs. It’s normal. Don’t take it personally. And knowing that it’s universal helps. Sometimes. A little. But we still struggle. Shouldn’t we insist on respect from our kids? And what happens when the eye-rolling and "God, Mom, don't you know anything?" really starts to wear us down? In this episode we discuss why kids take things out on us as parents (spoiler alert: it gets worse before it gets better) and how we can lower our reactivity in order to respond more effectively. Here’s links to research and other writing on the topic that we discuss: Christa Santangelo, PhD: A New Theory of Teenagers (book) Alice G. Walton for The Atlantic: 12 Ways to Mess Up Your Kids Sara Bean for Empowering Parents: “I Hate You, Mom! I Wish You Were Dead!” — When Kids Say Hurtful Things Kim Abraham for Empowering Parents: Anger, Rage and Explosive Outbursts: How to Respond to Your Child or Teen’s Anger Janet Lehman for Empowering Parents: Do Your Kids Respect You? 9 Ways to Change Their Attitude Stephanie Klindt: 10 Ways To Set Appropriate Boundaries With Teens Dr. Wendy Mogel: Mothers, don't take teen rejection personally Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 10, 2019
Teaching Kids Empathy
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What is empathy, exactly? It involves both emotion and action. For our kids, it’s an acquired skill- one that needs our guidance and encouragement to be cultivated. Here’s how to model and teach empathetic behavior. In this episode we discuss why empathy needs to be taught in the first place, when is the right age to start, the difference between pity and empathy, and how becoming more empathetic can benefit yourself (and your own kids) just as it benefits others. Amy Webb says that establishing sameness is a great place to start: "Once your child has some understanding that some people are different, now is a great time to find some common ground: 'I bet she likes a lot of the same toys/games/food that you like.' You can then ask the child or the child’s caregiver what they like to do. Establishing sameness is KEY. This is when the light goes on and children realize, 'Oh, she’s just another kid, like me. We are more alike than different!'" Here are links to research and other writing on empathy that we discuss in this episode: Jacqueline Woodson’s Each Kindness is an award-winning book for school-aged children about what happens when empathy is not chosen Amy Webb for A Cup of Jo: How To Navigate a Special Needs Encounter Katie Hurley for Scary Mommy: How Can I Teach My Child Empathy? Sumathi Reddy for the Wall Street Journal: Little Children and Already Acting Mean Dr. Chris McCarthy: Turn Around Anxiety Photo by Charlein Gracia on Unsplash Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jul 03, 2019
House Rules That Work
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We asked our listeners to tell us their go-to House Rules. Whether these words to live by are hanging in your kitchen written in cutesy script on a faux-weathered piece of wood (“in this house we give hugs”) or have been implanted in your children’s brains simply by your repeatedly screaming them, here are your (and our) best House Rules for: screens, fighting, pets, personal space, the dinner table, sleep, Saturdays, secrets, and being nice. Join the conversation in our Facebook group! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 26, 2019
Finding Your Mom Tribe
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Mom tribes are a thing… for some of us. Others find it harder to make and maintain fun, easygoing friendships with other parents. But should we feel bad if we don’t have a “Sex and the City”-style group that are all equally close and whom we see three times a week?   Our listener Hester describes a mom tribe this way:  like-minded moms with similar age kids who have one another's backscan be one or many, depending on your comfort level  more precious than ever when the traditional support system of close family is not availableIn this episode, we discuss our listeners’ advice on how to find mom tribes, how to deepen connections with the one you may already have-- plus whether online tribes count (yes).  In a day and age when our siblings and parents might live far away, it’s worth investing ourselves in the communities that can happen wherever we are.  Here's how writer Jenny Anderson explains it: I used to think that community was as simple as having friends who bring a lasagna when things fall apart and champagne when things go well. Who pick up your kids from school when you can’t. But I think community is also an insurance policy against life’s cruelty; a kind of immunity against loss and disappointment and rage. My community will be here for my family if I cannot be. And if I die, my kids will be surrounded people who know and love them, quirks and warts and oddities and all. By the way, our Facebook group is a tribe of really cool, funny, supportive parents- join us! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 19, 2019
Letting Our Kids Feel Unsafe (In a Safe Way) with Guest Evangeline Lilly
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Studies show that risky play creates what Dr. Ellen Sandseter calls a “motivating, thrilling activation,” building self-confidence and self-esteem. Message received: we’re supposed to allow our kids to take risks. But how risky? Like thin-ice risky? What if our kids are fraidy-cats? What if we are? In this episode we discuss the differences between risks and hazards and how to bring healthy doses of risk into our kids’ lives. Our kids need to learn what discomfort is- and how to deal with it- in order to feel competent and confident in the world. We also talk expanding the boundaries of what’s acceptable for our little ones with Evangeline Lilly— yes, that Evangeline Lilly! The award-winning star of TV’s Lost and films like Avengers: Endgame and The Hobbit is also the author of The Squickerwonkers book series, which Evangeline wrote to "open a portal for children of all ages to face and talk about the darker sides of their own natures.” Think Lemony Snicket meets Edward Gorey, with impossibly gorgeous illustrations by Rodrigo Bastos Didier. Here’s links to research and other writing we discuss in this episode: Jennifer King Lindley for Parents: Science Says Let Your Kid Push Boundaries Dr. Mariana Brussoni: Risky Play: Losing a Childhood "Right" of Passage- and a Tool to Help Protect That Right Dr. Ellen Sandseter et all: Children's Risky Play from an Evolutionary Perspective: The Anti-Phobic Effects of Thrilling Experiences Susan Davis and Nancy Eppler-Wolff: Raising Children Who Soar: A Guide to Risk Taking in an Uncertain World. Dr. Jim Taylor: Positive Pushing: How to Raise a Successful and Happy Child Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 12, 2019
Making It Work for the Long Haul (with guest Belinda Luscombe)
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The familiarity of long-term relationships is the best thing about them. And the worst. When our spouses' chewing or throat-clearing is enough to send us around the bend, how do we make our relationships work for the long haul? We discuss the latest research with Belinda Luscombe, author of the informative (and hilarious) new book MARRIAGEOLOGY: THE ART AND SCIENCE OF STAYING TOGETHER. After writing about relationships for Time magazine for a decade, Belinda draws on expert advice (and twenty-seven years in the marital trenches) to explain why marriage is better for your health, your finances, your kids, and your happiness. Luscombe argues that we don’t find our soulmates- we become them: "This is what love is, actually. Not a fluttery feeling... but a willingness to throw down for that person, a conscious decision to do whatever you can to make that person's life a little better, more fun, less stressful." Here are links to some of the research and other things we discuss in this episode: Nick North and his “number system” for avoiding misunderstandings John Gottman’s "Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse" (that can threaten any marriage) University of Georgia study which found expressing gratitude toward your spouse was most significant predictor of marital quality Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jun 05, 2019
Sleep Hacks (For All Ages and Stages)
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Got kids? Got exhaustion. Every age has its sleep challenges, and in this episode we discuss the absolute best sleep hacks for getting babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and even older kids napping, sleeping, and staying asleep.  Here are just a few of the topics you will hear about in this chock-full-of-useful-advice episode:  the importance of routine for even the youngest childrenthe absolute essential-ness of REAL blackout shades (Amy loves this cheap and easy-to-install brand) why the sleep sack isn’t just for babies how to get preschoolers to stay in bed past the first crack of dawn when co-sleeping might be the best answer the best playlists and apps to help set the sleepytime mood why sleep training is never a matter of “one and done”  Special thanks to everyone who sent in sleep hacks for this episode, especially Lori Strong and Sara Strong of Strong Little Sleepers Dr. Sarah Mitchell of Helping Babies Sleep Patti Smith of The Pickup Line, a daily newsletter for moms Rachel of Cha Ching Queen Huckleberry Sleep App  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 29, 2019
Making Big Changes as a Family (with guest Jill Krause)
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Have you ever considered selling the house, homeschooling the kids, and traveling for a year? Has a job or life change ever thrust a cross-country move, or other radical change, upon your family? Does the very notion strike terror in your heart?  In this episode, we discuss how to prepare for— and make— big changes as a family. Change feels huger and scarier when you have kids, in part because routine and structure and familiarity are the things that kids crave, and need in order to survive. But our guest Jill Krause argues that structure, routine, and family togetherness can be found in all sorts of places. Jill’s Happy Loud Life YouTube channel has chronicled the travels of her family of six as they spent the last sixteen months touring the United States in an RV. With— you read that right— four children. Including a toddler. So nobody is saying radical change is easy. If it were, there’d be no point in undergoing it. But change is possible. And it doesn’t always mean permanent. What “change” means, in fact, is entirely up to you and your family. Here’s links to writing on this topic that we discuss in this episode: I Miss You When I Blink, Mary Laura Philpott’s terrific new memoir on giving yourself permission to change Carl Richards for NYT: Hesitant to Make That Big Life Change? Permission Granted healthychildren.org-  Helping Children Adjust to a Move Peaceful Parent Institute - Helping Children Adjust to Change We've partnered with a great new iPhone app called Airr that lets you save and share the best moments of this (or any!) podcast. With one click Airr captures the moments that stand out to you while you’re listening, and then allows you to send the clips to your friends or share them on social media. Airr is a free app that’s currently in private beta, but What Fresh Hell listeners can get early access to the app by going to http://bit.ly/airr-whatfreshhell.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 22, 2019
Do We Really Have To Play With Our Kids? When Parenting Feels Relentless
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According to researcher Patrick Ishizuka, "intensive parenting has become the dominant cultural model." Sounds about right. We spend triple the time actively engaging with our kids that our own parents did with us. And even then, we all feel guilty that we're not doing more. (Or that we kind of hate playing with LOL Surprise! Dolls, and we aren't hiding it very well.) But is more always better? Are our modern hyper-organized days creating children who have no idea how to occupy themselves, who need either a screen or one-on-one adult attention at all times? Do we *have* to play with our kids? Is there a way for parenting to feel a little less relentless? Here are links to research and other writing we discuss in this episode: Claire Cain Miller for the New York Times: The Relentlessness of Modern Parenting Rebecca Onion for Slate: Playtime is Over Suzanne M. Bianchi et al: Changing Rhythms of American Family Life Janet Lansbury: RIE Parenting Basics (9 Ways to Put Respect into Action) Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 15, 2019
Mom Wins! (and Mother's Day Fails)
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Happy Mother’s Day Week! In this episode we salute YOU, Mom. Our listeners told us their biggest mom wins and we are passing out some awards- like to Francesca, who has convinced her rambunctious two-year-old that the signs in most public spaces say that all little boys have to stand right next to their mommies.   We also address the various ways that our small children’s Mother’s Day art projects have completely ratted us out. If you’ve ever stood in the hallway outside a kindergarten classroom and seen, projected in three-inch crayoned letters, the proclamation that your own favorite food is “BEER,” we are here for you.   Check out whatfreshhellpodcast.com for Amy’s “mom prom” picture and Billy Collins’ poem The Lanyard, which perfectly encapsulates the insufficiency of any Mother’s Day gift to properly thank us for what we do. You know what? That’s the point. No thanks *can* be good enough. So enjoy those lukewarm eggs benedict and hastily-purchased greeting cards! You’re worth it- and so very much more.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 08, 2019
Bullies
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Most of us hear “bullying” and picture a sand-kicking, lunch-money-stealing menace. But today’s bullying can take other forms. Research by Dr. Charisse Nixon shows that about 7% of kids report experiencing physical aggression once a week— but that HALF of kids report experiencing relational aggression at least once a month. On the other hand, as bullying expert Signe Whitson explains, some things can get termed “bullying” that might be more correctly described as mean or rude. Knowing the difference as parents will help our children navigate tricky situations more effectively. In this episode we discuss how to help our children understand what bullying is, plus how to know if our kids are being bullied themselves— since it’s the kids who are truly frightened and struggling who are often the most likely not to tell us. We also discuss whether, how much, and in what ways parents should intervene— somewhere in the middle ground between “so find new friends!” and beating the bully up yourself. (Spoiler alert: don’t do either of those things.) Here’s links to research and resources discussed in this episode: Katie Hurley for Washington Post On Parenting: What does childhood anxiety look like? Probably not what you think. Katie Hurley for PBS Kids: What to Do If Your Child Is Being Bullied Sherri Gordon for Very Well Family: 7 Tips for Helping Kids Deal With Being Ostracized Sumathi Reddy for WSJ: Little Children and Already Acting Mean Signe Whitson for Huffington Post: Rude Vs. Mean Vs. Bullying: Defining The Differences Louis Sachar: There's a Boy in The Girls' Bathroom  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
May 01, 2019
Screen-Free Week: How To Survive and Why It's Worth It
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We all know it: our kids are on screens too much. And us parents? Well, if you haven't used Apple's Screen Time function yet, prepare to be horrified. So have you ever considered a cold-turkey no-screens experiment in your home? Screen Free Week is coming up, and it gives us the perfect opportunity to present the idea to our families. But no, you might be saying. We couldn't possibly. My kids would fight! We need that down time! There's all that candy to crush! And to that we say, fear not, because we did it first. And we are here to tell you that you won't just find hours of time- you will, as Margaret put it, see entire bandwidths of your children's brains come alive that you hadn't even realized were asleep. In this episode we discuss how to sell screen-free week to the kids, how to prepare, how to survive, and why we think it's worth it! Here are links to resources and research discussed in this episode: screenfree.org unpluggedfamily.org screenlifebalance.com Kevin Roose for NYT: Do Not Disturb: How I Ditched My Phone and Unbroke My Brain Taylor Lorenz for The Atlantic: The Hottest Chat App for Teens Is … Google Docs Daily Mail: Smartphones, tablets causing mental health issues in kids as young as two Dr. Jean Twenge for The Atlantic: Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation? Dr. Jean Twenge for The Conversation: Teens have less face time with their friends – and are lonelier than ever Dr. Craig Canapari: Prevent Sleep Problems in Kids: Keep Technology Out of The Bedroom Erika Christakis for The Atlantic: The Dangers of Distracted Parenting Catherine Price: How to Break Up With Your Phone Cal Newport: Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World Leigh Stringer: On the Importance of Boredom Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 24, 2019
Changing How We Talk To Our Kids (with guest Dr. Wendy Mogel)
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It’s easy for most parents to explain what’s wrong with how our kids speak to us: the snark, sarcasm, and eye-rolling are all things we could use a lot less of.  But could the way we talk to our kids use a little fine-tuning as well?  Dr. Wendy Mogel’s latest book, Voice Lessons for Parents: What to Say, How to Say It, and When To Listen, is just out in paperback. In this episode, Dr. Wendy Mogel tells us how to bridge the ever-more-complicated communication gap between parents and children, no matter what age our kids are. Over the last two years we've quoted Dr. Mogel more than any other parenting expert, and no surprise- this interview is full of "aha moments" and great ideas. You can read and download the full transcript here. And if you still need a little convincing that we should be focusing on the faults with our own parental communication, rather than the shortcomings of our children’s techniques, consider this quote from another classic of parenting advice, How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk: "Rather than blaming your kids for all your parenting grief, you can improve communication with them by making a few changes to the way you speak to them and set the tone of a situation. Listening, sharing feelings, and respecting your kids will make your job as a parent far easier.” Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 17, 2019
100th Episode! The Best Stories We Haven't Told Yet
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100 episodes in, and we still have a few stories left to tell! In this episode we try to stump each other by playing "True or False."  True or False: Amy's child once embarrassed her horribly in front of Gwyneth Paltrow. True or False: Margaret *almost* had her first child in a hallway. Listen and learn!  Thanks so much to all of our listeners who have helped us grow this show for one hundred episodes. We're honored that you're out there. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 10, 2019
Youth Sports: If You Must
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Is there a middle ground in youth sports? Is there a place to exist between the nine-year-old icing his shoulder after a session with his pitching coach and the kid who bats last and hates every minute and never plays a team sport again? There used to be (back in our day). There can be. But in a world where families spend 10% or more of their yearly household income on travel teams, equipment, coaches, and gear, that friendly, non-intense approach has become a lot harder to find.   In this episode we discuss how to keep the “play” in playing sports how to push back against coaches and leagues that tell third-graders they have to specialize surviving early-spring double-headers at the baseball field  when to let kids quit (70% of kids quit a team sport by age 13 because it’s too intense)  why girls are more likely to quit than boysand when to follow your kid’s passion, even if it means turning all of your weekends over to lacrosseand the only thing you should ever ever say to your child after a game. Here's links to research and studies discussed in this episode:  Kingswood Camp: Our Philosophy On Sports Michael S. Rosenwald for Washington Post: Are parents ruining youth sports? Fewer kids play amid pressure.Bruce Kelly and Carl Carchia for ESPN Magazine: The Hidden Demographics of Youth SportsEmily Barone for Time: The Astronomical Cost of Kids’ SportsAspen Institute: 10 Charts that Show Progress, Challenges to Fix Youth SportsAspen Institute: STATE OF PLAY 2018: TRENDS AND DEVELOPMENTSCaitlin Morris for Aspen Institute: Changing the Game for Girls Our main takeaway? Sports are one area where we parents need to take our eyes *off* the prize. Bring back the backyard wiffle ball game. Find places where kids of all levels can participate. And keep looking until your kid finds the sport she enjoys. It won’t always be easy, but it will probably be worth the effort.   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Apr 03, 2019
What We Thought Being a Mom Would Be Like (with guest Betsy Stover)
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Some of the ways we imagined motherhood turned out to be pretty accurate (like how much we’d enjoy Santa Claus back in our lives). But some of it was wayy off base, like how long it takes to lose a muffin top. (It's like the Tootsie Roll Pop question: the world may never know.) In this episode we discuss what lived up to, exceeded, and confounded our mom expectations with special guest Betsy Stover, mom of three boys and co-host of the hilarious podcast Why Mommy Drinks.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 27, 2019
When School Projects Become Parents' Projects
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Whether it’s the science fair, the pinewood derby, or a pre-K shoebox diorama, sooner or later every kid gets assigned a school project that is, without question, a PARENTS' project. What four-year-old can fashion her own “Dress As Your Patron Saint” costume? What sixth-grader can attempt proper MLA citation format without extreme maternal participation?  It’s not so much the projects we mind- it’s the feeling that however we handle it, we’re doing it wrong. If we make the origami cranes for the kid, we’re snowplow parents. If we send them in with a social studies project they made entirely themselves out of paper plates and crayons, we also own their cheek-burning shame when their projects pale in comparison to the professionally-produced ones of their peers.  In this episode we discuss how to discern the right amount of help such projects require: not too much, and not too little. Sure, we can help our kids win the battle of the pinewood derby… but we really want to win the war of having our kids who can someday accomplish things all by themselves.   Here’s links to research and other writing we discuss in this episode:  Susan Messina for Huffington Post: That Fake Science Fair Poster That Went Viral? I Made It. Here's Why Dana Goldstein for The Atlantic: Don't Help Your Kids With Their Homework The Broken Compass: Parental Involvement With Children’s Education  Dr. Keith Robinson and Dr. Angel Harris for the New York Times: Parental Involvement Is Overrated Wendy Wisner for Scary Mommy: It’s Obvious When Parents Complete Their Kid’s School Projects, So Please Stop easybib.com (Amy recommends for an easier way to create bibliographies) sciencebuddies.org (Amy recommends as a resource to choose science fair projects)  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 20, 2019
When You Feel Like a Failure as a Parent
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In this episode we discuss all the reasons we’ve felt like failures as mothers, why we’re never as hard on others as we are on ourselves, and what we have done to mitigate these feelings of failure in our own lives.    “I feel like I’m failing at parenting fairly often,” our listener Becky wrote when she suggested this topic.  If it makes you feel any better, Becky, you’ve got plenty of company. These self-inflicted guilt trips are nearly universal among mothers. But why? Is it the 24/7 nature of the job? Is it the admittedly high stakes that come from nurturing small humans towards successful adulthoods? Is it our parenting culture, which tells us no matter how much we do, how hard we try, there’s another mother doing it just a little bit better? We think it’s all of the above. We also think talking to other mothers is the best solution. Thanks for being part of our mothering community. Here’s links to research and other writing on this topic discussed in this episode: Regan Long for Motherly: To the Mom Who Feels Like She's Failing: You're Not. Promise. Heather Marcoux for Motherly: 66% of working parents feel like they're failing—but the system is actually failing them Doug Parker for Babble: I Feel Like I'm Failing This Parenting Thing Every Damn Day Denise Rowden for Empowering Parents: “I Feel Like a Failure as a Parent.” How to Turn That Hopeless Feeling Around Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 13, 2019
The Best Relationship Advice Ever
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We asked our listeners to tell us the best relationship advice they've ever gotten- for romantic and platonic relationships both. In this episode, we discuss the advice that has worked best for us in the past- and what we're going to try going forward.  Stuck on what "prioritizing your spouse" really means? Tired of never going to bed angry? Looking for some time-tested fight-avoiding techniques from our listeners' great-grandmothers? You'll find much to think about in this episode! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Mar 06, 2019
Helping Kids Manage Anxiety
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Anxiety is a natural response to stress. Sometimes it’s even useful, like when it alerts us to danger. But when anxiety grips our children, they often don’t (can’t) explain how they’re feeling, and their inner turmoil can take over. As psychotherapist Lynn Lyons explains: Anxiety is a normal part of growing, changing and learning. But worry and anxiety can also become powerful and restrictive, disrupting families in ways that lead to avoidance, missed school, outbursts, conflict, and often depression if left untreated. In this episode we discusscoping strategies for all ages and stageshow anxiety in children can be easy to missthe negative behaviors anxious kids might exhibit why letting our kids avoid anxiety-causing situations is counterproductivehow anxiety "lives in the future” We also interview Dr. Lisa Damour about her new book Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls. Dr. Damour’s book is full of empathetic insight and useful takeaways for helping our anxious daughters (and sons). We discuss how to help anxious kids "settle their glitter" and how to use our own moments of stress and anxiety as opportunities for modeling. Here’s links to other research and writing discussed in this episode: Lindsay Holmes for Huffington Post Life: 10 Things People Get Wrong About Anxiety  Liz Matheis for anxiety.org: Identifying Signs of Anxiety in Children CDC: Data and Statistics on Children's Mental Health Metropolitan CBT: About Anxiety  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 27, 2019
Middle Kids
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Most people believe middle children are prone to feeling insecure and left out because they get less attention. Their primary emotional state? Jealousy of siblings. Studies show that we think these problems are real and inescapable. A City College of New York study found participants were most likely to use words like “overlooked” to describe middle children— while completely unlikely to use the word “spoiled.”  Psychologist Dr. Alfred Adler first proposed a “middle child syndrome” in the 1920s, and ever since, most of us have assumed the Jan-Brady worst. But Dr. Adler also believed that middle children’s place in the birth order made them “uniquely poised to succeed.” Are we getting it wrong? Are there lifelong benefits for kids who grow up neither the pressured oldest nor the coddled youngest?  In this episode we discuss: “middleborns” vs “classic middles,” and how both are disappearing from the American demographicthe negativity of the “middle child syndrome,” and whether or not it bears outwhy middle children are more independent and open-mindedwhy middle children have a greater appetite for riskhow the “ambient neglect” a middle child sometimes receives can be an incredible giftWriter Adam Sternbergh, himself a middle, says that "being a middle child is not something you aspire to; it’s something that happens to you.” While that may be true, it also turns out that we should perhaps all be jealous of them. Being a middle kid can be secretly great. Here's links to research and other writing on the topic discussed in this episode: Adam Sternbergh for The Cut: The Extinction of the Middle Child Dr. Catherine Salmon:The Secret Power of Middle Children: How Middleborns Can Harness Their Unexpected and Remarkable Abilities Lindsay Dodgson for Business Insider: 'Middle child syndrome' doesn't actually exist — but it still might come with some surprising psychological advantages Risk-taking middle-borns: A study on birth- order and risk preferences Abi Berwager Schreier for Romper: Do Middle Children Really Have More Issues? Jan Brady Wasn't The Only One Alphaparent: Optimum Family Size Facts Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 20, 2019
The Best Advice Ever
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Sometimes you gotta consult the experts. We asked our listeners to tell us their best life advice, and as usual, you all delivered! This episode is full of great advice on -making choices -doing what matters -ignoring the haters -and liking ourselves a little better. Join the conversation in our new Facebook group! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 13, 2019
Punishing Kids: What Works and What Doesn't
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When it comes to disciplining our kids, having "the punishment fit the crime” seems like a reasonable goal. But what if the “crime” in question is hitting a sibling?  And what makes a punishment good in the first place? Is our primary goal dissuasion or providing insight? How can our approach to discipline help our children make a better choice next time- even if they’re not worried about being caught? In this episode we talk about what does and doesn’t work for punishing kids of all ages, and discusswhy once you’ve threatened a punishment, you have to follow throughwhy shaming is unproductive (and ineffective)why punishments for younger children need to be “logical and immediate"why punishments for older children need to go beyond taking their phoneswhy, once a kid has served the time for her crime, a parent needs to let it goIn the end, we think punishments work best when we keep our eyes on our longer-term parenting goals: teaching our kids accountability and helping them learn to self-regulate, while also ensuring domestic tranquility (and providing for the common defense).  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Feb 06, 2019
Making It Work When You Go Back To Work
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We asked our listeners to tell us their best tips (and hardest struggles) around returning to the workplace— whether it’s been six weeks, six months, or a few years. Our listener Greta suggested this topic. After three-and-a-half years at home with her child, she "moved across the country, started kid in preschool, and started back at work at the same time.” Dr. Lisa D’Amour says that change equals stress, and if that’s the case… that's a whole lot of change. In this episode we discuss: dealing with the guilt (right or wrong, many mothers feel it)the surprising usefulness of the commutewhy your first day back at work should be a Wednesday the layers of challenge that breastfeeding can add. To those of you about to pump, we salute you. Here’s a link to breastfeeding-at-work rights by statehow to approach your boss about a job share If you’re a mom contemplating a onramping attempt after a quite lengthy stay-at-home gap, we talked about that a little in this episode- and then decided that deserves its own conversation! That episode is coming soon. In the meantime, here are two back-to-work resources suggested by listener Gretchen:  - iRelaunch - Career Relaunch When all else fails, listen to our listener Rachael:  "I went back after 12 weeks. It was tough, but I can say now that it’s been another 12 weeks, it gets easier. You get a routine. And the baby honestly does great at daycare." What helped with your own back-to-work transition? Tell us in the comments?  Photo by Nastuh Abootalebi on Unsplash Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 30, 2019
Surviving a Toddler and a Newborn
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Parenthood is hard. Different stages have different challenges. But there’s one particular phase that is of legendary, Kilimanjaro-climbing difficulty: surviving the first few months as the parent of two children, a toddler and a newborn.  This episode was suggested by Raya, who says:  "At one point I had a newborn and newly-turned-two-year-old. With my husband working seven days a week, I found myself alone the majority of the time with both kids. My kids are now one and three and it is getting easier, but those first eight months where probably the hardest thing I have experienced.” We agree on both counts: it gets easier. It may also be one of the hardest things we ever experienced. But here’s how to get through it! We asked our listeners to tell us their best advice for the toddler/newborn stage, and in this episode we discussthe best gear to have on handthe sanity saversthe things to do ahead of time in the moments you have one or both hands freehow to let people helpthe singular importance of consistent napping (for you too Mom)why Moana is apparently the movie to have on repeatIf you survived this stage and lived to tell the tale, take a bow (seriously, you deserve it). If you’re in it now: we see you, and you got this. If you’re about to enter this stage: okay, yes, it’s really hard. But you’ll get through it as long as you- in our listener Rachel’s words- “give yourself so much grace.”  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 23, 2019
Having People Over
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Entertaining at home is kind of like exercise: you’re so happy that you did it, but that doesn’t stop you from dreading it the next time around. Who should you invite? What should you serve? Will you ever find a playlist that won't unexpectedly veer into gangster rap or Kidzbop?  In this episode we discuss ways to take the stress out of having people over:lowering your standards (okay, easier said than done, but give it a shot)sticking with what works- nail down a few go-to dishes, and then make them every timehaving buffets instead of sit-down dinnershosting potlucks (although Amy claims these can actually be *more* work for the host)figuring out what music you’re going to play before the doorbell ringsAnd here’s some useful links for more ideas- and more reassurance: The Simple Dollar: How to Organize a Cost-Effective and Fun Dinner Party Laura Gaskill for Forbes: 8 Stress-Busting Tips For Hosting Small Gatherings Nancy Mitchell for Apartment Therapy: Why Doesn’t Anyone Have Parties Anymore? Teddy Wayne for NYT: The Death of the Party GfK: Half of Americans entertain guests in their homes at least once a month Isadora Allman for Psychology Today: On Entertaining and Being Entertained Tony Naylor for The Guardian: The new rules of dinner parties: don't be on time – and bring more booze than you need Having people over is always worth the effort. Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the potluck! Photo by Kelsey Chance on Unsplash Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 16, 2019
The Birds and The Bees: Having 'The Talk'
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Yikes. Do we really have to have “The Talk”? Yes, we do… and sooner than we’d probably like to think. Studies show that giving our kids appropriate information *before* they need it not only makes them more likely to make good decisions once they become sexually active— it also may delay the age at which such activities will begin.  In this episode we discuss:  the ages and stages of The Talk (a four-year-old gets a different answer than a preteen)why you don’t want your kids’ peers to be the arbiters of this informationwhy there’s not one “talk,” but many (or should be)how to be an “askable parent” why mothers are usually the parents tasked with these conversationshow internet parental blockers can also prevent our kids from seeing useful sex-ed contenthow to punt when you’re caught off guard (which is fine as long as you circle back later)And here’s links to research and studies we discuss in this episode:  John Sharry, Solution Talk: Facts of Life: At What Age Should We Tell Our Children About Sex? Center For Young Women’s Health at Boston Children’s Hospital: Talking to Your Tween about Sexuality: A Guide for Parents Lola’s personal, honest, real-life guide to your first period Advocates for Youth: Are Parents and Teens Talking About Sex? advocatesforyouth.org Dr. Colleen Diiorio et al: Journal of Adolescent Health: Communication about sexual issues: mothers, fathers, and friends Rebecca Ruiz for Mashable: Internet gatekeepers block sex ed content because algorithms think they’re porn It’s up to us to keep the conversation going on these topics. And if you’d rather stick your head in the sand, keep in mind it doesn’t have to be only about the improbable mechanics of it all. Here’s great advice from the Center for Young Women’s Health: Remember that sexuality is a much larger topic than sexual intercourse. It also includes topics such as gender, intimacy, sexual orientation… Talking to your tween about sexuality is an opportunity to share your beliefs about healthy behaviors and relationships with them. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 09, 2019
Our Goals for 2019
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New year, new datebook— and some very familiar goals. But this is the year we make things HAPPEN. We’re going to start by taking Jon Acuff’s advice to make our goals smaller- we mean absurdly achievable- and build from there. Acuff studied goal-setting and found that People with smaller goals are 63% more successful. Go big might be a good slogan for a gym wall, but if you really want to win, go small. In this episode we discuss our goals for the coming year, including: * Margaret’s “most massive purge” of her home * Amy’s word for 2019: OPEN * facing our fears * engaging less with our kids when they’re being arbitrarily cranky and challenging * becoming more curious about our spouses’ perspectives * entertaining more * reading more fiction What are your goals for the coming year? Tell us! Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Jan 02, 2019
Live Show Bonus! Chappaqua, NY 12/1/18
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This episode contains excerpts from our latest What Fresh Hell Live! show, performed at the Chappaqua Performing Arts Center in Chappaqua, NY on December 1, 2018. Interested in having What Fresh Hell: Laughing in the Face of Motherhood come to your town? We book live shows into performing arts centers around the country. We also do smaller custom events for Parents’ Associations and other groups. Drop us a line at info@whatfreshhellpodcast.com to hear more about how you can get our show to your town. Even just telling us there’s interest can get the ball rolling. You can always check out our website (whatfreshhellpodcast.com) to see where we will be appearing next. We’ll be making some 2019 announcements soon! Photo: Chad David Kraus Photography         Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 26, 2018
Holiday Traditions: The Good, The Bad, The Wish-We-Never-Started
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’Tis the season for traditions— most of them shopped for, planned, and generally upheld by moms. And for some of us, sending 300 holiday cards or creating a new tableau for a six-inch elf every night before bed really gets us in the holiday spirit.  But most of us, at this time of year, have more to do than hours to do it. Many of us think we’re done shopping and only then remember Aunt Doris who is impossible to buy for (and has expressed specific disappointment in gift cards). Many of us have kids at whom we may have raised our voices after the fifth or sixth question about when we were going to make all the Christmas cookies this year.  So we asked our listeners:    What are the holiday traditions that you love and work great for your family? What are the things you’d rather never do again but feel like you can’t stop now?    In this episode, we discuss your responses, plus: how to get out from under the traditions you wished you never started what to consider before letting a new tradition take root (keeping in mind that anything that happens at this time of year will immediately be deemed “something we do every year”) why the Elf on the Shelf might be a slippery slope to the full-on surveillance state why the joy of anticipation is at least as good as the moment anticipated how the Danish concept of hygge factors in to all of this easy holiday traditions like “Christmas Adam,” which as far as we can tell mostly involves holiday pajamas and Rankin-Bass specials Lean into the hygge this holiday season. Push back against the incremental spend, the just running out for one more thing. Lean into the anticipation, because that’s the sweet spot. Oh, and Christmas lights. Lots of them. (They do wonders for Seasonal Affective Disorder.) Special thanks to our guest comedy bit reader for this week: Sean Conroy of The Long Shot Podcast! Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 19, 2018
How Not To Go Insane in the Winter
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As the days get shorter, and colder, and darker, our listener Tamar suggested we do an episode on “how not to go insane when you can’t go outside.” (If anyone has any ideas for her, please reach out.) Seriously, our energy levels are especially depleted during the winter. It’s science: our bodies get less vitamin D, produce more melatonin (which encourages sleep) and less serotonin (which fights depression). No wonder we all want to put on the fuzzy pants, get under the covers, and call it a day. But we’re parents. Which means that while our own batteries are totally run down, we also have to deal with cranky kids who’ve watched way too many YouTube videos today and we should have gotten them outside but it’s 4:35 pm and it’s as dark as deep space out there and never has bedtime seemed so far away. In this episode we discuss:    the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder— and how to tell if our kids have it too the “exercise effect,” and why we resist exercise just when we need it the most why fresh air is actually a thing how to keep our kids busy on long days indoors with “theme days” and other new approaches to familiar things how to tell if you’re *in* or *out* of Daylight Savings Time (just stop and think: has daylight been saved? If it’s dark at 4:30, then no, it hasn’t… and therefore you are not in Daylight Savings Time.) And here’s links to some research and other things discussed in this episode: healthychildren.org: Winter Blues – Seasonal Affective Disorder and Depression Laura T. Coffey for Today: Batty from being cooped up with kids? Here are 9 great cures for cabin fever Valerie Williams for Mommyish: 10 Things Only Parents With The Winter Blues Will Understand Sasa Woodruff for NPR: A New Prescription For Depression: Join A Team And Get Sweaty Kirsten Weir for the American Psychological Association: The Exercise Effect Pennsylvania Department of Health: Cold Weather Outdoor Play Boosts Immune System Association between physical exercise and mental health in 1·2 million individuals in the USA between 2011 and 2015: a cross-sectional study   Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 12, 2018
Sometimes We Lose It (with guests Heather Turgeon and Julie Wright)
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Sometimes we lose it. Really lose it. We’re not talking “How many times do I have to tell you to put your shoes on” in a slightly elevated tone. We’re talking… well, Dr. Stuart Shanker calls the emotional state in question “red brain,” and you get the picture. When we’re in red brain, yelling can actually feel pretty good. It’s also singularly ineffective. Here’s how Dr. Alan Kazdin of the Yale Parenting Center explains it: If the goal of the parent is catharsis— I want to get this out of my system and show you how mad I am— well, yelling is probably perfect. If the goal is to change something in the child, or develop a positive habit in the child, yelling is not the way to do that. But clamping down on our anger isn’t effective, either— in fact, studies prove that attempting to do so actually increases our sympathetic nervous system responses and makes us feel more angry. So this is all pretty tricky. But in this episode we discuss: techniques for recognizing red brain before we’re in it why we sometimes treat strangers better than our loved ones Margaret’s “self-doghouse” technique how to properly make it up to our kids after we blow up And after discussing what NOT to say, Amy discusses what TO say to our kids with with Heather Turgeon and Julie Wright, the authors of Now Say This: The Right Words To Solve Every Parenting Dilemma. Heather and Julie explain their extremely effective “ALP” technique for communicating with our kids— Attune, Limit-Set, Problem-Solve. They also explain the importance of “the repair set” and modeling emotional health for our kids, particularly after we have not been our best selves. Here’s links to some of the other research and studies discussed in this episode: Margaret’s surprisingly useful “family doghouse” plaque Stephen Marche for NYT: Why You Should Stop Yelling At Your Kids Kelly for Happy You, Happy Family: Why Every Parent Should Know the Magic 5:1 Ratio – And How to Do It Dr. Karen Leith et al for Journal of Personality and Social Psychology: Why Do Bad Moods Increase Self-Defeating Behavior? Dr. Ralph Erber et al: On being cool and collected: Mood regulation in anticipation of social interaction. Sue Shellenbarger for the Wall Street Journal: Talking to Your Kids After You Yell and our episode on yelling, which is kinda the same but kinda different.  Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices
Dec 05, 2018
Saying No When Other Parents are Saying Yes
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