No Such Thing As The Perfect Parent
Let me say, firstly, that there’s no such thing as a perfect parent. I bet before you became a parent, you had all sorts of ideas about the kind of parent you were going to be. You were going to be patient and thoughtful, even after being woken up at 3 a.m. for the fifth […]
How Do I Develop My Child’s Talents?
Perhaps you’ve just watched your little one in the school play and you think, “Wow, he can really act and sing too!” The next question you need to ask is, “How do I develop my child’s talents?” Knowing how to develop a child’s talent is an important part of helping children find their place in […]
Why Gentle Parenting Will Make You and the Kids Miserable.
Coming right out and not only telling people that a particular parenting style doesn’t work but also why gentle parenting will make you and the kids miserable needs some explanation, I admit. Let’s start with this. A 12- to 15-month-old toddler slaps her mom right in the face. A third person captures mom’s startled but […]
How Income Changes What Parents Worry About
You probably don’t think about it much as it’s not on most people’s radar, but have you ever wondered how income changes what parents worry about and, if so, what are the differences? Surely all parents worry about the same things, don’t they? Worries such as whether or not their child goes to sleep or […]
Why Is My Child Unhappy?
Some children are happy with very little. Some spend a lot of time being miserable, no matter what they have. If you are asking yourself, “Why do I have an unhappy child?” you’ve come to the right place because I’m going to tell you a story that you’ll likely see much of your own struggles […]
My Child Hates The Car Seat
Hi Annie, How are you? I hope you had a good Christmas. I have a problem in that my child hates the car seat. She’s two. Every time we go on a trip, she screams that she wants out. We’ve tried various ways to help her enjoy the trip, such as car snacks, toys, and […]
How Long Is Too Long In A Baby Swing
Hi Annie, My question is how long is too long in a baby swing? We have a 3.5 month old baby girl who is content in a baby swing while we eat or make supper. She is also in the swing on occasion during the day while my wife makes lunch, etc.However, my wife said […]
These parents need to get their act together!
Hi Annie, Our niece Kaitlyn is about 3 1/2 years old and her parents need to get their act together. She runs the show. Kaitlyn tells her mom and dad what to do. She wants nothing to do with anyone unless she can be the boss; she does not respond to questions from adults (gets […]
My Child Whines
Hi Annie, My child whines. In fact both my kids have a real problem with whining. When my daughter went through it, I thought it was a stage and it would stop by itself, but it hasn’t. She’s now five, and my son is copying the habit, and he’s only two. I’m a single mom, […]
Why Raising a Resilient Child Matters
So, if you want to know why raising a resilient child matters, ask yourself this: Are you planning to live forever? No? Oh, I’m glad we got that out of the way. That’s because if you don’t plan to live forever or, frankly, aren’t able to, that means your children will have to fend for […]
My Child Feels Left Out
When any parent says my child feels left out I feel for them. Theres no doubt that watching your child being left out of the play is heartbreaking. All parents want the best for their child and when your child is purposely left out by others, it reminds us of our own painful experiences that […]
The Key To Parenting Is To Keep It Simple
I’m sure you’ve heard the KISS principle, and yes, it certainly applies to parenting. In fact, I’d have to say that the key to parenting is to keep it simple. However, trying to keep it simple often presents us with a problem because it seems as if society at large likes things to be complex. […]
4 Parenting Sentences You Should Watch
In this article, I’ll suggest 4 parenting sentences you should watch in terms of whether or not it’s a good idea to say them. That’s because the sentences I’m going to draw to your attention are very easy to say. In fact, they’re so easy to say that you probably say them all the time […]
Is Happiness All There Is?
There’s a great song I love. It goes like this: “If that’s all there is, then let’s keep dancing. Let’s break out the booze and have a ball.” I couldn’t agree more, especially about breaking out the booze on a warm summer evening, but it does beg the question: is happiness all there is? Is […]
I Can’t Get My Toddler To Sleep
Dear Annie. I can’t get my toddler to sleep! Our 13-month-old son started at a day home 3 weeks ago when I went back to work, and he does not seem to be adjusting very well. He cries and cries, and he won’t take any naps there, so he is exhausted when we pick him […]
I Need A Good Night’s Sleep
Hello Annie. Help! I need a good night’s sleep! I have a baby boy who will be 6 months old on January 31, and he is my first child. “What do you do about sleep?” is my question, and I’m not sure if you work with babies this young. My husband and I have read […]
Teaching Kids Gratitude
Teaching kids gratitude makes the world go round. All parents hope they will create appreciative children. So when it comes to teaching kids gratitude, let’s face it: nobody wants their child to be the one grabbing their birthday presents in a frenzy, shoving whatever lovely and thoughtful gift they just got aside in a desperate […]
How Do I Improve My Child’s Imagination?
For those of us who had imaginative childhoods, I’m sure one of the biggest questions on any parent’s mind is, “How do I improve my child’s imagination?” To me, there is nothing more beautiful than the imagination of a child. When I was little, in elementary school, I wanted to fly. The dream of flight […]
Where You Choose To Bring Up Your Kids
Where you choose to bring up your kids, matters a lot. That’s probably not a popular thing to say right about now, as so many of our cities and other living spaces are often, from a kid’s point of view, mind-numbingly boring. Where you choose to bring up your kids: Your environment impacts your children. […]
Parenting The Strong Willed Child
Would you like to know how to parent the strong-willed child? Parenting a strong-willed child is not easy, but I’m going to tell you something wonderful. Even though you may not feel it at times, you’re lucky. You see, I understand. If you’re the parent of a strong-willed or otherwise challenging child, it’s easy to […]
How To Handle A Temper Tantrum In Public
Would you like to know how to handle a temper tantrum in public? Let’s first acknowledge that there is nothing worse than having to handle a temper tantrum in public. All those judgmental stares and half-whispered comments just as you’re standing there with your toddler’s arms and legs flailing all over the sidewalk. So if […]
My Daughter Refuses To Clean Her Room
“My daughter refuses to clean her room” is a complaint I actually hear quite a lot, and not to be sexist or anything, I hear it more often referring to daughters’ bedrooms than I do those of sons. I don’t know if I can say girls seem to collect more stuff, but irrespective, here’s the […]
Do Parenting Tips Work?
Parenting tips are everywhere, but the question is: do parenting tips work? All around us, they fill magazines, the airwaves, and the internet, and many parents rely on them not just for little snippets of information but for their wholesale parenting approach. Which begs the question: do parenting tips work? And, if they don’t, why […]
How To Get Your Child To Listen
How to get your child to listen is a question that keeps many parents up at night. It’s frustrating when kids simply don’t listen to you, and you end up having to say the same thing over and over again. Here’s a question from Nancy: Hi Annie, I’ve got 3 kids; my oldest is turning […]
Child Behaviour Solutions that Actually Work
Are you looking for child behaviour solutions that actually work? As we approach Thanksgiving, I’ve no doubt there are parents out there trying to drift off to sleep at night with their calm thoughts being interrupted by visions of their preschooler screaming their head off during Thanksgiving dinner. Instead of enjoying warm fuzzies and thoughts […]
Ten Tips For Successful Parenting
So there you are, perhaps pregnant or weighed down with diapers, and there’s a snot streak left across your sleeve from your toddler’s nose from the fourth meltdown that morning, and you’ve been wondering thoughts like, “What the heck am I doing?” All of a sudden, you take a glance at your smartphone and notice […]
The Trouble with Online Parenting Advice
So what’s the trouble with online parenting advice? Looking for online parenting advice? Sounds fair enough. So what’s the trouble with online parenting advice? After all, what’s wrong with reaching out for guidance at the end of a night with the kids and looking for help, particularly when any parent I know would much […]
I Need Parenting Help!
Hi Annie, I live in Chicago, so I am not near you, but maybe you could point me in the direction I need. I have three children. 12, 4, and 16 months old, and I need parenting help!I am a stay-at-home mom that never seems to accomplish anything. My 12-year-old is in school. The four-year-old […]
My Son Won’t Sleep!
Hi Annie, My son won’t sleep! He’s 3 1/2 years old and gets up 1–4 times a night, comes into our room, and says, “Mom.” I go back and tuck him in. Sometimes it’s that easy; other times it’s a battle, and he shouts, “I don’t want to go to sleep.” Sometimes he says, “No, […]
6 tips for well-behaved kids
Ok, 6 tips for well-behaved kids. There’s always a lot of discourse in the parenting world about behaviour. When I start working with parents, they have all kinds of approaches to their children’s behaviour, some of which obviously work better than others. Combine that with all the behaviour tips available online, and parenting can be […]
Want To Be Your Child’s Friend?
Do you want to be your child’s friend? All parents love their kids, and pretty much all of us, I’m sure, have wonderful dreams of doing things together and getting along well as adults. But just as we recognize that it may be great to be your child’s friend when they’re an adult, is it […]
Should You Give Toddlers Choices?
One of the first big questions of parenthood is: Should you give toddlers choices? The answer to that question is yes and no. What do I mean by that? Well, read on, because the answer is two-fold, and getting it right is extremely important to both your peace and that of your toddler. Firstly, if […]
My Son Hits My Daughter
Siblings fighting usually drives most parents up a wall, and getting a question like “What do I do when my son hits my daughter?” is an extremely common parenting question. Usually it’s an odd hit or push there, but sometimes the behaviour becomes extreme, and then it becomes a far bigger parent problem to solve. […]
The Problem With Parenting Today
I made a post on Facebook the other day alluding to the gigantic North American industry known as the “parenting industry.” I call it the problem with parenting today. I bet you didn’t think of parenting as an industry, but it is, and it’s huge. As I alluded to in my post, though, it’s not […]
Thinking Of Calling Nanny 911’s Number?
Are Nanny 911 shows fact or fiction? Are you thinking of calling Nanny 911’s number? We’ve all seen the TV shows. The screaming children, replayed indefinitely. The tantrums, the hitting and biting, and then Nanny comes in wearing some Downton Abbey-style uniform, and in a week, the kids are all sitting there like little princes […]
How To Build Your Child’s Self Esteem
If you’re sitting out there wondering how to build your child’s self-esteem, I want to start with a joke. One of George Carlin’s more endearing moments, language aside, was when he made fun of the parental obsession of refusing to look reality in the face and say those all-important character-building words to your children, along […]
Free Range Parenting
I’ve always loved the concept of “free range parenting.” But I recall one trip a while back when I went skiing for the weekend. I actually went to the ski resort, did a few runs, managed not to kill myself, handed in my equipment, and did what I really wanted to do, which was relax, […]
Everyone Wants To Be A Star
I love humble, don’t you? There’s nothing nicer in the world than meeting someone who is just terrific in whatever way but doesn’t really know it, or at least if they do, they’re humble about their abilities. The trouble is, that’s not what I see. Instead, everyone wants to be a star. A case in […]
The Sexualization Of Childhood
The other day I was blown away by a CBC documentary called “Sexted Up Kids,” which, as the title suggests, is about the sexualization of childhood. This was no gentle prod about the state of the world, but instead an “in your face” account of the sexualization of childhood and how horribly pervasive it is […]
Ways To Teach Resilience
Every time I think about climate change, I think about Calgary and the floods that ravaged the community in 2013. I have the same thoughts about the BC flood of 2021, from which many communities still haven’t recovered. As I remember how all those flooded areas looked, I think of how the community came together […]
Is The Education System Failing Us?
There is a lot of discussion society-wide at the moment with regards to the question of education, namely, is the education system failing us? A while back, Margaret Wente, one of the columnists for the Globe and Mail, was on a roll. First, she lamented our children’s seeming inability to grasp the concepts of math. […]
Ways To Make Your Child Happy
Like any parent, I’m sure you want to know ways to make your child happy. The answer is really quite simple. It’s actually one simple secret, but let me set the stage for you. Recently, I came back from holidays in Europe, where I went to Holland to see and be with all my husband’s […]
How Do You Teach A Child To Be Kind?
First think about why you’re teaching morality? Most parents want their children to be kind, thoughtful, and decent to other people and to know right from wrong. In short, to be moral So the question is, “How do you teach a child to be kind?” All parents are attuned to screams of “I want it; […]
My Child Is Special
Is Your Child Really Special? I have to say something scary is happening to words, and it’s already having a big impact on our kids. If you’re a mom or dad, you’re probably saying it to yourself many times each week. What is it? Well, you’re probably saying, “My child is special.” Whispering to your […]
How Do You Stop A Child Interrupting
Dear Annie, I am looking for some advice or suggestions on how to teach my 6-year-old about personal space. He is a very social child and enjoys being around kids, adults, etc., but he always seems to need to get the attention of others. When he arrives at school, he yells, gives hugs, and just […]
How To Handle A Child That Screams
Annie – I’d like to know how to handle a child that screams. Specifically, my 19-month-old niece has a screaming problem. She will scream for no reason, and it is a piercing scream, and her parents don’t know what to do about it. It is very disruptive, and when we are all having dinner, she […]
How Can I Help My Child Overcome Fear
Hi Annie, I have a question. How can I help my child overcome fear? Recently, my son has started to get really worried about me. I had to help clean up after a party the other night and left after the fireworks, and my husband put him to bed. He cried for two straight hours, […]
My Toddler Won’t Sleep Alone
Hi Annie. My toddler won’t sleep alone. I have a twenty month old son and a six month old daughter and we’ve just moved house and given our son his own room for the first time, but the trouble is he hates it. He used to have his bed in our room and I’ve done […]
I Can’t Potty Train My Son
Dear Annie, We have a wonderful 3-year-old boy that we are at odds with over potty training. The issue is that I can’t potty train my son, or at least both of us are having difficulty. Both my husband and I have been watching for the typical signs of readiness and thought we were ready. […]
How Do I Change My Baby’s Routine?
Hello Annie. I’d like to know, “How do I change my baby’s routine?” In fact, I’m having trouble establishing any kind of routine at all for my 4-month-old son. He does have some semblance of a routine, but it’s very variable. He’s fine with it one week and not the next. His feedings are all […]
Child Has No Respect
Hello Annie, My best friend has adopted a girl from China, and she has no respect. Her daughter is 10 years old now. She has ADHD, high-functioning autism, and many other diagnoses. She is out of control and has no respect for her mother. Her mother wants to change things, but when this kid doesn’t […]
My Child Sleeps With Me
Dear Annie. My child sleeps with me and I don’t know what to do. But first, congratulations on your website; it is very helpful! Lately, I am having problems as my 15-month-old son wakes up crying during the night. I initially thought he was experiencing teething pains, but when I picked him up from his […]
I Have An Unhappy Baby
Hello Annie, We have 17-week-old fraternal twin girls, and I have an unhappy baby. We recently relocated the family to Calgary, where we have no support network or friends, and we appear to be having issues with one of the girls. While twin A is always content and happy (and easy to pacify), twin B […]
How Do I Get My Child To Sleep By Himself?
Hi Annie. I was looking for some information or insight on the internet when I came across your website as I am constantly trying to figure out “How do I get my child to go to sleep by himself?” My son is 7 years old. He still needs one of us to lay down with […]
My Child Won’t Stop Hitting People
Hi Annie, My child won’t stop hitting people. My son turned three a few weeks ago. The one thing we are struggling with is anger. When he gets hurt physically, if he bumps his head or falls down, or emotionally, if another child pushes him or screams at him, he will start to cry and […]
I Hate Crafts
Hi Annie, This may seem like a weird question or comment, I guess, but I feel guilty, but I hate crafts. I’m just no good at them, and they bore me! I get that it’s cold and there’s not much else to do, so we meet with my girlfriends and their kids a lot for […]
I Don’t Want To Yell At My Child
Hi Annie, I don’t want to yell at my child, but I’d like to know how to get my eight-year-old boy to do things without me having to yell at him. It’s not like he didn’t hear me the first time. Hi Lesley, I know what you mean. Many parents say to me, […]
Help My Child Won’t Poop
Hi Annie Help! My child won’t poop! How do I get my 5-year-old to poop? Doctors say it is behaviour-related, not medical.
How To Help My Child Deal With Change
I’d like to know how to my child deal with change? It is soon summer camp season, and my five-year-old son is excited to attend. Last year we found while he LOVES camps, he is always sad to see them end and becomes anxious about the next one- he really likes routine and for things […]
My Child Won’t Sit On The Potty
Hi Annie, My child won’t sit on the potty. Jade is terrified of the potty and the toilet. If I ask her if she wants to go without a diaper, she has a meltdown. She is genuinely scared, and although I am in no immediate rush to potty train, I would like to try and […]
How To Handle Transitions
Hi Annie, I’m looking for some advice on how to handle transitions. I will be returning to work from my second maternity leave in March. My main concern is for my 5-year-old daughter. She has really enjoyed me being home, being able to pick her up from kindergarten every day, and just having me at […]
My Child Vomits When Upset.
Hi Annie, My child vomits when upset. I have three children, ages eight, six, and two and a half, and one of them vomits when upset. On top of that, we are having a lot of issues with all 3 of them, but right now, my biggest issue is that I cannot get my 2 […]
My Child Has Food Allergies
Hi Annie I’ve recently found out that my child has food allergies. He’s five and has high food sensitivities. We have to eliminate dairy, gluten, eggs, and citrus by 95% for the next 3–6 months. My son is very sad to see his favourite foods go. How do I help him process this? We have […]
My Son Has Low Self Esteem
Hello Annie, My son has low self-esteem. He’s eight. I always try to tell him how well he does things, yet he does not believe me. He constantly thinks he has to do everything perfect the first time and melts down if he doesn’t. Do you have any solutions or recommend any good books I […]
My Child Won’t Sleep!
Hi Annie, My child won’t sleep! My daughter is one, and I can’t get her on a decent sleeping schedule. Any suggestions? Michelle. Hello Michelle, Thanks for the question. I don’t have a lot of information to go on here, so I’m going to do my best to guess what may be happening to you. One […]
What To Do About Child Clothing Sensitivity
Hello Annie. My 7-year-old granddaughter is having daily battles with her parents about getting dressed. It’s just that I don’t know what to do about children’s clothing sensitivity. Each day is at least a half-hour of yelling, screaming, and crying. They have purchased the clothes she picks out and “wants,” but it has not helped.
Child Says Hurtful Things
Would you like to know what to do when your child says hurtful things? One mom below contacted me to tell me that her child says hurtful things. Words can be hurtful, and none more so than when you’re called mean or kids say they hate you. So, if any parent reports that their child […]