This sweet set of photographs by photographer Johan Bävman depicts Swedish men caring for their children during paternity leave. Many of these men indicate that they are still considered rather unusual despite Sweden's notably progressive stance on paternity leave. The UK is changing, too: from this coming month, paternity leave will be more generous for men thanks to the efforts of the Lib Dems.
Is your family looking for an inclusive alternative to the Boy Scouts of America? Lance Finney posts a rundown on the Skepchick parenting blog Grounded Parents. The list is based on research he did when working to start a group with families from the Ethical Society of St. Louis that was “fully inclusive of religious belief, ethnic background, sexual orientation, and gender.” [more inside]
Amy Chua's anecdotal "tiger mom" manifesto meets some peer-reviewed data-driven research. Oh snap! [more inside]
"What appears as discipline or “tough love” from one perspective often appears as abuse from another."
On Tiger Moms: "What the controversy surrounding Chua demonstrates, however inadvertently, is that parenting techniques are always grounded in basic assumptions about the way things are and what matters to us. And they are always guided by some answer to the most fundamental of ethical questions—how to live?" [more inside]
"Redshirting" is the practice of holding eligible children back from kindergarten, with supposed advantages for them academically. Though there are questions as to it's efficacy long term.
In Sweden, a generation of kids who've never been spanked. 'Numerous studies have been conducted in recent years to support the theory that physical forms of discipline do more harm than good' and the effects of physical discipline linger for adults. Most parents in the U.S. and many other countries firmly believe that physical punishment is an important tool in controlling their children. But in Sweden, there's now a whole generation that doesn't believe corporal punishment has any place in disciplining any child. In 1979 Sweden became the first country to ban physical punishment of children. [more inside]
Breastfeeding in Mongolia The author describes the ubiquity of breastfeeding and breast milk in Mongolia, and her experience over a three-year period of breastfeeding her infant in Mongolia and in the West.
Most wives are Mad at Dad. "We're mad that having children has turned our lives upside down much more than theirs. We're mad that these guys, who can manage businesses or keep track of thousands of pieces of sports trivia, can be clueless when it comes to what our kids are eating and what supplies they need for school. And more than anything else, we're mad that they get more time to themselves than we do."
Vanity on the rise among young people today. Findings from a recent San Diego State University workshop shows that a couple decades worth of self-esteem parenting, may have engendered an entire generation of narcissists.
Only Children have a different set of experiences than those with siblings. This take on a privileged young New Yorker made me reflect on my own only upbringing. On the one hand, it seems intuitively correct that birth order contributes to life experience, but it actually looks like a pretty soft science, akin to astrology. Parenting advice is available, but on a folk wisdom level. Will this subject go away in time, like the old view of left handedness as a sign of potential deviance? What impressions does the girl in the article make?
Diaper Free! Natural Infant Hygiene and Elimination Communication are terms coined by author, Ingrid Bauer, to define an ancient, natural childcare practice for contemporary parents. They describe a gentle, compassionate and practical way to care for a baby's elimination needs from infancy, with or without diapers.
New software packages help parents keep tabs on teens.
This is probably the most upsetting job post I've ever come across. I don't know whether I should pity this couple or be really disturbed by them.
Our four helmeted kids (or four headed monsters) I recently heard a child psychiatrist say that everything he had learned was wrong - the single most important factor for parents to focus on in raising children was, not spending time with them, not giving them love and affection, not providing discipline and clear rules and responsibilities, not making sure they ate healthy meals with plenty of sleep and exercise, the most important factor was fostering their "Competence". How well do they do the things they do. From this article: "The way we realize our potential is through our activities. By ceaselessly striving to improve at the things we enjoy, we come to define, enlarge, and attain our best selves." Whatever happened to stopping to smell those roses?