Monthly Archives: May 2011

Is “Mom” A Dirty Word?

There is a great post on the New Yorker online, which takes a look at the word mom. Is it now the new dirty word? We refer to ill-fitting jeans as Mom Jeans. If a mom is wearing them, then what makes it bad? Why can’t they just be bad jeans? Why can’t moms look like…moms?


When did “mom” become a swear word? The other day, I was having a conversation with friends about how President Obama, despite being a very handsome man, is a bit of a nerd. “Did you see him when he threw out the first pitch at the All-Star game?” one of my friends said. “He was wearing mom jeans.” This was just a day after I was talking to a woman who had just had a facelift. She said she had told her plastic surgeon that she wanted to look fabulous and not, as she put it, “like a mom.” Like a what?, I asked her. “Like a mom,” she repeated. “I mean, I am a mom, but I didn’t want to look like, you know, a mom.”

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Kissy. Kissy. Where Do Yours Land When It Comes To Kids?

There has been some serious debate going on in blogland about where one kisses their kids. Some just plant one right on the lips. Others are a forehead or cheek kisser. Is one more “right” than the other?

I will admit, I’m a lip kisser. I smack my daughter on the lips when I give her kisses. I don’t recall my mother doing that to me as a child, but I can’t recall that she didn’t either. To me, she’s my kid and why would it be weird that I kiss her on the lips?

When I greet other family members or close friends, I kiss them on the cheek (and sometimes I wonder “what’s with all this kissing business? when did this start?”). I would never think of kissing them on the lips. They are not my husband or daughter. I guess to me the cheek kiss is more casual.

And, if I’m going to put it all out there, I kiss my dog too. But not on the lips. Heavens no! More on the top of his nose. He’s cute. He’s a lover boy. He likes kisses.

So, what about you? When it’s time to pucker where does it land?

Want to see what others are saying about the topic? A Cup of Jo started a firestorm when she posted about it. Then Parenting had their say so. The nice thing is there is no right or wrong answer here. As long as you are showing that love to your kids, no matter where the kiss lands, that is all that matters.


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How Are You?

I saw a Twitter post the other day that stated “when it comes to Mother’s Day, does anyone ask a mom how she’s really doing?” And it got me thinking. Would anyone, a mom included, 100% honestly answer that question? And when people ask “how are you?” do they actually, truly want to know or do they just want the polite “I’m fine, how are you?”. Do we really want to tell and do we really want to know?

I know when I had my daughter and had awful postpartum depression, I wasn’t truthful with myself. Every doctors appointment I thought I’d go in and tell her how awful I was dealing with it, how horrible I felt, how I cry every night. Then, miraculously on the day of the appointment I’d think “wow, I feel so much better” and not say anything and continue crying in the shower. Finally, at the end I said something, but always wish I had opened my usually big mouth sooner.  The odd thing is, I answered the checklist they gave me with honesty and they looked it over (obviously not very carefully) and asked how I was doing. If they had truly paid attention to my answers, they might have pried a little harder (I hope).

I’m no expert by any means. But I’d like to say, if you feel a little sad talk to someone. If a close family member asks you how you are, take them up on the opportunity to tell them maybe you aren’t doing so well. I understand we are turning into a society that values perfection more than anything, but nobody is. It’s better to tell someone “I could be doing better” and maybe get some help than to struggle and affect your children.

So,  we at Momsense would REALLY like to know “how are you?”

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Timeouts: Do They Work

Ahh, the timeout. What was thought of as new age or hippie parenting 40 years ago, is now commonplace.

In our house, timeouts are big. We’ve read the book “Magic 1-2-3” and have been following (well, mostly) their guidelines and use of timeouts. Soon, because she’s getting bigger, we can add taking away privileges to our arsenal. At the end of the day, have the timeouts changed her behavior? Not that I can so easily and obviously see.  I think what they do is give everyone a break. A break from the bad behavior or action that is going on and the parents a break from going into yelling or possibly hitting mode. A chance to get out of each others faces. Many days, that’s a big plus.

I’d like to say I’m a more calm, peaceful less loud vocal mom, but I’d be lying. But I do think it has helped. I’d probably be screaming way more than I do.

Others have been taking a look at the effectiveness of timeouts (although, I’m wondering, if they are deemed ineffective, what other methods to parents have? We know we can’t go back to hitting.)

Circle of Moms has recently posted an article examining just this.

Circle of Moms member Kara F. wonders why timeouts are so popular. “Do timeouts work?” she wonders, explaining that her nearly 3 year-old so “will rarely stay where we put him.”

She’s not alone. Every day, no matter where I am I hear parents say, “Stop it now or you get a timeout!” But after 18 years of teaching parenting and raising two kids, it’s my opinion that timeouts (as they’re practiced today), don’t work very well for young children (ages 1-5).

The “timeout” was originally conceived as a breather for both parent and child. It was created so both could take a short break, get calmer, and then talk about how to resolve a difficult situation. That is not the way timeout is being used today. These days, timeouts are used as a punishment, one that’s more socially acceptable than say, spanking.

Why We’re Sloppy With Timeouts

When parents first begin using timeouts they get down to their child’s eye level, they say the right words and gently escort them to a timeout spot. Then, as a child approaches age two, three, or four…well, things began to change.

Continue reading HERE.

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