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Queer parents - Page 7

post #121 of 575

Hey all~


South Carolina is nice. Nicer even than I thought. I love the trees and the fact that it rains sometimes, and that my house/town wasn't flattened by an F5.  DP loves her job and has settled right in. She's already gotten grants and is doing research projects and all kindsa stuff. Now I'm looking for a school library job. I LOVE the public library, but I'm part time, which is barely enough for my expenses, and gives us no way to buy a house or save for college (or indeed fix the car if it were to break down...) So this is a bit of stress right now. I've had five interviews and have another on Monday. Please please please gimme a job soon!!!!  Alternately, I'd accept a film deal for my book. Surely that'd be enough to go on with for a month or so ROTFLMAO.gif.


Ooh, I'd forgotten how fun the smileys are. I'll have to lurk on the ttc board so I can bust out the dancing veggies soon...

post #122 of 575

Hi Library!--when DS had a stint of biting we ended up plopping him back down on the floor, saying "no bite" and walking away from him.  After a moment we'd pick him back up again and remind him "I can't let you bite me, if you bite again I won't be able to hold/play/be with you"  It was a very short lived phase...


Escher--we abhored 18-21 months...in our house we've found the half years really hard (18 months-21 months; 23-26 months).  


Planet--we have friends who have the kanoe and really liked it for their 3 y/o's naps.  But, I saw it hanging up and it takes up tons of space (since they only used it for naps, they had it hanging above their guest bed and would just take it down when they had guests).


AFM--2 kids feels a bit "constant", there is almost always something that needs doing RIGHT NOW!  But, DW is feeling much better and able to help parent our 3 y/o--which has restored his sense of equilibrium.  The newbie is now 8lb 3oz (2 week appt was today) and 22 inches (up over a pound from his low point weight 14 days ago when he was 6'14).  He has officially decided he needs to be touching flesh to sleep (he is currently asleep on my chest).  Older DS did not like co-sleeping but this guy clearly does.  So far, that's working fine.  A meal train was set up for us and I haven't had to cook at all in 10 days...and probably won't need to again for 3 weeks!  We're feeling spoiled (and gosh, our neighbors and friends are great cooks!)


The rainy weather here has meant less time outside...and it's supposed to be pretty crappy out all week (we are all tired of the 60s and rain).  We are having professional family photos done on Saturday, so we are hoping for good weather (and our neighborhood festival is Friday night and Saturday--so good weather would be nice for those too!).  

post #123 of 575

Library ...

I love you.  You know that.  hug2.gif


hitting/biting ...


Redirect, redirect, redirect!  


This is when you need to be right at your child's side if they're at risk for hurting someone else.  


I don't like this phase because it means I have to be super vigilant instead of chatting with other parents or reading a book while H plays in the park or wherever.  It doesn't last long though, thankfully.  We're at the tail end of it now with H -- I hope -- after a month or so of interventions on a steadily dwindling basis.  At least I hope it's the tail end.  He definitely knows what the right choice is now, but being that I think kids gain about ten percent of impulse control per year of life, he'll be making questionable decisions for a while.

This is when I keep an eye out for the clues that lead to him hitting ... besides the obvious hand-raised-aimed-at-kid stance.  

I watch for failed negotiations around toys and space, I mind his levels of fatigue and hunger, I remove him from social settings when I know he's overwhelmed or not able to mingle.  

And I play up the positive with far more enthusiasm than anyone on any episode of Glee, ever. 


If he does hit or push, I give all my attention to the victim and completely ignore H altogether except to say calmly and firmly, "Hands are for gentle touch," or "Feet are for walking."


When the moment has passed, I go through the motions of reminding him what hands and feet are for in a super happy-clappy way: 

"Hands are for gentle touch." And I touch his cheek gently.

"Hands are for high-fives!" We high-five.

"Hands are for clapping!" Etc, etc.  You get the picture.


This is a great opportunity to growl at your children.  It's better than exhausting the word "no" at every wobbly turn.  We growl a lot.

post #124 of 575

Library Lady, thanks for the book recommendation!  I'm a 7th grade LA teacher and am always looking for good YA books to add to our classroom library!  Especially books with strong, non-stereotypical queer characters. I just put it on hold at the library to check out.  Have you read "I am J" by Cris Beam?  I LOVE that book, though my students have shared with me that it would be better for high school (sigh).

post #125 of 575
Originally Posted by starling&diesel View Post

If he does hit or push, I give all my attention to the victim and completely ignore H altogether except to say calmly and firmly, "Hands are for gentle touch," or "Feet are for walking."



I do exactly this too. DD didn't really go through a hitting/kicking phase in any memorable way (except with me *sigh*) but when she has done it I do the above.

post #126 of 575
Thread Starter 
QOTD: are there certain behaviors that you've taught your child(ren) are expected of them because of their sex?
post #127 of 575

I wonder if people will admit to that on this board! But of course people do it unconsciously to some degree. I am worried about what happens when the LO goes to school and learns those behaviors and attitudes from other kids (I am not into homeschooling).

post #128 of 575
QOTD--hmm...that's an interesting one. Not yet, since she's still little, but I expect there will be plenty. I hope to do it in more of an informative way than one that actually stops her from doing whatever she wants (thinking of crossing legs when sitting and things like that). I don't want her to feel constrained from doing her own thing, but I always felt awkward as a kid and I think a lot of it was because my parents never explained what the world was expecting (in terms of table manners or other small social interactions). So now as an adult I still get nervous over things that don't matter. I guess I'd rather let her know what people are going to expect and then let her decide whether she cares or not.

Library--hi! Only a month before we get to go and frolic in bookland! I've got the friday reserved to go, but if you need it to be a different day let me know and I'll see what I can do. Can't wait to actually meet you in person! smile.gif How is the job search going? I finally got around to putting in for some of the open positions at my job. What I'm doing is fine, but I kind of miss being in a branch, and 5 years in a closed department is starting to feel like long enough.

Tavi--sorry to hear about the kidney stone--that sounds awful. Are you feeling better?

Escher--ugh. Sorry he turned on you so quickly! Edie's started throwing baby tantrums whenever we interfere with her autonomy (which is pretty much all the time). Annoying, but still managing to hover on the edge of cute, for the moment.

Wishin--we're supposed to do family photos on saturday, too. And it's supposed to be awful out. greensad.gif

Starling--growling is something I'll have to add. I already don't like how often I'm saying no, even though I try to limit it to electrical outlets and the stove...
post #129 of 575
Thread Starter 
That's what brought it up. I told Shay to "always hold doors open for ladies" yesterday.

To be fair, all my kids are expected to hold the door for people but I usually have my own language under control enough to say "for people" instead of "ladies."

Haha, also to be fair, we live in the Midwest and this is a huge expectation for boys and men. Preschoolers regularly run to hold the door for me.

When appropriate, I remind my oldest son that its expected of him. I don't remind my daughter, but I'm not sure if that's because it's not a social expectation for her or if it's because she usually pays attention and remembers to hold the door for others, where her brother kind of lives in la la land.
post #130 of 575
Funny, but yes, I think the midwest thing adds to it. I've gotten used (again) to expecting that I'll be the first one to walk through doors, off elevators, etc. If I don't go for it everyone just stands there looking confused and then we all go for the exit at once. I think door holding is a universal good idea, though, especially for people with strollers or who look like they might have a hard time managing the door for some reason.
post #131 of 575

Too cute not to share :)

post #132 of 575
Wishin: That really is too cute not to share. He looks so totally snuggly! How is your big guy feeling about him these days?
post #133 of 575
Thread Starter 
Wishin, I thought I replied already, he looks like he's plumping up! Does he look much like his brother?
post #134 of 575

Seraf--nothing like his brother--same donor, but apparently all the donor's genes (except for the blondish hair) are recessive ;)  


And, the big boy is liking him a bit more, now that he's realized the parenting resource has actually INCREASED since we are both home!

post #135 of 575
Thread Starter 
Wishin, I'm glad he's enjoying double the mom. Have you seen donor pics? S and A are nearly the spitting image of their different donors, so it's funny that they look the most alike.
post #136 of 575
Wishin: I'm hoping that our toddler will feel similarly pleased when he realizes that he gets Mommy and Mama both home all the time after the new baby comes. Of course then I'll have to go back to work and he'll be stuck with the baby and just one parent....

Note to those with younger babies/toddlers: 19 months is a fun age after all (and I continue to believe that it just keeps getting better and better). It was just a bad week last week.
post #137 of 575
Wishin—so sweet! I’m glad older brother is enjoying things and getting used to having a little one around!

ETA--Escher--thanks for the clarification! As you'll read below, I could use some reassurance...

Funny story—I guess DP and I did well in choosing a donor that looked like her. My coworker stopped by and was looking at the calendar we made of Edie last fall. Out of nowhere he was like, ‘ok, this is maybe totally inappropriate, but did you guys use a sperm bank?’ It took me a minute to follow the nonsequitur, but apparently he just thought she looked so much like DP that he was wondering if we’d used a relative as a donor.

Question for parents who know more than me (ie: all of you): what do you do about baby tantrums? Things in our house have gone from cute 10-second bursts of fury to prolonged kicking and bucking and screaming until she gets her way (or, often, doesn’t, but then they go on longer). What to do with the preverbal set? It wouldn’t really help if she could talk, because the things she’s asking for (knives, full glasses of ice water, cell phones) aren’t things we’d give her even if she could ask politely.
post #138 of 575
Thread Starter 
Isa, distract? S2 shrieks just like S when he wants something (and he's a little chatterbox). I guess I'm kind of permissive. "That knife is sharp, you can use this one. I can help you with a drink, if you'd like." The boys play with our phones all the time. They say hi to them or try to unlock them but are pretty gentle. Lol. They also have toy phones. My main thing is that I try to tell them what they are allowed to do when they feel frustrated with their limits. It works sometimes but we have plenty of tantrums.
post #139 of 575
Hold your ground!

Distraction is awesome, and works for us nearly all the time, but when that doesn't work, the very best message to give your kid (in my opinion) is that A is not happening, and whatever hard feelings that might arise out of that are totally okay. And then they learn that the tantrum serves no purpose except for them to feel feelings, and that it doesn't change the outcome that you have thoughtfully and respectfully decided beforehand.

Gordon Neufeld is very big on the idea that so many kids aren't allowed to experience loss and move from mad to sad.
I think being able to just 'be' through disappointment is so key to kids developing resilience and for understanding their role in the family.
You aren't the gatekeeper, rather, you're the one wo knows better, and can help your child experience the full range of emotions related to disappointment/frustration.
If you do the work now, you can hopefully enjoy the future times when your child will ask for A, and then if it's not possible, watch your child adapt.

The key being to say yes whenever earthly possible!
Yes, you can walk but you must hold my hand when we cross the street.
Yes, you can have that cookie, because who says it needs to be for after the meal?
Yes, you can wear your pyjamas/cape/dressy shoes/wig/dirty shirt to wherever, because why not?
Yes, you can help me do _____ because I've wisely left plenty of time.
And so on.

Good luck!
post #140 of 575

Starling--I always appreciate your parenting thoughts!  


Prettyisa--I can't remember how old E is, but we did a lot of "that's a no, let's find a yes" (prior to age 18 months) and then physical removal if it was a safety issue.  In addition, we'll say things, "I understand you want "x" and you are very mad/sad/frustrated, since "x" can't happen, let's figure out what can..." 


Seraf--our donor doesn't have a baby photo, I wish he did!  Because I love our boys so much, I feel an overwhelming sense of maternal fondness for our WTBK sperm bank donor--and I am so grateful for the decision he made to be a donor (he was a little more than 10 years my junior when he donated...hence the maternal fondness :) .  It will be interesting to see what our little ends up looking like--our big boy is striking, and tends to inspire lots of curiousity about our donor.

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