The Internet can be a scary place, but does that give you the right to spy on your kid's online activity?
YES: It could make all the difference. "One week shy of his high school graduation, my 18-year-old son, Henry, died of a drug-related brain injury. Several months before his death, he was in rehab, and I hacked into his computer to find any clues that might help treat him. It felt like a terrible invasion... until the information spilled out. There were emails discussing where to buy drugs and links to message boards where he discussed drug-related topics with strangers. The information went back years. If I had peeked into his Internet activities sooner, I would have known how serious the problem was. The warning signs were there, and in hindsight, the very first thing I should have done was crack his online world wide open. Kids today have lives that exist entirely online, and they don't want their parents to see them. For that reason, parenting requires a new set of
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By REDBOOKRead More »from Should You Invade Your Kid's Online Privacy?
- Redbook | Parenting – Tue, Jul 19, 2011 8:40 PM EDT
By Charlotte Hilton Andersen, REDBOOKRead More »from Working Moms: What Are Your Secrets to Finding Balance? (Take Our Survey!)
"My mom works in a chocolate factory," is how my preschooler answered the job question on his About My Mom survey. I don't. Wishful thinking, much? (Of course, this was the same survey where he said I am 90 years old and my favorite hobby is chores.) But as a freelance writer, author, blogger and nighttime SAT essay grader, I can see why he was confused. And let's not forget my less official but equally important titles of bum wiper, lunch maker and taxi driver. Frankly, the chocolate factory sounds pretty awesome right now.
Related: 5 Tricks for All-Day Energy
I know I'm not alone in my juggling act. Every mom, no matter if she works in the home, from the home or outside the home, has to figure out how to balance all her many responsibilities. And it's tough! (Parenting lesson #350: Anything involving little kids is a lot of work.) But having been on both sides, first as a teacher with young kids at home and now as a stay-at-home mom who also
- Redbook | Love + Sex – Tue, Jul 19, 2011 6:07 PM EDT
By Aaron Traister, REDBOOKRead More »from Dear Whys Guy: "How Do I Teach My Husband Good Manners and Social Skills?"
DEAR WHYS GUY:
Four years ago, I met and married my husband. I was a single mom with four kids, and he quickly adapted to the role of stepdad, husband and dad after we had two children together. He is the nicest, most mild-mannered man I have ever met, he loves me and all of the kids unconditionally, and he would do anything for anyone. BUT! He is sorely lacking in good manners and social skills. I have subtly taught him some, saying "You're welcome," when he doesn't say "Thanks"; holding up a hand to quietly remind him not to interrupt; and asking him to introduce me to his friends. But how do I stop him from letting out big yawns without covering his mouth or excusing himself, taking off his shoes in public to pick between his toes, not greeting people who come into our home, and not looking away from the TV or his book to make eye contact during conversations? He has so many wonderful qualities, but my kids have better manners than he does! Do I ignore
By Jeannie Kim, REDBOOKRead More »from Do Books Still Matter?
As a lifelong lover of books, I always looked forward to sharing the joy of reading with my own children someday. So when my daughter was barely a month old, I sat down and read to her for the first time, snuggling her in one arm with a copy of Guess How Much I Love You in the other. And... nothing. Rose goggled at me blankly, as 4-week-old bundles of baby mush do, and I felt more than a little silly.
Related: 10 Tips to Get Kids Reading
Fast forward two and a half years, and reading is now one of our most beloved shared activities. Turns out, it's had real benefits for both of us. We've all heard about how children who read to often become stronger students. But reading also benefits kids in ways that aren't directly measured by grades and test scores. "It really does help develop key pieces of brain architecture," says Kim Davenport, senior vice president of education and programs for Jumpstart, a national early-education organization. "When children are
By Meena Sareen, REDBOOKRead More »from 10 Tips to Get Kids Reading
Reading gives kids the chance to exercise their imaginations and grow as people; however, they don't always realize that. Once they recognize that reading can be gratifying, they too will come to enjoy reading. Here are ten tips for helping bring books to life for your child:
1. Travel Without Leaving Home. Inspire curiosity by offering kids something different from what they experience in their day-to-day lives. Pick books from places or time periods different from your own. Once kids find a topic they're interested in, they'll be itching to find out more!
Related: The Busy Mom's Back-to-School Survival Guide
2. Show Them the Rewards. Kids often don't see the intrinsic value of reading. Show them the value with rewards they can see. Summer reading programs are great but with the summer ending, consider Pizza Hut's Book-It program, which rewards kids for meeting afore-set monthly reading goals. For more details, go to bookitprogram.com. Alternatively, you can
By Marguerite Lamb, REDBOOKRead More »from Does My Kid Have ADHD?
Children should be high-energy-bouncing, climbing, running, jumping, bodies in perpetual motion. But when does typical kid behavior cross the line into ADHD territory? Find the answers to your questions here.
What does ADHD look like?
There are three distinct types of ADHD: predominantly inattentive, predominantly hyperactive-impulsive, or combined type (an amalgam of the first two). Kids who are predominantly inattentive have great difficulty focusing on details: They're disorganized and forgetful; they lose things and make careless mistakes; they're easily distracted and have trouble following directions.
Related: The Amazing Upside of Being a Mom
A child who's predominantly hyperactive-impulsive is always on the go: He fidgets and squirms; he runs and climbs when and where it isn't appropriate; he has difficulty playing quietly, blurts out answers, interrupts others, and has trouble taking turns.
Of course, all kids exhibit some of these symptoms some
- Redbook | Love + Sex – Mon, Jul 18, 2011 7:26 PM EDT
By Aaron Traister, REDBOOKRead More »from Dear Whys Guy: “My New Husband Doesn’t Understand Why I’m Grieving the Death of My Ex”
DEAR WHYS GUY:
My ex-boyfriend passed away yesterday at the age of 24. We were together for three years, and he was my first love. We had a very ugly break up four years ago. My now-husband (of six months) does not understand why I am upset and grieving the loss. It is creating a lot of turbulence in our new marriage. What should I do?
Related: "Why Don't I Like My Own Child?"
DEAR REDBOOK READER:
Sorry to hear about your ex. 24 is too young to go.
As for your husband, I can understand why he is upset. It must be hard to feel like you're in competition with a ghost.
Related: 30 Days to a Better Husband
Have you talked to your husband about why you're so upset? More importantly, have you asked yourself why you're so upset? Is it because he was so young? Are you sad for his family? Is it because you feel like a a door on your youth closed with his passing?
Or are you lamenting what might have been or things left unsaid?
It's fine to have all those
By Kayla Miller, REDBOOK
Kyle, 30, and Courtney, 29, have been engaged for six months. Every once in a while, Courtney suggests they go out to dinner rather than stay in and cook. Kyle usually doesn't want to go out and would rather save money by staying in, since he usually foots the bill. Kyle reluctantly agrees to go out to dinner but thinks Courtney should pay because it was her idea. Who's right?
He says: It was her idea to go out, so why should I be paying for something that wasn't my idea? If she would pay for her meal, I wouldn't mind splitting it 50/50.
Related: What He Secretly Doesn't Want in Bed
She says: He never wants to go out anymore, so when we do, I feel like he should be the gentleman and pay for the entire meal. We're going to be married soon so isn't his money my money?
- Kyle should pay. It's tradition.
- Courtney should get with the times and offer to split the bill.Read More »from Settle an Argument: Who Should Pay for Dinner?
By Jeanie Davis, REDBOOK
A little sniffle. A slight cough. "I don't feel good," says your child. But how do you really know: Should this kid stay home, or go to school?
With cold symptoms, fever (or lack of it) helps determine the answer, says Steven Parker, MD, director of the division of behavioral and developmental pediatrics at Boston Medical Center, and an expert moderator for WebMD's message boards.
"If there's no fever, it's generally OK to send the child to school," Parker tells WebMD. "It's likely a cold, and school is probably where your child got it in the first place. If your child feels pretty good otherwise, then it's fine to send the child to school."
But when in doubt, Parker says you should always call your pediatric provider for advice.
Also, if your child frequently claims to be "sick" but is fine on weekends, that's a sign of other issues. "There may be trouble at school," heRead More »from Your Child: Too Sick for School?
By Judith Newman, REDBOOK
There's a good chance that your child is, right now, making his own Harry Potter broomstick out of a stick he found in the backyard...and he might prefer it to the pricey vibrating plastic version you were thinking of buying him. Childhood experts and those who have studied the stressed-out are weighing in on the ways we can help our children reclaim simpler pleasures. Here are a few of their suggestions for slowing down and getting a little balance back into kids' lives:
Related: 5 Dresses Every Woman Should Own1. Embrace the joy of goofing around. If you live in an area where you can let your child run amok with his friends outdoors, let him; if you don't, remember that just hanging with friends and neighbors indoors can be great too. I've recently adopted an open-door policy with the parents and kids in my building: The result sometimes necessitates that I wear earplugs and swill wine on a Saturday afternoon when the hordes descend, but the Read More »from 6 Ways to Let Your Kids Be Kids