Blog Posts by Parenting.com

  • New Episode of Lords of the Playground

    Parenting.com is proud to present the first season of comedy web shorts that, for better or worse, present a dad's-eye view of the playground. Share these videos onFacebook, email, or Twitter.

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  • Children of Divorce Are More Likely to Smoke

    © iStockphotoBy Kimberly Horner

    More bad news for kids with divorced parents - it turns out these kiddos may be more likely to smoke later in life than their peers with married parents, according to recent study conducted by researchers from the University of Toronto.

    Plus: Raising Healthy, Happy Kids Through a Divorce

    "Finding this link between parental divorce and smoking is very disturbing," said Esme Fuller-Thomson, lead author of the study in a news release.

    The study analyzed the "adverse childhood experiences" and smoking habits of 19,000 adults, ultimately finding that those who were exposed to separation or divorce in childhood were more likely to smoke as adults.

    When their parents divorced before their 18 th birthday, women were 39 percent more likely to smoke 100 or more cigarettes in their lifetime; men were 48 percent more likely to smoke.

    Plus: Tips for Tobacco-Free Kids

    Still, although this study did find a strong link between divorce and smoking, it in no way

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  • Just in Time for April Fools--Kids Telling Jokes

    Courtesy of ParentingFor April Fool's Day, Parenting.com asked kids to tell us their favorite jokes.

  • Kid Adopted by Gay Dads Writes Letter to Support Gay Marriage

    YouTubeBy Leonora Desar

    Meet Daniel Martinez-Leffew, a 12-year-old boy from California who wrote a letter to Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts urging him to end the ban on gay marriage and strike down Proposition 8.

    In a moving video, Daniel reads aloud from his letter, which talks about how he and his sister Salina were adopted by their two dads when he was five. Daniel had been told in foster care that he was "unadoptable" because he has Goldenhar syndrome, a genetic disorder which affects the whole left side of his body. "I lost my little brother Emilio because some people wanted to adopt him, but they weren't willing to adopt me because of my medical conditions," said Daniel as he read aloud from the letter. "Lucky for me, that's when my two dads came along."

    Daniel goes on to write about how he recently discovered that Justice Roberts adopted a boy and a girl, which reminded him of him and his sister.

    Plus: Check Out a New Episode of Lords of the Playground

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  • Study: Skim Milk May Not Reduce Obesity Risk

    © Shutterstock

    By Sasha Emmons
    A surprising new study published in the Archives of Disease in Childhood undercuts what pediatricians and parents have long thought: that drinking low-fat milk is part of a healthy diet to keep your child's weight in check. In fact, researchers found kids who drink skim or 1 percent are actually more likely to be overweight than those who drink 2 percent or whole.

    Plus: The Health Benefits of Milk

    "We were very surprised," says study author Mark Daniel DeBoer, M.D., an associate professor of pediatric endocrinology at the University of Virginia School of Medicine in Charlottesville, VA. "Our original hypothesis was that skim and 1 percent milk would be associated with lower baseline weights and less weight gain. Instead we found that children drinking skim and 1 percent were heavier, potentially because when children are overweight their parents are more likely to give them skim milk. We next looked at weight gain over time and were surprised that

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  • The Gamble

    c/o ParentingThis is not your father's fatherhood. Muddling through with a little ingenuity (and a lot of coffee), these benchwarmers offer their dad's-eye view of the playground. They are masters of their corner of blacktop. They are Lords of the Playground.

  • Study: Avoiding Fears Makes Kids More Anxious

    iStockphotoBy Leonora Desar

    Do you indulge your kid's fears or do you push him to conquer them? A new study by the Mayo Clinic shows that kids who avoid scary situations are actually more likely to have anxiety than kids who face their fears.

    The study surveyed both parents and their children, and included more than 800 kids from ages 7 to 18. Parents were asked to describe their kids' avoidance behaviors, while children were asked about their own tendencies in situations that make them uncomfortable.

    Plus: 26 Baby Sleep Solutions

    The researchers found that kids who avoided situations that they found frightening were more likely to be anxious a year later. "This new approach may enable us to identify kids who are at risk for an anxiety disorder," said lead author Stephen Whiteside, Ph.D., a pediatric psychologist with the Mayo Clinic Children's Center. "And further, because cognitive behavior therapy focuses on decreasing avoidance behaviors, our approach may also provide a means to

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  • Parenting Without a Future

    Soulumination.orgBy Brian Braiker

    What does being a mother mean when your baby is dying? How do you parent a child with no future? These questions needle the reader throughout Emily Rapp's moving and beautiful new book, The Still Point of the Turning World.

    In January of 2011, when her son Ronan was just nine months old, Rapp learned he was dying from Tay-Sachs, a ruthless and heartbreaking disease with no cure. Ronan was given no more than three years to live. He had developed normally for six months until he simply stopped. He would very gradually unravel, fading away from her piece by piece, until his death in February 2013.

    Rapp, a powerfully elegant writer, turned to writing to grieve and for therapy. She processed her pain and fear on her blog, Little Seal. And now, Ronan lives on in this touching book -- as agonizing to read as it is imbued with hope and light.

    Rapp recently spoke with Parenting's Brian Braiker about Ronan, what it was like to shepherd and protect him, and what

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  • Parents Shouldn't Ask for ADHD Meds for Healthy Kids

    ShutterstockBy Kate Goodin

    The headline might seem obvious, but a study published in the medical journal Neurology found that teens and children who are perfectly healthy are routinely being prescribed ADHD medications as "study drugs"-often asked for by parents.

    Plus:
    10 Great Toys for Kids with Special Needs

    The Los Angeles Times reports that over three percent of 12th graders who take ADHD meeds do so for reasons other than its intended use. Additionally, parents-and teens old enough to ask for medication-are taking advantage of the pervasiveness of ADHD and the prescription of stimulants to get the drugs as test-taking "steroids," or a way to boost focus and attention.

    Plus: Is it ADHD or Immaturity?

    Study author William Graf, MD, of Yale said that it's up to doctors to refrain from prescribing these medications to otherwise healthy kids. "Doctors caring for children and teens have a professional obligation to always protect the best interests of the child, to protect

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  • Can You Have it All? Now It's a Question for Dad, Too

    Veer

    By Brian Braiker
    Is it possible to have it all?
    Can you have that killer career, and a happy, fulfilled family life? Are you exhausted from pressure-cooker days: coming home from a full-time job to housework and kids who need more of your time?

    Sit down, mom. These questions are for dad.

    As the roles of moms and dads continue to converge, fathers with young children are now about as likely as mothers to say they feel stretched thin and have difficulty balancing the demands of work and home. These findings are part of a major new report released Thursday by the Pew Research Center.

    The way mothers and fathers spend their time has changed dramatically in the past half century. While not on the face of it shocking news, even as fathers' time with children has tripled since 1965, they still feel like they're not doing as good a job as Dad as they'd like.

    Plus: 8 Things You Don't Know About Modern Dads

    Nearly half of all fathers (46 percent) feel like they don't

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