Parenting When You're in Pain

Every family has its own heartbreaks, sooner or later.

But how to meet and manage the pain and sadness of these times without shutting down is a whole other story. And having kids complicates how (or if) we are able to work with it. It also raises questions about how much (or whether) to share it with our children.

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Get Ready for Your Baby the Respectful Parenting Way

There are so many opinions out there about what you need to do to get ready for your new baby. As useful as these tips can be, they overshadow some of the most important kinds of preparation. We need to be prepared for how to be with our babies, not just for what we’ll swaddle or stroll them in.

Luckily, the Educaring Approach® (commonly known as RIE® parenting or respectful parenting) is the perfect support system for the intense early days of parenting. Here’s how you can practice some of the Approach’s most effective—yet quite simple—tools before your baby even arrives.

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Help Your Child Sleep Better With Bedtime Rituals

Ahhhhh, sleep.

It’s one of the first things people ask new parents about, and the focus and source of a lot of our time, energy, and stress during the first years of our kids’ lives.

I recently visited with close friends and their week-old baby. One of the first things Dad said to me was, “wow, the sleep deprivation finally caught up with us. We were fine for a few days and then…” he trailed off. Then: “This is hard.”

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How to Weather Big Transitions

My son starts at a brand-new school tomorrow. At 4.5, he’s starting preschool later than a bunch of his peers, but it was the right decision for our family to keep him in his sweet, small daycare for an extra year.

These kinds of transitions are part of parenting for all of us, whether it’s a move to a new school, a new home, or to becoming a sibling instead of an only child. Here are a few tips for weathering these kinds transitions with respect for your child’s process and your own.

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4 Ways to Meet Your Child's Resistance

I happen to know that my child is not the only one who resists the normal, everyday aspects of his existence with a kind of endurance that would be admirable were it not so darn aggravating.

Here are a few tips for managing your child’s resistance respectfully, and with an eye toward deepening her sense of connection (which—you guessed it—also can help lessen the resistance). All of these tools work well with babies, toddlers, and older children as well.

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The Four Keys to Limit Setting

In a recent post about limit setting, I argued that, for our passionate little movers, limits are like the railings on a beautiful yet precarious dance floor.  We need them to provide safety and security as our kids explore the world and their place in it.

In this post I want to explore in greater detail how limit setting can look, through the lens of a beautiful path for living and relating to others called The Four-Fold Way®.

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What is Respectful Parenting (or RIE®), Anyway?

You may have heard about the Educaring® Approach, or RIE®—sometimes called “respectful parenting”—on the playground or from a friend who is a parent. But what is RIE® really all about? Is it right for your family?

Magda Gerber, who founded RIE®—which stands for Resources for Infant Educarers—believed that babies are whole, capable people deserving of our respect from the moment they are born.

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More Than Words

The Educaring® Approach offers many wonderful practices for communicating with infants and toddlers, but we sometimes forget to talk about what we're saying when we're not using words. Learning to respond to our children respectfully starts with attunement

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