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We Spoke to Parent Psychologist Richard T Medow

Tuesday, April 10, 2018 2:59
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Life as a parent can be difficult at times, as children grow older their demands become more vocalised and the begin to have hobbies and friends that want to interact with. What makes it even harder is when you have children of different age ranges that have completely different needs to fulfil. This guide will help parents manage their time and reduce unnecessary stress, whether you’re already a parent of multiple children, a soon to be a parent or even if you want to foster a child.

Set Boundaries

It’s a tough point to start on but realistically every parent will need to say no from time to time, if you have multiple children sometimes the schedules will overlap and requests can’t be met, if one child has a guitar lesson they need taking to and another wants to go to the park, knowing where your priorities lie will help you make decisive choices that your children will have to accept at some point. Compromise is also a key incentive to use, offering another time to go the park may calm your child down if they aren’t accepting the choice you’ve previously made.

Making sure child doesn’t have too many activities is important also, children are still growing and overextending them won’t help them or yourself, in the long run, sometimes choices should be made if all of the activities can’t be kept too.

Preserve Family Time

One of the most important parts of your schedule should be creating family time, a period that everyone is together without compromise. Not only will it help your family bond weekly, you can listen to people’s weekly plans and begin to create a schedule and pre-warn anyone that you won’t be able to help on certain time slots. As children get older they may want to skip out on family time to see friends but putting your foot down and making it unmissable will help them to not make plans at that time in future

Avoid Late Nights

It’s bound to happen sometimes but avoiding your children having late activities that push your schedules back daily is the best approach. Activities that don’t start until later, football practice, for example, might be acceptable once a week but if it becomes more you might have to reassess their choices. If you have a younger child at home also, bedtime schedules may be difficult to keep to if each night entails a different activity for older children.

Don’t Force Hobbies

It’s always good to encourage your children to test out hobbies and interests, activities like sports, music and art are all beneficial to a child’s health and wellbeing. But if your child isn’t enjoying the activities after time them it may be time to end the hobby. If it’s a choir for you to take them to the activity and a choir for them to attend it, it’s not benefitting anyone. Maybe consider something else or wait for your child to come back to you with a new interest.


Be Respectful

Being a parent isn’t about just having the last word, being respectful in declining a child request is key. Saying no doesn’t explain your reasoning and although a child may not understand fully, trying to explain why you can fulfil their request may offer some benefit to them.

Think Tactically

Whenever possible, it always good to think about how you can make your children’s daily schedules easier. If you can take two children to activities at similar times or move something around it’ll make things easier in the long run. Making friends with parents can really help too, people can go out of their way to help you if ask nicely, if another parent is taking their child to an activity your child attends I’m just they’d be happy to do it on rotation with you. Don’t forget about your family members and partners there always willing to help with your child’s schedule wherever possible.


Bio: Richard Meadow is a freelance writer that works closely with parenting, childcare and career choices. He is always interested in currently news in these areas and enjoys writing about them.

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