Further in the Interview with Mommies series, we have a famous Parenting blogger, Bharathi Balasubramanian. Mother of a 1.4 years old boy named Aadvik, she is a former Auditor and a Parenting Coach. Bharathi advocates for early learning, practical education and positive discipline for the kids. You can join her huge number of followers on Instagram on her handle ammanextdoor. Alike, interview with mommies series, she has a very useful and informative series on her blog, Momshares Series.
Excerpts from an email interview with Bharathi Balasubramanian.
1. Could you elaborate on”Respectful Parenting”?
Respectful parenting in short is where you treat and respect the child as you would treat any other individual and the way you would like to be treated. You consider the child’s perspective as well before making any decision. You recognize their presence as an individual which allows them to grow as strong and confident individuals who know their place in the society.
2.What made you decide to become a stay at home mom? Do you regret your
Once I had my son I realized that I didn’t fall into a traditional parenting category and that my strong believes could not be understood by my kid’s caregivers hence I took things into my hands. Being a stay at home mom gives me much peace and it’s my privilege, to be able to see my son grow in the best possible way.
3. What are the common myths and realities involved in parenting?
There is no shortage of myths around us. It in fact starts from pre-pregnancy and it continues to grow as our child does. The most common ones revolve around foods that allegedly affect breastfeeding mother’s supply, over feeding/ under feeding a baby etc which cannot be farther from the truth.
4. Could you suggest a few creativity building activities for toddlers?
Independent / open ended play is the best way to build creativity in a child, be it whatever even as simple as giving them a couple of utensils and letting them have at it. You could encourage them to paint, scribble. Creativity doesn’t necessarily need activities , you can give them a whole new world to create using books. Also when you avoid automated, batteried toys kids end up using their creativity to play with their toys. In case of automatic toys there is no space for the kids to get creative since the toy does that part.
5. What should we do to develop better communication with our children?
Every parents has got the ” Talk to your kid ” part covered but how many of us have the ” Listen to your kid ” part down?! Listening is just as much, if not even more important in establishing a better understanding/ communication with your kids . Create them a safe environment where they can talk about anything without being judged , which can be achieved by acknowledging all the emotions equally . Be it anger, happiness, sad ,frustration or whatever it doesn’t matter ,acknowledge and respect every emotion equally.
6. Could you discuss the various types of “Schema” during a child’s
Parents need to be aware about Schemas to understand why their kids do what they do, why they aren’t doing an activity the way another kid does, in general to have a basic and in depth understanding about their actions and reactions. There are 7 schemas that a child goes through, throughout his childhood namely transportation , trajectory, positioning, enveloping, containment, orientation and rotational schema. You could view an in depth analysis on each individual schemas on my blog.
7. What is positive discipline?
This is the exact opposite of negative discipline which includes scolding, punishing physically , forcing a child, bribing a child to do a certain thing , or rewarding them for positive behavior. Here we set strong and firm limits and boundaries in a respectful, kind, emphatic way all while maintaining your relationship with your child.
8. Do you want to give any message to new mommies?
I was a new mom from a conservative background and I understand how confusing , difficult, opinionated and controlling such environment could be. Please do your research and do not blindly follow any advise and most importantly stand your ground when you know undoubtedly what is best for your kid. Let’s raise better kids.