"I don't own my child's body" by Katia Hetter.

Hetter describes her methods of teaching her child that it's OK to say no to an adult who lays a hand on her, even a seemingly friendly hand, and why parenting experts agree. How can this affect a child's decisions and feelings about their body later on?

“Ordering children to kiss or hug an adult they don't want to touch teaches them to use their body to please you or someone else in authority or, really, anyone. We teach them that their bodies do not really belong to them because they have to push aside their own feelings about what feels right to them... this can lead to children getting sexually abused, teen girls submitting to sexual behavior so 'he'll like me' and kids enduring bullying because everyone is 'having fun.'”

Read on for further resources on how to talk to your young child that about body privacy and personal boundaries.

I Don't Own My Child's Body

Why Self-Care is Important in Parenting

Parents of young children often communicate that they have no time for self-care. Here are some reasons why I often respond by saying that they don't have time NOT to engage in self-care daily. Finding ways can no doubt be tricky, but I promise it's doable.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/on-parenting/in-defense-of-a-parents-day-off/2017/01/23/270ffafc-d8f2-11e6-b8b2-cb5164beba6b_story.html?utm_term=.8ff4d2e924a5

How to Teach Young Children about Feelings and the Brain? Imagine your Brain as a House!

"Sometimes our brains can become overwhelmed with feelings of fear, sadness or anger, and when this happens, it’s confusing—especially to children. So giving children ways to make sense of what’s happening in their brain is important. It’s also helpful for children to have a vocabulary for their emotional experiences that others can understand. Think of it like a foreign language, and if the other people in your family speak that language too, then it’s easier to communicate with them."

http://www.mindful.org/how-to-teach-your-kids-about-the-brain/

"The Japanese Art of Grieving a Miscarriage"

An warming NY Times Article on creating a ritual of healing following a couples' miscarriage.

"My husband and I were young enough then to assume that tragedies happened to other people and not to us. This was a belief we carried for years until the day we held hands on an ultrasound table watching the technician turn off the monitor and tiptoe out of the room. A miscarriage at 10 weeks produces no body, so there would be no funeral. “What do we even do?” I asked the doctor."

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/06/well/family/the-japanese-art-of-grieving-a-miscarriage.html?_r=0

Self Esteem: Helping Children Develop a Positive Sense of Self

Let's talk self-esteem. How can parents build self-esteem in young children (starting in infancy!)? Researchers have identified five “competencies” that emerge as key players to positive development. Why is this important?

To quote Frederick Douglass, “It is easier to build strong children than to repair broken men.”

http://www.vision.org/…/family-relationships/chi…/34763.aspx

Celebrating International Women's Day

One Village honors International Women's Day by celebrating the women who have worked hard to bring us the rights, knowledge, and arts we have today, and recognizing the continued struggles women face and tackle both locally and globally. 🕊It's true that when women support other women, amazing, boundary-shattering things do happen. Here's to strong women: may we know them, may we be them, may we raise them.

Why Aren't Trauma Survivors Warned that Parenthood may be a PTSD Trigger?

A poignant, important read that gives voice to how dormant trauma and experiences arise during parenthood.

"For many survivors of childhood abuse, symptoms of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) may re-occur, or never arise, until they become a parent. A significant number of parenting survivors do not recognize the increased depression, anxiety, or onset of flashbacks as symptoms of PTSD, weaving in and out their journey to raise a family. Instead, many will internalize debilitating shame and question  their ability, and even their right to parent."

https://triggerpointsanthology.com/2017/02/17/why-arent-trauma-survivors-warned-that-parenthood-may-be-a-ptsd-trigger/

New York Paid Family Leave is Around the Corner

Some hopeful and updated news from our Governor announcing the future of paid leave for parents with a new child. Financial strains that arise from having a new child and taking needed time off to care for a baby can lead parents returning to work before they or their child is ready. The enormous amounts of stress this causes is unneeded, especially at a time when parents' mental health is already vulnerable. Let this pave the way for the rest of the country as this program phases in over the next few years.

“New York enacted the strongest paid family leave plan in the nation to ensure that no one has to choose between losing a job and missing the birth of a child or being able to spend time with a loved one in their final days,” Governor Cuomo said."

http://www.rochesterfirst.com/…/governor-cuomo-an…/661353660

Stress in Babies: Keeping Babies Calm, Healthy, and Happy

"Nobody wants a stressed-out baby. The stress is contagious, and chronic stress has long-term health consequences. When babies are exposed to high levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, they are more likely to develop behavior problems and stress-related diseases later in life. In the worst case scenario, toxic stress can alter brain growth and shorten the lifespan." Read more at:

http://www.parentingscience.com/stress-in-babies.html

How to Find a Good Child Therapist

"You feel over your head. You’ve hemmed and hawed, but last night’s behavior solidified it – you need to find a child therapist. Your child needs help. Your family needs help. But, where do you start?"

http://www.anxioustoddlers.com/good-child-therapist/

Women's Intimate Stories on why they had Abortions as Mothers

Abortions are deeply personal and intimate decisions a woman makes with her body. 1 in 3 women in the United States will have an abortion in her lifetime and 59% of women getting abortions are already mothers. Here are a few intimate stories of mothers who chose to terminate pregnancies, from medical to life planning reasons. Whatever the decision, there is support available for those who need it. 

http://www.redbookmag.com/…/a481…/mothers-getting-abortions/

Postpartum Depression or Baby Blues?

How can we distinguish between the two, and manage common feelings of guilt and loneliness? 

Writer Marie Hartwell-Walker offers some insight on where to begin and eases some of the confusion, in her article, New Baby Blues or Postpartum Depression?

https://psychcentral.com/lib/new-baby-blues-or-postpartum-depression/

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