Parenting is a tricky journey. There’s no one way to go about it and that’s part of what makes it so hard.
However, there are a few questions which pop up all the time that I may be able to help with! I’m not an expert, this is just something I threw together that has been drawn from my own experiences (not all of them good!)
Not seen the question you’re burning to have answered? Send me a message and I’ll do my best to add it to the list with my two cents!
How long do I need to breastfeed for?
As a man, this really isn’t my area of expertise (for obvious reasons!) So I would hate to step on anyone’s toes, especially as all you ladies do a fantastic job of raising your children. Medical bodies recommend nursing for 12 months for a few medical benefits, but don’t feel pressured to continue if you are struggling or if the baby won’t latch. Speak to your midwife or healthcare professional for advice on moving on from breastfeeding. My wife only breastfed for around 6 months with one of ours and everything has turned out fine.
When will the baby sleep through the night?
Ah, the age old question and the factor of parenting which drives most people to the brink of insanity – the sleepless night.
It will get better, but it takes time. Two month olds will typically need to wake up every five hour, four months will typically extend this to eight hours. But take this with a word of caution – your baby’s big sleep may not be at a convenient time. For example, they could sleep from 7pm till 3am, which is eight hours, but still with a 3am wake up.
How can I help my child make friends?
It can be a little worrying if you think your child has no friends, as play time and social interaction is super important for developing a well-balanced human being. Ask your child if they would like to join an after-school class or club, friends will come naturally from shared interests. Or arrange a playdate with kids from the street or from their class.
Whatever you decide to do, make sure it is actually what your child wants. Some kids are happy in their own company but try to gently encourage socialising.
What can I do to help with homework?
Like I’ve discussed previously, I feel like I have an inside scoop on education after being a teacher for many years. But even without this knowledge, there are things you can do to help your child with their education.
Try and learn along with them to make the activity a bonding session (this is only good if you don’t know it yourself). Ask them what they learnt at school and if they had any homework to complete, let them try and solve it on their own before stepping in and make sure they’re not just being lazy.
Check out my page on learning at home for more ways to improve their education while at home.
What is a good diet for my child?
Diet is a tricky thing to address as every child has different needs. What I will say is that it is important not to overload on sugar or too many ‘treats’ or ‘snacks’. Childhood obesity is at an all time high and can have a detrimental effect on children’s lives.
Just make sure you are including enough fruit, vegetables, protein and complex carbs and consult a dietician if you are struggling to make them eat enough or if they are eating too much of a bad thing.