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Why Being Honest with Your Kids Can Stop the Drop-Off Tears
Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell

Honesty can be tough, but it’s worth it! We recently had a client contact us with a serious... more

Why Being Honest with Your Kids Can Stop the Drop-Off Tears
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Honesty can be tough, but it’s worth it!

We recently had a client contact us with a serious problem. She said, ‘My son won’t let me leave preschool. He can’t stop crying. It’s like he thinks I’ll never come back for him.’

She revealed that, since he would have a fit if he knew she was leaving, she frequently snuck out the back door. He was busy playing with and didn’t realize that she had left until later. ‘It’s way easier to leave if he doesn’t know I’m going.’ she explained.

This parent’s behaviour is telling the child: ‘I may leave you at any moment. You will never know when I am leaving.’  As a direct result, he is terrified to let her out of his sight. At least when he can see her he knows that she is there. He can’t trust her.

Honesty doesn’t often feel like the easy way out. Sometimes our kids don’t like the truth. However, if honesty is an important family value to you, it is critical that you model it so that your kids learn it. Kids learn what they live. If you say that honesty is important, and then sneak out the door or make up lies about why you won’t be attending a party or pretend that your child is younger to save yourself an admission fee, you are teaching your children that honesty is not important.

After some counselling, our client really changed her ways. It wasn’t easy at the start, but has become so much easier over time. She made a plan to never sneak out on her son again. We taught her strategies to teach him to use his courage and get through saying goodbye. She and her son planned a script, called their ‘Goodbye Plan.’ She would say, ‘I’m heading out, I know you can use your courage and have fun with your friends. Let’s do our goodbye hug.’ He would then say, ‘I’ll miss you mom and I can do it.’ Then they would hug and count to five and then give each other a high five. They used the Goodbye Plan regularly and he became more confident that he could trust her.

The great news is that modelling honesty with young children sets up a pattern for honest communication in the future.

Image of tears from Shutterstock

Julie Freedman Smith and Gail Bell provide tools for real life parenting through their company, Parenting Power™. Using over 40 years of combined experience, they work with parents across the country through telephone coaching and teleconferences to ease the stress and guilt of parents while providing practical solutions to everyday parenting challenges. Visit to ask your own parenting questions, and learn how to receive 20% off all services as a Parenting Power Member!
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5 Ways to Dress a Postpartum Body and Feel Beautiful Without Breaking the Bank
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Throughout our lives weight fluctuation might be something we deal with, but during motherhood it is inevitable.

Many women go from a shape they’ve been used to since teen years, to a constantly-changing pregnancy shape, to a new post-baby shape. The latter shape can take years to settle into. With the stresses of motherhood, on-and-off breastfeeding and having more children…it can take years to feel like you’ve found your new self.

While these weight and shape fluctuation years are happening, it can feel really hard to get dressed. Many women lose themselves to athletic wear because it’s a way to feel ease everyday—athletic wear just fits! But if you want, there are other strategies you can use to keep a sense of yourself while this fluctuation happens…that won’t break the bank.

First things first

Please, please, please, try on everything you own. You don’t have to get rid of any of it, but you do need to sort it. Keep only what fits right now in your closet. The rest of your wardrobe pieces can be stored in a bin outside your closet marked by size so you can pull them out if you ever need them.

This is extremely important so you can see what you actually have to wear! If you keep everything you own in your closet you’re just tricking yourself into thinking you have more to wear than you actually do.

Buy exactly what you need

If you’re weight fluctuation is extreme at the moment, this is not the time to be flitting around in the clothing department. Decide exactly what it is you need to get by for now. Would two bottoms and five tops do the trick for a while? This is a great time for keeping the most minimal of wardrobes. Solid neutrals will be your best friend—that way no one will know you’re wearing the same pieces over and over.

Rethink alteration advice

Alterations can be expensive and continuous alterations cause clothes to lose their shape, so altering pieces while your weight is fluctuating might not make the most sense. Instead, pick and choose the pieces that make you feel happiest and alter them once your weight and shape have settled.

In the meantime, you might find it’s a better use of your dollars to buy a minimal amount of inexpensive clothing that fits and donate or store those pieces when they no longer work.

Stretch it out

Not just in athletic clothes—in all your clothes. If a garment is stretchy you’ll get more comfortable wear out of it for longer. For example, a pair of jeggings might look and feel good for fifteen to twenty pounds in either direction rather than a straight denim pair of jeans, which will be good for less than ten pounds.

Know your current beauty

This is so so important! No matter where you are on your journey it’s important to your self-esteem to feel good now. Show off your current assets by wearing clothing that actually fits. You will start to receive positive feedback from others immediately, which will only encourage you to keep things up.

Wendy Woods is a Personal Style Coach at THE REFINERY. She is fiercely committed to time-starved women who want an effortless sense of style. Her down-to-earth method allows women to feel accepted and understood while creating a personal style that makes them look and feel beautiful.
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