5 Signs That Indicate Something Is Not Quite Right With Your Child

I was quite happy that my daughter was meeting all her developmental milestones. She started sitting at 6 months, crawling at 8 and walking at 11. I was so happy with her timely accomplishments that I forgot that there was something equally important to focus on. Her behavioural development. There are some telling signs that can indicate a serious problem. Consider this my warning!


Behavioural development of your child is as important as her meeting all her physical milestones. Hence, focus on them too! For me, it wasn’t until my daughter’s constant desire to be with me became a nuisance that I realized that there was something not correct. I talked to her paediatrician, enrolled her in a kindergarten and hosted play dates, and that’s how gradually she started observing and mingling with other people other than me.

Yes, behavioural development of a child is as important as physical development. A child may throw a tantrum, be disobedient, or display an outburst of aggression or destructive behaviour. If that’s occasional, there’s often nothing to worry about. But, if this kind of behaviour is a regular norm, it’s time parents took it more seriously and took positive steps to control it.

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Originally published at – http://www.mycity4kids.com/parenting/first-time-mommy/article/why-you-should-tell-your-kids-change-is-good

I still distinctly remember the day, when my little daughter came from school and told me excitedly,

“Mama, you know I am going to a big class.”

“Oh! Really!” I feigned surprise.

“Yes, because I am big now.”

That was her last day of one class, and she was being promoted to a senior class. That is a usual phenomenon; every March, kids enter a senior grade.

She continued, “Teacher said the new class will have tables because we will be writing.”

“Oh! Wow!” I exclaimed.

She said with a little note of sadness in her voice, “But, my teachers will change. I will get new teachers.”

But, the very next moment, even before I could react, she jumped in excitedly with, “And, the teacher said ask mama to buy you a new school bag and water bottle.”

I replied automatically, “Why?” Now, I wasn’t too sure. Why a new bag? What’s wrong with the existing one. Schools these days just want parents to spend, spend and spend. Do they even know how much these things cost? Do they think parents get money off trees? What kind of teaching is this?

I was thoroughly disappointed with the school, and came out with some choicest expletives, though I refrained myself from uttering them aloud.

“Mama, because, I am going to a new class. That’s why everything should be new. New teachers, new friends, new tables, new school bag, uniform and water bottle.”

I took a while, but it finally dawned on me the philosophy of my daughter’s school. The kids were small; hence, a huge change which included new teachers and a new set of friends (her school shuffles students in all the sections with the aim to encourage children to interact with new people and thus, make new friends) would make them anxious. This anxiety could prove a hurdle in their learning and growing up process. In order to avoid that, they were preparing the kids beforehand. This way, the kids would not mind, or rather wouldn’t resist the change; rather they would be looking forward to the excitement the change would bring. The expense of a new school bag and a water bottle appeared paltry now.

I later found a note in her school bag by her teacher, “She hugged me a lot today, because she realized I would not be around in the new class!” Those words can still bring a few tears to my eyes. That one sentence showed how sensitive kids are, and their fear towards the unknown.

That was then. Now, my child looks forward to her new class, new teachers, new friends and new adventures with wholehearted excitement. And I thank her teachers for that.

This happens with everyone. Even an infant eyes suspiciously and howls when he finds himself in strange arms, because he doesn’t like the change; he prefers his mother’s lap. When a toddler goes to school first, again he doesn’t want to leave the comfort of his home and his family. He doesn’t appreciate the change in his life.

When adults resist change, why kids should be any different. Kids are also averse to changes in their life. Because change means moving out of the territory that is known and comfortable.

Why would anyone want to change? Why? Why?

Because by changing, we keep on learning and growing. Kids can’t remain kids all the time, they need to grow. And change provides that. The perfect opportunity to learn, to explore, to grow…and to progress.

So why should we resist the change? Why? Why?

No reason at all. If we explain to our kids that a change is for the better (not many will agree with me here, but actually, that’s how it is) and brings in new opportunities, they will look at the change positively. They might not like it, but they will come to appreciate it. Childhood is the period when we can instill fears and courage, and positives and negatives in their little hearts.

5 things we can do for our children today:

  • Let’s not instill our fears and pre-conceived notions in them.
  • Let them not fear the new experiences.
  • Let them grow positively and look at the brighter side of things.
  • Let them see the goodness in bad.
  • Let them grow with hope.

Every parent wants to provide a happy childhood to their children. A khuljaye bachpan – a bachpan that is carefree, and challenges our kids positively and teaches them to be fearless and all-accepting of changes. Let’s do that, let’s embrace change, and teach our kids to do that too!

My New Year Resolution I Promise To Do Right By You, My Child!!

I know it’s a little late in the day to be posting about the New Year Resolution, but once you start reading it, you will realize why I couldn’t help myself. 🙂


With the New Year ringing in, everyone is scrambling to find their New Year Resolution. A resolution which, they very well know, wouldn’t survive the first flush of spring. Anyways, that’s not what I want to talk about.

A few months ago, I had watched ‘Tamasha’, a nice romantic movie by Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone. Do not be alarmed, I won’t be discussing the movie here. But, there is something about the movie that has stayed with me, even after so much time has elapsed. It had something to do with the story of that movie. Ranbir Kapoor, a brilliant storyteller since childhood, is forced to go through the Engineering and take up a corporate job that he hates. He becomes an automaton, running with the world, in the rat race. He forgets to laugh, enjoy and LIVE.

Now, that’s where my point comes. As a child, I was good at numbers. When the time came to choose a stream, I went for Commerce. Why? The logic was simple. I was not cut out for the hard work that the Science stream demanded. Also, I hated physics, and  didn’t want to be an Engineer or a Doctor! As for the Arts, it was considered (please do not mind it, it was the general opinion at that time) at the bottom rung of the hierarchy. And it didn’t pay much. So Commerce, looked like a respectable choice! Of course, I didn’t consider that I loved reading and writing. Who cares for reading and writing, anyway??? Now, years later, I regret that choice. Arts was FOR ME.

The career options there are today, didn’t exist back then. We’d never heard of a Zumba instructor or a storyteller. I look at them, they are so happy with their career choices. Happy that they are doing what they love, and not forced to love what they do. You can be anything and excel at it, as long as you love it.

I see my daughter doodling on the walls, and I think, may be, she will become an artist when she grows up. The next day, she brings out the doctor set from her toy cupboard and starts examining me, “I think you have a fever. I need to give you an injection. And also some very bitter medicines.”

“No injections, please, doctor,” I say (joining in the spirit) pleadingly.

“You need an injection. It will make you better quickly,” she says firmly and tries to put the toy injection on my arm. I cry, “Ouch” which somehow makes her satisfied.

“No chocolates and no ice creams, OK? Or, we will need to hospitalize you,” she says in a strict doctor-like tone. And I only nod.

Yes, with a white doctor’s coat and a stethoscope around her neck, she looks very much like a doctor. She can definitely be a doctor when she grows up.

It’s true, she can be many things, but more importantly, she needs to be someone she likes to be, and not what I want her to be.

My nephew at a tender 18 decided to pursue CA. Well, it was his father’s dream he became a CA. Everyone was happy, we would finally have a Chartered Accountant in the family. The boy worked hard, he definitely did. Managing college and CA studies was no joke. But, after a couple of years, I heard he had quit the professional course.

I talked to him, “What happened?”

“I realized CA was not for me. I would have left it in the first year, but I didn’t want to dash everyone’s hopes,” he replied. I could understand.

“Forget it. You tried to please your family, now it’s time you please yourself. Do whatever you like,” I advised.

“But, I am already 20! It’s time I think about settling down.” He exclaimed.

“So, you are only 20. You have the entire life before you to decide and do, or not to decide. People leave their jobs at 40 to pursue their passion. You are getting that chance at 20. So take it,” I said. I don’t know if he understood my words, I just hope he did.

It was my nephew, had it been my daughter, I would have advised her the same. We do not need to settle in life to make our parents happy, to get married and to start a family.

We have a very materialistic approach to life. It needs to be toned down a little, if a child has to have a happy childhood. Yes, money is important. But, it is only as important as you want it to be. A little money is good enough to take care of your needs, more money just sits in your bank. So enjoy with little money, and live your dream. At the end of the life, you won’t have much need for that money anyway! It will be the fulfilled dreams that would count. It would be the items on your bucket list that you checked off that would keep you warm in those twilight years.

Many of our kids will be at the threshold of adulthood, where they need to take important steps for the future. In the New Year, as loving, caring and responsible parents:

  •         Let us encourage our kids to choose something they like and are passionate about, and not something that is credible and pays them more money.
  •         Let them choose something of their liking, and not try to fulfil our dreams.
  •         Let them opt for something they love, and not something that their peers are going for or is the fad of the moment.
  •         Let us empower our kids with good books, good thoughts and good deeds.
  •         Let us nurture them into being a complete person, than a money-minded one.
  •         Let us tell them, their life and their dreams are worth more than the money could ever buy.
  •         Let us make them realize that the pursuit of happiness is inside them, and not in the wads of money they earn every month.
  •         Let us teach them to celebrate life, to play and to explore, because these days will never come back.
  •         Let us tell them that bachpan doesn’t have to end at 10, 15 or 20, they can have the same carefree bachpan at any age, given they keep the same mindset.

This is my promise to my daughter – I will do right by you. I will not make a Tamasha out of you! This New Year, this is the new beginning I hope for. This is how I intend to start on a new beginning – Khuljaye Bachpan!

What is your promise to your child this year?

To read my other posts on Khuljaaye Bachpan, you can log onto http://www.mycity4kids.com/parenting/first-time-mommy.

Image Credit: http://loveyouthismuch.com.au/

Peer Parenting: The New Age Parenting???

Earlier parenting was heavily influenced by what the elder and more experienced members of the family did with their child. If the elder cousin was enrolled in dance classes, the younger kids of the family were sent there too. Today, the joint family set up is rare. So parents instead of following their elders follow their peers. So if a certain mother enrolls her child in a horse riding class, the other mothers in her what’s app or Facebook group will follow suit. And if another mother puts her child in a Mandarin learning class, again the peer pressure will be seen.

Every mother’s child is intelligent and capable to take on the world, so why should he be left behind? It’s a dirty competitive world out there, so why shouldn’t the child be prepared from toddlerhood?

Sad affairs, isn’t it? I see more and more kids being strutted from one class to another. Money is not a question where the future of tiny tots is concerned. In fact, the pricier the better. It gives the young mothers a sense of pride and accomplishment as they carelessly (but craftily) dole out the information in their next kitty party.

And it’s commendable the way these classes sell themselves. ‘Come join our class. It helps in developing the fine motor skills of your child, nurturing life skills such as positive attitude, self esteem, social skills etc. and gives him an opportunity for physical development’. Wow! Kudos for their English and capability to hit the raw nerve of the parents.

What I fail to understand is ‘can kids learn these life skills only in such activity classes?’ What happened to those good old days when kids learnt all of these and a lot more while playing in the open fresh air of a playground or a park.

Earlier, the kids learnt either at school or at the hands of their parents or other family members. Nowadays, they learn whatever they need to learn in activity classes. Because obviously the schools are not capable and sadly, parents have no time for such things.

What a narrow-minded approach! We cushion our kids at all possible instances and then expect them to survive the world. We send them to sanitized enclosed classrooms and expect them to learn life surviving skills.

Peer parenting is a great advantage, especially when we are staying in single families. However, there is a fine line between support and blind following.