Mother’s Day. Father’s Day. Halloween. Christmas. Then add all those little holidays and milestones you didn’t even know about like Olivia’s 6 month birthday. You can’t escape it: the bottomless pit of children’s pictures on social media. Many people secretly moan and groan but for me and my wife – two years in to infertility treatments – it’s feels like a digital snowball to the face.
In the United States, at least 9 percent of school-aged children have been diagnosed with ADHD, and are taking pharmaceutical medications. In France, the percentage of kids diagnosed and medicated for ADHD is less than .5 percent. How has the epidemic of ADHD—firmly established in the U.S.—almost completely passed over children in France?
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Awareness of Autism is growing, which is good in that the earlier the diagnosis, the earlier and more intensive the intervention which often results in better outcomes. However, with awareness has also come anxiety about prevalence, false positives in diagnosing, and misinformation about cause and the desire for an easy explanation (i.e. the whole vaccines cause Autism debacle).
Six months ago, my 8 years old niece announced that she wanted to learn how to sew. Every one of us became so excited about it because rarely does she declare an interest or passion for something that is new to her. Her dad went out and bought her a sewing machine, luckily he has some basic skills with sewing and he taught her the basics. For the next three months after that, she watched YouTube videos of sewing and will tell me who her favorite seamstress is. She will even tell me what thread colors she had bought, and so on. However, I had never seen her attempt to make anything.
The diagnosis of a chronic and/or life-limiting illness in a child can overwhelm a family. While parents are coping with their own grief and fears, they also have much to learn and many decisions to make. One of the biggest challenges they face is how to talk to the child about the illness.
Divorce isn’t easy on anyone. When you are getting divorced with children, trying to minimize the amount of change and disruption can be overwhelming. Nesting is where the children stay in the family home and the parents take turns coming in and out according to the parenting schedule. Think of it as the kids have custody of the parents who come home and then go to the other house! Nesting is not for everyone and is fraught with difficulties, but when the situation works, there are great benefits.