Is it me, or is parenting mysterious? I have a four-year-old and a one-year-old and I find myself somewhere between unsure and baffled every day. “They” mean it when they say that parenting does not come with an instruction manual. These are the questions that regularly come up for me. I present these as a springboard for discussion. I would like to hear your parenting questions and dilemmas; I hope we can help each other out in the comments.
One: Is it my fault that my kid is doing this?
Two: Why is my kid doing this?
Three: Am I handling this situation correctly?
Four: Will this screw up my kid?
Five: Is this normal?
Six: Does my kid’s teacher like me? Does it matter?
Seven: Is it OK to let my kid get his way right now?
Eight: Is this age-appropriate?
Nine: Am I too lenient or too strict?
Ten: Should I listen to that other adult who is giving me unsolicited advice? Is she right?
Eleven: Can my child have chocolate at breakfast and not develop an eating disorder?
Twelve: Am I overreacting?
Thirteen: Am I under-reacting?
Fourteen: Am I demonstrating keeping Jewish law well enough?
Fifteen: Am I demonstrating Chassidishkeit well enough?
Sixteen: Am I teaching my kid to do mitzvoth in a positive enough way?
Seventeen: Am I too lenient or too demanding in expectations for my child’s mitzvah observance?
Eighteen: Should I give my kid more attention or should I encourage him to be more independent?
Nineteen: Should I try to solve this problem for him, or let him figure it out himself?
Twenty: What can I do better?
Now I want to hear from you: What are your parenting questions, and how do you get answers? What kinds of answers have you gotten?