this is a group for parents (and people starting on the path to parenthood soon) to discuss and share ideas about revolutionary parenting methods that seek to raise a different kind of children for the next generation, ones who value collaboration, compassion, and enthusiasm over competition, criticism and dogma. this encompasses the intersection of lots of things, but includes attachment parenting, unconditional parenting, nonviolent parenting, and similar ideas. it is hopefully a place to find a like-minded community of folks who can share the parenting journey, from planning pregnancy & birth, parenting styles, creating shared learning and play environments for our kids, etc., and trying to create better versions of ourselves as we become and grow as parents.
if i had to sum up what all the parenting styles i've been reading about and come to value have in common, here it is: behave with gentleness & compassion, and never make a kid feel shamed or evaluated, ESPECIALLY when they're sharing their feelings. you never ascribe bad motives to their actions, you ask them, and then sincerely listen and then let *them* evaluate, don't you go and evaluate. they learn to be good people naturally, organically, not through us asking or demanding it of them (which often slows down or distracts from the real learning). you put the relationship first. a good test of "is this an appropriate way of responding to my kid" is to ask yourself, would i think it appropriate to say to a dinner guest or a good friend? (so you don't ever give yourself permission to say rude things that pass for parenting, like a scornful "why can't you ever remember your umbrella? you're so forgetful!" but instead we say, with a smile, "oops, almost forgot this! here ya go!"). i want to create a community of other parents who will all strive to parent in this way, and help each other problem solve as we go.
here are some of the books and topics i'm interested in so far: the attachment parenting book &/or website by Dr. Sears; the findings (in favor of cosleeping) of the University of Notre Dame's Mother Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory (http://cosleeping.nd.edu/); Unconditional Parenting, Punished by Rewards, and The Homework Myth by Alfie Kohn; The Continuum Concept by Jean Liedloff; Playful Parenting by Lawrence J. Cohen; Raising our Children, Raising Ourselves by Naomi Aldort; homeschooling and unschooling; refusing to perpetuate a restrictive binary gender system (and learning how to spot it creeping in despite our best efforts!); queer parenting; natural birthing; doulas & midwives; breastfeeding; sustainability/keeping a small footprint; plus lots more stuff (please share your favorites books, ideas, philosophies, ponderings, struggles, etc!)
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