Mommy Minute: Rules and routines can ease stress during ‘pandemic parenting’

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Parenting during a pandemic can be stressful with many feeling like normal rules and routines don’t apply anymore. Many kids are learning from home and parents are often working from home as well.

So how do you cope with these changes?

“There is no rulebook or handbook on quarantine parenting,” said Dr. Susan Alberts, a psychologist with the Cleveland Clinic. “Often, parents look to their parents for a style of what to do, or what not to do, but no one has been through this experience, so they don’t have that role model of how to parent during this time.”

Albers says parents should pick their battles and make a list of issues and rules that are the most important. She says parents should be consistent with rules so that children don’t think they can bend them. And she says parents need to be good role models. If they see an adult neglect their responsibilities, they may be inclined to do the same.

Finally, Albers says dont be afraid to say “no.”

“We’ve all struggled during the pandemic, so its easy to say, ‘oh, have that extra cookie or stay up an extra hour.’ But, right now, its really important to stay firm to your rules and expectations and not try and soothe them with bending the rules,” she said.

At the end of the day, Albers says parents shouldn’t be too hard on themselves.

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