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“I hate you! I wish you weren’t my mom!”

The other day during online school, my 6-year-old was on the floor, refusing to do his seatwork yet again. My gentle prodding and requests weren’t working, and he was missing the activity.

I brought out my Momster voice: “DO IT,” then I started counting “3, 2, 1..” (which he hates). Full-on drama ensued.


“I will always be your mom.”


“Even if you hate me, I will love you forever. I know you don’t want to do this, but you need to learn to sit down properly and do your work. Finish this first, and then we’ll talk about our feelings, okay?”

I gave him the pencil and notebook and he started writing, with tears in his eyes. He kept muttering “I HATE YOU,” while I kept replying “I love you,” until he finished.

“I’m proud of you for finishing your work. I know you didn’t want to do it, but you did what needs to be done. Thank you.”

“I’m still angry at you! I hate you!”

“It’s okay to feel angry. But it’s not okay to say hurtful things. I will love you no matter what you say or do. But you need to be careful with your words. It’s okay to tell me you’re angry at me or that you don’t like me. But hate is such a strong word and it hurts too much. I’m just shielding my heart, so think very hard before you say it again.”

“I’m angry at you and I don’t like you!”

“That’s okay. I’ll give you some time.”

We talked about other things to get his mind off it. When I managed to get a chuckle out of him, he would stop himself and frown again.

“I’m angry. I want to stay angry. I’m trying my best to stay angry!”

“It’s normal to feel angry. But staying angry for too long will hurt your heart and can make you weak. Anyone can be angry, but not everyone can overcome it. Learning to let go of your anger will make you stronger. We learned about different ways to let go of anger— now you need to try those things and find your way out.”

It took a while of back and forth, but he finally came around.

“Mom, I think I love you again.”

“I’m glad. But I never stopped loving you. I’m so proud of you for being stronger than your anger.”

“Me, too. I’m sorry for getting so angry and for saying those things.”

“It’s okay. Just don’t say them again.”

And then we hugged.

Thanks for reading! I have no idea if I’m doing the right thing. I’m far from perfect and definitely not an expert at this. Just a mom sharing her journey, hoping it can help some of you who might be having similar struggles.

What I do know is that a few months ago, I might have gotten angry and lashed out at my son, partly from the shame of seeming to have the only kid in class who keeps having tantrums. I’m trying to remember that how my child acts is not always a reflection of my parenting skills. It’s how I respond that matters.

All kids are different and will develop at their own pace. So we just try our best to be patient, trust our instincts, and adapt. There will always be people who disagree with how we parent. But just as every kid is different, so is every situation, family, and culture. We’re not perfect, but we try our best, and we keep learning and growing. Bad days will come and we may stumble, but we’ll keep moving forward. Because our little ones are counting on us! ❤️

Image source: @yourbeautifullife

#tantrums #tamingtantrums #gentleparenting #positiveparenting #emotionalregulation #emotionalintelligence #consciousparenting #respectfulparenting #kids #angermanagement

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Nightmares and Fairytales

cute duck kids dream

How do you deal with kids nightmares?. A few months ago, Kyle woke up crying inconsolably. I tried my best to calm him down and assure him- it’s not real; it was just a dream. You’re safe here with me. I asked him what it was about, but he refused and said it was too scary. The next few days, he would tell me bits and pieces about it.

“There was a bad wizard, and an old man. And there were pins and needles.” I was curious to know more, but didn’t want to force him if he wasn’t ready. I suggested we stop watching and reading fairytales for awhile, and then forgot all about it.

wizard kids nigthmare

Tonight, as I was putting him to sleep, he asked me if I remembered the scary dream that he had.
“The one with the wizard?“
“Yes. It was so scary…”
“Do you want to talk about it and try to make the wizard seem funny?”
“Okay! What if he was like Magic Koopa from Mario?”
“That would be so cute! And what if he liked to dance like the dancing Koopa?

koopa troopa

We both started laughing, but then he turned serious again.
“There’s more that I didn’t tell you about, mom, because it’s too scary. There was also an old man who had his head stuck in a helmet. And there was a duck. And the wizard pinned some needles on the duck… like twelve needles. That’s why I called it pins and needles. And they were so big. And you know what? The duck died…”
“Oh no… That is such a sad dream. Can we try to change it a bit so it won’t be as scary?”
“Well, what if the wizard was a good wizard? And the old man was good, but he was so hungry and he had nothing to eat. The duck was his friend, but the duck was very weak and was about to die soon. And the duck was in so much pain- he said, “please help me, I want to be at peace. You can eat me so that you can be strong again.”
The old man said- “but I do not want to hurt you, you are my friend.” But the duck said: “I am old, and I have lived a long and beautiful life. I am alone and my whole family is in heaven. I would like to be with them.”
So the good wizard said “I can help you. I have magic needles that can help stop the pain.” The needles were big, but they did not hurt. They stopped all of the pain, and the duck was smiling as he died in peace. Then his spirit went to heaven, where his whole family was waiting to embrace him.
The old man was sad, but he knew that the duck was happy. He needed to feed himself, so he prayed, then carefully cooked and ate the duck. He became stronger, and he was finally able to remove the helmet. Then he planted some carrots and vegetables to eat, and swore to take care of all the ducks and never eat them again. And all the ducks were so happy, especially the duck in heaven. Because he was with his family, and he was also able to help his friend become stronger.”

cute duck kids dream

“That’s a nice story, mom.”
“Do you feel better now after talking about it?”
“Yes. Thanks, mommy.”
“Thank you for finally telling me about your dream. I hope you can tell me about it right away next time, so you won’t stay scared for long. Now it’s time to sleep.”
We hugged each other for a while. I thought he had fallen asleep, but then he suddenly put his head up.
“Did you enjoy talking about my dream and making it a little bit nice?”
“Yes I did. Very much.”
“Me too.”
And he finally drifted off to sleep.




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Check out our children’s books about big feelings!


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Moments of Weakness

Moments of Weakness

Moments of Weakness:

Moments of Weakness

The other day, we shared one of our proud moments of strength. Today, we’ll share with you a moment of weakness. Life is not perfect, and we all make mistakes. That’s how we grow.


July 13, 2021:

I thought I finally had everything figured out: as long as I stay calm when Kyle has a tantrum, it won’t escalate to rage and he won’t burst into The Hulk.

When Kyle started Kindergarten online classes at big school, I thought it would be a breeze. He adjusted pretty well to online classes at his pre-school, so I didn’t think it would be any different. As you’ve probably guessed, I was wrong.

It was hard for him to sit through 2-and-half-hour classes of more serious learning, when he already knew most of the lessons. The chat box on zoom was a big distraction, because he wanted to type so many things (but teacher says it’s only to be used when there are internet problems). The icing on the cake was that he kept rocking his chair and falling backwards, sideward, and every which way, causing the wooden chair to bang on the floor and scratch our parquet tiles. It was driving me nuts!

So naturally, I had a mini breakdown one day. Aside from Kyle’s usual antics during class, I was stressed about preparing our meals (our cook had left again, and I had to train the new one but didn’t really have the time to). To top it off, someone kept nagging me about how I don’t fix the sheets properly, and about imaginary crumbs on the floor when I feed Kyle his snacks.

So when Kyle kept minimizing the Zoom window to google during class, I snapped at him. He got upset and came over to me, growling. He hugged me but I was still upset, which didn’t sit well with him. The next thing I knew, he banged his hands towards my face and hit me in the eye! It really hurt, so I screamed in pain and watched him look at me like it was no big deal. I was shocked at how he seemed so unremorseful, that I spanked him on his bum. 

“That didn’t hurt so much, mom.”

I spanked him again. 

“Why did you do that, Kyle? It hurts so much! Don’t do that ever again!”

Spanking has always seemed counter-intuitive to me, because I can’t reconcile how hitting a kid can help them learn to stop hitting you. But at that moment, all I could think of was making him understand how much hitting hurts, so he would think twice before doing it again. 

I let him go back to class as I sat there, fuming and wondering if all my efforts at positive parenting had been futile. Maybe a strong hand is really what’s needed for a child as strong-willed as mine. He didn’t apologize, so I stayed quiet the whole time. I stormed out of the house to take a walk and clear my head, then watched TV by myself to calm down.

Soon, Kyle came over to hug me and say sorry. We talked about it, like how we usually do, and we processed what happened. It didn’t really make me feel better, because I was still struggling with all these thoughts of self-doubt about my parenting skills. It took me a while to realize that maybe the problem was not my parenting style, but my attitude towards parenting and my own unconscious issues and beliefs.

A while back, a friend shared with me the concept of Conscious Parenting by Dr. Shefali Tsbary (watch her TED Talk here). She applies the concept of Consciousness (read Eckhart Tolle’s “A New Earth”) towards parenting, and argues that we need to look inward to resolve our own issues so that we can become better parents. The child is not the problem- it is the parent. Those concepts resonated deeply with me, but I forgot them when things became overwhelming.

When I looked inward, that’s when I realized that my expectations towards Kyle had been unreasonable. Kids are not meant to sit still for long periods of time, especially not for online classes. They will get restless and bored, but it doesn’t mean they are misbehaving. That’s just the way they’re built!

I also realized that I had become so irritable, because I felt like his misbehavior was a reflection on my parenting. It felt like a failure on my part, and I felt ashamed every time my son would unmute the microphone and say something out of turn in class for the nth time. As a stay-at-home mom, all my hours spent with him should have resulted in a perfectly behaved child, right? I had no career to speak of, so my child was my career, and my parenting skills were the measure of my success. 

What an awful lot of pressure to put on a 5 year-old child! 

First of all, there is no room for shame in parenting (thank you to another friend who pointed this out recently). Second, as hard as it may be to accept and believe sometimes, all the work we do has value, whether the world thinks so or not. We are inherently valuable just by “being”– we touch the lives of those around us, and bring something to this world just by being in it. We all need to take a chill-pill and give ourselves (and our kids) a break sometimes.

Lastly, it is unreasonable and damaging to pin any of our hopes and dreams on our children, whether consciously or subconsciously. Let kids be kids- we need to learn to check ourselves for unhealthy behaviors and mindsets that may end up hurting us and those around us.

Let’s all stop measuring success based on worldly standards. It is a toxic and endless cycle, and unreasonably biased towards careers that bring fame or fortune. Everyone has her own place in the world. Just as a working mom is successful for raising her family while nurturing a career, so is a stay-at-home mom successful for giving up her career (and sanity) to focus on raising her family.

One does not take the way away from the other, and should not be pitted against each other, because “better” is always subjective. There are always trade-offs, because nobody can have it all. But we choose to do our best with what we have, anyway, and feel grateful for it. Each person is built differently, each situation is different, so there is no use in comparing, unless the goal is to improve one’s self without diminishing someone else’s value.

Once I realized all these, I finally got my Zen back. Kyle still has his outbursts, but they have been much calmer and easier to overcome. We still try different strategies, and what works the most for tantrums that arise over trivial things is to distract him. Lately, what works is this:

“Oh no, Kyle, nobody will buy our book. They will say it- it doesn’t work! Look at Kyle, he’s still angry all the time. He doesn’t know how to feel more than one feeling.”

“But nobody will know, Mom, because we won’t tell them!”


Distracting works, because most of the time his anger comes out of nowhere and over something so small that he doesn’t even remember it afterwards. I can’t take all the credit for this, because there are lots of factors to consider- Maybe he’s just gotten used to class; Maybe he’s just outgrown his tantrums; Maybe I was just imagining it all (*plot twist!*).

I’m always on guard because I know that one day, things will likely get out of control again. After all, parenting is a roller coaster ride, so we need to expect the unexpected. We all have our bad days and moments of weakness. What we need to realize is that our moments of weakness actually push us to grow. So here’s to our moments of weakness– may they help us find our moments of strength.


If you enjoyed this, I hope you can share it with someone who might need it.


#consciousparenting #tempertantrums #breakdowns

Photo credits to Getty Images

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