The Secret to Raising Happy & Well-Adjusted Children

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happy-kids-on-grass Image via Shutterfly

If there’s one thing I know, it’s parenting. I consider myself an expert, actually – and I say that with the utmost humility. I’m not bragging, okay? It’s just true. Because I am a parent. And because I’m a giving person, I would like to share my vast parenting expertise with you.

If you follow ALL of these steps, you are GUARANTEED to raise happy and well-adjusted children who will grow into happy and well-adjusted adults. And isn’t that all every parent really wants?

1. Abstain from all alcohol and caffeine during pregnancy. Both are known to destroy developing brain cells and cause a host of other problems. You don’t want to jeopardize your little genius’s potential, do you?

2. Everything in moderation. A little alcohol and/or caffeine on occasion is nothing to worry about.  Relax!

3. Plan to have natural, drug-free childbirth. Even in labor, your baby will receive whatever drugs you are given. Do you really want a stoned newborn?

4. Have a home birth. It’s really the only way to ensure a gentle, loving entrance into the world for your baby.

5. Plan to have an epidural and any other drugs you can get your hands on during labor. Nobody gets a medal for enduring pain.

6. Room in with your newborn. These first few days of bonding are very important. Besides, you don’t trust the nurses to care for your baby, do you?

7. Send your baby to the nursery, for god’s sake! Enjoy all the rest you can!

8. Insist on being discharged from the hospital as soon as possible after giving birth. Hospitals are breeding grounds for germs.

9. Stay in the hospital as long as possible after giving birth. You’ll never have anyone waiting on you like this again!

10. You should, of course, breastfeed. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends breastfeeding for at least the first year of your child’s life.

11. Breastfed children have higher IQs, better immune systems, and a lower incidence of allergies.

12. The World Health Organization recommends breastfeeding for two years. Not breastfeeding is obviously selfish.

13. Extended breastfeeding is weird and perverted and will result in sexual deviancy.

14. You should definitely formula feed. That way, you won’t be tied to your baby, and Daddy won’t feel left out.

15. Co-sleep. You want your baby close to you at all times in order to foster feelings of safety and security.

16. Whatever you do, don’t co-sleep! It’s super dangerous and will make your baby overly dependent on you.

17. Let your baby cry it out. Foster independence as early as possible. Your baby needs to learn that he will not get whatever he wants by crying.

18. You should never let your baby cry. It’s cruel and will result in feelings of abandonment and life-long self-esteem issues.

19. Wear your baby in a sling or a complicated wrap-thing. It’s part of the bonding experience.

20. Don’t wear your baby, or he’ll never learn to walk and will expect to be carried until he’s ten.

21. Babies should not be offered solid foods until at least six months of age.

22. A little rice cereal in your three-month old’s bottle will help her sleep through the night.

23. Rice cereal in a bottle is a no-no! It is an aspiration hazard.

24. Don’t bottle feed! You should be breastfeeding.

25. Children achieve milestones in their own time. There is a very wide range of “normal.”

26. If your child is not walking by fourteen months, consult your pediatrician. It could be a sign of serious developmental delays.

27. Albert Einstein did not speak until the age of three.

28. If your child’s vocabulary does not consist of at least fifty words by the age of two, you are right to panic. This very likely means your child has a speech delay and should be evaluated and placed in speech therapy immediately.

29. Does your three-year old know her alphabet? What about her colors and shapes? No? You didn’t listen to classical music when you were pregnant like you were supposed to, did you?

30. Wait until your child shows signs of being ready to potty train, such as telling you when she is soiled, and waking up with a dry diaper. This happens at different ages for different children. If you attempt to potty train a child before she is ready, you will create a battle ground and deep-seated bathroom issues.

31. You should potty train your child as soon as possible.  Anyone who doesn’t have their child potty trained by the age of three is in serious parenting failure.

32. Elimination communication is the only way to go. Even newborns can be potty trained.

33. Don’t spank. It’s abusive in all situations.

34. Remember, a swat on the bottom once in a while will cause no long-term damage and is sometimes the only way to get a child’s attention.

35. Time-outs are an excellent, non-abusive form of discipline.

36. Sending your child to his room as a consequence causes feelings of abandonment and isolation and can lead to long-term emotional scars that may inhibit the ability to form healthy adult relationships.

37. There is absolutely no reason to feel guilty for working outside the home. Your income is no doubt necessary to the family, and even if it’s not, it sets a good example for children to be independent. Sending your child to daycare will make her more sociable, too.

38. Mothers should stay at home with their children if at all possible. Make sacrifices so that your family can get by on one income; your child’s emotional well-being is certainly more important than internet service, vacations, and organic foods. Children grow up so quickly, and this is time you will never get back.  You don’t want some stranger to experience your child’s firsts, do you? Besides, daycare is a breeding ground for diseases and bratty behavior.

39. You should feed your children organic foods at all costs.

40. Vaccinate your children, and do it on schedule! Vaccines save lives!

41. For God’s sake, don’t vaccinate your kids. Anti-vaxxers know the truth: vaccines are deadly and a conspiracy by the government to create a population of autistic robots.

42. Homeschool your children. You are your children’s best teacher. Public education sucks.

43. Whatever you do, don’t homeschool. What makes any parent think they’re qualified to teach? Leave teaching to the highly educated professionals. Besides, homeschooled kids don’t have any social skills.

44. Your child will receive a superior education at a private school. If you must take on a second job to afford the tuition, be happy to do it.

45. America was founded on public school education.

46. Don’t fall prey to government schools! It’s a conspiracy.

47. One word: volunteer! Volunteer at your child’s school as much as possible.

48. Join the PTA. Be a room parent. Every year. Chair the fundraising committee. An involved parent is a parent who cares!

49. Your child’s life at school should be his own. This is his opportunity to learn and have experiences without you; it’s healthy. Anyway, you don’t need to prove anything, and there are plenty of other parents who enjoy volunteering at school. Imagine if every single parent volunteered! Schools would be literally crawling with parents, like cockroaches in a dumpster.

50. Enroll your child in as many organized sports and enrichment activities as possible. Idle kids are kids headed for trouble.

51. Foster independence and creativity in your children by allowing them plenty of unstructured time to use their imaginations to amuse themselves.

52. Don’t let your kids out of your sight! The world is a far more dangerous place than when you were growing up. Just turn on the news and you’ll see! There are murderers and child-abductors lurking around every corner.

53. Let out the reins and let your children take risks. The world is no more dangerous now than it was when you were a child; the only thing that’s changed is the twenty-four hour sensationalistic news media.

54. You should have your children take on housekeeping chores as soon as possible. Even a three-year old can dust.  This fosters a sense of responsibility and a strong work ethic.

55. Definitely hire a housekeeper. Let kids be kids – they’ll grow up and have to work soon enough.

56. Give your child an allowance. This will teach them the value of a dollar and the importance of budgeting and saving.

57. Paying children to help out around the house sends the wrong message. Everyone in the family should pitch in because it helps things run more smoothly for everyone. Children should not be taught to expect compensation for helping out.

58. Talk to your children about sex early. This will demystify it and instill healthy attitudes about sexuality.

59. Certain topics are not appropriate for young children. For example, reproduction and human anatomy. Let them hang onto their innocence for as long as possible.

60. Teach abstinence! Everyone should save themselves for marriage.

61. Buy condoms for your teenager. At the very least, make sure they know how and where to procure condoms on their own.

62. Discussing birth control with kids is the same as giving them permission to have sex. Bad parenting move.

63. Insist that your teenager get a part-time job. This will teach her responsibility and allow her to begin paying and saving for things she needs and wants.

64. The number one priority of every high-school student should be school. Employment of any kind will interfere with school and should be discouraged.

65. Buy your teenager his first car. Plan to pay for his gas and insurance, as well.

66. A part-time job will enable a teen to buy her own first car. She will value it far more if she pays for it herself.

67. Teenagers have poor judgment and relatively low maturity, as their brains are not fully developed until approximately age 22. For this reason, teenagers should not drive.

68. Start your child’s college savings fund as soon as you find out you’re pregnant. If you can’t afford to save for college, you should just go have an abortion. No young adult should have to deal with student loan debt.
Abortion is murder.

69. If your child wants to go to college, they should expect to pay for it themselves. They will value it more if it’s on their dime, anyway, and it builds character.

70. People who don’t get college educations are losers; they go nowhere in life and have nothing to offer.

71. Also, college is overrated. It’s not for everyone.

72. In addition to starting college funds for your children before they are born, you should also start wedding funds for any daughters you have. A big, ostentatious ceremony/party on your dime shows how very much you treasure your little girl(s). If you are unable to save for said wedding(s), plan to mortgage your house and/or take out other loans.

73. You should definitely encourage your kids to elope or go to a justice of the peace to get married. They’ll probably end up divorced anyway.

74. Marriage is an archaic, paternalistic institution. Discourage your children from getting married.

75. The absolute most important thing you can do as a parent is to scrutinize other people’s parenting practices with an extremely critical eye, and offer your wisdom wherever you see fit. After all, if something is working for you, you’ve obviously tapped into a superior depth of parenting knowledge, and you owe it to the world to share this expertise with other parents, even if they don’t ask for it.

Comments

The Scary Mommy Community is built on support. If your comment doesn't add to the conversation in a positive or constructive way, please rethink submitting it. Basically? Don't be a dick, please.

  1. 1

    Agora says

    I’m pretty sure the point got made after the first 10 contradictions. The list just gets tedious from there. And I must say that from the title I was hoping for some kind of real useable advice, not a regurgitation of every parenting opinion ever stated for the sake of saying there IS no way to raise “happy, well-adjusted kids.” 15 minutes I can’t get back…

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      • 3

        Peanut says

        If SM can’t handle criticism then she shouldn’t be posting publicly. Agora can state her opinion that the post was a waste of time. I happen to concur with that opinion, this list wasn’t funny or enlightening at all. Boring. Maybe an actual blog post would have been a novel way of doing something constructive with her public voice rather than just posting for the hell of posting to earn a nickel.

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      • 6

        Ash says

        Jill, do you write for the stir? Your name rings a bell. I remember liking your articles if you are who I think you are. If you are, do you know why the authors on that site never comment to the readers? Not that I much like many of the comments to be honest, but I always wonder why the authors don’t stand up for themselves in there.

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        • 7

          Jill Smokler, AKA Scary Mommy says

          Hi, yes, I do! Honestly, I don’t even read the comments there and most writers I know don’t, either. The commenters are so vicious and irrational, that there’s no point in engaging. Better to just submit and forget it. (For my sanity, at least.)

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          • 8

            ash says

            I totally understand. The atmosphere in that place is so unhappy and angry that I quit reading altogether. You have some great articles though. :)

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  2. 19

    cosette says

    not gonna lie at first i was like is this person stupid then i realized where it was going with it and had to read to the end to see how many contradictions were in it lol…. I like this alot its funny

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  3. 25

    says

    I realized half-way through that this was contradicting. Don’t get me wrong, I love reading everything you post on your page but why a contradicting article that will possible confuse young or soon-to-be first-time moms???

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