Last year, it was the Tiger Mom that led the best-seller list in parenting. Its author claimed to create success in parenting through extreme force and control.
A recent Time magazine cover features a woman with a three year old at her breast, doing her best to practice “attachment parenting.”
When the fashion in parenting swings on the same predictable pendulum as politics, finance, and all other fashions, how is a parent to know what to do? Even Dr. Bill Sears, the current guru of “attachment parenting” and his grown son Jim state that mothers reading his father’s work interpret it more stringently that even the writer intended.
What’s a parent to do? How’s a parent to know what to do?
What if there was a way to parent without being a slave to the latest advice? Is there a better way?
Access Consciousness™ has a number of tools that can actually make parenting easier and a number of experts in parenting that work with parents and children to bring more ease, joy and glory into everyone’s lives.
“Choose what works for you, not the advice of some expert,” says Glenna Rice, who has taught her “Questionable Parent” classes worldwide. Unlike some approaches, which appear to require total sacrifice on the part of the parent or total submission on the part of the child, Rice points out that choosing, what worked for her usually also worked for her children. “When I chose what worked for them, they were quiet. When they were quiet, that worked for me, too.”
Much parenting advice is fear and control based, she notes. Rice advises parents to choose options based on what’s easier and more fun for both parent and child. She recommends asking questions, such as, “Does my child require anything right now?” The biggest thing she has found children require is that parents stay aware of them. This does not require “wearing” them, nor does it always require you to be physically present with them.
She also asks parents to clear all their “fantasies and insanities of what should work for you,” with the emphasis on should.
When her children were younger, she did the “attachment theory” approach to parenting, allowing her children to sleep in her bed and nursing them until they were four. Unlike mothers who do it because of obligation or expert advice, she chose this because it worked for her. She encourages parents to look at “what actually creates more ease for you” in making choices about how to parent.
One way she shows parents to determine this is to use the tool of light and heavy. In all Access Consciousness™ classes, it’s mentioned that “if it’s light for you, it’s true; if it’s heavy for you, it’s a lie.” Rice encourages parents to use this tool in making choices about parenting.
She returned to work when each of her children was 6 weeks old. “The notion that attachment parenting does not honor working mothers is ridiculous,” she says. Rice, for example, found it easier to nurse her children than to prepare endless snacks for them at daycare. She tasted formula herself and found it so disgusting she did not wish to offer it to anyone, so she didn’t give it to her children, either.
Dr. Kacie Crisp, who raised an amazing 21-year-old son, always saw parenting as an adventure in consciousness. “I knew that having a child would take me places psychically that I couldn’t go otherwise,” she says, “and it has!”
She also always lived from the question. “I never saw it as my job to make Arran be anything. I always lived in the question of who he was and who he wanted to be. I was just there to keep him from killing himself as a toddler—and maybe as a teenager—and to provide as many opportunities for him as possible.”
Her husband David Caddy is even more succinct. “My job as a parent was to be fully present.” When asked to write a college essay about his best friend, Arran wrote about his dad!
A common concern of many parents is how to keep their kids away from drugs. Marilyn Bradford, a social worker with 30 years’ experience working with addictions, facilitates courses in using the Access Consciousness™ tools to prevent and change addictions. She often gets asked about how parents can guide their children away from using drugs.
“They’re going to try them,” she says. “They’re humanoids.” (Bradford has noticed that very many of the people she works with who have addictions are humanoids who do not know how to handle the extreme awareness they have, so they use alcohol and drugs to numb the pain and unhappiness they are perceiving in those around them.)
But she continues to these concerned parents, “If you have honored and empowered and acknowledged your child for who they are and the differentness they are, you will have given them enough of a sense of themselves that drugs and alcohol will not be a pull.”
Bradford recommends parents be “curious and enthusiastic and supportive of the difference their kids are” rather than “trying to tie them to their roles or their heritage or their identity.”
“Be empowering of them to know what they know,” she advises, as her recommendation to prevent addiction in your kids.
You can watch all of the above people quoted in action on video at accessconsciousness.tv under specialty classes. Rice has videos on Conscious Parenting, Bradford has many videos on different aspects of addiction, Crisp and Caddy have a video on Talking to Your Teenager without Losing Your Mind. The book, Conscious Parents, Conscious Kids, contains many examples of parents and others using the Access Consciousness™ tools with children, with sometimes-miraculous results.
Rice has recently been interviewed on the Leading Edge Parenting show with Sandi Schwartz. That interview, her favorite, is available in the show archives under “Access Consciousness™ parenting.” She will next be on the Dr. Pat radio show June 13 at 11 a.m. Pacific time. That and several archived shows are available at drpatshow.com