Family Life Articles

A Message from our Editor, Issue #61 - Mama Minou

While my husband and I were in college, we started going to a chiropractor who helped us regain our normal function. This was after we were told by medical professionals that we were doomed to have “bad backs” for the rest of our lives. What an...

No Sleep Training Required

How to Achieve Radical Acceptance of Biologically Normal Infant SleepSleep is a usually a concern for parents for a variety of reasons. Most of these are fueled by unnecessary fear. It is so important to support parents as...

On Their Own: How to Stop Interfering with Your Child’s Development

It’s hard to give objective information about raising a child to a parent without them feeling offended, so when I see things that make me cringe, I usually bite my tongue. But when a friend asked me what I thought about putting her 3-month-old in a...

Laying the Groundwork: Five Reasons Why Your Birth Can Affect Your Baby and Your Parenting

When I meet a new mom, dad, and baby for the first time at a consultation for colic and sleep, I always open with the same topic: “Tell me about your birth.” Mostly my request is met with confusion, wrinkled eyebrows, and exchanged curious...

Too Much: Why Adults Resist the Exuberant Nature of Children

For adults disconnected from their power, a child’s unbounded, spirited nature can easily be “too much”—too much enthusiasm, too much spontaneity, too much imagination, too much anger, too much sadness. The greater the repression in the adult carried...

Real Self-Care for Mothers

I talk a lot about self-care for mothers in my work. And I find it so interesting that when I read articles for women about self-care, the recommendations are often things like, “Pamper yourself! Go get a manicure! Take a bubble bath!” Do I...

Home Sweet Homebirth

There is an overwhelming cultural belief in the United States that hospitals are the safest place to give birth, regardless of the extensive scientific data that suggests otherwise. Numerous studies around the world have documented the safety of...

The Forgotten

Wow! It’s real! The test turned blue. The plus sign appeared. No questions. You are pregnant. Now the fun starts. The planning, the picking of names, baby clothes, diapers, wipes, and birth plans. Will you give birth at home? In a hospital?...

A Tale of Two Births: How Chiropractic Reshaped How I Birth

Leading up to my first birth, I had obstetric care until I was 34 weeks. My obstetrician told me I would be induced two weeks early, for no reason other than he felt it was best, so I transferred care to a group of midwives. Overnight, it seemed, I...

Co-Sleeping and Biological Imperatives

Why Human Babies Do Not and Should Not Sleep AloneWhere a baby sleeps is not as simple as current medical discourse and recommendations against co-sleeping in some western societies want it to be. And there is good reason why. I write to...

Rereading How Children Learn

The Joy and Sorrow of Revisiting the Work of John HoltIn a survey we conducted a few years ago, educational psychologist Gina Riley and I asked unschooling families to name the writers whose works had influenced them most in their decision...

Who Knows What’s Good or Bad?

We don’t always understand why certain things happen. At times it could be so easy to be mad. To play the victim. To feel shame, disgrace, or even envy. It could be so easy for my husband and me to get angry, since this is our second...

A Child's Innate Gifts

Each child is unique. Parents come to know their offspring as highly distinct individuals soon after birth. In part, that’s because babies arrive with traits and talents waiting in a raw state of potential. Young people have an inborn drive t...

Infant Needs and the On-Demand Life

On-demand services may have spoiled parenting—yes, by their very convenience. For example, we no longer have to plan our schedule around the airing of our favorite program or make efforts to record a particular show. With a few clicks, we can e...

Co-Sleeping Contributes to Optimal Brain Development

Like all mammals, humans have been sleeping alongside their babies for millions of years. Babies have an innate desire to stay in constant contact with their caregivers for survival. In most of the world, it’s still the norm for children to...

It Takes Two to Tantrum

When Toddlers Act Out, Parental Expectations are a Piece of the PuzzleMost of the time, when your child is having a tantrum, the episode is more accurately characterized as an interaction between the two of you. Generally, your...

Time In

The popular “time-out” behavior management technique is less harsh than traditional forms of discipline, but it’s still a punishment—like a mini jail sentence. Time-outs usually include a shame component as well (e.g., the “Naughty Chair”)....

Peeling the Onion

When I talk with my kids, I love sharing analogies of how the natural world is reflected in their bodies. One of my favorite ones is this: Your body is like an onion. Layers of experiences and responses build up: falls, injuries, positioning;...

After the Break-Up

Having a Positive Divorce is Up to You…But if You Have Kids, You’ll Have to Heal on Two Levels at OnceDivorce hits every aspect of your life. There is no escaping the waves of disbelief mixed with relief and terror and joy. It’s a very...

The Beauty of Fathering During Pregnancy: What Babies are Teaching Us

Our core understandings of babies and early human experience are in the midst of a fundamental paradigm shift. In my article “Consciousness at the Beginning of Life,” published in the previous issue of Pathways [Issue 57, Spring 2018], I...