Parenting goal: avoid competing with other children and families

The best outcome for your kids — best best, with no meaningful challengers — is for them to find a place in life that feels right to them based on their skills, their temperaments and their passions. That some of your kids’ A’s slip to B’s and some of their peers run/swim/flip/play/dance/sculpt/sing better is not even remotely an obstacle to this outcome. After all, those everyone-else’s-kids getting all the awards will get their butts kicked, too, probably as soon as they move on to the next level of competition.


How can I remind my parent friends that I want to hang out with them AND their kids?

I am not a parent but many of my friends are. When friends started having babies, I did all the usual stuff — bringing muffins, offering to help out around the house or at least hold the baby while the parents clean up, and of course cooing over the little ones. I genuinely enjoy kids and I am happy that my friends are bringing them into my life. I know I can't be included in everything, but I feel so sad when I hear a bunch of people I like talking about an activity that I would've enjoyed but wasn't invited to because they all brought kids. No one seems to think I care, even though I've mentioned that I like, say, the zoo or the park, too. I have tried inviting people with their kids to my place and it's lots of fun, but it's clearly a grownup apartment and things wrap up pretty quickly.


My gay BFF wants a baby and I'm pregnant but don't want to keep it: how do I broach the topic of adoption with him?

We had our son five months ago and have been using condoms as birth control since he was born. Much to my horror, I find myself pregnant again. My partner and I have discussed our options, and have decided we don't want to terminate the pregnancy — but we also know that we don't want to raise two children this close together. One of my best and oldest friends has been talking about having a baby, and he and his husband are having a hard time adopting. We've joked about one of our friends carrying a child for them, but didn't think it would actually happen… until I became pregnant.


Let me tell you about my book club… for babies

Once a month, a handful of my friends meet up at our friend’s house for our babies book club. We still refer to it as “baby book club” even though there’s no denying that our children aren’t babies anymore. They’re energetic, willful, spirited two-year-olds who run, laugh, fight over toys, and keep us constantly on our toes. They’re also two-year-olds who love to be read to. Like most toddlers their age, they love to be held on our laps while listening to stories and looking at colorful and beautiful picture books.


My best friend and her kids might come live with us — any advice on creating a non-biological family?

My best friend is a single mom with two kiddos who are my godchildren/niece and nephew. Since her divorce, she's been living with her parents in a pretty cramped living situation in our hometown. She left college when she got married, and even living with parents, childcare costs have prevented her from going back to school for more than a class at a time and sometimes not at all. She's been struggling even more financially recently, and my husband and I have been talking more and more about offering that she come and live with us for a bit to focus on school.


5 tips for dealing with feeling guilty after moving your kid far away from family and friends

We just packed up our entire life and moved 2000 miles away from any family and friends our family has ever known. There's no better way to describe doing something like this than to use the word "bittersweeet" — we know we're in the right place for our family, but we're seriously struggling with feeling guilty for taking our kids away from their grandparents, cousins, aunts, and friends.