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Q How has your slow parenting lifestyle changed now that Anna is a teenager?
A My daughter definitely got busier once she entered high school. We became the kind of family I would write about. I think the difference for us was that she chose the activities and we didn’t feel like we were dragging her all around.
We try to have as many family meals as possible — dinners or breakfasts. We occasionally have Friday night or Sunday afternoon game time and sometimes she invites her friends over, too. As kids get older, try to find opportunities for that low-key bonding time when you can.
Julie Pfitzinger is a West St. Paul freelance writer.
Why Become a Slow Parent?
• Improves physical and psychological health. Slowing down, even for as brief a period as six minutes, can reduce stress for people of all ages. Spending time in nature can help foster a child’s development intellectually, emotionally, socially and physically.
• Allows time for beneficial unstructured play, which lets us get in touch with our imaginations and our inner worlds in a way we can’t during competitive sports or more passive leisure activities.
• Helps create and pass on beloved family traditions — many arrive from a combination of intention and awareness, two qualities that slow parenting fosters.
Source: “Fed Up With Frenzy,” by Susan Sachs Lipman