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The commitment and effort of many people made this book possible. The team of POPCOM staff who researched, worked, and wrote on the various aspects of parenting: Jackylin D. Robel, Mylene Mirasol C. Quiray, Zenaida M. Opiniano, Gloria I. Mendoza, Raymunda P. Espeña, Lydio M. Español Jr., Sylvia T. de Jesus, Eleanor M. Cura, Maritess U. Cipriano, Erlina H. Castillo, Virginia B. Candor, Karina M. Biteng, Aris D. Baluyos, and Susan B. Codotco who did additional editing and Benjamin Espartero for the photos. Our thanks to GTZ Health Program for the additional photos. Throughout the development of the book, Mr. Tomas M. Osias, Ms. Mia C. Ventura, and Ms. Victoria D. Corpuz provided invaluable guidance and assistance. The books on parenting by the late Atty. Ramon A. Tagle Jr. and his wife, Ms Erlinda de Ungria-Tagle, the Pre-Marriage Counseling Handbook and the Sexually Healthy and Personally Effective (SHAPE) Training Module of POPCOM, the Effective Parenting Manual of the Department of Social Welfare and Development, and the various NFP materials of the Department of Health provided the foundation of this book. So are the works of various writers who wrote on this most difficult and yet most rewarding job – parenting. Their publications are listed at the back of this book. We express our special thanks to the Institute for Reproductive Health (IRH) and Ms. Mitos Rivera for the use of the concepts and illustrations on fertility awareness /joint fertility. Our acknowledgement also goes to the POPCOM Regional Offices and regional partners and the various national and regional stakeholders whose comments and suggestions have greatly enhanced the content of the book. This book was made possible through the support provided by the Department of Health.
....................................................................................................................................... Relationship with relatives and in-laws .......................................................................................................................................................... Parenting the teenager ............................ Family formation ....................................................................................................................................................................................... Essence and meaning of children ..................................................................... 49 Natural Family Planning Methods ................................... Chapter II............... 52 References ..................................................................................... Parent-child relationship .............................................................. ii v vii ix 1 2 3 5 7 8 9 17 19 29 29 32 34 Chapter III...................... Rights of children ............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................... 62 iii ........ Introduction .. Responsible Parenting Definitions and Concepts .... Message............ Chapter I....................................................... Parenting the pre-teen ................ Home Management and Budgeting Activities management ............................................ Family health .................. 42 Chapter IV.......................................................................... Fertility Awareness and Natural Family Planning Fertility Awareness .................................................................................................................................................. What is parenting ...... Family Relationship Making marriage work.................. Foreword ......................... Husband-Wife Relationship ............. 37 Financial management .............................. Duties and responsibilities of parents ........Table of Contents Acknowledgments ......................................................................... 39 Maintaining the home ...................
POPCOM Board of Commissioners v . D. which emphasizes birth spacing. and the youth who may soon be parents themselves in the future. breastfeeding. DUQUE III. M. Department of Health and Chair.. parents-to-be. SEC. ardent with desire and inspiration to become better citizens not only for the community but as well as for the entire society. especially the teens. in working with and counseling today’s parents. It is meant to serve as guide for our health workers. and Natural Family Planning. We hope that with this Handbook we will be able to strengthen family relationship in an environment of love and affection. MSc. mutual respect and understanding.Message The publication of the Responsible Parenting Handbook comes at an opportune time in the implementation of the Responsible Parenthood Program. FRANCISCO T. This Handbook presents the essence of family relationship as well as basic concepts of Responsible Parenting as practiced by both husband and wife in their relationship with their children. especially those at the barangay level. Parenting the adolescent children requires extra skills by the parents themselves as today’s youth have been wanting empowerment — activity-wise and in their decision-making.
OSIAS Executive Director Commission on Population vii . TOMAS M.reword Foreword The launching of the Responsible Parenting Movement last year coincided with the 35th anniversary celebration of the Commission on Population which was centered on the theme “Ika-35 taong paglilingkod sa bayan tungo sa matatag na pamilyang Pilipino. empowered. We hope this book will provide parents and advocates of responsible parenting a ready reference which they can refer to when confronted with questions about parenting and building a home. healthy. The family. supportive. should be provided with timely and appropriate programs responsive to their needs. as the basic unit of society. and productive Filipino families. It sums up the advocacy of individuals and organizations that comprise the population community. and caring for the welfare of every member of this family. To achieve this vision. We must also build communities that are friendly. we should open our lines of communication and start connecting with each other.” The theme illustrated our vision in the implementation of the population program – happy.
including the extended family. responsible parenting is anchored on several provisions of the 1987 Constitution. family formation. As a government policy. It provides practical suggestions on maintaining a safe. ix . Chapter IV discusses fertility awareness and natural family planning. and parent-child relationship. which includes activity management. 14.Introduction T his book is designed as a handy reference for Filipino parents on the various aspects of parenting and married life. particularly Article XV Section 3. It describes briefly male and female fertility and the result thereof when the two are combined. family health. parenting. These constitutional provisions give couples the responsibility to decide on their family size in accordance with their religious beliefs and the demands of responsible parenting. happy home. It also underlines the advantages of natural family planning. and responsible parenting as used by the Responsible Parenthood Program of the government. the essence and meaning of children as well as their rights. 12. Chapter I of the book explains the meanings of parenthood. making their marriage work. It discusses the core elements of responsible parenthood – parenting and its concepts. Chapter II deals with family relationship. 15.1 and Article II Sections 9. and the value of open communication within. and caring for the environment. budgeting. Chapter III talks about harmonious husband-wife relationship and effective home management. It shows several types of natural family planning methods the couple may choose in planning the number of their children and when to have them. and 16. It underlines the parents’ task in dealing with their pre-teen and teenage children. In general. It is about responsible parenting and the tasks involved in caring for and nurturing one’s family. this book is envisioned to be an easy reference for parents and government workers tasked with implementing the responsible parenthood program of the government.
The various definitions of responsible parenthood and the family are: • Responsible parenthood refers to the will and ability of parents to respond to the needs and aspirations of the family and children. and economic concerns (PPMP DP 20052010. Parenting the pre-teen and teenager should also be given appropriate attention considering that adolescents have special and unique needs. socio-cultural. health status. It also involves the inculcation of values and discipline. and empowered Filipino families. Raising a family builds up the character of the parents and fulfills their need to have children and develop their love for them and to share and plan life together. prosperous. It is a role that cannot be played on the basis of chance. spacing and timing of their children according to their own family life aspirations. DEFINITIONS AND CONCEPTS Responsible Parenthood. Responsible Parenting Handbook 1 • . parents-to-be. the essence and meaning of children. duties and responsibilities of parents. is based on several social and economic development and cultural and religious views. and the youth who may soon become parents themselves to accept the ideals of responsible parenting as it helps build a better family and a stronger community. It is a shared responsibility between husband and wife to determine and achieve the desired number. taking into account psychological preparedness. as a government program. POPCOM). Clear concepts on responsible parenting. healthy. attention and affection (Training Manual on PMC. It is the primary right and responsibility of parents to get actively involved in the promotion of their children’s well being through the provision of adequate care. Parenting involves skills. It is an outcome responsible parents attain after gaining experiences and skills in rearing and bringing up their children with love and care. and rights and duties of children are important facets of married life that have to be recognized and accepted before we can have happy.Parenting Responsible Parenting CHAPTER I B eing a parent carries with it great responsibility. and experiences in attending to and providing for the physical. It is important for today’s parents. emotional. DOH 1996). responsibilities. and spiritual needs of children.
It is a basic social institution that public policy cherishes and protects. Article 149 of the 1993 Family Code of the Philippines as the foundation of the nation. one of its important aspects is fertility awareness of the couple and the methods by which they can achieve their planned family size. It shall equally protect the life of the mother and the life of the unborn from conception. to avoid for the time being. Thus. or even for an indeterminate period. for their children. More than just the decisions. and for the communities they belong to. Thus. practice. a new birth. Responsible parenting includes the process of deciding how many children to have and when to have the first child. ESSENCE AND MEANING OF CHILDREN Pregnancy and childbirth are the most crucial and most anticipated occasions among Filipino families. between parents and children. These are discussed in Chapter IV of this book. among ascendants and descendants. In Article 150. The anxieties and discomforts brought about by these life-cycle stages are offset by the jubilation of the family over the coming of a new member. and among brothers and sisters whether of the full. The natural and primary right and duty of parents in the rearing of the youth for civic efficiency and the development of moral character shall receive the support of the Government. economic. # 10) The family is the core social unit.• • In relation to the biological process: responsible parenthood means the knowledge and respect of their functions… (Humanae Vitae. • The state policy on the family is mentioned in Article II. psychological and social conditions. Responsible parenting is a series of decisions parents make to ensure the best possible life for themselves. or agreement destructive of the family shall be recognized or given effect. responsible parenthood is exercised either by the deliberate and generous decision to raise a numerous family or by the decision made for grave motives and with due respect for the moral law. family relations include those between husband and wife. Section 12 of the 1987 Constitution: “The State recognizes the sanctity of family life and shall protect and strengthen the family as a basic autonomous social institution. 2 Responsible Parenting Handbook . family relations are governed by law and no customs. It is an institution that regulates sexuality and procreation to ensure the continuity of the community. #10) In relation to physical. It is primarily responsible for giving its members religious instructions and molding their character.or half-blood.” The family is also defined in Chapter I. responsible parenting is a commitment to ensure the well-being of the family and to enable each to fully develop one’s capabilities and potentials. (Humanae Vitae.
Filipinos anticipate children as the natural outcome of marriage. parents have enormous duties and responsibilities towards their children. These are summarized below: 1. There are also instances when the father or the mother would want to replicate the family size they were brought up with. help in the farm or in the house. They are to be treasured and must be cared for with special care. being endowed with priceless treasures in life. Socio-cultural: This includes sex preference among parents who keep on having children until they have either a boy or a girl. The male child is often preferred to keep the “family name alive” or to carry their surnames in the family tree. Responsible Parenting Handbook 3 . and distraction from worries. love and happiness. emotional. play and fun. Emotional: A number of couples considers having children as the means to strengthen the bond between the husband and wife and to strengthen the family. Children provide socio-emotional benefits such as companionship. This duty and responsibility starts during the prenatal stage. security for old age. to take care of their younger siblings. Spiritual: Children are looked upon as gifts and blessings from God. Another view of parents is that having more children equates to greater wealth. Female child preference is intended to provide or lend a helping hand in taking care of the younger siblings and in doing the household chores. Provision of Physical Care and Love The physical. playing and helping them learn are all important for growing children. Keeping them warm and healthy. A thorough knowledge of their duties and responsibilities will allow parents to determine what they can do and to what extent they can improve upon in parenting their children. DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF PARENTS As provided for in the Child and Youth Welfare Code and Family Code. namely: Economic: Children are viewed invariably as investments. “Why get married if you don’t expect to have children?” Filipino parents cherish their children for various reasons and attach a number of meanings to them. hugging and cuddling them. and mental health of children depends on the quality of parental care they get as they grow. as well. or help parents earn a living. Children are a source of joy and happiness. People always ask.
Parents are required to send and provide for their children’s schooling. cooperation. Self-confidence is an important component of social competence. 3. Pride in our own culture. their first school. and protection of the beauty and bounty of our country. and energetic. Inculcating Discipline Children should be trained to think and reason out for themselves and be able to distinguish between right and wrong. have good communication skills. self-discipline. happy. Suitable learning experiences must be provided in the home to hasten their mental development as early as infancy. They should learn to accept limitations. tolerance. This is developed by praising children for their efforts and congratulating them for their successes. promotion. sportsmanship. value freedom with responsibility. Citizenship Training It is necessary to teach children a sense of nationhood and develop their commitment to their country. self-confident. They enjoy work. Parents are also duty-bound to discover and help develop their children’s innate talents and abilities to the fullest extent possible. determination to advance the collective interests of our own people. encourage them to try again. and involvement in national development efforts are virtues every self-respecting Filipino must possess. Developing Social Competence Socially competent children are described as friendly. Education Parents are the children’s first teachers and the home. They are to be taught the value of order. 4 Responsible Parenting Handbook .2. appreciation. and make decisions in accordance with their level of development. and understand the requirements of living happily and peacefully with other people. Social competence can only be achieved if children have high self-esteem. and are good sport. 5. If they fail. imaginative. responsible. It is important to inculcate a sense of nationhood and national purpose in the young. This training may start as early as the first year. Citizenship training is important for children to acquire a perspective larger than the family. 4. This is developed by allowing them to do things on their own. think for themselves. and self-reliance in the home and play experiences aside from those learned in school. Every child has the right to education. alert.
political background of parents. involvement in church activities. parents must respect and recognize the rights of children. nutritious food that are not necessarily expensive. 8. and health care. Children are endowed with the dignity and worth of a human being from the moment of their conception. sex. parents have the responsibility of providing their children with other minimum basic needs such as a happy home and family environment. Teaching the Wise Use of Money Children should be taught the value of money. Parents should earn enough even if this would mean putting in more hours of work. religion. and family prayer. bringing them closer to the Almighty through family devotion. Children have the right to a wholesome family life. RIGHTS OF CHILDREN Under the Family Code and Child and Youth Welfare Code. budget. social status. They may also be provided the opportunity to buy things which they choose for themselves such as school materials and supplies. The following are the rights of children. As much as possible. Financial Aspect of Responsibility Aside from education. 1. clothing that is appropriate for every occasion. they may be given a reasonable allowance which they. All children are entitled to rights without distinction as to legitimacy. When they start schooling.6. Spiritual Formation Parents are also responsible for the spiritual formation of their children. 2. the right to be born well. Children have the right to be born well once they are conceived. thrift. and other factors. they should be made conscious of their share in the family’s budget. and self-reliance. and therefore. themselves. Children have the right to a wholesome Responsible Parenting Handbook 5 . 7.
Children have the right to enrich and strengthen their character through a moral and upright life. Children have the right to an education commensurate with their abilities and to the development of their skills for the improvement of their capacity for service to themselves and to their fellowmen. Children have right to live in an environment that will affect positively their growth and development. education. and active member of society. assistance. and moral development. 6 Responsible Parenting Handbook . 12. guidance and counseling. Children have the right to a healthy and vigorous life. 7. 5. individual as well as social. moral and material security. mental. 11. Children have the right to education and skills development. 10. improper influences. 8. Children with physical and mental handicap shall have the right to the treatment. Children have the right to an efficient and honest government. hazards and other conditions or circumstances prejudicial to their physical. sufficient shelter. Gifted children shall have the right to develop their special talents. adequate clothing. Children have the right to grow up as a free and responsible individual. Children have the right to full opportunities to safe and wholesome recreation and activities. Children have the right to develop into a happy. and protection of the State. Children have the right to a well rounded development of their personality to the end that they may become a happy. and all the basic physical requirements of a healthy and vigorous life. and care they need. Children with emotional problems or who have difficulty in getting along with others shall have the right to treatment and competent care. Children have the right to protection against exploitation. Children have the right to be protected from anything that will affect negatively his development and growth. development and improvement. Children have the right to an efficient and honest government that will deepen their faith in democracy and inspire them with the morality of the constituted authorities both in their public and private lives. Children have the right to be brought up in an atmosphere of morality and rectitude for the enrichment and the strengthening of their character. 3. understanding.family life that will provide them with love. Children have the right to safe and wholesome recreation and activities. Children have the right to the care. Children have the right to a balanced diet. and active member of society. 6. 9. for the wholesome use of their leisure hours. Children have the right to live in a community and society that can offer them an environment free from harmful elements and conducive to the promotion of their health and the cultivation of their desirable traits and attributes. proper medical attention. useful. particularly when their parents or guardians fail or are unable to provide them with their fundamental needs for growth. Children have the right to grow up as free individuals in an atmosphere of peace. emotional. tolerance. 4. care and understanding. useful. social.
love. One is the happiness and stability of their marriage. especially the care. and spiritual needs. being by the children’s side during the growing up years until such time that the children themselves are ready for adult roles. moral and spiritual development. norms and contributions to the child’s faith. social skills. it has to be channeled correctly and be enlightened by a concrete understanding of the developmental needs of the young. and nourishment) • Social development and emotional support (love. They are responsible for the physical. and others) When a couple considers becoming parents. This is usually done in the child’s home by the mother and father and other people who are directly influencing or caring for the child such as close relatives. they have to think about several points. Couples should be conscious that parenting is a lifetime vocation. moral. and guidance given by the parents. Responsible Parenting may also be defined as the ability of the parents to raise their children and to satisfy the social and religious responsibilities of the family. WHAT IS PARENTING Parenting is the rearing of a child. and protection.and universal brotherhood and with the determination to contribute their share in the building of a better world. providing love. care. physical safety. They have to be physically and emotionally healthy so that they can give the best care they can for the family and for their children. It is the process of raising and educating a child from birth until adulthood. medical care. play. There are three important aspects of parenting: • Physical care (providing shelter. emotional. Responsible Parenting Handbook 7 . and physical touch. etiquette. It means personally attending to the children’s physical. Money matters are often the source of stress among couples and in the family. ethics and value systems. Children are the future parents and leaders of society. payments for education. and emotional upbringing of human beings whom they chose to bring into this world. Another important consideration is the financial preparedness of the couple. It is not exaggeration to say that most parents love their children above themselves. education. and ethnic customs) • Financial support (money. But for this love to be fruitful. Another factor is their physical and emotional readiness for parenting which implies tremendous responsibility. Respecting their rights and providing them with the proper care and guidance will enable them to grow and develop as responsible adults.
FAMILY HEALTH Health is wealth. especially when all the members of the family and the community enjoy its benefit. especially before and after eating and after using the toilet. The family is the child’s source of security. usually resulting later in the birth of one or more children. emotional. Brush your teeth after each meal. and bad odor. and armpits must be cleaned well. Change clothes daily. Physical The best way to stay physically healthy is proper personal hygiene. social. and moral well-being. dried sweat. The neck. Good health leads to a longer. 8 Responsible Parenting Handbook . belongingness. grime. Germs can easily cling to the skin and nails and can get to the food which we eat. mental. especially if you perspire a lot and live in a dusty place. Tips for proper hygiene: • • • • • • Take a bath daily. and dead cells from the skin. Bathing removes dirt. avoidance of vices. and proper nutrition. or adoption. Clean parts of the body that easily collect dust. Wash hands regularly. and emotional and economic growth. groin. Membership in a family is acquired by blood. marriage. dirt. The state protects it because it is the basic unit of society. There is no greater wealth than a person’s health. and more fruitful life. Keep your fingernails and toenails clean and trimmed. It is formed by the marriage of a man and woman.FAMILY FORMATION Definition of a Family The family is the oldest and most universal institution most societies cherished. sweat. Nails easily pick up dirt while we work or play. fuller. See the dentist at least once a year and not only when you have a toothache. regular exercise. The family is the child’s immediate environment and serves as the foundation for their physical. enough rest and sleep.
Guide for a healthy lifestyle: • Exercise daily or at least three times a week. and using dangerous drugs and substances. earn more and live more comfortably. he/she will live more years to spend his/her life with loved ones. • Get enough rest and sleep to keep your body in good condition. • Take precautions when in contact with a sick person to avoid getting the disease. Drink plenty of water and fruit juices every day and eat green leafy vegetables. especially after taking a bath. It can lead to heart. A person needs to recharge energy to function better both physically and mentally. Above all. Comb hair regularly. or worst. One can get blurred vision very early in life with bad reading habits. It gives strength to muscles for daily work.• • Move your bowels daily and urinate regularly. It’s bad for the health not only to the smoker but to the passive smokers. This will help prevent constipation. and throat diseases. • Avoid eye fatigue. cancer. Healthy Lifestyle Being healthy means having a sound mind and sound body. Responsible Parenting Handbook 9 . • Avoid harmful vices such as drinking alcoholic beverages. lung. It also keeps a person from getting tired too easily. A healthy person works better. It also means positive attitude towards other people and towards life in general. Read only when there is enough light. • Avoid smoking.
in fact. 10 Responsible Parenting Handbook . In this case. loving relationship. the father or the mother holds the baby upright over the shoulder and pat or press the baby’s back gently or smoothly to make the baby burp. carrying in a sling. The father can help so much by actively participating in the process. Breast milk contains substances that protect babies from diseases. massaging. and ensure that mom is getting plenty of rest. and just loving the baby are all ways that a father can bond with his baby. Bringing the baby to the mother for breastfeeding is a great way to demonstrate to the baby that the father can. Changing diapers. Colostrum. or midwife for check up. the father can bring water. As the mother’s support. the husband and wife are informed on the proper caring for pregnant mother for the entire duration of pregnancy. Bonding occurs through a physically. and after breastfeeding. singing. infections. proper nutrition information. Breastfeeding Mother’s milk is still the best milk for babies because it is a complete food in itself. The baby will be aware of the fact that daddy is the transportation to the food.Pre and Post Natal Care Mother and child deserve the best care in the world. and food allergies. The father can help to create a situation where mother and baby can be together. Other Health Care Tips Burping Half-way through. nurse. After delivery. It should not be wasted. touching. When the mother feels she’s pregnant. both parents need to bring the baby to the doctor for newborn screening and well baby check up. is good for the baby. trustful relationship with his child. holding. the fluid that a mother produces after giving birth. The early weeks of breastfeeding can be a time of exhaustion and confusion. There are many ways for a father to connect to his new child. make food. meet his baby’s needs. These are all crucial ways that a new father can develop a loving. bathing. the husband accompanies her to see a doctor. Proper caring include periodical or monthly check up. A father being available to care for and nurture his baby is essential in allowing the mother time to tend to her own needs. or thrown away. The father’s role in breastfeeding is very important during this period. and getting supplements to ensure a well nourished mother and normal births.
where. drowsiness. parents can make corrective measure to prevent early stage of damage on the child’s normal development. It is important to regularly measure the weight of the baby to monitor growth and put it in the Under-Five Growth Monitoring chart. difficult breathing. Thus. An average healthy baby’s weight is three kilos at birth. the birth weight will double after five months and triple by the 12th month. Growth monitoring Growth monitoring is following the growth process of the child. The chart could be a fancy. flushed skin. Pat with soft towel to dry. avoiding the face and ears. convulsion. An upward line means the baby is doing well and gaining weight. The parents will be able to take appropriate action. and how many times their infants should be immunized (Maternal and Child Health Nutrition 1999). It is therefore essential that all parents know why. high temperature. Clean the umbilical cord with 70% ethyl alcohol. If the baby grows well. A downward line is a sure sign of danger. loose or bloody stool. and irritability. depending on the direction of the curve. In this way. Use only mild baby soap. when. the parents can detect child’s health and nutritional problems. Sickness Watch out for the following symptoms: loss of appetite. Consult your doctor immediately.Bathing Give the baby a warm tub bath everyday. A flat line is a cause for concern because the baby is not gaining weight. Immunization Children can be protected against serious diseases by a course of immunization that is usually available through health services. but it is important to have one. printed one or just a listing in an ordinary notebook or ruled pad. Through this growth monitoring. unusual vomiting. Responsible Parenting Handbook 11 . Avoid wetting the umbilical cord stump during the first two weeks. parents need to weigh their babies monthly to keep a good record. It is easier to see at a glance whether or not the child is gaining weight normally.
sex. trivalent OPV** Hepatitis B … Trivalent OPV** Live measles vaccine or further Attenuated Vaccine … Rubella vaccine Mumps vaccine …DPT*. Yogurt. Rice. but the table below will give an idea of where a person fits in: Preschool children Bread. trivalent OPV** Booster … DPT*. Pasta Fruits Vegetables Milk. trivalent OPV** … DPT* Hepatitis B … DPT*. Cheese Meats. body size. trivalent OPV** Booster … DT*** … BCG whenever Mantoux test … reverts to negative DT *** … Hepatitis B vaccine Combined diphtheria-pertussis –tetanus Oral Polio Virus Combined diphtheria -tetanus Teenage boys 11 servings 4 servings 5 servings 2-3 servings 7 ounces 12 Responsible Parenting Handbook .Need for Immunization Children can be protected against serious diseases by a course of immunization that is usually available through health services. Fish 6 servings 2 servings 3 servings 2-3 servings 5 ounces Most children and teenage girls 9 servings 3 servings 4 servings 2-3 servings 6 ounces … BCG … DPT*. and activity level. Recommended Schedule for Immunization Birth (or any age) 2 months 3 months 4 months 6 months Between 12 months and puberty 15-18 months 4-6 years 12-14 years Thereafter Any Age * ** *** Nutrition The right amount of servings from each of the food groups depends on age. Cereal.
ambitions. Mental and emotional health Raising children is becoming harder for parents nowadays. Parents should note that it is in the first two to three years of life that children’s personalities are being most actively molded – by the attitudes of the parents or of the others who provided Responsible Parenting Handbook 13 . The food pyramid is a visual illustrating the contributions of each food group that make up a healthful diet. The top of the pyramid are food that does not help make the body strong or healthy.The Food Pyramid It is healthier to eat more of the Level 1 food group and fewer of the higher level group of the pyramid. and character the children will be having and the kind of world that awaits them as adults. Parents of the 21st century often worry that a lot of old-fashioned convictions are lost and are uncertain of the kind of morals. Healthy mental and emotional development of children is an important goal of parenting.
Catch your child being good. Make a point of finding something to praise every day. A common mistake parents make is failure to follow through with consequences when rules are broken. let alone spend some quality time • • 14 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Praising their accomplishments. will make them feel proud. The more effective approach is to catch the child doing something right. to foster emotional depth and keen intelligence. The tone of voice. Be generous with rewards. even in tiny accomplishments. body language.most the care of the baby. and no hitting. it is often difficult for parents and children to get together for a family meal. Set limits and be consistent with your discipline. Parents should give their children their visible love. Discipline is necessary in every household. perhaps with the help of others. You can’t discipline a child for talking back one day and ignore it the next. but they need those limits to grow into responsible adults. limiting internet access. • Make time for your children. Some house rules might include: no TV until homework is done. here are ways to address this responsibility: • Nurture the child’s self-esteem. enthusiastic parents. surges ahead. Being consistent teaches your child what you expect. Have you ever stopped to think about how many times you react negatively to your child in a given day? You may find that you are criticizing far more than you are complimenting. followed by consequences such as a “time out” or loss of privileges. or hurtful teasing is allowed. and compliments can work wonders and are often reward enough. The goal of discipline is to help children choose acceptable behaviors and learn self-control. To prepare parents for the tough job of raising mentally and emotionally healthy children. Avoid making loaded statements or using words as weapons because they can damage children just as physical blows do. Choose words carefully and be compassionate. your love. Parents may want to have a system in place: one warning. Complimenting statements will do more to encourage good behavior over the long run than repeated scolding. and joy. A baby who is cared for mainly by loving. Children may test the limits parents establish for them. By contrast. The words and actions of parent affect their self-esteem more than anything else. name-calling. Establishing house rules will help children understand your expectations and develop self-control. Children start developing their sense of self as babies when they see themselves through their parents’ eyes. Let children know that everyone makes mistakes and that you still love them even when you don’t love their behavior. hugs. and every expression are absorbed by them. however small. letting them do things independently will make them feel capable and strong. pride. With so many demands on time. belittling comments or comparing them unfavorably with others will make them feel worthless.
” Children want and deserve explanations as much as adults do.together. Exhibit unselfish behavior and do things for other people without expecting a reward. treat children the way you expect other people to treat you. Parents who reason with their children allow them to understand and learn in a nonjudgmental way. The children’s environment has an impact on their behavior. describe it to the child. Many parents find it mutually rewarding to have prescheduled time with their child on a regular basis. Be open to the child’s suggestions as well and negotiate. tolerance. think about how you want the child to behave when he or she is angry. Children who participate in decisions are more motivated to carry them out. • Be a good role model. Look for other ways to connect with your child. parents should do their best to be available when their teen does express a desire to talk or participate in family activities. Create a “special time” each week to be together and let him or her help decide how you will spend your time. Because there are fewer windows of opportunity for parents and teens to get together. Studies have shown that children who hit usually have a role model for aggression at home. and invite the child to work on a solution with you. Parents who think in “shoulds” or “must” may find it helpful to do more reading on the matter or to talk to other parents or child development specialists. Above all. Before parents lash out or blow the top in front of the child. If a parent finds himself constantly Responsible Parenting Handbook 15 . The younger they are. friendliness. • Be flexible and willing to adjust your parenting style. Children who are not getting the attention they want from their parents often act out or misbehave because they are assured of being noticed that way. Be sure to include consequences. If there is a problem. kindness. Make suggestions and offer choices. If we don’t take time to explain. Parents should model the traits they wish to cultivate in at home: respect. Parents should make expectations clear. But there is probably nothing a child would want more. Pre-teens and teenagers seem to need less undivided attention from their parents than younger children. Parents cannot expect children to do everything simply because parents “say so. children will begin to wonder about parents’ values and motives and whether they have any basis. so parents may be able to modify that behavior by changing the environment. Be constantly aware that parents are being observed by the children. Express thanks and offer compliments. express your feelings about it. honesty. it may be because they have unrealistic expectations. If parents frequently feel “let down” by the child’s behavior. Young children learn a great deal about how to act by watching parents. the more cues they take from parents. • Make communication a priority.
saying “no” to a 2-year-old. When parents have to confront children. and spiritually. • Be aware of your own needs and limitations as a parent. What is important is to recognize your abilities and vow to work on your weaknesses. criticizing. Of course this is a surprising time and period of adjustment with the teacher to learn and share attention with the classmates. even when disciplining the children. and work in a classroom with thirty to fifty other children. as the child changes. strive to nurture and encourage. which is another important value to model for your children. • Show that your love is unconditional. your love is there no matter what. 16 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Every parent should accept that there is no perfect parent. This will cause less frustration for both. What works with the child now will not work as well in a year or two. It is in school where dealing with classmates and learning will depend effective and easy for him. morally. A child needs to be emotionally and socially ready if he is going to adjust to others and learn readily. they must not be pressured putting on too much expectation on the child’s performance. A child’s readiness for school depends on the orientation from older siblings and parents’ encouragement to learn is needed in child’s mental development. As a parent. PARENTING THE PRE-TEEN Growing to learn Starting to school is challenging for a first timer to learn. The school is the second home where he learns about the birds and the bees. the flowers and the trees academically. look for ways to restructure the surroundings so that fewer things are off-limits. which undermine self-esteem and can lead to resentment. live. parents should gradually change the parenting style. you are responsible for correcting and guiding your children. But how corrective guidance is expressed makes all the difference in how children receive them. the spouse. Focus on the areas that need the most attention rather than trying to address everything all at once. and the children. Make sure they know that although you want and expect better next time. Focusing on your needs does not make one selfish. avoid blaming. Try to have realistic expectations for yourself. or fault-finding. It simply means you care about your own well-being. he feels the love and cherish that every member of the family gives him. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses as a family leader. Instead. While it is true that parents want the children to be adept in schoolwork. Admit when burned out and take time out from parenting to do things that will make you happy as a person (or as a couple). As home is the child’s first school. Moreover.
School-age children learn many things from home and school. and neighbors. This is the time that parents should be more in contact with the child while monitoring his school performance and activities with other children. Making them proud of what they have accomplished will be reached. Parents’ involvement as teacher enhances their learning and self-esteem. The group is composed of children of similar size. During this period. popular or unpopular. Responsible Parenting Handbook 17 . sex.” as they are called. They deserve praises and encouragement for whatever good deeds they will make. This is what is called the early adolescent period or the age of puberty. Other people could help. This includes playing games. Children who were properly disciplined will find it easy to obey a task given in school or even at home. They need teachers to teach them the procedures and the how’s. etc. Setting rules at home will help kids cope with school work easily. Relating to others Children enter the stage of their psycho-sexual and psycho-social development at age six to ten. This is the time that the child needs more of the parents support. to indulge in drugs or attend a youth club. decorating. This is the period that the children compare notes with parents or even all members of the family. schoolmates. School children have their own friends. Children’s capability to discern things increases at these ages. they are ready to join their peers or “berks. and interest. cooking. athletic or clumsy. children’s interest is not only focused inside the home but on their playmates. or if they want to become a somebody or a flunker. Let them know that parents are concerned about their friends and the reason why they need to be in a good company. no”. This is a sign of breaking away with parents. doing household chores. like the school teacher and favorite cousins. When children reach the pre-teen period between the ages of nine and twelve. teachers. Children who honor and respect their parents will practice the same with their teachers and older persons. knowing their friends is a responsibility in order that children would be in the correct company. like baking. As good parents. It is in school where they hone their talents as they need the guidance of their parents and teachers to cultivate said talents. age.It is in school where children decide if they want to be smart or stupid. School-age children become increasingly independent of their homes and families as they spend more and more time in school and in the company of their playmates. definite in saying “no” or “a no. It is in school where discipline and self-esteem are strengthened.
and intellectual development. Ask teenagers to share things from their life and listen with genuine interest. This may seem as a development of close friendships. parents need to be involved in their children’s lives. and dreams. This then may lead to positive personality development of the teen. and pre-marital sex. Sufficient monitoring and good communication. parents need to be especially involved and concerned during adolescence. let teenagers know that they are still valued and cared for. alcohol. if parents know what to expect and are willing to make adjustments in the way they think and act. Let teenagers know that their perspective is understood even though parents may not agree with it. feelings.” Every parent at this point is confronted with issues such as peer pressure. parents need to be very careful in criticizing their adolescents’ friends or forbidding their boys and girls to associate with friends of whom the parents do not approve. responsible adults. teens experience rapid physical. drug use. Indeed. “tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are. more or less harmoniously. Parents and teens can live together. It goes with the saying. They go through a lot of changes and development. PARENTING THE TEENAGER Adolescence is a time when teenagers want more freedom to “spread their wings. To be effective. smoking. During adolescence. While this is important at each stage of development. are crucial in a parent-teen relationship. social. finding strength in the company of their peers. Understanding their developmental stages and their traits can help parents support them in developing into independent. ideas. Life with teenagers is an emotional rollercoaster. Parents’ opposition might lead to something they don’t want to happen. coupled with parental warmth and support. Parents sometimes feel overwhelmed by the stress of bringing up teens. Prompt them to open up by asking open-ended questions. Here are some techniques that may help to parent teenagers effectively : • Encourage teenagers to express themselves by talking about their thoughts. To get involved in a teen’s life with hands-on love and guidance will make a real difference in a teen’s future. In discussing sensitive or emotionally charged issues. goals. dating.Knowing their friends would help protect them from bad influence.” It is also at this stage that an adolescent idolizes and idealizes someone of the opposite sex. emotional. 18 Responsible Parenting Handbook . when teenagers are at the crossroads of not being a child anymore and not yet being an adult.
as well as the consequences of not doing so. Parents need to do everything to convey to teenagers that they are open and available to hear questions on any topic. Be proactive in helping them how to recognize other people’s character. parents need to do something about it by clearing up communication problems. and why it’s important to act justly. Explain to them that just laws are to be obeyed at all times. Explain what constitutes right behavior. • Step in to prevent troubles. learning from past mistakes and moving forward counts. Setting strict rules when it comes to issues like dating is of utmost importance. Teens will only believe in themselves if they know parents have confidence in them. Then set boundaries and consequences to follow through. Try to recognize the teenagers’ efforts and the good things they do. as teens may approach it the wrong way. Help teenagers learn how to obey from the heart. are less likely to get in trouble. like attend a party or go out with friends. thus. and ill-prepared to deal with life’s strains may be the end result. Parents used to be adolescents. When teenagers learn to obey authority figures like parents and teachers. This will help boost their self-esteem. Teens whose parents know who their friends are and what they do in their free time. Refuse to allow teenagers to engage in certain privileges. If a teen is heading for trouble. acquire inaccurate information. • Guide teenagers to choose friends wisely. they will learn to become responsible and to recognize and obey authority. Responsible Parenting Handbook 19 • • • . When teenagers feel that the home is not a safe and secure place to seek answers. they tend to seek answers from peers and. confused. Much of the teenager’s behavior will be influenced by their friends. in the process. Being anxious.• Maintain openness with teenagers. Help teenagers to be responsible and disciplined. until they fulfill their chores or assignments. Explain the rewards of completing certain tasks. Explain the need to guide friendships.
thus the temptation to react harshly is a possibility. while guiding them develops in them a sense of responsibility and wisdom to know which path to take.” But parents should bear in mind that humility may be the key in winning their teenagers’ trust. • • • • Talking about peer pressure Many parents of teenagers worry about the influence their children’s friends can have and the effects of peer pressure. Certain issues may trigger strong emotions in a parent. fear. As parents. Teenagers need to see that one’s values are matched with specific actions by the parents. As parents. Here are some ideas on how parents can equip their teenagers in handling some sensitive issues when they are growing up: 20 Responsible Parenting Handbook . If it happens. sadness. and happiness. Always explain the reasons behind actions parents want a teen to do. as parents may not be comfortable surrendering the “reins of authority. believing that their peers held that top spot. Making one’s beliefs known to teenagers provides a framework that enables them to absorb the parents’ values for themselves. Communicate values. This may be difficult. Use positive reinforcement as often as possible. Teach teenagers that feelings shouldn’t control them. it counts to understand that all teens experience intense emotions like love. so that deeds will match one’s creeds. and drugs – believing instead that their teen mates and the media are more influential role models. shutting out their parents and wanting to spend more time with their friends. apologizing for the specific mistake committed will facilitate mutual respect and communication. that these feelings should point them toward constructive actions. Apologize when one is wrong. there were a lot of researches conducted which found that most parents felt they were not the biggest influence on their teenagers. In fact. pride. shyness. When children reach their teenage years they seem to grow up very fast. Keep rules consistent no matter how much the teenager rebels. yet be sure to do so with the goal of loving them. anger. Work with teenagers’ moods and figure out what to do about them. Giving room to teenagers to make their own choices. Focus on discussing the issue at hand rather than attacking teenagers personally.• Lighten up. Handle rebellion with loving firmness. They no longer wanted to talk to their parents about major issues such as sex. This will equip teenagers to manage tough issues in life in a healthy and creative manner. conflicts with teenagers need not be treated as a battle. embarrassment. relationships.
talk openly about the potential dangers of alcohol – from health to safety. Help them to see that they can a have a mind of their own. But remember. Encourage them to bring their friends home for a play date if they are younger. but meeting them.. is better than nothing.• Try talking to children about a range of issues. Talk openly to teens about peer pressure and discuss how they would handle situations that they didn’t feel comfortable with. including pre-marital sex and relationships early on. often influenced by peer pressure and the media. they are used to open chat with parents and are more likely to come to parents with their problems.g. Get the timing right. Try not to criticize or make fun of their friends as the barriers will go up at once and may make them more determined to keep a friendship or relationship going. Help teens to say no to peer pressure. Try to find a relaxed time to talk about it e. when it may have fizzled out anyway. There may have problems at school because of friends and there may be bullying involved. Ask if they are in need of any help and assure them that they can always talk it out with their parents. Responsible Parenting Handbook 21 . • • • • • Talking about alcohol Teenagers have easy access to alcohol – at parties. The worry of most parents is that this action can also be linked to risky teenage behavior such as smoking and pre-marital sex. Tips and Hints • • • In a practical way. Take time to talk about how alcohol can influence people’s judgment and help them to think through how it might feel to regret something they did because they are drunk the next day. The number of teenagers trying to drink in their early teens is growing. when watching TV. or just to hang around if they are older. or giving them a lift rather than when they are with their friends. in sari-sari store – and quite often they drink for an experience. they may not want their friend’s parents to be around. By the time they are teens. Point out that their friends might just be showing off. Try to get to know their friends too. in friend’s houses. invite them for a meal in order to know them in a casual and informal setting. albeit fleetingly.
ask questions and listen intently to their opinions. the negatives of alcohol.• • Make them aware of drinks being spiked and not putting themselves in vulnerable situations. • • • 22 Responsible Parenting Handbook . • • • Talking about smoking Smoking. Some parents find that talking about the health risks is enough to put their teens off—there is a lot of information out there that could be of help. Parents may want to talk about different drinks. be open and let them know that they can talk freely without you as parent flying off the handle. Stay calm. Get them and their friends to look out for each other. Present the facts. Check one’s own behavior. Remember that a parents’ behavior will definitely influence their child’s behavior. the same with alcohol. The following are some helpful suggestions on how parents should talk with young people about smoking: • Gem up on the facts and talk openly about the health risks of smoking. and how it can make some people aggressive and up for a fight. limit drinking to acceptable norms. A parent who is drinking should be honest about the reasons why they or people in general like drinking as well as. is another thing that most teenagers want to experience. If a teen is suspected to have tried smoking or is already smoking. If possible. Access to it is inevitable. don’t expect a confrontational question to result with the teen opening up or being honest. Explore how alcohol affects people in different ways. especially when they are in their pre-teens and discuss how they would handle situations that they didn’t feel comfortable with. Try not to take it personally if teenagers don’t take heed to advice. sometimes teens have to make their own mistakes to realize that what was said to them was true. Don’t just talk and talk. it is easy for them to have one and try it. Talk of ways of keeping safe and walking away from trouble. Don’t let a chat end up being a lecture as teens are more likely to tune out. their alcohol strength and their impact on one’s health. Talk about peer pressure.
If a teenager smokes and is talking through the risks hasn’t had any impact, talk to them about what the bottom line is (e.g., “I don’t want you smoking in my house.”) Check your own behavior. Remember that your behavior will influence your child’s behavior. If you smoke, it is best to be open and honest than try the ‘do as I say not as I do.’ If possible, quit smoking.
Talking about drugs Drug use among teenagers is now alarming. Drugs, including alcohol and cigarettes, are easy to come by, glorified by pop superstars, and are stuff that belong to certain “in-crowds.” Teenagers are very vulnerable to drugs; however, a little back-to-basics and common sense parenting grounded on spiritual values will be of great assistance to equip teenagers to say “no” and stick with it. To this end, here are again some practical suggestions: • Know their friends, classmates, sport buddies, etc. In short, know everyone that has contact with them. The easiest way to accomplish this is by inviting their friends to come over to your house often. Observe their friends’ behavior, if any negative behavior was noticed, try talking it out with your child. Don’t be afraid to voice out your concern about their friend’s negative behavior. Rather than forbidding your child to see this friend, seek to limit the activities of your child with this friend. Rather than labeling the adolescent as a danger, or a problem, help your child to identify weaknesses in their friend’s character. Practice and promote self control. This goes hand in hand with checking ones behavior, which will require the child to check her/his own behavior. A child, who early on learns to control negative emotions in the light of failure and pressure, will be less likely to seek to self-medicate dull painful feelings. Be on guard. If a drug paraphernalia was found or when the teen’s pupils dilated, or believe there to be any other sign of drug use, err on the side of caution and whisk her/him away to the doctor to ascertain the extent of drug use. Help them to understand that saying “no” is okay. The best way to do this is to dispel the myth that they may feel different from others and just trying something, like drugs, won’t lead to an addiction or illness, or worse. They must be made to understand that the temptation to do drugs is normal, yet they are capable of saying “no” to such temptation.
Responsible Parenting Handbook 23
Talking about dating At the adolescent stage, certain hormones begin carrying out their function, thus, beginning a serious interest in teens of the opposite sex. Chief among the goals of teen-agers is to gain acceptance by the opposite sex. The time when teenagers “fall in love” may be a complicated time as their behavior may create problems in the family such as the tendency to neglect their studies due to time spent with the “beloved”, becoming depressed because of problems in such relationships and above all, refusing to listen to advice about the relationship from their parents. It is critical that teenagers understand that it is normal for people to fall in love and marry. They must not have any shadow of doubt that God has prepared someone for them. They should learn to trust God’s goodness and foresight. It will make it easier for them to overcome the temptations of peer pressure and curiosity of the unknown. Boys and girls have to learn the differences between sexes. Boys need to learn to respect a girl’s physical weaknesses and emotional make-up. As they get older, boys need to know that women are not intellectually inferior to them. Parents must explain that women are not sex objects to be taken advantage of, even if they are willing. Girls must be taught to respect that boys might be “clumsy” in social situations. As they get older, girls must learn that men are not inferior to them because they lack social poise. Moreover, girls should not be taught that all men are out to hurt them and that they should never trust a man. This could have devastating outcomes in their future marriages. Tips which may help when teen-agers “fall in love.” • “This, too, shall pass.” At the adolescents’ stage, teenagers point of view goes against reality. It is at this stage when feelings are still unstable and adolescents are in the stage of discovery. Parents need extra grace and patience, knowing that romantic relationships of adolescence rarely last for a long period of time. Communicate unconditional acceptance. Teenagers are more often reluctant to talk to their parents about their relationship with the opposite sex, for such reasons as fear on getting a lecture or be dictated on what to do. It is necessary for parents to listen carefully without interrupting and let teenagers know they are loved no matter what. For only when parents listen carefully that understanding of the teenagers’ point of view occurs. Parents should always supply assurance, comfort and guidance especially on matters of the heart.
24 Responsible Parenting Handbook
Talking about sex Psychological control is an important determinant in teen sexual activity. Knowing where and whom the teens are with and what they are doing communicates to them that parents care. Monitoring your children without being intrusive will most likely result in low-risk sexual behavior among teens. This is so because as teenagers cope with emotional ups and downs, they try to find out their worth in this world. As teens try to establish their identity, they struggle with a lot of emotions or mixed feelings. If parent-teen connection is consistent, positive, and characterized by warmth, kindness, love, and stability, teens are more likely to flourish socially. They are more likely to respond to others positively and with greater empathy. Also, they struggle less with depression, have higher self-esteem and self-confidence. A recent study has shown that teenagers who had high self-esteem are less likely to engage in pre-marital sex. Consequently, parents are the best source of information on risks related to sexual activity. • Talk about body image and other issues. Adolescents experience rapid rates of growth and maturation of the reproductive organs and glands. Together, these physical changes accomplish the biological task of transforming a child into an adult. Rapid change combined with wide variation among individuals tends to make adolescents extremely sensitive to their appearance. At no other time in life are feelings about the self (self-esteem) so closely tied to feelings about the body (body image). These physical changes also affect their social relations and emotions. Thus, teenagers are concerned with the changes their bodies are going through. They will have valid concerns about what is and what isn’t normal. Teenagers need to be taught that everyone goes through this time in their lives and has the same worries. Sharing concerns parents had during that age may alleviate such worries. • Discuss the consequences of sexual behavior. When adolescents enter puberty, their sexual drive develops very fast and yet they are not yet capable to correctly understand and resist sexual enticement. Since teenagers clamor increasingly for freedom, parental suggestions, questions and guidance are the keys to influencing them. Do not hesitate to ask teenagers where they are going, whom Responsible Parenting Handbook 25
Parents are the best source when it comes to valuable life information. 26 Responsible Parenting Handbook . have to be taught to teenagers. These feelings need to be brought into the fore by the parents as tough issues are discussed. Understanding that there is no such thing as “little immorality” is important because once they are on the road to it.they are meeting. The fact that sex without the commitment of marriage is not a sure sign of love nor will it lead to marriage. heartache. in age-appropriate fashion. Remember to bring up the fact that open communication about sex does not in any way imply that sexual behavior is condoned or consented to. Pregnancy is great. Teenagers ought to know that parents and moral laws are not there to spoil their fun. if pregnancy occurs at a young age. will prime teenagers on how to deal with issues that might arise. • Tell teenagers that the door is always open. if it occurs during the right time. popular music. Difficult as it may be. even if parents are not present to guide them. given such avenues to elicit information on sex. and when they will get home. Teenagers need to know that for every action. TV. the peer pressure to join in in this worldly activity may easily erode a young person’s willingness to wait until marriage. Parents need to train teenagers to understand what love is. it is advisable to tackle issues before they come up. abortions. and popular fiction have on teenagers who still are impressionable. Parents need to reduce the influence that movies. It makes life very hard though. In this regard. what they are planning to do. and mistrust including single parent families has to be deeply ingrained. according to the moral laws and not according to the world. parents should set some ground rules. • Give teenagers every possible perspective. The truth that sexual immorality causes unwanted pregnancies. parents hardly have enough choice. there is an equal and opposite reaction. it is not for selfish reasons.” Furthermore. In the area of sex. and will just go downhill from there. and within a committed relationship like marriage. Communicating this will clear any confusion they may have and calm some of the parents’ own concerns. When something is not allowed. but for their own protection. Doing so over the course of time. Teenagers may feel pressure from another to engage in pre-marital sex to see if they are “compatible. it is a very slippery slope.
With that in mind. Remember that discipline should be redemptive. Teamwork that leads to consensus between spouses is always ideal. when a child hit the teen years. Its purpose is to help them grow to become responsible adults. Don’t feel guilty about disciplining teens. discipline is more important than ever. Be judicious and creative when choosing a discipline. Talking or hugging afterward communicates that they are still being loved despite what they did. • • • • • • • Responsible Parenting Handbook 27 . there will be less need for a parent’s intervention. If teens know what’s expected of them up front. Be consistent. If a teenager disobeys and gets off without any consequences. Also make sure the punishment fits the offense. Present a united front. Communicate to them the expectation that they should actually learn to discipline themselves.Discipline tips for parents of teenagers Discipline isn’t a pleasant experience. only punish for willful disobedience. As teens learn to discipline themselves in different areas. but was nailed the second time for the same thing. Punishment isn’t for the purpose of hurting them because they broke the rules or have hurt others. it will create confusion. but save the discipline for the big stuff. many problems can be avoided. Never discipline for mistakes. More serious offenses should incur a more sever punishment than lesser ones. The teen years are a handing-over period. However. independent. Give counsel following mistakes. and exempt from correction. Communicate with them after the discipline. Teens will often try to make their parents guilty for standing on their ground. It’s still the best parenting book available. the following are suggested disciplining ways: • • Communicate rules beforehand. Disagreements between parents about rules and discipline issues communicate weakness. especially for teens that feel grown up. Use the Holy Book to teach lifestyle principles and applications to situations and behaviors.
28 Responsible Parenting Handbook . If a child lives with jealousy. He learns to have faith in himself and in those about him. He learns to fight. He learns to be apprehensive. If a child lives with honesty and fairness. If a child lives with praise. If a child lives with acceptance. He learns to be appreciative. He learns to be shy. If a child lives with pity. If a child lives with recognition. He learns to feel guilty. He feels sorry himself. If a child lives with ridicule. He learns to be confident. He learns what envy is. If a child lives with tolerance. If a child lives with fear. He learns what truth and justice are. If a child lives with hostility. If a child lives with sharing. He learns to like himself. If a child lives with encouragement. He learns to condemn. He learns that it is good to have a goal. Your child will live with peace of mind. If a child lives with friendliness. He learns that the world is a nice place in which to live. If a child lives with security.Below is a rhyme that captures the spirit of parenting: CHILDREN LEARN WHAT THEY LIVE If a child lives with criticisms. If a child lives with shame. He learns to be patient. If you live with serenity. He learns about generosity.
respect. Positivity. empathy. people can keep their marriages strong and enjoyable. acceptance. It is an active relationship in which both partners grow and develop their best qualities as human Essentially. Let’s look at these factors. satisfying marriage? HUSBAND-WIFE RELATIONSHIP Consider the positive aspects of your marriage. On the other hand. There are many ways that show positivity in a couple’s marriage. If there is too much negativity – criticizing. Successful spouses have far more positive than negative interactions. and care for each other. love and respect. love. But with hard work and dedication. MAKING MARRIAGE WORK Most spouses start out full of hopes and dreams and are truly committed to making their marriage work. demanding. if there is never any negativity. The main difference between stable and unstable marriages is the amount of positive thoughts and actions spouses engage in toward each other. many individuals feel less romantic and do not find as much satisfaction in their relationships. chances are that your relationship has high levels of positivity. arriage is the lifelong partnership of a man and a woman – two different individual who are bound to understand. holding grudges – the relationship will suffer. Yet as the reality of living with a less than perfect spouse sets in and the pressures of life build.amily Family Relationship CHAPTER II M beings. How is it done? What does it take to create a long-lasting. All marriages change over time. What are you doing that works well and brings you and your spouse joy and happiness? If you have a satisfying marriage. it probably means that frustrations and grievances are accumulating inside one or both partners. Responsible Parenting Handbook 29 . commitment. These are some of the characteristics that researchers have found to be common in successful marriages. marriage is what the two persons make of it. name-calling.
You can show affection in subtle ways through quiet acts of tenderness – touching or holding hands or a quick shoulder massage. there is conflict in marriage because partners cannot accept the individual preferences of their spouses and try to demand change from one another. they are much more likely to have a relationship that lasts. Basic acceptance is vital to a happy marriage. Be affectionate. Both spouses should be committed to the relationship. Interest can be signaled by truly listening and being involved in a conversation. Commitment.Show interest. This is important for relationship satisfaction. each spouse explains why he or she is mad while the other one listens with respect. yelling and sobbing seldom helps solve problems. they usually have high-quality marriages. The most successful couples acknowledge that many problems are unsolvable and learn to work around them. they are usually more secure and confident in their relationships. However. Acceptance. Show you care. A successful couple continually focuses on their relationship’s strengths. In a fruitful argument. When people feel that their spouses truly accept them for who and what they are. Often. Husbands and wives who only focus on themselves and their own desires are not as likely to find joy and satisfaction in their relationships. 30 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Acknowledgment helps them feel loved and confident enough to share further expressions of love. Husbands and wives are more content in their relationships when they perceive that their spouses truly understand their thoughts and feelings. Be appreciative. Long-term happy couples tend to argue calmly. Show your concern. Be supportive when your spouse is worried. Have tolerance. When one person tries to force change from another. Everyone wants to feel valued and respected. Express your concern whenever your spouse tells you about something distressing or troubling. he or she is usually met with resistance. The ability to forego perfection is vital for relationship satisfaction. despite the unavoidable challenges and obstacles that come. Loss of control. Empathy. Fight fair. Empathy means understanding a person’s perspective by putting oneself in his or her shoes. Small acts of thoughtfulness are a powerful way to boost the positivity in a marriage. Let your spouse know that he or she has done something that pleases you. When the partners are truly dedicated to making their marriage work. when spouses are committed to investing in their marriage and are willing to sacrifice some of their own preferences for the good of the relationship.
PARENT-CHILD RELATIONSHIP As united by marriage. Conflict in marriage is unavoidable. If they do. the marriage often suffers as a result. However. As fathers and mothers are responsible for the health. In addition to a harmonious parent-child relationship. The key to their success is how they handle their conflicts and disagreements. and development of the character of children. It is important that husbands and wives continue to develop love and respect for each other throughout their lives. Managing conflict. Successful couples don’t take each other for granted but work constantly at rejuvenating their good feelings for each other. Parents are committed and dedicated to children’s welfare.even the best ones – will experience at least some conflict from time to time. parents will procreate by giving birth to and nourishing a new life. warmth. Parents have to recognize the basic need of the newborn for safety. respect. sex serves as powerful instrument of relationship maintaining marital fulfillment and happiness. It is all too easy for spouses to lose touch with each other and neglect the love and romance that once came so easily. Satisfying sexual relation. Responsible Parenting Handbook 31 . such as love. Maintaining the desired relationship. The most satisfied couples put as much thought and energy into their relationship as they put into their children or career. nourishment. relationship with God. Why would two people get married who did not love and respect each other? The fact is. despite the conflicts that arise. communication. and forgiving and forgetting. When done as an expression of love and care. they are also accountable for whatever their children will become in the future. This includes the well-being of a child. and nurturing. as time passes and life becomes increasingly complicated. Feelings of love may wax and wane during a relationship. it is highly likely that their relationships will remain happy and satisfying. but trust and commitment must be constant. All marital relationships. A couple must renew and enrich their relationship again and again.Mutual love and respect. the following are for consideration: prioritization. the inculcation of good character traits. Marriage relationships are constantly evolving. and obedience. growth. many people are successful and happy in their marriages.
Though children are obliged to honor and obey their parents as long as they are under parents’ tender and concerned authority. children are not to be indulged and allowed to think that they can follow their own desires without asking the advice of their parents. Parents are awfully busy with minor things – forgetting the major ones. and appreciate their children will gain the children’s self respect. Thus. Obedience to parental authority should be inculcated during babyhood and cultivated in youth. Obedience. Children need to know that they are priorities in parents’ lives. A special day would mean spending quality time with the children in a form of a recreation. This is the time for getting young children to obey tasks. However. children are taught to obey their parents. and show reverence to authority. Children love to play games. The incentive that starts from getting a big kiss and hug to owning a cellular phone is the result of responding to a small task to a big one. plays. is learning how to learn. the teachings parents provided to the children will bear fruit in a long lasting effect. newborn babies attain a greater degree of competency. self confidence. the affection. It is often correct to give incentives to children than punishment to show concern for the learning process of a young human being who is turning into a “new individual. parents need the cooperation of the children in setting rules within home and outside home. House rules are meant to be observed. Children grow so fast. care. Children who obey house rules will find it easy to do tasks given by the school or outside school. Priority in life. The encouragement. The three-year old is learning and. Respect. parents of children from birth to age three play a critical role in influencing the child’s growth and development. Paying attention to their needs is what they wanted.” Given good care and sufficient stimulation. educated. From their earliest life. and everyday is a special day with them. to respect their word. giving respect to authority. and disciplined until they become obedient to their parents. Praising the children in every good deed they do is better than having a new pair of shoes.Love. It is important to respect children’s choices as they reach out for independence at a young age as it is the young’s initial decision-making stage. talks. and explores. 32 Responsible Parenting Handbook . and development of their talents and potentials to the fullest. Parents who love. Parents can help foster those decision-making skills by being supportive and respect their attempts to achieve independence and to establish their own identity. Children are trained. Newborn grows from a completely dependent human being into one who walks. Playing games is the best quality time a parent and child share with each other. perhaps more important.
because this may help in learning not to do the same mistakes again. happiness. Parents are the greatest gifts of God to children as the children are the greatest gifts to parents. can serve as an important factor in molding the character and personality of children. especially the feelings of sadness. Parents are reminded to teach the children that feelings should not control them. Past mistakes may be shared with the kids.” “Forgive me. when properly handled. fear. avoiding conflicts that might lead to disagreements.” are words that deserve forgiveness from child’s faulty and treacherous offenses. anger. Recreational activities can serve as excellent opportunities for guidance and counseling because the spontaneity of the situation allows a parent to right away put in a word or two of advice. Frequent communication. from the time of their first smile. up to the time when they are ready to become parents. If ever this occurs. Parents should take advantage of the time spent with their children. their first school day of school.” “Please understand me. and sacrifice. Constant dialogue with the children will help in inculcating the values of love. and embarrassment. Understanding each others’ strengths and weaknesses. One of the hard parts of parenting is to accept that parents are no longer the central focus of their lives as when they were still children. it is the duty of the parents to help their children understand that parents will always be there for them to help and support their taken actions. Forgive and forget. It can strengthen bonds of togetherness between parents and children. Responsible Parenting Handbook 33 .Recreation. pride. the first time they say the word “Mama” or “Papa”. parents and children will have continuous harmonious relationships. their first crawl. But parents should not underestimate their importance as kids will always need them to explore who he is and what he can become. Good words like “I’m sorry.
for example. One assumes a positive attitude towards them and consciously looks for their good points. considering the Filipino’s traditional respect for elders. the extended family system makes adjustment a bit more complex. aunts. They may be overbearing or over-dependent. and alienate the children from their parents by ridiculing and pointing out the inadequacies of the latter. They may impose their own. Problems arise when relatives and in-laws contribute to family disharmony. then accepting them as they are is a good way to start. they automatically become members of their spouse’s family. when either of them or any of their children falls suddenly ill. when they have to move to a new residence. newlyweds should strive to be financially and emotionally independent from their parents if they want their relationship to grow on a mature basis. This is expected especially if the source is much older. However. If a spouse wants to have successful relationships with relatives and in-laws. favor one child over all the rest. and a disadvantage because there may be relatives who will interfere or make a nuisance of themselves. the decision to follow or not still lies with the receiver of the advice. They may serve as a positive and enriching influence on both parents and children. This brings not only certain joys but also certain situations. Relatives and in-laws play a supportive role. In our country. if they are full of ideas and have had many experiences. Setting up their own nest will greatly minimize unwelcome intervention even by well-meaning in-laws. One does not criticize the partner’s kin so as to compare them unfavorably with one’s own. As much as possible. They may encourage over-dependence on them. Relatives may be requested to shoulder some of the couple’s domestic responsibilities not only during times of stress but also when they manifest their sincere desire to help without imposing their own values and lifestyle. This particularly manifests itself when the couple find themselves under great financial difficulty. uncles.RELATIONSHIP WITH RELATIVES AND IN-LAWS When persons marry. if they are greatly involved in community affairs. 34 Responsible Parenting Handbook . One graciously listens to relatives’ advice because this is often well-intended. and nieces to the nth degree. or hold a big party. One deals not only with the immediate family of one’s spouse but also with the grandparents. The traditional closeness of the wellknit Filipino family can be an advantage because there will always be relatives who are willing to help when the going gets rough. nephews. especially if they have wide interests outside the home. often over-indulgent mode of child-rearing. creating tension either way. They may side with one partner against the other.
especially since grandparents tend to spoil them. Children who have reached adulthood are expected to take care of their elders who reciprocate by helping in the housework and keeping watch over the kids. Parents nevertheless should make it clear that they are primarily responsible for the raising of their children. the arrangement may still be made pleasant and satisfactory by observing the rules of mutual respect and mutual accommodation. In-laws have a big part to play in the success or failure of marriage. it is still possible to establish a relatively independent life by having a separate household. Be fair. grandparents.In the Philippines. Do not criticize your spouse’s parents. Within the limits of this cultural framework. When maintaining good relationship with in-laws. and vice versa. If problems arise. Do not compare your in-laws with your parents and vice versa. Responsible Parenting Handbook 35 . your priority should be your own family. the best way is still to talk them over. • Remember that when you get married. Give as much respect and time to your in-laws as you would to your own parents. If living with relatives and in-laws is unavoidable. Remember that your in-laws are like your second parents. Conflicts revolving around the discipline of children are bound to occur. and other relatives during the first few years of marriage. Let your in-laws enjoy your kids as much as you let your own parents. here are some points to remember: • • • • • Treat your in-laws as you would your parents. Grandparents may just visit their children’s families. this is admittedly difficult because usually couples still live with parents.
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material goods. clothing. It can possibly increase their performance and productivity at work and in the home. Beyond these basic needs. controlling. Problems in activities management usually come from poor work habits. on the other hand. What can be considered as family resources? These resources include time. This will help reduce stress. and which activities can be delegated to other members of the family or what tasks can be totally eliminated. the maintenance of health. and shelter. It is a good idea to keep track of how the couple spends their time for at least four days and after a while try to review and check for the causes of ineffective use of time. The best place to start is to manage the couple’s time better. education of children. family goals may include. and skills. security for the future. Family goals. and evaluating family resources to achieve family goals. money. are based on concrete human needs. Management is the process of planning the use of resources in order to get the desired output. Responsible Parenting Handbook 37 . The couple may then ask themselves which tasks can be performed only by them or one of them. Applying this definition to the home setting. ACTIVITIES MANAGEMENT Management of the activities of the couple begins from the time they wake up to the time they go to bed.Management Home Management CHAPTER III H ome management is a day-to-day activity of married couples as soon as they start their lives together. Home management is a decision-making activity. This management skill can allow them more time for themselves and the children and friends. among others. It is the conscious and deliberate use of resources to get results that are favorable to everyone’s needs. energy. knowledge. and the full development of each member’s potentials. home management can therefore be defined as the process of planning. and pertain mainly to the provision of basic needs which are food.
Allocate enough time for exercise. 3. 5. Aside from a flexible time schedule. 38 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Give each member of the family an assignment so that the burden of work is spread out. and sleep. recreation. rest. not when tiredness is expected to set in. Opposite each task. it is necessary that goals are set clearly.Tips on Activities Management Here are some tips for apportioning time for activities: 1. note the approximate amount of time needed to accomplish each. In prioritizing time. Alternate the easy with the difficult task to minimize fatigue. Break the “Do-It-Yourself” habit and let others learn to share responsibility in doing household chores. and sleep are essential in remaining physically and mentally fit. You will find you have more time for major tasks. To make these goals operational. breaking large activities into smaller ones. Tackle the hardest tasks when the energy level is at its peak. Avoid unimportant commitments. and setting short-term deadlines. 2. Manage commitments by not over . rest. List down the tasks to be done. Redirect time to those activities that are important and meaningful. readily accessible. Prioritize time by rating tasks by importance and urgency. Deal with procrastination by using a day planner. recreation. 6. and easily remembered. 7.or under-committing. Consolidate or group similar tasks and do them simultaneous. This eliminates a lot of sporadic behavior. Goals should be put in writing and reviewed frequently. daily “to-do” list should be used. energy and time may also be saved by arranging equipment and belongings so that they are well arranged. Exercise. 4.
Budgeting should be a joint decision-making between husband and wife. a bigger portion of the family income will go to their education. is that financial demands vary at different stages of family life. among others. clothing. Budgeting No matter what income level it falls under. It is also expected that when children start studying in college. Subtract fixed expenses such as: rental (house/room/apartment) light water installment tuition taxes Responsible Parenting Handbook 39 . their money seems to be always lacking. A common complain among married couples is that. This will provide a constant consultation and communication regarding matters that will affect them and the family. Estimate the total income which may come in any of the following forms: wages and salaries extra earnings or sidelines sale from home products or fruits/vegetables (backyard garden) additional amount from gifts or other sources 2. 3. recreation. water. a family must have a budget. and electricity. whatever they do. It seems they are never able to earn enough for their needs. Here are some steps parents can follow in budgeting: 1. A budget is a plan by which the important needs of a family are met in a satisfactory way through a well-thought out system of priorities. For example. medical and dental needs. housing. it is expected that when the children start going to school a bigger dent on family funds will be incurred than when they were just pre-schoolers. in order to prepare for it as much as possible.FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT Money is a very important resource that needs careful management. List down all items which the couple or the family has to spend on including estimates of each item. The family has to provide the basic needs of the family members which include food. education. Another fact that a family has to recognize early. transportation. Family needs are numerous but family resources are often limited.
8. Be creative in cooking. Walk instead of taking a ride when the destination is only a short distance away. Include savings in the budget items. Tips on cost-cutting measures Below are some tips on cost-cutting: 1. 7. Establish priorities and resort to “hulugan” only for very important items. Learn to recycle food. 10. This is important for emergency use such as in sickness. Keep your savings in the bank where they are safer and earn interest. Plant vegetables in the backyard/pots. Learn to say “no” to sales people who encourage “hulugan”. 5. Buy wisely. the walk will provide exercise which is good for health. and money. Vegetables will always be fresh and the excess can be sold for extra money. it can also allow savings. or for earning additional income like investments. If there is a baby. or capital for small business. such as: food clothing (laundry) transportation health recreation 5. The balance is divided for daily needs. 9. Aside from helping one to be healthy. Avoid smoking/drinking liquor/gambling/junk foods. and other items. 2. Aside from saving. Conserve energy and water. Wise buying is the art of getting goods that satisfy one’s needs at a minimum amount of time. set aside 5 to 10 percent of the balance for saving. It is getting the most out of limited resources. Learn to live within the means. 6. 40 Responsible Parenting Handbook . This is good for the baby’s health and for closer bonding between the mother and the baby. learn how to sew and other means of reusing waste materials at home. 3. breastfeed him/her. clothing.4. As much as possible. 4. energy.
savings is most easily linked to savings for something they really want. Advertising claims such as “No Down Payment” and “Long time to pay” means greater costs. out of mind. think through the decision-making process: • What are my financial goals and priorities? Will this help me reach my important goals? Responsible Parenting Handbook 41 . Plan shopping with a purpose in mind. Before spending money. Buy soap and detergent in bulk. Simple but attractive meals may be served. Buy food that is cheap but nutritious. 8.” Tips on wise buying In buying for household necessities. get medical care on time to prevent complications. and praise the child for their savings. 7. Extras that are not really needed can add to the total at the cash register. Large down payments pay off quickly. such as a piggy bank. If there is a serious spender in the family. Buy household equipment that is within the family’s means. 12. birthday. A fiesta. 3. Then monitor the spending and saving. Complications mean greater expense. 2. tired. 9. Shopping when one is hungry. or depressed can be a tendency to overspend. Use that list.11. Avoid “just looking”. using the principle of “out of sight. Stay away from stores except when there is absolute need to buy. 4. 6. Avoid getting near to things that will tempt you to spend. In case of illness. or family reunion as an established tradition may be celebrated but not lavishly. Make a list and stick to it. Limit the number of trips to the store or to the market. Do not over cook food. Buy on sound credit terms. keep the piggy bank in a drawer or closet. Buy clothes that can serve many purposes and can be worn on many occasions. Browsing can lead to buying. It is a waste of fuel. To encourage children to save. Take advantage of fruits and vegetables in season. 5. be guided by the following tips: 1. For children. 13. provide them with a source of money (either in allowance or some method in earning money) and a safe place to put the money.
12. Ask yourself: Can I do without? Can I continue to use what I already have? Can I make it instead of buying it? Can I borrow someone else’s? Can I substitute something less expensive? Can I rent a few days instead of buy? Is this a need or a want? Should I buy? 10. If there are parts that need repair. Do not buy just because of the feeling of being obligated. Keep credit purchases to a minimum. Review the family’s spending record for patterns of behavior. lights. interest charges usually add to the cost of anything purchased with credit. 11. Leaking faucets can lead to higher water bill. or throwing away useful items are all examples of wasted money. 14. Excessive use (water.• - Consider the alternatives. Use feedback. maintaining the house in safe and good condition is necessary. Be patient. Set spending limits. • that are too expensive for the budget (know the limits of the family’s budget) • that look wonderful but are really not. Learn also to say no to friends or relatives who sell things to you that you do not need. abuse. Learn to say “no” to items: • that do not rank high on the spending priority list. Because of this. 42 Responsible Parenting Handbook . defective electrical connections or convenience outlets can be dangerous as it can cause fire. MAINTAINING THE HOME The house should be a place where everybody in the family would feel safe and secure. If deciding to buy. 13. Establish spending guides for the family to follow. Do not spend more than what is in the plan. Remember. do some comparison shopping. Try to reduce waste to help save money. automobile). The following are general reminders in maintaining a healthy and safe house: 1. or lack of care which leads to expensive repairs or shortens the service life of a product. Examine every part of the house periodically. do the repair immediately. Think about what credit will cost and how else to use that money. Use expense records to plan spending.
2. and fires. 6. Protect the environment. as well as vermin (fleas. inside and outside. Most accidents happen in the home and this is why it is important to ensure that your home is safe especially for children. Clean the floor regularly and always keep it dry to prevent accidents. This means that. It is the key for healthy and sustainable living. 7. touch. should not be allowed to freely roam around as they might bite people and cause a lot of trouble to the owner. There are many situations in which children have overdosed on their parents’ drugs and medicines. Termite attacks can strain the family budget on repairs. They can also bring in a lot of germs. A healthy family makes a habit of cleanliness. 4. 5. Be a responsible pet owner. and properly labeled. They are curious by nature and need careful and gentle guidance. Dogs. Small children should never be left alone with pets. they will crawl. Watch out for signs of invasion of destructive insects such as termites and ants. for instance. such as the kitchen. 3. Be prepared against disasters and calamities such as floods. especially near wires and sockets. Make sure that the house is always clean. Cover all garbage cans inside and outside the house to keep out flies and rats. Are your children contained within the house? Is the safety chain high enough on the front door even for a very active toddler? Crawling and exploring are an essential part of their development . Even trained and good natured animals can turn on them. and grab at whatever is in their line of sight. Keep pets from annoying the neighborhood or straying onto the street.keep an eye on your young children. Shouting at or smacking children will not teach them about safety. Responsible Parenting Handbook 43 . Cleanliness is also very important in guarding against diseases. Certain rooms are necessarily full of danger. bugs and others). Safety in the home Babies and young children learn about their world by exploring it. typhoons. and should remain out of bounds or made safe by the use of safety devices. as soon as they are able to. Here are tips on how to avoid some dangers in the home: • • • • • Make sure that all medicines and drugs are locked away well and out of reach of children. Ant bites are bothersome.
Keeping healthy and safe surroundings The following are tips on how to maintain a healthy and safe surrounding: Garbage disposal A healthy family makes a habit of cleanliness. Make sure that the house is always clean. Check toys for safety marks. Keep sharp objects away. Unsafe toys can be very dangerous. Keep matches. Clean the floor regularly. Let the child sleep in his or her crib and let him lie in a prone position or on his side. 2. Children will be affected by passive smoking and your smoking may encourage them to smoke when they get older. Check LPG tanks/gas stoves and accessories regularly. medicines. he may consider stopping the habit. especially if the pieces are small enough to choke on. If a parent is a smoker. Keep the child out of direct sunlight to avoid skin burn. Inhaling cigarette smoke is bad for children’s health.• • • • • • Make sure that irons. Always keep it dry to prevent accidents. ponds. and hot liquids out of reach. and rivers without adult supervision. Scalding and burns are common and avoidable accidents. These can clog up the drain and render the sink unusable. Always use seatbelt when inside the car and never leave the child alone inside a vehicle. Install safety locks on cabinets. saucepans. Do not allow solid objects to be washed down the kitchen sink. 44 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Never smoke or allow someone to smoke near the child. caustics and insecticides from the child. Keep plastic bags away to avoid suffocation. Other tips for child safety: • • • • • • • • • • • • Never leave the child without an adult supervision. Never allow the child near swimming pool. inside and outside. Never allow the child to play on the street. Check electrical wiring periodically and regularly. Here are some tips: 1. and hot drinks are kept out of reach of children. Ensure that your child does not play with toys that are not suitable for his or her age. drawers and wooden cribs. Keep away kerosene. lighted candles.
Other materials which can be recycled such as newspapers. Responsible Parenting Handbook 45 . 8. magazines. Provide a cover for the hole of the latrine. to prevent its infestation by flies. Use soap and water. In constructing the toilet and bathroom. Scrub them regularly to avoid accidents in the bathroom. Segregate solid garbage which can be recycled and reused. liquid soaps. As much as possible. in cleaning up after moving your bowels. slippery film. Cover all garbage cans inside and outside the house to keep out flies and rats. glass bottles. Bottles and other empty containers may be reused for storing vinegar. 11. Use weighted lids to prevent dogs and cats from spilling and scattering the garbage all over the place. and other creatures. mosquitoes. and the like. to prevent clogging. tin cans. and the sewage pipes – either of iron or concrete – are wide enough and correctly installed. In places where toilets are in the form of pit privies dug in earth. water dipper. Sprinkle water on the ground before sweeping to prevent the dust from swirling all over the place and into the house. cockroaches. 12. Clean the water container. make sure that the cesspool or depository of wastes is big enough. Avoid excessive use of plastic bags. Cement floor can be very slippery. 9. construct your toilet out of concrete. Reuse all items as much as possible to lessen garbage produced or repair them for longer use. 6. Reduce and dispose safely all domestic wastes. or toilet paper. and provide four walls and a roof. make sure that the excavation is deep enough. Regular scrubbing should prevent this. Plastic containers tend to collect a slimy. 7. 10. 4. or any other bulky material which can clog up the pipes.3. shredded cardboard. Install a sturdy toilet bowl. 13. 5. 14. and soap containers regularly. may be sold to a junk shop. Avoid using newspapers. and cooking oil and for other household uses.
bottles) inside and outside. 3. Cover all foodstuffs. Always keep it neat. you may be able to ease your money worries. Tend a small vegetable and herbal garden in available lot or space at home. Backyard gardening. hair sprays.15. secured place where cockroaches can not reach them. Keep glasses. animal wastes and other biodegradable wastes. forks. Learn to construct and use a compost pit for dried leaves. clean. It is the key to healthy and sustainable living. At the same time. knives. absorb pollution and provide cool breeze especially during summer. 4. and water dippers in a covered. 2. The kitchen is a very important part of the house. too. protect them from flies. 4. 5. Scrub the toilet bowl regularly. Use muriatic acid or vinegar to remove the yellowish stains inside. pitchers. Clean the dining table with soaped rags to remove odors and stains which attract flies and other insects. Clean water containers (jugs. This way. cook and store food. Loam soil produced from decomposed wastes from the compost pit can be used as organic fertilizer. 46 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Trees will provide shade. plates. This is where the family prepares. greening. Safety measures against diseases 1. 2. or collect endangered plants and animals. and provide them a greater quantity of nourishing food. Don’t catch endangered species. paints and insect repellants with chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) that destroy the earth’s ozone layer. Be aware of and protect your environment. jars. Plant fruit bearing trees around the house. 5. you can improve the health of your family. and caring for the environment 1. and orderly. and keep them covered or capped at all times. 6. 3. Avoid use of aerosol sprays. spoons.
eye and lung infection. Keep the yard clean and free of garbage. and other similar areas. skin. 9. including the area outside your fence. Waste matter in the area can become the source of intestinal. The toilet and bathroom must be clean. Responsible Parenting Handbook 47 . 8. Clean up animal and human waste in the yard immediately. near an electrical transmission line. 2. in case you’re using a big water jar. in areas near a very steep slope or ravine. in areas that can be reached by high tide. Parents should learn how to do first aid techniques in case of injuries and know the locations of the nearest medical clinic or hospital when any of the family members need medical attention. Set aside a special dipper for stored drinking water. Disaster preparedness 1. Dirty surroundings breed disease. Avoid constructing your house in dangerous locations such as near the riverbank.6. 7. and it is very important that these are sturdily built. Family members should be taught how to safely evacuate the house in case of fire or in case there are natural calamities such as floods and typhoons. in earthquake fault line. particularly among children who play in the yard. in flood prone areas.
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Fertility.and Fertility Awareness a nd Famil Planning amily Natural Family Pla nning CHAPTER IV T he human body is already equipped with mechanisms for the natural management of fertility. It relies on the daily observation and interpretation of the changing signs to determine a woman’s fertility status (DOH 2001-2004). A wet dream usually signals that the boy is now producing sperms and he is entering the age of puberty. FERTILITY AWARENESS Fertility awareness refers to the recognition of the fertile and infertile phases of a woman’s reproductive cycle. A male’s body changes in many ways when he approaches puberty. When we speak of responsible parenting. Male Fertility A boy begins producing sperm when he is about 12 years old. it is similar in meaning to fecundity which refers to the ability to produce offspring (Encarta Dictionary Tools 2003). Responsible Parenting Handbook 49 . His shoulders and chest widen. A man is normally fertile every day of his life from puberty until his death. He begins to produce sperms and begin to have wet dreams. his outer reproductive organs grow bigger. These mechanisms show themselves through physical and physiological signs that can be recognized. Couples should be aware that men are potentially fertile all the time when they are already producing sperm. fertility is the natural starting point since it is fertility that determines whether a couple will have children or not. Women however are only fertile for a few days in a menstrual cycle around the time of ovulation. or being fertile. It is necessary for both the man and the woman to be fertile for them to bear a child. This is accompanied by hair growth in the armpits and chest and in the pubic area and his voice lowers. observed. is the capacity of a person to conceive and bear children. and charted by both men and women.
an egg cell matures and is released into a tube called fallopian tube where it waits for the sperm. 50 Responsible Parenting Handbook . This is called ovulation and the egg is called the ovum. A woman is fertile around this time. the mucus she secretes around or before ovulation can keep the sperm alive from three to five days. the woman feels wet because of the mucus that her body produces. Between puberty and menopause.Female Fertility A woman’s fertility starts at puberty with her first menstruation. A woman’s fertility begins at puberty and ends at menopause when her menstruation stops. On the other hand. The female contribution in the conception of a child is the egg. Around the time of ovulation. Between two menstrual periods. a woman is only fertile around the times when her body releases an egg. This menstruation signals that her body is now ready to bear a child. The egg cell lives for about 24 hours.
there is no other way. Responsible Parenting Handbook 51 . Combined fertility is the equal contribution of the male (sperm) and female (egg) in the decision and capability to have a child. This simply means that a male sperm and a female egg are needed for fertilization to occur. This calls for maturity and responsibility in the reproductive process of the couple.Combined Fertility In the context of parenting. fertility is an integral part of the conjugal relationship of the husband and wife. despite the fact that only the woman bears a child for nine months and gives birth. The following illustration show how the couple can organize their fertility behavior so that they can raise the children according to their plans and aspirations.
stretchy. The length of a woman’s cycle can vary normally by a few days from cycle to cycle. The ovulatory phase is the highlight of a woman’s fertility. slippery. may not be able to observe the dry days after menstruation. Menstrual bleeding is due to the shedding of the uterine lining that was previously prepared for implantation. these methods are based on the changes in the cervical mucus or basal body temperature of the woman during her menstrual cycle. it indicates that no implantation happened. The cycle begins on the first day of menstrual bleeding and ends at the onset of the next menstrual bleeding. the ovulatory phase. however.Fertility Cycle The fertility cycle or menstrual cycle of the woman is crucial in our appreciation of human fertility. especially women with short cycles. At about the time menstrual bleeding began. This mucus helps the sperm live and swim to reach the egg. and the post-ovulatory phase. the cervical mucus is also wet. One mature egg is released and stays in the fallopian tube. the woman’s sensation is wet. The fertility cycle is divided into phases – the menstrual phase. MODERN SCIENTIFIC FERTILITY AWARENESS-BASED METHODS (NATURAL FAMILY PLANNING METHODS) Commonly called Natural Family Planning (NFP). The length of the pre-ovulatory phase varies. It is an educational process of planning or postponing pregnancy based on observation and 52 Responsible Parenting Handbook . A menstrual cycle is usually 25 to 34 days but some women may have shorter cycles or longer cycles which are normal. several eggs have started to grow in the ovaries. and clear. It occurs 12 to 14 days before the onset of the next menstrual cycle. the pre-ovulatory phase. The pre-ovulatory phase is the infertile phase which includes all the “dry” days after the menstrual bleeding has stopped. It nourishes the sperm. During this phase. Some women. The woman experiences menstrual bleeding which usually lasts three to five days. The menstrual phase begins on the first day of menstruation which is also the first day of the cycle. It can be fertilized by the male sperm for only up to one day or 24 hours. This phase is usually fixed in the cycle (11 to 16 days). The post-ovulatory days are the infertile days after the release of the mature egg during the ovulatory phase.
no waiting period. Simply. The couple has to agree not only in the initial choice of the method but in its ongoing use. 5.). helping build their relationship. etc. The man learns to know the woman in her physical and hormonal changes and the woman appreciates the man’s attention to her individuality and acceptance of her cyclical fertility. pre-menopause. Responsible Parenting Handbook 53 . 6. When learned and used properly. The methods provide greater self-awareness and independence. Life-long use. The methods foster positive communication between the couple. Advantages of NFP 1. The methods encourage and respect the natural processes. Natural. Inexpensive. Options are available to manage their natural fertility to achieve or avoid pregnancy. develops self-confidence as the couple begins to recognize the physical and psychological influence of cyclical hormones in the woman making it easier for them to adapt when changes occur. Reversible. Highly effective.interpretation by the couple of naturally occurring signs and symptoms of the fertile and infertile phases of the woman’s menstrual cycle. especially that of the woman (breastfeeding. When fully integrated into their lives. 8. 7. the methods call for constant dialogue between the couple. the couple does not incur other expenses. There are no risks to health nor are there any harmful side effects or interventions. This means couples need to be knowledgeable of the identifiable signs of their fertility. thus. the methods can be used in all phases of life. The methods can be used any time to plan or avoid pregnancy. it is ranked as among the most effective methods of regulating fertility. 4. Aside from the minimal expenses in the purchase of charts and the onetime fee for the materials and teaching. Builds relationship. Empowerment. The methods are based on natural. 2. observable changes in a woman’s body. it means the accurate time of the couple to make love during the fertile phase to achieve pregnancy or to make love during the infertile phase to space or postpone pregnancy. Once learned. Simple to learn. 3.
It makes use of “full or almost full” breastfeeding immediately after giving birth until six (6) months after delivery provided the mother has no menses yet. as much as possible. consult NFP workers in their area or qualified teacher-users of the method of their choice to avoid disappointment that the method did not work for them. To use them. Lactational Amenorrhea Method (LAM) This method takes advantage of the normal physiologic response of the woman’s body to a suckling infant which is to inhibit ovulation. 54 Responsible Parenting Handbook . a couple should.The illustration below shows how a couple may become an NFP user or practitioner: HOW TO BECOME AN NFP USER/PRACTITIONER The Different Natural Family Planning Methods Below are the general descriptions of the different NFP methods.
She should observe the sensation of wetness or dryness and the appearance of the mucus outside the vagina. To effectively practice this method. The woman must consciously observe the quality of her cervical mucus in what she sees and what she feels throughout the day. This should be done at the end of the day because the most fertile sign of the day must be recorded in a learning chart as a guide for fertile and infertile days. the couple. the couple therefore is advised to learn another natural method before the six months end or when the first menstruation after childbirth occurs. three requirements should be present: • • • The baby is 6 months or less The mother’s monthly period has not returned The baby is fully breastfed. should do the following: 1. 2. 3. Mercedes Wilson Method and Two Day Method). The method involves the daily observation by the woman of the naturally occuring changes of the cervical mucus during the different phases of a woman’s menstrual cycle. The best time is to observe before or after urinating. Cervical Mucus Method (CMM) This method includes (Billings Ovulation Method. especially the woman. LAM is up to six months only. “What do I see?” Observations must be recorded in the evening before going to bed. Couples who want to use Cervical Mucus Method should seek assistance from userteachers in their neighborhood or in church-based organizations or from trained NFP providers in health centers. Responsible Parenting Handbook 55 . Observation starts on the first day of menstruation. A couple using this method notes the changes in a woman’s cervical mucus using a learning chart. The sensation of wetness or dryness are observed throughout the day and recorded in a learning chart.For LAM to be effective. 4. The woman does the observation by asking “How do I feel?” and by looking at the mucus in her underwear and asking.
Below is a sample chart of this method: 56 Responsible Parenting Handbook .
What is needed is the woman’s willingness to check her secretions everyday and the discipline of the couple to abstain for several consecutive days each cycle if the indications suggest that the woman is fertile. the woman is considered fertile if she noticed any secretion for two successive days.Two-Day Method (TDM) The two-day method is a simple fertility awareness-based method of natural family planning that involves cervical secretions as indicator of fertility and the woman checking the presence of secretions every day. Basal Body Temperature (BBT) With the use of a thermometer. The woman’s temperature rises 0. Responsible Parenting Handbook 57 . By charting the daily temperature of the woman. a couple takes the body temperature of the woman at almost the same time each morning before she gets out of bed and notes how it changes in a learning chart. It is one of the Cervical Mucus methods but is given a separate treatment here because it is new and is still being mainstreamed.5 degrees around the time of ovulation. In other words. the couple avoids lovemaking from the first day of menstruation until the temperature has risen above her regular temperature and stayed up for three full days. the couple can have their lovemaking until her next menstrual bleeding begins. In this method. After this. The method can be used by women with cycles of any length and has normal secretions. she should consider herself fertile and the couple should avoid lovemaking if they do not want a pregnancy to occur. If a woman notices any secretion today or yesterday. a couple will be able to identify the fertile and infertile days.2 to 0.
These rules are derived from the cervical mucus method and the BBT method described above.Below is a sample of a BBT chart: Sympto-thermal Method (STM) This is a combination of the observation of the cervical mucus changes. 58 Responsible Parenting Handbook . and secondary signs and symptoms of fertility before and after ovulation. low and high temperature changes. The couple should avoid lovemaking until the rules have been applied on both the peak day and the shift in temperature. A couple notes the mucus and takes the temperature of the body at rest in a learning chart.
Days 1-7 and the rest of the days after day 19 are identified as non-fertile days. It helps a woman know her fertile days by simply counting the days of her cycle.Below is a sample of an STM chart: Standard Days Method (SDM) The Standard Days Method is a modern scientific method of family planning based on fertility awareness. starting with the first day of menstruation. Responsible Parenting Handbook 59 . SDM’s “fertile window” of days 8-19 has been standardized and is applicable only for women whose menstrual cycles range from 26 to 32 days. It identifies days 8-19 of the cycle as the fertile period when pregnancy may occur if there is intercourse.
Among the 13 beads is a dark brown bead that marks the 26th day of the woman’s cycle.The couple uses a color-coded device called the “cycle beads” to mark the fertile and infertile days of the menstrual cycle. followed by six brown beads that represent the days that the woman cannot get pregnant. the couple should seek advice from a qualified NFP or SDM facilitator. because the woman has a long menstrual cycle . The couple therefore cannot use the method because the woman has a short menstrual cycle. In this case. Next to the brown beads are 12 white beads that represent the days that the woman can get pregnant and 13 brown beads that also represent the days the woman cannot get pregnant. then the woman has a cycle longer that 32 days. It has one red bead that represents the first day of menstruation. 60 Responsible Parenting Handbook . Between the last brown bead and the red bead is a small black bead. If the woman’s next menstruation fall on or beyond this bead. then the woman has a cycle less than 26 days. If the next menstruation occurs before this bead. The “cycle beads” has 32 beads representing the days in the menstrual cycle.
The marker should be moved in the same direction. from the narrow to the wide end of the bead.A rubber ring that fits around the beads is used to mark the days in the cycle that are represented by the colored beads. This means a new cycle has started. Responsible Parenting Handbook 61 . the marker is moved again to the red bead. The record can be used later when the couple could not remember whether the marker was moved of not. Every morning the marker is moved to the next bead. the rubber ring is moved to the red bead and the date of the first day of menstruation is recorded in the SDM Card. On the first day of menstruation. The marker is moved even on days that the woman has her period. SDM was developed by the Institute for Reproductive Health of Georgetown University. the oldest Catholic university in the United States. On the day the next period starts again.
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COMMISSION ON POPULATION Welfareville Compound.ph (02) 531-6502.ph Email Address:email@example.com. Acacia Lane Mandaluyong City.popcom.gov. (02) 531-6805 . PHILIPPINES http://www.
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