Common issues addressed by the ‘Parent Whisperer’

Common issues addressed by the ‘Parent Whisperer’

Dear Parent Whisperer,

I love my children. I know I do. But every time when I come home from my day at work, my children come running to me and complain about something so small and I just want to yell at them- and sometimes I do. After a hard day at work, my brain wants to explode every time I walk into the house. What should I do?


Dear Alice,

First and foremost, thank you for reaching out to me. The first step to solving your problem — you already did! So, kudos, to you. Acknowledging and recognizing your frustration is the first step to understanding how we can solve your dilemma. From your question, you’re sharing that you are going from work to home with no emotional break in between. To be available for your children, you need to make sure that you are available. This can look different for many people,

but some suggestions that come to mind: write out three things that frustrated you at work to “get it out” so you do not bring it in; state three things you are grateful for (it can be as simple as a working pen); play your favorite song before entering the house…. In essence, before you can be available for your children, you must take care of yourself. Choose the one thing that you feel will help you “reset” before entering your home. Enjoy that moment — it’s important to take “me” time. You deserve it.

Dear Parent Whisperer,

AHHH! My child used to be such a great sleeper. And now she isn’t. She comes out of her room at least 5 times within the first hour. I am really losing my patience with her. Please help me!

Really really tired

Dear Really really tired,

Oh sleep. We all need it and it’s so important for us and our children, which is why it makes so much sense that this is a source of frustration for you. Here is a suggestion to help validate your needs and your child’s needs.

Create a bedtime pass. A bedtime pass is a clear visual where your child has a clear number of times that he/she may leave the room.

1. Hours before bedtime discuss with your child the issue. Bedtime is when we stay in our bed, I’ve been noticing you’re coming out of your bed five times.

2. Afterwards, acknowledge your child’s response.

3. Together, we are going to make a Bedtime Pass. This pass can be used if you need an extra hug/tuck in.

4. Provide your children with a specific choice: do you want two bedtime passes or three bedtime passes.

5. Practice using the bedtime pass before bedtime and provide your child with a clear response: for example, “Sally, I see you are bringing me the pass. What would you like?” When your child says “a hug” — respond by saying “You used 1 pass for a hug — you remembered how to use the pass; I am going to take this pass — and you have 1 more for the rest of the night.” A bedtime pass is a creative tool to use when you want your child to have ownership of change as well as results.

Sweet dreams!

*These questions were asked by parents. Names and specific details were changed to ensure anonymity. Jessica Bartel, the Parent Whisperer, is an early-childhood educator with over 15 years of teaching experience. She is passionate about helping parents help their children during the various adventures in the parenting/caregiver journey. A certified teacher, she has a master’s degree in Early Childhood General and Early Childhood Special Education. Contact her at to schedule your first consult

read more: