By: Dr. Mona Youssri

Child psychiatrist, Family Counselor & CLC Founder www.monayoussri.com

I always wonder why do women think its a competition for a better mom?? Is it because of the historical best mom contest? Or is it just pure female competitiveness?

 

Whatever it is, we as mothers have a serious impact on the world, and thats what we should be focusing on!  For the future will depend on generations we are raising today.

بقلم الدكتورة منى يسري

طبيبة علم نفس الأطفال ومعالجة أسرية ومؤسسة مجموعة حضاناتCLC 

دائما ما أتساءل لماذا تعتقد السيدات أنها مسابقة لإختيار الأم الأفضل؟؟ هل يرجع ذلك للمسابقة التاريخية لإختيار الأم المثالية؟ أم هي مجرد تنافسيه أنثويه بحته؟

 

 أيا كان السبب، نحن الأمهات لنا تأثير خطير على العالم، وذلك هو ما يجب التركيز عليه! لأن المستقبل سوف يعتمد على الأجيال التي يتم تربيتها اليوم.

By Dr. Mona Youssri

Child psychiatrist & Family Therapist

www.monayoussri.com

When you go to any large spacy outdoor public area, just sit on a bench and observe the surrounding children. They have this amazing ability to very happily entertain themselves and each other with absolutely no tools or toys within sight, just the brilliance, and richness of the outdoor environment.  Even if this space was only concrete, observe how children come into it with wide-open eyes, with happy curiosity as if they are little scientist exploring an interesting discovery.

By Dr. Mona Youssri

Spoon feeding your children till they are six or seven? Opening the TV to distract your child while feeding? Running after your child to take a bite while they are playing around in the club?

These are all very common behaviors in our Egyptian culture. One of the requirements of being a good Egyptian mother is to feed your child well, till signs of plump cheeks and thigh creases appear. Grandmothers always nag their daughters or daughters in law if the child is not sort of chubby, and if one is blessed with a slim healthy child who is not underweight by medical standards but is malnourished by cultural standards, still people may label this mother as not attending to her child’s nutritional needs.

بقلم الدكتورة منى يسري

 

هل لا زلتي تطعمين طفلك في فمه حتى مع بلوغه سن السادسة أوالسابعة؟ هل تقومين بتشغيل التلفاز لإلهاء طفلك حتى تنتهي من إطعامه؟ هل تجري وراء طفلك أثناء لعبه في النادي ليأخذ قضمة من طعامه؟

 

تعتبر تلك المواقف من السلوكيات الشائعة في الثقافة المصرية. فمن أحد المتطلبات اللازمة للحصول على لقب "الأم المصرية الجيدة"، تغذية الطفل حتى ظهور علامات امتلاء الخدود وثنايا الفخذ.

By:  Dr. Mona Youssri

Child Psychiatrist & Family Counselor

Anger and aggressive behaviors are very noticeably on the rise. Could it be all the junk food and unhealthy habits? Could it be the recent stressful events all over the world? Are our blooming generations angrier than we were as children? The definite factor is our effects as parents influencing on a daily basis our children’s behaviors. I truly believe in the saying “children see, children do”! Let us observe a few reflections of our aggression on our children. Just the other day, I saw a couple of girls pretending to be teachers with a couple of boys on the street. They had made the two poor boys raise their arms up in form of punishment and they were shouting at them nervously. Actually they are all victims of a loud violent environment that robs them from identifying the true image of a caregiver or an educator.

If you ask a child to draw his mother or father, there is a very big chance that she/he draws a very scary figure with staring eyes an open mouth and messy hair.

Dear Parents;

Egyptians have been going through more than two years of continuous agony and a challenging degree of stress. The mere instability of the daily life and not knowing what to expect just a day ahead is emotionally stressful for any human. We have brilliantly developed coping mechanisms and have become masters at using our defense mechanisms as well, but my concern is all the children who are amidst all these stresses! Personally, through my family counseling clients, I have noticed a dramatic increase in three particular problems; Anxiety, Phobias and depression, all caused by exposure to the challenges we are suffering of..

 As we all can sense, the coming days might pressure us further, so, let me give you some examples of what Not to expose your child to.

 Protective procedures and what to avoid:

 1.    Avoid uttering general statements of despair like “Egypt is going down” “I can’t live like this” “Our life is terrible” “There is no future” etc. These kinds of statements are taken seriously by children and could cause them to be really scared, concerned or depressed.

2.    When you are having political discussions with family or friends, make sure the children are in another room and are not listening. The same applies to watching political talk shows or the news on TV.

3.    Keep your daily routine and life as stable as you can. If you cancel the daily activities your child loves, you will notice an immediate change in behavior.

Dialogue with children:  have a serious talk with children about their ideas about something of importance.

The group of children can be:

·         The whole class

·         10 children

·         4-6 children

·         Pairs

·         1 at time

The idea every time is to explore the children’s ideas with all their critical and creative thinking skills.

Teacher’s role is:

·         To ask good open ended questions.

·         Facilitate and guide the conversation.

·         Should not fish for right answers.

·         Extend and deepen the children’s thinking.

Carlina Rinaldi:

“Children are searching for the real meaning of life. We believe in their possibilities to grow. That is why we do not hurry to give them answers; instead we invite them to think about where the answers might lie. The challenge is to listen. When your child asks: “why is there a moon?” don’t reply with a scientific answer. Ask him “what do you think?” He will understand that you are telling him “you have your own mind and your own interpretation and your ideas are important to me”. Then you and he can look for the answers, sharing the wonder, curiosity, pain……everything. It is not the answers that are important, it is the process”.

Tips for Parents

Dr. Mona Youssri

Child Psychiatrist, Family counselor, CLC Founder & CEO

The traditional scene in most Egyptian homes is the daily quarrel and nagging about completing the child’s homework however boring or tiresome it may be.  Mothers complain all the time about how they spend hours of their precious lifetime with their children to reinforce them to complete their assignments. The mothers’ sacrifice could reach the extent of not going out nor doing any personal requirement just to remain seated beside the child,

By Dr.Mona Youssri

Child psychiatrist & CLC owner

 How to Ease Separation Anxiety?

Infants have two principle tasks to accomplish say Greenspan and Lieberman (1989).The first is to achieve homeostasis which is a balance between needs and assimilations like being hungry, thirsty, wet...Etc.

The second task is forming an Attachment to the primary caregiver which is in most cases the mother and in other cases the grandmother, the father or a babysitter.

 

Dr. Mona Youssri, Child Psychiatrist and Family Counselor

"Help me I'm so confused, I don't know which school to choose for my child". This is what a lot of parents come up to me asking every year at this time of school enrollment applications. So let's organize our thinking and form a guide for every parent to use on this school hunting mission.

We will divide the process into 5 Major Steps:

1.       School Fees and Location

2.       Your child

By Dr. Mona Youssri

Child Psychiatrist, Family Counselor & CLC Founder

 

Prepare your child:

  1. Take your child to visit the school a couple of times before the scheduled date. For example when you are paying the fees or getting the uniform.
  2. Take a tour of the school, show your child his/her class, the bathroom and the playground.
  3. Try to arrange for your child to meet his/her class teacher and know her name.
  4. At home talk about going to school and what kinds of activities your child will do.

How early do you think a child could read?

By Dr.Mona Youssri

Child psychiatrist and CLC Owner

Early literacy is regarded as the best investment in enabling children to develop skills that will benefit them for the rest of their lives.

Visualize a playroom at a nursery where there are different and variable play centers. An art center, with a variety of art materials; colors, paper, paint brushes, glue, and glitter. A reading center where there is a collection of age appropriate books, A drama center, including a lot of pretend clothes and costumes, And a building block center full of colorful blocks.

 What do you think happens when a group of children enter such a room….????

A 3 year old boy heads directly to the bookshelves, chooses a book and sits down consumed in flipping the pages.

By Dr. Mona Youssri

Child Psychiatrist, Family Counselor, CLC Founder and CEO

As a family counselor and an early childhood education provider, I have increasingly noticed a third entity creeping its way into the families we serve. It is truly a smart entity as it has a very clever way of creeping into your life.

The beneficial side is far more clear and evident than the side effects and it has a mysterious way of coming into your family and filling your life with so many joyous services that you cannot refuse.

Countless parents have handed their child their smart phone to keep quiet, others have apologized for their smashed screens by the hand of a toddler or sometimes even an infant. A huge number of parents have bought tablets and I pads for children under the age of 3 years. And, of course, the old habit of parents calling on their old friend, the TV to be the baby sitter while they finish their work.

Research Based

By Dr. Mona Youssri

Child psychiatrist, Family Counselor and CLC Founder

 

The phrase “Time out” has been overused and misused by parents and educators lately. Teachers, mothers and caregivers should refrain from using this strategy up until a certified therapist adequately coaches them. And it is very important that they combine “time out” with positive procedures that may teach new skills and prevent misbehavior.

 

Unfortunately such training on scientific basis is very rare in our country and even parenting experts have gotten their experience from the internet which is rarely a credible scientific certification. It is heartbreaking to witness a mother scolding her child and aggressively forcing him/her into a closed room for an extended period of time, just because she saw an episode of “the naughty corner” on TV!

الشائع في المجالات التعليمية هو قياس كل الأطفال بنفس المقياس علي نوع محدد وواحد من الذكاء وهو الذكاء الأكاديمي ، بمعني قياس القدرة علي تحصيل مواد ثابتة بطريقة موحدة. هذا الأسلوب أثبت انه ظالم لكثير من الطلاب فالمستفيد الوحيد منه هو الطالب ذو الذكاء اللغوي والذكاء المنطقي؛ وبالتالي معظم المدارس تتبع اسلوب تدريس موحد وكأن كل الطلاب يمتلكون نفس البنية العقلية وأسلوب التفكيروطريقة الاستيعاب.

 لاحظ العلماء هذا الاختلاف ومن بينهم هاورد جاردنر ( صاحب نظرية الذكاءات المتعددة ) ، فيحلل جاردنر ان هناك ٩ انواع من الذكاء وهي:

By Dr. Mona Youssri

Child Psychiatrist, Family Counselor & CLC founder

 Every spring, which is usually when mothers start thinking of getting rid of their child’s diapers, I am bombarded with young mothers, all asking the famous question of “When should I start?” They ask it with a huge expression of guilt and confusion on their faces and when we talk further, they explain how some surrounding people, most commonly from the older generation are exerting loads of pressure upon those new seemingly but not actually inexperienced mothers.