Woman's Era - - Contents -

I have an eight- year- old daugh­ter for whom I hired a pri­vate tu­tor. I saw to it that I was al­ways at home when he ar­rived and kept the door ajar. De­spite this pre­cau­tion one day I saw him put his hand up her frock! Though I have ter­mi­nated his ser­vices I do not know how to tackle the mat­ter fur­ther. I have lost my sleep and peace of mind. Pease tell me what should I do?

First and fore­most im­press upon your daugh­ter that you do not hold her re­spon­si­ble in any way (for chil­dren are eas­ily given to guilt) for what hap­pened. Let her know by words and ges­tures that you love her as much if not more than be­fore. Ques­tion her gently as to what all her teacher did with her per­son.

Do not blame her for not telling you any­thing. She must have hid­den the sor­did facts out of fear both of the teacher’s wrath and the loss of your af­fec­tions. It is im­por­tant to find out how far did he go and for how long. You might even need to get her ex­am­ined phys­i­cally by a doc­tor . Teach her the dif­fer­ence be­tween a good touch and a bad touch and ask her to tell you im­me­di­ately if any­one be­haves im­prop­erly with her.

If she has been a vic­tim of pro­longed child abuse it is best to take her to a psy­chol­o­gist so that to­gether you can help her get over the trauma of the ordeal.

I have a six-year-old daugh­ter. She is pretty do­ing well in all spheres, but has one pe­cu­liar habit - she is given to speak­ing lit­tle fibs. How do I put a stop to this, for I would like her to grow up into a truth­ful and hon­est per­son?

It is im­por­tant to be truth­ful and hon­est your­self, for chil­dren learn best by im­i­ta­tion and at this stage of life par­ents are their role mod­els. You can­not ex­pect her to speak the truth if you and your hus­band re­sort to white lies in pub­lic. Also never lie to her. When a child dis­cov­ers that her par­ents have lied to her she loses faith and feels iso­lated and unloved. An­other rea­son for her ly­ing could be that you are too strict with her and if she has done some­thing wrong she is afraid of the pun­ish­ment she will re­ceive.

The next time she lies, calmly and pa­tiently ex­plain to her why ly­ing is not a good thing to do. Tell her it is im­por­tant that she speaks the truth be­cause it is the right thing to do and it pains you when she does. Praise her courage when she speaks the truth in try­ing cir­cum­stances while let­ting her know at the same time that you do not ap­prove of the wrong she did and will ex­pect her not to re­peat it.

I will soon be de­liv­er­ing my first child. It is cus­tom­ary for a revered per­son to give a new­born baby honey soon after birth so that the baby grows up to be like the per­son who fed him the honey. Is it al­right to do so?

It is not right to feed honey to your new­born baby. This is be­cause honey can con­tain in­fec­tive ma­te­rial, es­pe­cially bot­u­lism. If it is dif­fi­cult for you to pre­vent this your­self, you could al­ways take the help of the pe­di­a­tri­cian, who in any case will ad­vise against the prac­tice.

I have a nine-year-old daugh­ter and a seven-year-old son. My daugh­ter is do­ing very well in school, is neat and tidy and in gen­eral a well-be­haved child. My son on the other hand is a pain. He for­gets things, is a medi­ocre stu­dent and an un­tidy per­son with no sense of dis­ci­pline. I keep telling him to be like his sis­ter (it is said that chil­dren learn by im­i­ta­tion) but he does not lis­ten to me. Please tell me what should I do?

First and fore­most stop com­par­ing him with his sis­ter. This will only cre­ate an in­fe­ri­or­ity com­plex and will not help him in any way. In fact, he will be­come more re­bel­lious and stub­born. On the other, he will be­gin to re­sent her. Learn to ap­pre­ci­ate his strong points - he must be at least rea­son­ably good in some­thing – games, draw­ings. Also, guide him and help him im­prove his weak ar­eas. In due course he will re­gain his self- es­teem and flower as an in­di­vid­ual in his own right.

I have a six-month-old daugh­ter and in a few days I will be leav­ing her for the en­tire day in the care of her grand­mother for, I have to go back to work. I would have loved to con­tinue breast -feed­ing her, for there is an abun­dance of milk in my breasts and all said and done it is the best food for her.

There is a way out of your predica­ment. You could ex­press the milk from you breast and keep it in a clean closed con­tainer in the fridge. This could then be fed to you baby with the help of a spoon in your ab­sence.

It is wise to keep the milk out­side the fridge some­time be­fore the next feed is due for it to come to room tem­per­a­ture. Al­ter­na­tively you could put the uten­sil con­tain­ing the milk in warm wa­ter for it to warm up. Do not heat the milk di­rectly on the gas. Also, by this time some sort of wean­ing food must have been started which can take the place on one or two feeds of breast milk in your ab­sence. – Dr Am­rinder Ba­jaj, MD.

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