On each Growing Connected podcast, husband and wife team Dr. Jeffrey Olrick and Amy Olrick discuss a listener-submitted question, exploring what the intersection of child development science and faith teach us about issues families are facing. Each episode ends with a God Moment — a story about a time a parent or a child felt God's love in their life in a specific and sometimes inexplicable way.
The Guide to Connection with Lori Beth Auldridge
As parents and families face increasing pressure and mental health strain, Dr. Jeffrey Olrick and Amy Olrick share how science and faith come together to show us that attachment and connection can still grow our kids strong. They offer a guide to build strength and resiliency in our children that will last a lifetime, even through hard times.
In this episode, the Olricks share an overview of attachment science and The 6 Needs Compass they present in their book, The 6 Needs of Every Child: Empowering Parents & Kids through the Science of Connection. Then author and mom of four, Lori Beth Auldridge, joins the conversation to share how the compass has helped move her family forward and draw her children close when they need it.
“We battle with our daughter about bedtime every night.”
Most families deal with bedtime struggles at some point or another. In this episode, we discuss why kids are wired to be scared of the dark and strategies to make going to bed easier for everyone.
At the end of the episode, New Zealand pastor and musician Aaron Hardy joins us to share his story and music from his band, Te Rautini. His music is a gift that we’re thrilled to get to share with you.
Here’s today’s question:
"I'm hoping you all might have some advice for us. Every night we battle with our 5-year-daughter about bedtime. We have a routine: we have dinner, she's usually allowed to watch one TV show, then we go brush teeth, get in bed, and we read at least two books. She's happy all the way through that routine. But as soon as we turn out the lights and prepare to leave her room, it's all weeping and gnashing of teeth. She wails that she is scared of the dark. We have two nightlights in there and we leave the hall door open. But that does not calm her down. It's usually so bad that one of us ends up sleeping with her every night because she will wake up screaming if she's alone. She says she is scared of the shadows, but she can't articulate anything else that she might be scared of, just scared of the dark and she does not want to sleep alone. We don't know if we are being manipulated or if she's truly scared of the dark. We want her to be comfortable sleeping on her own. Do you have any tips to make our bedtime experience better?"
"How can I get my kids to help me with chores?"
In today’s episode, a mom wonders how to get her children to help her with chores. We talk about surprising ways to encourage kids to help from young ages, why creating a system where everyone contributes is so important, and how “doing with” a great way to grow our kids in responsibility over time.
Don’t miss the God Moment at the end from Sam Altis. It’s a beautiful reminder of God’s perfect, pursuing love for our kids—love that will follow them even when they’re grown.
Here’s the question:
Hi, I’m the mom of 3 kids, ages 3, 7, and 9, and I’m struggling to know how to get the older ones to do chores. I grew up with a mother who used to yell at me for not doing enough around the house. I don’t want my kids to experience that, but I don’t want to grow up thinking that they don’t have to lift a finger, either. My husband is a loving, playful father, but I don’t think he understands or values how much I do to keep everything running. Is there any hope that I can get them to help me without creating a lot of conflicts, or at least stop feeling so resentful?
“My kids’ arguing has me at the end of my rope.”
This week's question is about a sometimes-too-familiar subject: sibling rivalry. We discuss how to help kids learn to negotiate their differences on their own and the importance of removing yourself from the role of judge. Don’t miss the God Moment at the end, when Lindsay Durrenberger shares about a remarkable encounter she had on the night after she’d been diagnosed with cancer.
Here’s the question:
"My kids arguing has me at the end of my rope. They’re pretty young still—5, 7, and 9, and the constant bickering over meaningless things has me wanting to scream. I feel like I’m always mediating their problems, and I’m exhausted. I don’t have a close relationship with my siblings and it’s something I’ve always wanted for my own kids. How can I help them get along? Is this level of conflict normal, and is there anything I can do to make it better without losing my mind?"
"Help! My son wants to be a YouTuber."
In this episode, we hear from a mom concerned about her son’s desire to be a professional YouTuber. We discuss how situations like this can be opportunities and the power of starting conversations with our kids with a mindset of “Yes, and.”
Here’s the question:
I have a son who is very intelligent, creative, capable. He can do anything he sets his mind to do. And when I ask him what he wants to do when he grows up, he says he wants to be a famous YouTuber. Now, I’m in a conundrum because I want him to believe he can pursue his own profession and walk his own path and take his own journey. I also wonder what the point of being a YouTuber is. And also, how do Youtubers contribute to society? So my question is how do I talk to him so we can have a conversation about making good and fulfilling choices and things that will contribute, but at the same time letting him know that he can make his own choices and it’s not what I dictate and it’s not what I tell him he has to do, because it’s not my life, it will be his life.
For more resources, visit GrowingConnected.com
"My 4-year-old demands constant attention"
In this episode, we consider a question from a mom with a 4-year-old daughter who demands constant attention, discussing how to help manage her little girl’s needs and requests.
Here's the question:
“My daughter, who is turning 5 in a couple of weeks, is very articulate and emotionally intelligent and consistently communicates to me that she’s not getting enough attention. She is pretty relentless in advocating for and trying to get her way, and is also rarely satisfied when she does, which I find really challenging. For example, I might play with her for hours and then she’ll have a playdate and then our whole family will do something fun together, and at the end of the day she’ll say, ‘You didn’t play with me today.’ I’m worried that her needs aren’t being met that she is harboring growing resentment and some kind of hurt at our inability to give her what she needs.”
For more resources and discussion questions, visit growingconnected.com
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Truth and great information!!