@howbad 

No United Front - How Bad?

Should you and your spouse at least appear to agree? Credit: mynameismarsha, Flickr
How many times have we heard how how important it is for parents to present a united front to the kids? But really: Must parents always agree? Or is it really...

Leaving a Child Out - How Bad?

Do siblings always have to do the same things? Credit: AshD23, Flickr
"How bad is it to leave one child out?," a mommy blogger wrote via email. "I have many friends that won't have play-dates or sleep overs for one without making plans for the...

White Bread, No Crust - How Bad?

Are you spoiling your kids by cutting off their crusts? Credit: left-hand, Flickr
"During my daughter's refusal-to-eat-most-foods stage (which to be honest, is ongoing), I figured out that if I cut her sandwiches into cute shapes, she'll eat...

Kids Addicted to TV - How Bad?

Having a hard time prying the kids away from the TV? Credit: Getty Images
"It's not like they watch a ton of TV. It's just that they love it so much. My kids are allowed to watch one hour a night, from 7 to 8 p.m.," said a mom of two...

Texting While Parenting - How Bad?

Do you check e-mail while parenting? Credit: me and the sysop, Flickr
"The BlackBerry gives me freedom, for sure," a mom-friend confided. "But I sometimes wonder how bad it is that I answer the call of the BlackBerry when I'm with my kids." ...

Is Ice Cream Bad for You?

If ice cream falls on the pavement, it's still good, right? Photo: stockxpert.com
"So, it's summer," my friend says, "and that means a steady inflow of ice cream into many members of our family. And by 'steady,' I mean daily. And by 'daily,' I...

Letting a Child Win - How Bad?

"You're it!" Photo: stockxpert.com
When playing a game against your child (checkers, chess, Candy Land) do you let them win? Many parent-friends were split on this issue -- and had pretty strong feelings about it, I might add. So I asked...

Under-Scheduling Children - How Bad?

I don't know, what do you guys want to do? Photo: stockexpert.com
This year many mom-friends are skipping the camp-gymnastics-art-class-tutoring routine for a more relaxed (not to mention cheaper) summer. One the one hand, this sounds...

Kids Staying Up Late - How Bad?

Got a couple of night owls at home? Photo: stockxpert.com
Ever try to coax children to go to bed when it's bright as noon outside and the gleeful shouts of neighborhood kids are mixing in with the soft summer breezes blowing in through the...

Major Bedtime Snacking - How Bad?

"Do you see any coffee ice cream back there?" Credit: stockxpert.com.
After "eating" dinner, my children used to ask for snacks in 5-minute increments from 6:30 until bedtime. Goldfish, string cheese, carrots, milk, apple ... the list went on....

Skipping Sunscreen - How Bad?

"Is that sunscreen in your hand?" Photo courtesy of stockxchange.com.
For some families, this delicious weather also brings a delightful daily battle: Child vs. Sunscreen-Applier! There is nothing like a long, drawn out war-by-the-door over...

Family Dinner Boycott - How Bad?

Sure she threw me a bone, but when is everyone else coming to the table? Image: Stockxpert.com.
My friend practically whispered it in my ear: We don't have dinner together anymore.
"Really?" I asked, concerned. "Is your husband working late...

Saying No to StarTrek - How Bad?

"Okay so YOU can see 101 Dalmations, but not YOU. You're too sensitive." Photo from stockxpert.com.
Hanging out with several other moms-of-boys, the conversation of course turned to the movie "Star Trek," and some moms were saying they weren't...

TV Lunch, Every Day - How Bad?

So how bad is eating in front of the TV? Photo courtesy stockexpert.com. This week's How Bad question comes via email: "My daughter is 4. I would say, regrettably, that she eats lunch in front of the TV most days. It probably started because we...

Scolding Your Child's Friend - How Bad?

Do you scold other people's kids? Photo courtesy of stockexpert.com.
The email said: "How about this for How Bad: Scolding other people's kids? My child has a friend who is naughty at my house. Her mom is usually here when they play, and I wait...

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