Do children need to be pushed?

Written by Kesang Menezes on Monday, 02 September 2013.

Posted by Kesang Menezes who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of two girls aged 11 and 15.

In our last article we shared the story of a mother who did not feel comfortable about pushing her children to learn swimming in a way that was distressful for the child. So she waited till her children were ready and motivated to learn without being forced.

This kind of incident brings us to a dilemma that parents face all the time. Should I push my child? When is it ok to push? If I do not push, won't my child lag behind? Do children ever do things if not pushed?


on Friday, 08 February 2013.

Posted by Deepa to share about how the tool of “acknowledging feelings” which she learnt in the program helped her.

This story brings out the fact that when we see the interaction between children, we often do not know all that is going on. We do not know what each one is feeling and why they behave the way they do. So as a parent rather than judge them and try to be the arbitrator, if we just keep trusting them and acknowledging their feelings, they are capable of handling things in a way we would never imagine. 


Written by Sujata Dewaji on Thursday, 07 February 2013.

Posted by Sujata Dewaji who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of a 17 year old girl and a 14 year old boy.

My teenage daughter and I are watching an ad on baby products on TV and both of us say, “Aw, so cute!” in perfect unison. “Did I enjoy the oil massage and bath as this baby?” she asks curiously. “You loved your bath and you gurgled and squirmed with the slight ticklish feeling when you were massaged”, I reply dreamily. We share a smile.


Written by Kesang Menezes on Monday, 11 February 2013.

Posted by Kesang Menezes who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of two girls aged 11 and 15.

We conduct parenting workshops and very often we are asked this question- Why would anyone come to a workshop on parenting? Isn’t parenting something one does by instinct? This is a very valid question but do we even know what in instinct in a world where we are so conditioned? Are we able to get in touch with what is called ‘animal instinct’ which drives every creature to protect, feed and nurture its young? 

When a mom really listens...

Written by Sunitha on Sunday, 10 February 2013. Posted in Communication

Posted by Sunitha, a facilitator with Parenting Matters. She shares about how the tool of “active listening” helped her.

I had always thought that I was a good listener and a very open and friendly mother with whom my children could talk about anything they wanted to.  In our parenting group, we had a session on how to practice active listening, which is the foundation of good communication. I felt very good about myself as I believed I was following it. But it was only after the following incident that I realised how wrong I was.

Self Esteem - What's It All About Anyway?

Written by Kesang Menezes on Saturday, 09 February 2013.

Posted by Kesang Menezes who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of two girls aged 11 and 15.

In our parenting workshop, parents are always concerned about their child’s self esteem. "I want to know how to make my child confident." "My child is so shy he will not talk to anyone." "My child is too soft"... these are the concerns we hear.

A Conversation with tomorrow’s daughter-In-law

Written by Sunitha on Tuesday, 08 October 2013.

Posted by R.Sunitha - facilitator with Parenting Matters and a mother of twins.


Nowadays everybody seems to be worried about their new daughters-in-law. As it is a fact that they are well educated and can earn a living, the belief is that these girls are now independent, stubborn and set in their ways. They do not want to adjust to their new environment or give in to their new relatives.  



Written by Sunitha on Friday, 16 August 2013.

Posted by R.Sunitha - facilitator with Parenting Matters and a mother of twins.

We always assume that at a certain age one should learn to do specific things else one would never learn in the future and would be left behind. We think the same for our children.

When my children were five years old I enrolled them for swimming. They were so frightened. My son fell sick after 2 days and could not continue with class, my daughter was stuck to the wall all through the 15 days. She would hide when the master came to pull the kids out. It broke my heart to see them struggle.

The big stuff we learn from small children

Written by Mrinalini Ponappa Banerjea on Friday, 16 August 2013.

Posted by Mrinalini Ponappa Banerjea who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of a 12 year old boy and a 6 year old girl.

My daughter who is all of 6 yrs old went through a big change in her life in the last week of March. Her closest friend in class, with whom she had spent most of her school hours in the past three years, left school for good.

We noticed her getting edgy at home over issues that she would normally have not reacted to. One particular day, I had been unusually busy and preoccupied, as a result of which I had ended up thoughtlessly correcting her all day for all sorts of things.

Developing a Positive Attitude towards Food

on Wednesday, 06 February 2013.

Posted by Arthi, a participant of Parenting Matters sharing about her struggles with her daughters attitude to food. 

What happens when a child hates to eat? 

My daughter is four and half years old and just weights around 12 kilos. She is dainty. Food has been always a big issue and meal time a major power struggle. Otherwise she is sweet child, pretty active and very healthy. We as parents felt she was a poor eater. We have used all the so called tricks in the book starting from bribing, reward system, scolding and even T.V, but of course nothing worked, she only ate what she wanted and how much ever she wanted. As a mother I was clueless as to what she liked in terms of food, it felt like she did not like food at all, anything that goes inside the mouth is no for her. 

Does A Child Benefit From A System That Does Not Have Marks, Grades Or Any Form Of Assessment?

Written by Kesang Menezes on Wednesday, 23 January 2013. Posted in Education

Posted by Kesang Menezes who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of two girls aged 11 and 15.

Let me start by telling you that I am neither an educationist, nor someone who has conducted research on this topic. I am simply a parent sharing with you my personal experiences of observing my children grow up in a school environment without tests, exams or grades. 

In the beginning, I definitely resisted it. “What is the harm in giving the children an occasional test just to see what they know and do not know?” I argued with the principal of the school. But she was adamantly against it. She said, ‘As a teacher I do not need tests. Every day I am interacting with my students and I know where each of them stands and what help they need. “ 

Is it anti feminist to talk to girls about the role of nurturing?

Written by Kesang Menezes on Friday, 01 February 2013. Posted in Communication

Posted by Kesang Menezes who is a facilitator at Parenting Matters and mother of two girls aged 11 and 15.

We live in a society where the majority of women are forced into stereotypical roles and barely given choices about what they would like to do with their lives. But yet there is the emerging middle class which is empowering its girls to go ahead and achieve whatever they would wish for. These girls are doing well academically (and on average far better than boys) and surging into careers like engineering, management etc. I come from such a family as well, where I was brought up to believe that truly the sky is the limit for my ambitions. I spent my teen years only thinking about what career I wanted and dreaming about all that I would achieve. And then I got married and had a baby... all of my own choice. 

How are you?

Written by Mrinalini Ponappa Banerjea on Thursday, 27 August 2020. Posted in Communication

This blog is written by Mrinalini Ponappa Banerjea, a certified parent educator and mother of two teenagers

“Hi! How are you?”

This is a question we are most asked and we ask others in return. And, while it is a very intimate question, the answer is almost always an unthinking,”I am fine. Thank you. And how are you?” And so carries on the never ending cycle of a personal question followed by the cagey and socially “appropriate “answer. And, in this fast paced world of chasing time, it’s quite possible that no one really wants a five minute monologue answer to this question, when over decades, it’s been a polite way of greeting both close family and friends, to the people we are being introduces for the first time.