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How to respond respectfully to your child's defiance and disrespect. Nicole Schwarz Imperfect Families

How to respectfully respond to your child’s disrespect and defiance

Use this list of tips to address your child’s defiance and disrespect in a way that keeps the relationship strong. “You can’t make me.” He stands defiantly, arms crossed. In the past, you may have yelled, “How dare you talk to me like that young man, get to your room!”

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Help your child navigate tricky social situations. Nicole Schwarz, Imperfect Families

Tricky Social Situations: 5 ways to empower kids

Don’t assume your child knows what to do or say at the next family gathering, friend’s birthday party, or other social situation. Prepare them in advance using these tips. A few weeks before Christmas, I asked my kids, “What would you say if someone gave you a gift you didn’t

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7 tips to raise confident, independent kids. Nicole Schwarz

7 Tips to raise independent kids

7 tips that encourage your child to become more independent doing chores, completeing homework, practicing critical thinking, and making good choices.  “I’m wearing dirty pants today because I need to do laundry,” my daughter announces as she comes into the kitchen for breakfast. I wait a beat. “I’ll do it

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13 ways to stay calm when your child is upset by Nicole Schwarz, Imperfect Families

13 Ways to Stay Calm When Your Child is Upset

It can be hard to stay calm when your child is upset, anxious, angry, or sad. Read through this list to find 13 ways to practice calm, confident parenting. I did not start out being an especially calm, patient parent. It took years of practice, therapy, and lots of deep

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21 shame reducing phrases every child needs to hear, Nicole Schwarz, Imperfect Families

Reduce Shame: 21 Things Your Child Needs To Hear

Is your child stuck in the “I’m a bad kid” cycle? Caregivers can reduce the effects of shame, using these phrases to remind your child that they are seen, known, and loved. Shame is a powerful force.  It sends the message that you are not worthy of love. It tells

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10 things I love about having older kids (Tweens and Teenagers)

Raising tweens and teenagers can be challenging, but there are a lot of amazing things about this stage too! Read this list and then create your own. If there’s one phrase I would like to eliminate from our vocabulary, it is “just wait until they’re older.” Being a mom of

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25 alternatives to timeouts, grounding and taking things away by Nicole Schwarz

25 Alternatives to Timeouts, Grounding, and Taking Things Away

Change the way you think about discipline! These 25 parenting tips focus on positive, respectful, age-appropriate alternatives. When it comes to discipline, it’s easy to feel stuck.  We’re told to use timeouts, grounding, bribes, taking things away, and even spanking, but nothing seems to make a difference. Maybe we’ve been

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Three things to do when your child is in the middle of a meltdown.

Three Things to do When Your Child is in the Middle of a Huge Meltdown

Big emotions can be scary, overwhelming, and stressful for parents (and for kids!). Use these three tips to parent with a calm confidence during your child’s next meltdown. She stands in the kitchen screaming. Hands clenched at her sides. Eyes focused and glaring. You try everything – offering a hug,

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Nicole Schwarz, Parent Coach, LMFT

A Reintroduction: Nicole Schwarz, Parent Coach

Celebrating 10 years of positive, respectful parenting strategies at and looking forward to the next adventure.  Welcome to Imperfect Families! I’m Nicole Schwarz, Parent Coach, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, and mom to 3 girls. I did not start out using positive, respectful parenting strategies. My career as a

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How to eliminate the word "should" from your parenting vocabulary.

How to banish the word “should” from your parenting vocabulary

The words “should” and “should not” add unnecessary guilt and shame to our parenting. Use these tips to parent in a way that moves you in a positive direction. Sitting on the couch, scrolling social media, you sigh. Thoughts swirl through your head as you peek into the carefully curated

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