Parenting expert shares phrases you should never say to kids - regardless of behaviour



The parenting specialist addressed the phrases when debunking common myths families believe - and explaining why they don't always prove true when it comes to raising children

Portrait of a 2 year old girl at home
The parenting expert debunked common myths (stock photo)

For many, parenting is one of life's greatest and scariest challenges. After all, there's no rulebook and families can look forward to years of trial and error as they learn the way forward together.

But you can ease the journey somewhat by listening to those who have travelled the route ahead of you, or turning to specialists for advice.

In good news for anyone looking for a helping hand, a parenting expert has debunked five common myths about raising children, which cover everything from the 'terrible twos' to potty training.

Parenting specialist, Kirsty Ketley bases her advice on the misconceptions she comes across when working with families, and her own experience adopting a 'respectful parenting' method for her children, Ella, 10, and Leo, six.

Parenting specialist Kirsty Ketley shared advice (


Martin Bamford / SWNS)

First up, the Surrey-based mum warned parents should avoid categorising babies as 'good' or 'bad' – no matter their behaviour.

"There is no magical unicorn baby. They all behave according to their needs and stage of development. Babies are babies – end of. They are neither good or bad," she explained.

What's more, this approach is likely to come in handy when it comes to navigating the so-called 'terrible twos'. Sharing advice on how to manage this stage of your child's development, the pro said: "Yes, it can be a tricky time navigating tantrums – which usually start before children turn two – but the good bits far outweigh the bad.

"It's a period of time where children are developing at a fast rate and learning how to regulate their emotions, so be aware of that. Keeping your expectation realistic will hugely help."

As for dummies and potty training, which parents will be very familiar with by the time their kids reach this age, Kirsty had tips to share. She wanted to remind parents that while youngsters may be ready to start potty training from the age of two, this is not always the case.

"Children are actually ready anywhere from 18 months to around three years old," Kirsty revealed. "Just because physically they may be showing signs, emotionally they may not be ready."

Equally, children may turn away from dummies at different ages, but she does recommend finding the right time to ditch them.

The pro explained: "Dummies can be a godsend for helping a baby to settle and shouldn't be seen as a bad thing. However as babies turn into toddlers, it is best to ditch the dummy to help their oral health and speech development.

"My advice is either ditch the dummy around six months, or wait until your child is heading towards two years – then you can make full use of the Dummy Fairy, Father Christmas or the Easter Bunny to help you."

Last but not least, the expert, who offers her services under the name Auntie K, addressed the age-old advice to cherish every moment with your child. "It is impossible to 'cherish' the moments where you are knee-deep in child sick, picking dried bogies off a wall, sat in a pool of sweat watching swimming lessons, or being severely sleep deprived," admitted Kirsty.

"Parents never regret having their children, and of course they love them unconditionally, but it's perfect (sic) OK to find some parts of parenting hard and to really dislike other parts.

"Nobody cherishes every part of their life – parents or not."

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