Are you regularly exhausted at the dinner table and don’t have the energy to control your kids while eating? Is your child upset about the arrival of a new sibling and doubts your love? These are the two questions Dr. Leman answers on this episode!


Question #1 Sheila:

I am exhausted at the dinner table. My two kids, ages 3 and 5, won’t stay at the table, don’t eat all their food, and are constantly running around during meal time.

Dr. Leman’s Answer:

Training is really important. It starts in the high chair!

Because food is a primary reinforcer, it is important that you, as the parent, stay firm when they get down from the table. Throw out their food. Don’t give in to their whining that they are hungry. They will be hungry at the next meal.

The temptation will be to give them a little snack to get them to stop whining. This will destroy any headway you have made.
They won’t starve before lunch.

Read my books Have a New Kid by Friday, and the new edition of Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours (Coming Fall 2017).

Question #2 Brandon:

We have three kids age 11, 6, and 19 months. Now that the baby is here, the middle child is upset. She says things like, “You don’t love me.”

Dr. Leman’s Answer:

This is a birth order issue. She is both a middle child, an oldest (because of the span between her and older child), and an only child (because of the gaps on either side of her). She can go any number of ways.

The key will be that you never pay off her “Dog and Pony show.”
When she declares, “You don’t love me.”
You respond with a quick and decisive, “I am sorry you feel that way, but I don’t feel that way.”
Don’t carry on.
Look for opportunities at other times to show and tell her how much you love her.