Here on Home-Ec 101 I don’t often talk about parenting, even though we have four kids in our family -my stepdaughter + our three. I feel that parenting is an intensely personal experience, and I tend to shy away from offering advice. It’s so nuanced that what works for me and my children may be completely useless in your house.
We live in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, there are days when walking from the air conditioned house to the air conditioned car in the driveway is enough to soak your shirt. My last job was working in a commercial kitchen, between the flat top grill, the grill, the steam table and holding lamps, that was a sweaty job. I also deal with stage fright. My boys are into football and practice starts in August. You could say that I am intimately familiar with sweat and the funk that goes along with it.
So how are these two topics related? Well, I was invited by Unilever to participate in helping spread the word about the Don’t Fret the Sweat campaign.
I’ve done surveys on the site in the past and I know that many of you are parents, so I thought some of you could relate to this topic. Puberty* happens to the best of us -and the worst, too; its not choosy. As an aside, the word puberty always makes me start singing Ch-ch-ch-Changes.
It’s really weird how your kid can seemingly overnight go from just a dirty, sweatball kid to a dirty, SMELLY, sweatball kid. -Oh and don’t get me started on the sports equipment- After they get sent to the shower, there’s a talk that needs to be had. Really, this change isn’t that big of a deal, right? It’s a hey, maybe you should be more attentive in the shower and actually use soap, instead of just standing under the spray and doing whatever it is you do in there. The way you address the issue is going to depend on your kid and your values. One thing to remember is the body odor? That’s just one of the first signals that you’re about to get on the hormonal roller coaster and ALL that goes with it. Adolescence is a rough enough road, your kids should know you’ve got their back.
In both the BlissTV videos and on the Don’t Fret the Sweat website, Rosiland Wiseman author of Queen Bees and Wannabees shares her expertise about the tricky tween years, and the challenges parents have faced ‘stopping their tweens’ stink.’
While I was on camera, when I wasn’t having an internal meltdown, I was laughing at the irony of just how sweaty I was during the filming. Thankfully it wasn’t obvious to anyone else. Well, I hope not. . .
With kids, the body odor talk is a good place to open the door and set the tone for all the other conversations that will and should be coming.
If you’re looking for advice on how to address the concerns with respect for your child’s self-confidence check out the Don’t Fret the Sweat Facebook Page sponsored by Unliever – maker of Degree, Dove and Suave deodorants – for money saving offers and expert tips, tools and real life stories about how parents helping their tweens become confident and self-reliant teens.