Category Archives: Parenting

Birthday Dowry 

This is a something that as a parent I felt connected too and want all parents to read and understand. When a birthday celebration is taken as a social status, there is need for introspection because your child can be the next victim.

“I am a psychiatrist and few days back I had this six year old child as my patient. His parents indicated no obvious cause for his depression.
To assess the problem I started a conversation with him, asking all kinds of general questions. Intermittently I asked if somebody said anything to him, which he refused everytime. In the same flow I asked when is your birthday and suddenly he started crying. I knew I hit the right chord.

He had his birthday one and half month back and a birthday for a child is a big occasion. It’s the day when he/she gets all the limelight, specially nowadays when birthdays are celebrated like big occasions in school where you have to give all kinds of gifts to the whole class, cake cutting, sweets and many times even a party.

Seeing and expecting what his classmates do, he too craved for a pomp and glitter kind of birthday celebration so that he could also feel importance among his friends. The school even invite parents on the child’s birthday for cake cutting in the class.

This child’s parents are a middle class family and haven’t done anything like this in past, so they avoided going for the cake cutting, instead gave him a packet of toffees to distribute. Now isn’t it obvious when everyone else is distributing gifts on birthday, how low and odd you will feel while distributing toffees. You start feeling outclass. This is exactly what happened to this child.

Over the years, it seems that this birthday tradition has changed. The fancy celebrations are on the rise, putting a dowry like pressure on the child leading to depression.

I can understand the pressure for parents as well to meet or exceed the standards of celebrating a birthday. For many families, budget may be tight, and spending money on treats for the whole class is not a priority.

Celebrating a birthday at school is a special occasion for any child, but it can be celebrated by having some fun or a small treat from the school side, which should be same for every child. School officials should avoid promoting such celebrations and also explain to headstrong parents, that there is an important lesson here that kids need to understand: Birthday fun does not require cake and gifts.

Parents, schools and society at large must oppose it because celebration has no limit and tomorrow even our child can feel the same. It is easier to cut out the birthday celebrations entirely than to have children with sad feelings on their birthdays.

Give them a happy reason to celebrate occasions, not gifts and fancy parties. Well off parents has a special responsibility here- you can make your child feel special at your home, but at school let them be what they are- school going children.

As a psychiatrist, I request my doctor friends, teachers and others to share it because your words can create more impact on the psychology of the parents and the school administration.”

Credit – Doctors for ethical care( detcare) and thanks to them for allowing me to share this post as a blog because I feel it is important to convey. 

Dolmen Mall- The perfect place for babies and mommies day out

I ❤️ Dolmen and there’s no doubt Dolmen loves me equally. Proof? Lots and lots of things are there at DMC which makes it an ideal day out place for mommies with toddlers/kids. I have two hyperactive daughter MaShaAllah and it becomes very tough to shop with both of them Dolmen Mall Clifton has become an exceptional place. From women only parking lot to nappy changing areas and the best kids area makes DMC my favorite place to hang out with friends and family. 

Let me list down some of the women and kids friendly facilities that Athens amazingly accommodating Dolmen Mall has to offer. Thank God they think like moms and have some great mommy friendly attractions to make shopping with kids a memorable experience. 

Women Only Parking

The service was introduced last year and now expanding area in the parking lot is what women needs the most. Our very own parking space that too near the entrance gate is the perfect welcome you need. 

Kids carts

This is the best thing. You enter the mall and on your left see some bright colored cars/carts parked for pickup. My kids just love riding these and imitate like a driver while sitting in there. It also makes hanging your shopping bags easier instead of carrying that weight all the time. So a thumbs up. 

Pro Tip: if you’re going with two kids and get the double cart, it might become difficult to push that if your babies are MaShaAllah se healthy. If you know what I mean. Also, the cart wheels don’t stuck in the elevator like shopping trolley which makes it difficult to hold with kids riding. Better to take single car. 

Nursing room with Nappy changing area

This is the best facility out there. No other place has a dedicated nursing and diaper changing area that too so we’ll decorated that you fell in love with it. Women washroom area is a neat clean wide space with a dedicated Nursing room. Decorated with pink wallpaper, a comfy seating place to feed babies and a nappy changing tray make sit ideal for mommies with toddlers to rest and recharge. 

There’s a prayer area there too which is wall to wall carpeted and very neat. Washrooms were pretty well taken care of too. 

Sindbad

 the top floor you’ll find the best place to get your kids busy. Whenever I go to DMC, husband use to take the kids inside Sindbad while I go to shop for myself and then he goes to shop for groceries while I take care of kids there. Perfect plan. Now that Sindbad has celebrated its 26th year and built a new playing area and a hiking wall, you di t need to worry about kids at all. 


My kids were in love with the ball pit and the trampoline inside kids play area. They charge per hour for the place and it is pretty awesome. Totally worth it. 

The Food court

And last but not the least is definitely the awesome food court, catering to the needs of kids as well as mommy’s favorite food after all that shopping and playing. Loved the variety of food from fast food, Chinese to Desi. You name it and DMC has it. 

You the Best for Mommies DMC. You the best. 

What else a mommy need? Other than a peaceful shopping spree with the ease of getting so many kids attractions. Thank you Dolmen for the taking care of us, mommies that well. You’re the best. 

So, when are you hanging out with kids at DMC? 

#BreakTheNorm – Stay at Home Moms Vs Working Moms

Women’s day is all about celebrating women around the world and raising awareness about their rights in man’s world. This year it was quite a stir about stay at home moms vs working moms after Filmstar Shahid Kapoor’s wife Mira Rajpoot spoke about her being a proud stay at home mom while choosing to judge working moms. This international women’s day on Pakistani Twitter (apart from this Saas bahu type discussion of working Vs homemakers) was all about courageous women who have proved their matel in every walk of life. 

Gosh Pakistan, a Copenhagen based cosmetic company decided to honor such brave women from every walk of life this women’s day and got noticed. It is not easy to be a women in man’s world and definitely an achievement to be at the top of your field. No matter how many times she has to break the norm of being a girl, she is there to achieve whatever she dreams about. Good to see such encouragement and celebration from brands. #BreakTheNorm hashtag made me share my story too which a lot of people got inspired by. It was my honest tale about marriage, work and having kids. I kinda find myself relating to Mira Rajpoot as well as the other mommies around. 

Mira Rajpoot, being completely an outsider to bollywood might not know how to be politically correct like her husband but her choice of words at public forums has sparked outrage often. Being a stay at home mom myself I can relate to her sentiments but then I work (freelance) too. That makes me understand the perspective of both working as well as homemaker women.

I would like to give Mira some linenacy as her intentions might not be derogatory towards working moms but her statement reflects otherwise. Being a star wife and choosing to be a mom at such young age is her choice and she’s happy with her role. I hope in future she realizes that her statements has a mass reach and she should be respectful to other women.

In response to her sentiments there was an open letter written by three working moms explaining their struggles to raise kids as well earn for themselves. The points were extremely valid but was it an effort to demean the stature of stay at home moms? I felt like it was written in a way to portray that working moms are superior to stay at home moms because they have to battle it out more. Then again it is a matter of choice.

Moms are brave, bold and powerful. If they chose to stay at home or work, let them be. Being a women we should support and encourage moms in every possible way. 

I choose to stay at home but I am earning through my freelance work projects too, which allows me to be with the kids most of the time. They’re so young to take care of themselves and I chose to be with them. Whenever I have to go out for any event or any assignment I make sure that the kids stay with their father. It is a constant juggling between the roles but I am trying to manage it. I don’t compare my choices with any other women rather I try to break the norm for myself and excel in doing what I love to do. Between kids and job it is like a demotional experience for mommies. (Shahrukh Khan coined the term demotional which means to be detached and yet emotional about someone). 

Embrace every role in your life with dignity. Be the women who support other women rather than being the one who pull others down. It needs a lot of courage to pursue your dreams, don’t let your gender be a reason not to do so. 

The cartoons effect – Tun Tun se Ammi Jan Tak

میری بڑی بیٹی ماشاءاللہ سے چار سال کی ہونے والی ہے. اس برس کے آغاز میں اسکول داخل کروا دیا تھا جہاں کافی دل لگا ہوا ہے. شروع سے ہی پریشے کو نظمیں اور کارٹون میں کافی دلچسپی ہے وجہ شاید یہ بھی ہو کے ہم جوائنٹ فیملی میں نہیں رہتے اور گھر کے کام کاج نمٹاتے ہوئے بچوں کو ٹیلی ویژن سے بہلانا آسان ترین طریقہ ہے. دوسرا یہ بھی کے آواز اور موسیقی بچے کو کافی بہلاتی ہیں. لوریاں اسکی بہترین مثال ہیں. 

خیر! تو جب پریشے نے اسکول جانا شروع کیا تب تک وہ کافی نظمیں اور کارٹون دیکھ چکی تھی. اسکول سے واپسی کا وقت بارہ بجے تھا. ٹی وی تو آتے ہی دیکھنا ہوتا تھا اور ان دنوں پوگو پے ہندی کارٹون بھیم کا بڑا اثر تھا. جب دیکھو وہی آرہے ہوتے تھے. پھر ہوا یوں کے پریشے کو چھٹکی، راجو، کالیا اور جگو یاد ہو گئے. انکی لڈو بنانے والی خالہ ٹن ٹن موسی اسے کبھی کبھی اپنی ماں میں نظر آنے لگی اور لڈو بھی پسند آنے لگے. پھر جب میں نے چاہا کے پوگو کم کیا جائے تو کوئی خاطر خواہ اثر نا ہو سکا کے اکثر  نانی کے یا کہیں اور وہی کارٹون لگے ہوئے مل جاتے تھے. کسی اور چینل پر بھی کوئی اور اچھے کارٹون نظر نہیں آتے تھے. مجبوراً پھر یو ایس بی سے کچھ نئی ڈزنی فلموں سے پریشے کو متعارف کروایا. انسائیڈ آؤٹ کافی پسندیدہ رہی.

آخر کار پیمرا نے پوگو کو بند کیا اور مجھے ایک دن سی ٹی وی پر پریشے کو اسکول کی تیاری کرواتے ہوئے جان کارٹون نظر آئے. پہلے پہل تو سمجھ نہ آئی کے وہ ہر قسط کے اختتام پر ابھی اس بک میں بہت سے پیجز باقی ہیں کیوں کہتا ہے مگر کارٹون بہت اصلاحی اور تربیتی لگے. آج پریشے کے لبوں پر جان کارٹون کا گانا اور اس میں سکھائی جانے والی اچھی عادات کا ہی ذکر ہوتا ہے. مما سے اچانک میں امی جان بن گئی ہوں. جان کی دادی ہیں تو پریشے پوچھتی ہے کے میری دادی اللہ میاں کے پاس کیوں ہیں. 

وہ جو کمی مجھے اپنے زمانے کے اور آج کے ٹی وی پر بچوں کے لیے مواد میں محسوس ہوتی تھی کسی حد تک یقیناً دور ہوئی ہے. امید ہے کے مزید چینل بھی اپنی ذمہ داری سمجھتے ہوئے اس طرح کے علمی اور اصلاحی پروگرام پیش کریں گے. 

What Dettol Pakistan’s Handwashing Guinness world record teaches us

On this global handwashing day,  Dettol Pakistan announced that they’ve successfully set a Guinness world record of handwashing with the most participants in a relay. The title was earlier claimed by 1400 participants in India while Pakistan broke the record with more than 1600 participants. 

 https://twitter.com/Mussanaf/status/787272376820047872
This might sound a bit useless to many people that such records have no use & they question how unimportant it is to make such efforts. Well, if it is in Guinness it is important. Secondly if you go through the minor details of making such records on a huge scale; you’ll realize how important it is for the people who make it possible. Lastly handwashing is a habit that we need to teach well. 

8 steps of Handwashing
8 steps of Handwashing

When we say that 1600+kids participated to make the world record it means they have been taught how to wash their hands properly. Surprised? Well, you better be coz I was surprised to know how to wash your hands properly. Guinness world record follows a strict routine to certify and handwashing needs to be done in proper 8steps. Now imagine all those students were being taught the steps, they performed it for their cleanliness and will obviously remember in their lifetime that handwashing is a must. They will also pass on the info to their circle- making the message of hygiene  conveyed to a bigger audience. 

#DettolKaDhula hath definitely saves you from a lot of diseases & practicing healthy habits won’t harm anyone. So, keep going. Thank you Dettol Pakistan for making us proud of our kids. Guinness world record is a reminder that to make Pakistan clean & healthy there’s much needed to be done. Small steps like this will have a huge impact.