The Norman Transcript


February 28, 2014

Don’t overreact to son’s annoying habit



So, instead of getting all worked up every time he wiped snot on someone, you got worked up one out of four times he wiped snot on someone. (If you want to get fancy, psychologists would refer to it as “interpersonal snot wiping behavior”).

One out of four is enough to keep ISWB going. One out of 10 will do it, in fact. Whenever parents tell me they’ve ignored something, I know they’re not telling the truth.

Let’s face it: This is not malicious behavior, nor does it constitute a real and present public health menace. His snot has not caused anyone to become ill, much less precipitated a worldwide epidemic. It has caused you consternation.

You think it’s disgusting, which is subjective. In all honesty, given my vast experience with toddler behavior, this is not serious. Furthermore, I seriously doubt that he will be smearing snot on people two years from now, and that timeline is pessimistic. One year is more like it.

One thing’s for sure: If you continue to swat, scream and run around like a headless chicken when ISWB occurs, it will continue to occur and probably get worse. Pin a handkerchief to his clothing so that it hangs in front of his shirt. Tell him that it’s for wiping snot from his nose and show him how to use it.

Then, when you see him picking his nose, say to him, “Where do you put stuff from your nose?” Help him understand the concept of using a handkerchief. And if he smears it on you anyway, then simply take his handkerchief and wipe it off, with dignity.

Family psychologist John Rosemond answers parent questions at

Breaking news, severe weather alerts, AMBER alerts, sports scores from The Norman Transcript are available as text messages right to your phone or mobile device. You decide which type of alerts you want to receive. Find out more or to signup, click here.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Crafter’s emporium planned Saturday

    Members of the Opal District Crafter’s Emporium, plus other local artists, will have an art show from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Cleveland County Fairgrounds, 615 E. Robinson St. in Norman. It will be hosted concurrently with the ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Williams book signing event set

    Jared Williams, a resident of Moore, will sign copies of his book “Cerebral” from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday at Hastings, 2300 W. Main St. Norman....

    July 31, 2014

  • Home dedication set Sunday

    Cleveland County Habitat for Humanity will host a dedication of the Ruvalcaba family home from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at 618 E. Apache St. Those attending are asked to bring a pantry item to help the family begin life in their new home. ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Two territorial littermate cats are asserting social dominance

    Dear Dr. Fox: When we decided to get a cat 10 years ago, I thought getting a couple of littermates would work well. They got along during the first couple of years, often sleeping together and grooming each other. As they matured, though, ...

    July 31, 2014

  • Board welcomes new member

    In its June meeting, the members of the Mary Abbott Children’s House board of directors elected Barbara Henderson to serve the remaining term of Anne Ederington, who resigned from the board in May due to moving from Norman. Henderson and ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Pancake breakfast set

    The Police Explorer youth organization will host an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast from 7 to 11 a.m. Saturday at the Norman Masonic Lodge, 1700 N. Porter Ave. All-you-can-eat pancakes, sausage, milk, orange juice and coffee costs $5. ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Center will be more than a building

    Many volunteers who assist veterans and surviving spouses have driven more than an hour to be at the Goldsby Community Center by 7 a.m. each Thursday. The volunteer of the week is from Harrah and has made that drive for the last three ...

    July 30, 2014

  • Senior organizations that appeal to conservatives

    Dear Savvy Senior, Can you recommend any advocacy organizations for seniors other than AARP? I cut up my AARP card a few years back when they supported Obamacare and am now looking for another organization that better represents me....

    July 29, 2014

  • Seniors adjust to different sleep patterns

    According to the National Institutes of Health, older adults need seven to nine hours of sleep each night. However, sleep patterns change with age; this is often evident in the nursing home population. Frequent causes of interrupted sleep ...

    July 29, 2014

  • Ceremony marks opening of community center

    A July 23 ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the addition of another feature to the Chickasaw Nation Carter service campus in Ardmore....

    July 27, 2014