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UPtv's Jo Frost Talks Rebuilding Families In Any Stage of Parenting

Jo Frost discusses rebuilding families through any stage of parenting—from toddlers to tweens and teens. Read Transcript


While most fans know her as the hit show supreme "Supernanny,"

"Extreme Parental Guidance," and "Family S.O.S.,"

and now Jo Frost is taking her act on the road.

Take a look.

NARRATOR: This is Jo Frost.

And helping families is her lifelong mission.

Jo has been a nanny for over 20 years.

Now more than ever parents everywhere

are asking for her help with the challenges

they have raising their kids.

JO FROST: Now, you're being very silly by making that noise.

NARRATOR: In her new show, "Nanny on Tour,"

Jo takes to the road in her mobile office,

crossing the country to help families in need.

Please welcome to the "700 Club" Jo Frost.

Jo, it's great to have you here.

Thank you very much.

Thank you for having me.

So you've had all these programs

and now you're taking your show on the road with mobile nanny.

Tell us a little bit about what that looks like.

How do you do that?

Yes, I am.

And I'm loving every minute of it.

Having the opportunity to take the mobile office--

you saw me traveling across America helping families.

[INTERPOSING VOICES]

Exactly.

It means that I get to really operate

from that mobile office.

You know, I travel across America.

I'm working, watching the families.

We have surveillance cameras and I

get the opportunity to help not just one family

but the community, as well.

Becomes a parental clinic for families to seek advice.

Kind of a heads up when you come to town,

I would imagine, for people to even stop and think

about their parenting techniques.

Yes.

You've got one called "S.O.S."

Yes, I have.

TERRY MEEUWSEN: Talk about that because it's--

I have.

I think it's incredibly important for us

to recognize that there are techniques and tools that

can help us along our journey of parenthood.

And "S.O.S" is step back, so that we can detach ourselves

in that moment in a healthy way, to then

observe what the scenario is-- what's the situation, who's

having the meltdown, who's saying what--

and to actually step back in with decisive action.

So that whether it's communicated

so that we can have both children and resolve a dispute,

whether it's recognizing that we've got our self emotionally

caught up into this tornado that we need to just calm ourselves

from-- it allows us to be able to step back, observe

the situation, and step in so that we become parents who

are more disciplined in our approach in how

we'll help our children.

TERRY MEEUWSEN: And thoughtful at that.

Exactly, and very mindful.

But present in that moment so we remain attached.

So where do most people lose it in that equation--

that they don't ever get to observe at all because they're

so caught up?

Or is it that even after they observe

they don't know what to do?

They don't step back.

TERRY MEEUWSEN: They run.

They stay in the middle of it.

I think animals run when they see commotion,

and we stay right in the middle of all the commotion.

And we don't take a moment.

And we allow it to escalate.

And we get caught up, like I said,

in this kind of family dispute.

And we need to step back a moment.

It's what we see professionals do all the time.

With respect to paramedics or firefighters,

they have that quick blink of being able to step back

and to really take in everything that's happening-- where they

are, what the circumstances are, who's

involved-- so that we can make decisions

that allow us to progress, allow us to move forward.

We live in kind of a crazy world today.

Everything's going so fast.

I mean, there's so much available

to children that maybe shouldn't be on television

and computers and other things.

What are the biggest challenges do

you feel facing families today?

I certainly feel that families need

to understand the importance of how we embrace technology,

but how we monitor and we regulate that, too.

And certainly, we need to recognize

that what we have that choice.

We make those choices for our children as parents.

What's suitable for them.

TERRY MEEUWSEN: It's like personal empowering, really.

Certainly.

And recognizing what is important for our children

to view.

And to recognize that we don't just go with the herd

and feel that peer pressure that we

have to, because our children may say to us,

well you know my friends parents are doing so.

What are our values?

What are our principles as parents?

How are we raising our children to become

those well-adjusted adults with sincerity and mindfulness

and thoughtfulness?

So I think we really have to be able to take the reins as

such as parents, and recognize that it's

about our values-- our family values--

and knowing that if we just move forward in that

and we can explain to our children

why we believe this is important for them,

then we really should stay stead with that.

TERRY MEEUWSEN: Talk a little bit about discipline.

Because, you know, it's one thing

to discipline in the confines of your home

but I think a lot of people are afraid to discipline

their children too firmly in public

because they are afraid somebody is going

to take them to task for it, or think

that they're being abusive.

How do you handle that when your child has a meltdown

at the grocery store?

There's a controversial subject because the reality

is that positive parenting does include

discipline and consequence.

And we do judge other parents when we see children misbehave.

And I believe that if we can be more supportive to parents

and understanding that it's about encouragement,

rather than judging them, and if parents

can take decisive action in stepping up

to implement discipline and consequences,

then the whole situation would be a lot better.

But a lot of parents-- [INAUDIBLE]

epidemic of abuse in this country.

And we need to let go of that stigma and to own it

and to heal from that and to educate parents more.

And so I feel that parents have grown up

in these dysfunctional families, and certainly

when it comes to then implementing

discipline or consequences with their own children.

It kind of fires that in a child of situations

that have not been resolved within their own upbringing.

And so then they refuse to discipline or consequence

at all.

It just continues to perpetrate the cycle for generations.

The cycle of not really correcting

the undesired behavior.

We need to recognize the importance

of being able to do that in a positive way that creates

more love, more harmony, and understanding

of right and wrong.

I'm not a firm-- you know I don't

believe in corporal punishment or spanking.

And I feel there are ways that effectively we

can raise our children to understand that behavior.

What's the worst case you've ever had to deal with?

I think the very--

TERRY MEEUWSEN: Maybe hardest is the--

Yes, hardest.

I think certainly it's when you see spirits broke.

You know, when you can go into a home and you can see so much

control that you look at these little children

and their spirits have been broke.

And I believe it's very, very important

to be able to set boundaries and rules, and to make sure

that we give much love and praise

and we have a lot of physical intimacy and connection.

But certainly we want to make sure

that we're not breaking the spirit of who our children are.

When you come into a home I'm sure every parent thinks

that, well now she's going to get my children in order,

but the truth is you're really getting the parents in order

as well.

True.

But how do you follow up on that?

Like you come in and you're with a family

for a short window of time.

And then are you able to follow up

with them to be sure that they're understanding

and able to execute?

JO FROST: It's a must.

Yes, it's a must.

Certainly.

From the time a family have been given the green light

that I'm coming to help them-- their emotions,

their feelings are certainly cradled

at the sensitivity of the subjects,

right the way through to the after-care

that they received-- the consultation that I give them

after I've been there.

It's incredibly important.

You know, I have the honor of being

able to go into people's homes and to be able to help them.

And to do so with integrity is of utmost importance for me.

What's the one piece of advice-- if you

had to give parents one nugget?

You know so much, but if you had to cull it

down to one nugget, what would you say?

God it would be very-- I don't think one can.

But I do believe as parents that you have

to be able to accept adapting.

You have to be able to adapt.

You have to be able to flow.

If you're rigid you create a lot of obstacles.

TERRY MEEUWSEN: So if your lifestyle is rigid

as far as the other aspects of your life are concerned

it's likely to fall into that parenting role.

Well, I think it's important to communicate, to have

compassion, to look at time.

Helping these families takes the time to do so.

And to be mindful of that.

We can get caught up in ourselves.

You know?

So I think it's important to be able to take that step back.

Families don't happen instantly.

You have to invest yourself in them.

I want you to know you can watch Jo Frost, "Nanny on Tour."

The show airs Thursdays at 8:00 PM eastern time on Up TV.

And if you have specific parenting questions

for Jo Frost you can actually tweet her at jo_frost.

Thank you so much.

Thank you for having me.

Great to have you with us.

We'll be watching.

Thank you.

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