For Families, By Families: Keep It Real Initiative

The Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC) is dedicated to helping children and families in Connecticut thrive. We created the For Families, By Families — Keep It Real Initiative video series to give parents a voice and to help families learn from one another.

Get honest, unfiltered perspectives from other Connecticut parents about key topics:

Share your perspective!

We’re looking for honest stories from parents in Connecticut. Have any tips for other families? Experiences you want to share? Fill this form out!

Parenting During COVID-19

“It almost felt like my pregnancy didn’t happen to other people…”

Mom Katie talks about her experience having her first child during the pandemic — both the difficulties and the silver linings.

“Bring them around other peers, whether it’s going to the park or going to the library…”

Mom and behavior analyst Katie talks about COVID’s impact on young children and gives advice for parents whose children haven’t had much social interaction yet.

“That ended up being the best thing that worked for us.”

Janell talks about how she found child care during COVID-19 and gives some advice for new parents. Watch the video.

“Juggling during COVID was very, very challenging — but I got through it.”

Briggitte talks about how she wore multiple hats during COVID-19 — taking on the role of full-time mom, teacher, and employee all at once. Watch the video.

See more of our stories about parenting during COVID-19 and other topics. Check out our YouTube channel.

Everyday parenting — challenges and rewards

“[My doula and midwives] taught me how to do this journey in a mentally healthy way.”

What are the resources that make the biggest difference for parents? Watch mom Lauren talk about how working with her doula, midwives, and therapist to take care of her health changed her life.

“When you become a mother or a father, it’s very instinctive…”

Watch mom Mya talk about continuing to pursue her dreams to give herself and her boys a better life. Hear her advice for new parents and what it’s like raising two boys under the age of two.

Becoming a Parent: “At that time I didn’t have too much knowledge about autism. It was very difficult for me.”

Lena talks about parenting a daughter with autism and what she’s learned since her daughter was first diagnosed. Find out about the early intervention supports and services that helped her daughter and family thrive. Watch the video.

Becoming a parent: “It’s hard at first … but once you go along, the journey is definitely worth it.”

What’s it like to become a mom at a young age? Maria talks about finding out she was pregnant when she was already 7 months along, the experience of telling her parents, and how her son is the light of her life. Watch the video.

Watch more stories from parents on our YouTube channel.

Talking About Race and Racism with Your Child

Discussing Race with Your Child: “It was a nice way to begin the conversation.”

Chenae talks about her own experience coming from a mixed family — and how she used a PBS video to start a helpful discussion about race with her own daughter.

Discussing Race with Your Child: “I don’t want him to be afraid to live in this world.”

David worried about raising his new son in a country that makes it hard for Black men to succeed. While his son is still too young for “the talk” now, learn how David plans to approach it.

Watch more stories from parents on our YouTube channel.

Need resources?

Looking for resources and support with raising young children, COVID-19, or talking to kids about race? Check out some starting points below.

Parenting in General


Our COVID-19 resources include links to support lines, help from childhood experts, tips for discussing COVID-19 with your children, and more. Find support during COVID-19.

Race and racial identity

Start the conversation with your children. Watch a PBS video about how to talk to your children about race.

Last updated December 15, 2021