It’s time once again for Heather Johnson from Family Volley to share with us some Parenting Tips as part of her “Parenting Tips” here on The Idea Room. Here’s Heather in her own words and sharing how parents should support kids and their interests.
Are your kids throwing temper tantrums? Is there arguing and power struggles between you and your children?
Child: “Mom, I am hungry”
Can’t you hear the arguments that are about to start.
Here is what is funny. There were not any tantrums or arguing until AFTER WE DENIED HOW OUR CHILDREN FELT.
What should we do? How can we respond?
This type of response would not sit well with us at all. It would be frustrating and upsetting. In my head I would be thinking, “How do you know if I am tired or not, or if I got enough sleep for me?” You can quickly see why our kids get so upset.
Stop just for a minute and think about how your kids feel. When I am hungry, I am miserable. I want to eat. When I am hot, I want to take off my coat. Our children are miserable when they are hungry also. They want to eat. When they are hot, they want to take their coat off also.
Second, evaluate why you are denying their feelings.
“Is that so”
A simple comment response works wonders. Here is an example.
A while ago our daughter came to me to tell me about something her brother had done. She was playing with the baby and he came in to the room and started taking over, trying to get the baby to play with him.
Instead of counseling her, or getting on her, or telling her it wasn’t a big deal and she should “get over it” (all things I wanted to say), I just said, “hmmm, really?”
Guess what happened? She looked at me, said… “yes he did, he always does that”. And then she ran off to play.
She just wanted her feelings to be validated.
If I had tried to figure out who was in the wrong, or solve the problem, or said anything else, it would have turned into a “power struggle”. Instead, once she felt validated, she dropped it and moved on.
Remember, we should always accept how our children feel. It is okay and normal to feel hungry, frustrated, irritated, happy, excited, and/or mad.
We shouldn’t always accept how our children act. If they are throwing a fit, hitting, or whining because they are hungry, frustrated, or mad, that is NOT okay.