One of the things I often see with clients who consult with me for parenting help is they allow their children to get away with doing wrong.
One mother was speaking with me on Zoom and her 6-year-old daughter wanted her cell phone to play games on.
Mum said “No” and the child started yelling “I want it. Now.”
Hmm. I wonder where she learnt that from!
Again, Mum said “No”.
Her daughter started yelling abuse.
“No” came the reply.
Her daughter then started lashing out and hit her mother with a closed fist.
When she still didn’t get the phone, the situation escalated and Mum gave her the phone.
“Does this happen often?”
“Nearly every day – especially if she doesn’t get her own way.”
When asked why she gave in, she replied “It is too hard”.
While this is an extreme case, situations like this are now more common.
When asked why it’s too hard, she replied “It’s far easier to give in and keep the peace! The hitting and abuse stops”.
I asked, “What is your daughter learning?”
I can get whatever I want. If I don’t get it from asking, I’ll get it from abusing someone and being violent.
This belief is going to work well as a teenager and when she gets into a relationship.:-)
A great rule is: Before I say or do anything, I think what the child is going to learn from what I say or do.
I think about what I want the child to learn.
This is best to implement when the child is young as it becomes easy to formulate a good belief system while still giving the child the ability to make decisions that serve them and to have fun.
Think about how you want your children to turn out. When they are 18 years of age, what morals, beliefs and traits would you like them to have?
We are in the process of giving the mother skills to curb the abuse and the hitting. Mum has to stand up and be strong with herself to carry out what she knows is right and best for all concerned.
In summary, think about what you want your children to learn.
It will make a big difference in the way you parent.