I get scared when you yell

Adoption

One thing I really like about BCLC is that much of it is about improving yourself as opposed to always trying to change your kids.

Another aspect that I’ve come to accept as true for me, is that there are really only two primary emotions – love and fear. So when I get angry because the kids are yelling, it is really fear that is being triggered.

I’ve been working on combining these two concepts, by identifying when I feel afraid/nervous and then trying to do better the next time. I’m also really conscious about being a good example for the kids. So, recently I completely over-reacted when the kids were fighting. After I calmed down, I talked to BE and confessed, “I get scared when you yell,” and I apologized for losing my temper. And, of course we talked about the importance of using our inside voices. don’t know if it meant anything to her, but I’ll keep working on it.

It’s all about relationships

Adoption

As I’ve written before, I subscribe to Heather Forbes’ e-newsletter (Heather is the co-author of “Beyond Consequences, Logic, and Control”). In a recent edition, Heather answered the following question: “Could you please explain more about why I should see my child’s issues as ‘regulatory’ instead of ‘behavioral’ and the neuroscience that supports this concept?”

Here’s an excerpt of what she had to say: “The most important and most effective behavioral technique your child needs in order to move him back within the behavioral boundaries of your home is relationship. Too much emphasis has been placed on what behavioral technique should be used or which punishment should be imposed … It is the relationship that does the work…that is where real change happens because it is in the right brain-to-right brain experience that children are able to get back on course. More importantly, it is change that brings not only behavioral shifts, but deep healing that permeates to the heart and soul of a child who has experienced pain and vulnerability.”

To learn more about BCLC, please consider subscribing to Heather’s newsletter.

I’m mad at you, mama

Adoption

At our house, BE used to rule when it came to tantrums, but recently BC  has usurped her. Usually after a tantrum is over, we talk about how hitting, yelling, etc is not ok. I tell him that it’s ok to be mad at me and to tell me so calmly.

Recenty, we were at BE’s swim school and he got mad at me about something. So he sat down on the floor and kept repeating, “I’m mad at you, mama!” One of the other moms overheard and said, “Well, at least he knows his feelings!” It’s good to know he’s listening, even if it’s only sometimes.

A parenting evolution

Adoption

I hate to admit it, but I make assumptions about people based on their appearance all the time. A few weeks ago, I made a new acquaintance who is the father to a college-aged son.

We were talking about our kids and he asked me if I am a strict parent. Judging by his clothes and hairstyle, I assumed that he had not been. So, I shared how at first I had been much authoritarian, valuing discipline more than relationship. Much to my surprise, he chastised me a little , saying that today’s parents are too concerned with being their child’s friend.

While I agree with that, I also have come to believe that while  a disciplinarian style may be effective with some children, there are many children (mine included) that respond to a different approach. In the beginning, I thought I had it all figured out – now I realize that there is no “parenting truth” and that in a few years, I may have revised my approach several times over.