The Answer Is To Love the Assholery Out Of Your Kids
You know me, Bitches. I usually have nothing but sarcasm or repulsion when it comes to these articles and books written by experts on parenting. I feel like so many of them are meant to freak us out, make us panic that we are doing it wrong, and entice us to buy a product or a book that will “fix” our child.
And then I read this. You should read it too. It’s called “Child Behavior:When nothing else works, consider these 7 strategies.
What if maybe, just maybe, it’s not the children who need to be fixed? What if it society has changed the parent child relationship so much that we need to find a way to fix that instead?
Yesterday I wrote about trying to find balance, and how hard it is to juggle being a working parent….even a working parent who has had the luxury of only working part time, and mostly from home. I am one of the lucky few who hasn’t struggled to find daycare while I worked full time out of the home.
And then I read this piece and felt so super validated.
As the world has changed in the last 60 years or so, they dynamic of families has changed. We went from one parent at home to women’s lib and now the necessity of two working parents. We have gone from having the luxury and responsibility of raising our children and teaching them what we value, to having to ask ( and pay) someone else to do it for us. We miss out on so many things and simply cannot do it all.
So what if maybe, all the behavior problems we see in kids are merely manifestations of “lost” kids? What if the structure of our families today are at the root of difficult kids? What if all we need to do to “fix” our kids is to spend more time with them? What if the solution to good kids is to recreate the bond between a parent and child so that they feel safe, confident, and clear about what we expect of them? It seems too simple and too obvious to be true!
The author of the above article suggests that because there is such a disconnect between parents and their children now, the respect kids once showed their parents and adults in general doesn’t develop in the same way.
Managing child behavior has and will always be determined by the quality of the relationship between the adult and the child.
I am so, so grateful for the time I have spent with my kids. Despite the exhaustion and the bitching on my part, I would not have changed anything, unless it was to be able to afford me to be a completely stay at home mom.
And it’s not because I’m all crunchy and old school or weird.
I just love my kids. And I want them to be good people.
I’ve said a million times in my teaching studio that I am not the most talented violinist out there. Not even close. I am a somewhat competent musician with a knack for finding a way to break things down and teach people around me. But the biggest part of my success is my ability to develop meaningful and loving relationships with my students and their families so that they trust me to have their best interest at heart. They trust me and respect the things I say because they are confident in my affection and concern for them.
And so why wouldn’t this apply to our relationships with our own kids?
And again, how do we find balance?
Am I saying that women have caused this by entering the work place? Absolutely not. I think it is actually the reality of our economy that forces families to need two incomes has more to do with that than anything. A man is welcome to stay home if it works best for his family.
I don’t know. Maybe we just need to unplug a little more from things that distract us from one another and plug into each other. Find a way to connect with our kids every day so that they know we are available. Talk with them more. Listen even more. Develop a relationship with them that is rooted in love, and maintained by respect.
Either way. If I can win at parenting simply by having a good relationship with my kids, that seems like the simplest, best advice I’ve ever read.