Here is an example of bad parenting–my example! I have not felt great for a really long time it seems. It’s just been one thing and another. Being pregnant, then the ups and downs of thinking we were losing the baby, and then the miscarriage. Through all these things I knew that I needed to be careful because I am much more likely to be impatient and lose my temper with the kids in these circumstances.
I also recognized that the kids were going through some of these things with me. So I tried to be sensitive to them too. Recently, things with the kids have started to feel out of control. They have not been cooperating very well at all.
1. Reevaluate your parenting. That’s always a good time to reevaluate my parenting because I’m usually the problem! Hate that! Sometimes though, it’s hard to see what I am doing wrong right away. So I began watching myself, and no not in a mirror! Ha! I just began paying attention to my reactions.
I was trying so hard to be patient and kind with the kids. What did I need to change? And then it hit me. Yes, I was trying very hard to be patient and kind to them WHILE they were being naughty and doing things they knew they weren’t supposed to do. I was inadvertently tolerating their wrong behavior.
2. Expect obedience and be consistent. It was when one of my kids kept whining about doing her school work that I saw things clearly. It was literally the fifth time I (very patiently and kindly) reminded her not to whine about it. Hello! Esther, you are very patiently and kindly training them to whine! I know better than that. Really, I do. I was not expecting her to obey, and I was not being consistent in discipline!
3. Apologize and reiterate expectations and consequences. I stopped what I was doing, called my daughter over to me, and explained to her what I was doing wrong. “I have very patiently and kindly asked you to stop whining five times. Now I am right to be patient and kind, but I need to be patient and kind as I discipline you for whining and disobeying. It was wrong that there weren’t consequences the first time that you ignored me. So starting now I am still going to work very hard to be patient and kind while I discipline you for disobeying. Do you understand?” It’s amazing. She knew I was wrong. It was not news to her. She knew that she needed discipline, and you know what? She started behaving!
4. Pray with your child. I didn’t do this this time, but I should have. I should have prayed with her asking God’s forgiveness for my behavior and leading her in praying too. When I have prayed with her after a time like this it has been precious.
I found my patience and kindness rather sickening and kind of funny. I know that I need lots of work in that area, but doing it wrongly isn’t that helpful! Now if only I could remember everything I’m supposed to be doing all at the same time because I will probably be doing referring back here again today!
Hard to do but worth it. We are praying for you.
Thanks for sharing this! I find this concept intriguing.
Good stuff! I am right there with you girl. Praying for you.
Great parenting advice! Thanks for taking the time to write these down.
Parenting our children is the hardest job that we will ever have, but also the most rewarding!
Thanks for sharing your struggles….and your wisdom, Esther!
These are awesome!! It reminds me of teaching…amazing how things work at school and at home, lol! Thanks for sharing!!
The Provision Room says
Your transparency is refreshing! We’ve ALL been there!
I wouldn’t call it “Bad Parenting” though. Making mistakes and then making correction and reconciliation or seeking/offering forgiveness is a really healthy part of life. If we never made any mistakes parenting, how could we model this behavior for our children? I apologize to my children all the time. It’s one way we show them what it means to be a Christian. They need to see it from us first. So, that means that sometimes we are going to have to make some mistakes.
No guilt. See your mistakes through those eyes. Blessings to you.
I have found that prayer is the key to making all of the other tips work. Have a blessed evening!
I love your heart here, and loved that you stopped to prayerfully evaluate what wasn’t working and why.
Sometimes we concentrate on doing one thing so well that we sort of lose focus on another area. It’s a balance and it keeps us on our toes!
Sometimes I’d get so used to my son whining that it would go over my head and my husband would come home and point out that he was whining as he called him out on it, and I’d be like “Oh…..yes….he WAS whining!” I just didn’t HEAR it sometimes.
I love your steps here. I remember praying with my children over certain discipline issues and attitude issues that they had (or I had!). It not only gets our hearts right before God but it teaches us humility as well.
Thanks so much for linking up to the “Making Your Home Sing” linky party today! 🙂
Love this. I had two rules I felt were important when my girls were young. One was in disciplining make sure they know you mean it. No random swatting of their bottom or hands, no half-hearted punishing. The second was consistency. If I said it–it happened. Oh how hard that is sometimes. My praying with them over discipline issues gradually turned into praying with them over all hurts, pains and needs of their lives. I was not a perfect parent by any means, but these are a few things I got right and I see the fruit of them.
Ummmmmm hi there, did you write this for me? Because I sure needed it! The lLord reached me through you! For a week now my husband and I have tried really hard to talk to the kids differently and “let them” be kids. My husband has worked on his temper and I on my tone. We have done what you did…..we were kind and patient with their wrong behavior and they have taken advantage. Ha, not anymore!
I really relate to this as my son is in a whining stage-the thing I find had is what do you do to discipline in this situation? For example when the repeat something again and again and as a parent I tolerate it with patience and kindness, what can you do to get them to obey? Thank you!
Oh I’m sorry, so many typos, hopefully you understand anyway. 🙂
Yes putting it all together- remembering what to do, and consistently doing so is the tricky part!
Colleen, try these tactics:
1. Make sure you show him that you heard what he said: “I know you want to go to the park tomorrow. You don’t need to say it again. Let’s talk about what we’ll do at the park.”
2. “I have heard that song too many times. Go out on the porch to sing. When you are all done with that song, you can come back in.”
3. “I don’t understand whining. Use your nice voice.” (This only works if you haven’t already responded to what he’s saying–you have to act like you don’t understand. It also only works if YOU use your nice voice. Resist the urge to imitate the whining!)
Esther, I think your realizations are very valuable! I’ve totally been there, trying to be so nice to my son because I realize we are all having a rough time, and eventually realizing that he is acting up SO THAT he can get me to be firm and feel confident that things are back to normal and I’m in control!
Kim@Co-Pilot Mom says
Parenting is a constant process, isn’t it? I find I am always evaluating what is working and what needs focus.
Sometimes I have to remind myself that I need an attitude adjustment- when my kids are doing something that is annoying me, but isn’t actually something bad, I have to take a deep breath and realize not everything is worth telling them to stop.
I need to put myself in check sometimes. I get caught up in the day to day and then I find my patience is running low. Then I try to remind myself that I need to see things from their level and not act at their level just because I’m grumpy too.
Great advice here!
Parenting is a daunting task. This statement is really true just take into consideration the issues raised by some parents on raring their children. And to address all these issues, the tips you have provided in this post are just fit. Thank you for sharing them with us, most especially to parents.
Thank you Becca!