Tag Archives: discipline

Parenting With Sensitivity

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I have a two year old who’s a little bit different. She hasn’t received any diagnosis and passed a hearing and speech evaluation, but she’s just not quite like other two year olds. She displays several markers for Autism as well as a variety of ‘unusual’ — but cute! –behavior. 

We are attempting to potty train this nutty little girl. So far we’ve come across a complete lack of success. She pees down her legs and doesn’t seem to notice. She will be interested in panties ad interested in sitting on the potty, but pee just never happens. Today, Grandma decided to help while I was mopping the kitchen floor. From the other room, I could hear her yelling at her and my little ladybug crying and saying “all done”. Grandma didn’t want to let Little Miss off the potty insisting that at 31 months she “has” to potty train. 

Long story short, I flipped out. 

I believe in gentle parenting. In treating children with kindness and firm guidance, but never with cruelty or force. Unless, of course, they are in harm’s way– that is another story entirely. Forcing a little girl to sit on the potty will, in my opinion, do more harm than good. She will go when she is ready. And this brought me to a thought- how many of us actually parent with sensitivity to our children’s needs? Are we doing what is convenient for us, or what is best for them? I recall a quote that goes something like, “What’s best for the child is not always what’s most convenient for the parent”. 

What do children need? Food, shelter, clothing. But also love, guidance, a superior role model. A strong pair of arms, a loving touch, a gentle voice. 

Forcing your child to do things they are not yet ready to do may harm the special bond you have with your child. Forcefulness breeds mistrust, anger, and general unhappiness. Raising your voice breeds fear and hurt. Take the time to not only tell your children that you love them, but also to show them that you love them. I truly do not believe that a well-loved, gently disciplined child can be spoiled. There is no such thing as too many kisses! 

On that note, the other day Grandma said to me, “your children are far too attached to you!”. This idea appalls me. Why, I ask, would you have a child and expect them NOT to be attached to you? You bear them, you birth them, you raise them. You are, in every sense of the word, their world. And certainly the intense attachment of a two year old can be overwhelming at times. The passionate love of a baby or toddler can be frustrating when your hair is undone and your house is in shambles. But that love is a blessing, the most beautiful gift a parent could wish to possess. So parents, parent gently. Be sensitive to the needs of your children. Parenting is not an easy task. Your days may be long and your nights may be sleepless, but childhood is short. This too shall pass! 

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Who Disciplines Parents..?

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Lately, in my frequent use of the internet, I’ve found a lot of questionable content from other mothers and fathers. Comments like women leaving their children home alone, disciplining their children in ways that can only be described as inhumane, and engaging in a variety of other inappropriate behaviors.

I come from a long history of familial craziness, and have seen much of the “what not to do” of parenting first hand. My mother was no class act! Recently, I graduated with my Associates in Psychology and have just started coursework towards a Bachelor’s degree in Clinical Psychology. All of these experiences have allowed me to see much about raising children, but also much about mental disorders and the inner workings of the human mind. What’s often frightening is when those two overlap.

Who disciplines the parents? The obvious answer is CPS- once (and if!) a complaint has been made. But CPS’ failure to work has caused many a child to suffer needlessly at the hands of their parents. What is it that determines the right or wrong way to raise a child? And to those parents who do not raise their child “correctly”, who do they answer to?

In my personal experience, there are many ‘right’ ways to raise a child. As long as you fill their lives with love, safety, health, and happiness, it’s kind of a give or take on what’s right or wrong about parenting methods. But what disturbs me is when I see these women posting on the internet about things they have done to their kids, either inadvertently or intentionally.

From the mother who left her newborn in the car for 20 minutes before realizing she wasn’t with her, to the mother who performed sexual acts on herself with food and then fed that food to her children, I stare in awe of what the world has come to. Clearly, we need change. We need a disciplinary system for the parents who do wrong, and we need education for the parents who don’t know what it is they’re doing. And, unconstitutional though it may be, I honestly believe some people just shouldn’t be allowed to breed.

What do you think, Reader? Would the world be a better place if there was a psychological evaluation required before conception was allowed? How would you discipline or educate the parents of America?