Use Your Kids’ Insults as Priceless Bullying Lessons
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By: Lisa Cavallaro – Confluence Daily is your daily news source for women in the know.
Teach Kids How to Hold Onto Their Power
If you’re a parent, and at least one of your kids hasn’t insulted you or your parenting, consider yourself lucky, AND among the minority.
Here’s a sampling of comments I’ve heard from one of mine:
I hate you!
I don’t have to listen to you.
You’re a terrible mother.
I like Dad better than you.
I don’t want to live here anymore.
I’m going to go live with Nana.
She may love me today, but from my older daughter’s toddler through teen years, we were each other’s worst enemies.
I admit I made lots of mistakes, and if I could do that part of my life over again, it would look very different. Instead of acting like the dictator I was, I’d act more like the teacher I could have been.
Instead of being my daughter’s verbal sparring partner, I’d take a step back. Rather than allowing her words to hurt me, I’d realize she’s only saying them because she herself is hurting, and she wants me to hurt too.
This is a battle no one ever wins. I experienced it myself, and I’ve seen many other well-meaning parents experience it too. We get tough with our kids because we think that’s what we’re “supposed” to do in order to “teach them a lesson.”
If only we realized that the lesson our sparring teaches them is the WRONG lesson.
Disagreeing with our kids is fine. But arguing with them, letting them hurt our feelings, and saying things we don’t mean is not something we want to demonstrate.
Giving kids the message that they’re responsible for how we feel is not only lying to them… it teaches them that someone else’s actions can hurt THEIR feelings. This simply isn’t true.
No one can hurt your feelings but you.
Similarly, no one can hurt your child’s feelings but your child.
We often say this to kids when they tell us someone is bullying them. But we forget about it when we’re the ones being bullied… which is when we MOST need to remember it.
When kids try to hurt us with their words, we need to model how we want THEM to act when someone tries to hurt them.
If we don’t want our sons and daughters giving away their power to someone who tries to intimidate them, then we have to stand in our power by managing our emotions when we have disagreements with them.
We can’t let disagreements escalate our emotions. Remaining calm and saying things that come from our hearts and not our heads is often all it takes to prevent disagreements from turning into full-blown ugly arguments.
Taking responsibility for our own emotions teaches our kids to take responsibility for theirs. If we’re going to teach kids a lesson, it makes sense to teach one we’re willing to learn ourselves… one that will help them hold onto their power, rather than hand it over to someone else.
More by Lisa:
Lisa Cavallaro, The Confidence Coach, is an LOA Coach with a solution-focused spin on bullying. She helps parents leverage Law of Attraction to raise kids who are self-confident and have a positive outlook toward peers, school and life. Lisa is the author of No More Drama and ADHD The Natural Way.
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