Catch up on shows with The Coast On Demand
Tuesday, October 30, 2012 12:50 PM
After there has been a blow-up or some misbehaviour at your place, make sure things end right. You might have sorted out the conflict and set consequences but relationships might still be sore and bruised. There needs to be a bit of reconciliation.
Imagine your bigger boy has thumped your little boy. You intervened and there was a consequence and maybe a lot of parents might leave it at that. But I suggest, later on in the day, say to your older boy, “Why don’t you go and push your little brother on the swing. He loves it when you do that.”
Now you’re probably thinking that he’ll just push him on the swing straight into the trunk of the tree! But let’s imagine he does it just fine. Two things are going to happen: first of all, the little boy is going to experience his big brother as a nice big brother, not just as a grump who hurts him. Secondly, and probably more importantly, the older boy gets to experience himself as a good boy. When kids get told-off they often take the scolding very personally, and so he might be thinking, “I am a bully, I am a thug”, and this gives him a chance to replace the labels he’s put on himself (or had put on him) with more positive ones.
If you’ve had a row with one of your kids and there have been sparks flying, go through to see them that night when they are in bed and sit on the edge of their bed, and say something like, “That was pretty awful earlier on. I was as mad as heck, but I’m not angry now and I won’t be tomorrow. I’m glad it’s a new day tomorrow with a fresh start, because I really do love you. But, you still won’t be seeing your Playstation until Saturday.” The penalty is still there, but the anger isn’t it.
When two kids are fighting, and we say, “Stop it! Be nice to each other!” ... has that phrase ever worked in the history of humanity? “Oh I am sorry, Brother. I had forgotten how much we loved each other until Father reminded us.” No, wait until the heat goes out of the situation before doing the reconciliation.
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