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I've come to the realization that I need to really work on finding my compassion for my child when he does something "wrong". I don't want to be the mom who sometimes flies off the handle and yells or snaps at him when what he really needs is a parent who is consistently there for him.<br><br>
What happens too often now is that I'll yell, and he'll start to cry, and then I'll apologize, and then we'll cuddle and talk and discuss what happened and why he did it, etc. But I'd like to be able to more consistently leave out the yelling part. I know that I wasn't raised by parents who were compassionate first, and I'm sure that's why it doesn't come naturally. I want to break the cycle!<br><br>
So, what do you do in that moment when you see red over something they've done?<br><br>
Or, how do you keep the perspective that lets you see them compassionately, as just the small children they are who need help, guidance, and support?
 

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I'm curious to see how others respond, since I'm working on this myself. How old is your DS? My older DD is 4.75, and I've found that dealing with misbehavior has gotten easier for me as she's gotten more verbal. When I'm really upset/angry I will tell her that I'm too angry and that I need to give myself a time-out to calm down before I talk to her. I'd like to say that this always happens before I yell, but that is definately not the case (though I'm working on it). It also helps that she's old enough and verbal enough to really talk through and understand if/when I need to apologize to her for over reacting or getting too upset.
 

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I have been working on this, too. I tend to get impatient & become more "strict" ie I'm the boss, then get all understanding and apologetic and cuddly cozy - on my timetable! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/greensad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="greensad"> I really want to be more mindful about this.
 

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I'm not a yeller or a hitter, but I can relate to this, too.<br><br>
I find if I can remember that dd (age 5) wants to do "the right thing" but lacks information, it helps me a lot. (I frequently forget...) But, almost always there is something underlying her action that isn't devious in the least. It's been very, very rare that she did something from a true place of malicious intent or the like; and I'm willing to concede that I still misinterpreted those situations, too. So, I try to remember to ask myself "why" did they do whatever BEFORE I address them. I don't usually ask them why. I feel it is a trap that leads to lying. I prefer to ask more direct questions.<br><br>
Here's a recent example of my poor parenting. We were at the strawberry farm, and I had explained to dd over and over, quite patiently, that we were going to fill our buckets, and they could eat some in the car. BUT, they weren't going to eat their whole buckets. Most of what we were taking home was for the freezer. Crystal clear, I thought. Dd is taking a year to fill her bucket. I am frustrated because I (unreasonably) expected her to be a help to me this year. She is taking the caps off of every single strawberry she picks and then putting it in her bucket. Sigh. I explain again how we aren't eating all the strawberries in the car. I ask her to not take the tops off; it makes the strawberries go bad quicker. I knew she heard me, and I thought she got it. I check on her a few minutes later. She is still picking strawberris at the pace of a snail, and STILL taking the caps off. I am harsh in my words, and not very nice. I immediately feel bad, but it's too late; the words are out. She musters the courage under my unfair reprimand to say, "But what are we supposed to do with the tops in the car since we can't throw them on the floor."<br><br>
AH...my horrible blind spot. I was mean to my 5yo because I thought I had explained, but I hadn't. I hadn't thought through her side of things. Dh has recently insisted that the kids not put their trash on the floor of the truck. He has them clean it out everytime they get out, and he reminds them frequently not to do it. Dd has gotten the message on that front. What she didn't understand is, while the berries were for our freezer, she was going to be allowed to eat some. What should she do with the ones she was going to eat. It wasn't clear why she should leave the tops on, and it also wasn't clear which ones she could eat and which ones she couldn't. So, I had trapped her between dh's rule and mine. No trash on the floor, and don't take the tops of the berries. She had to pick one to break, and mine was more abstract. A little patience, a little conversation, and a little foresight on my part could have prevented the whole conflict. It wasn't HER being a stinker...it was ME being confusing and unreasonable.<br><br>
Sigh...being a parent is SO hard. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/hug.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hug">s
 

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first and foremost when i see i am becoming a yeller or wanting to hit, i sit back and see what's going on with my life.<br><br>
everytime i find i am not compassionate, its because there is a lot of stress in my life and i havent had time to find a balance, a break, some time to take care of 'me'. it is usually a warning to myself something needs to change.<br><br>
however i dont know if any parent can be consistent. that would be a super parent. everyone has ups and downs in life. everyone at some point yells at their children. so completely erasing that part of you is not going to happen. in fact it has its plus points. one time when dd was about 2 years old or younger and ran out on the street because of my fault, i lost it in such a screaming hysterical way - a way dd had never seen me - that she froze and never repeated that again. it left a huge impression on her.<br><br>
dunno. one of the things i do a lot and have done since dd was about a year old is two things. 1. just sit and watch her play. it is the sweetest thing. you start at a young age and you will discover expressions that stay even as they grow up.<br><br>
2. i kinda did a child centered meditation. just sitting and focusing on how fast she grows up. oh and i also told her stories about herself. about what seh was like as a baby. she hated me singing to her but would find my talking voice soothing. so i would tell her about how she woke up when she was a newborn. how it took her 15mins of stretching before she opened her eyes, blinked, frowned and then smiled. i told her about her messes, her giant poopy diaper, her facial expressions.<br><br>
i am not a product of my parents parenting. they did it the old way. i refuse to do that with my dd.<br><br>
plus i think for me - the biggest difference was - not to see my child as a child but another person trying to figure out social norms. i treated her not as someone who knew but someone who was trying to learn. trying to figure out things.<br><br>
but bottom line is expectations. are they age appropriate. and breaks for mommy. downtime where she can rest. these two really saw me thru the baby and toddler stages.
 

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Wow, I'm not really sure where people got the hitting idea from or if you all were just talking about your own experiences or more generally, but I've never hit my ds!<br><br>
That being said, I think meemee had a good point with her thoughts about stress in our own lives. I do think that's part of it for me right now. I need to work on that for myself right now!<br><br>
I love Just1More's thoughts on how kids usually want to do the right thing. I agree that it's usually true, at least at younger ages. It's something I need to keep in mind.<br><br>
I'm also really trying to work on keeping the bigger picture in mind. I want my ds to feel like he can come to me for help or when something is bothering him. If I want him to feel that way, I need to not yell first and then realize I overreacted and then try to figure out his motivation. I need to work on pausing, figuring out how I want to proceed, and then talking with ds about what happened, what led up to it, and what he was thinking.<br><br>
Somehow a lot of this was much easier when ds was younger. At 2, 3, 4, or even 5, the issues were smaller - or maybe just my expectations were! Now that he's almost 8, I find that I sometimes expect him to be able to respond more maturely. The reality is that sometimes he can and does, but sometimes he can't. I need to work with myself on remembering that he really is still very young and learning, and that sometimes I expect too much of him!
 
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