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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Maybe it's not particularly about GD. I don't know.
I changed my method of dealing with my kids, and especially with my VERY spirited and willful 2,5yo (now 2y9m) drastically to a more gentle, understanding, consensual style. Because a little more authoritative, non-permissive (not allowing certain things/behaviours, obviously because they were giving me stress I see now). So I tried to let go of that stress, let go of my wish to have control over my child(ren) and their doings/wishes too much and let them have the self-control and allowance they really need.

I am so happy to be doing this. Even if it meant for me to let go of many 'issues' I got way more relaxed. About messes, cleaning up after, energy waisted, doing/saying the same things over and over again without much result, saying NO much much much less in a day, and so on.

We have rough times at home, because my two kids together are a real bunch of high energy and conflict and my LO is very willful and exploring, with a big need for independency and self-reliance.

But I feel much more peaceful about my changed approach even though I can never be that very understanding, allowing, 'good mom at all times, I'm human still and sometimes feel ıoverwhelmed and I loose my temper once in a while. I don't think it's wrong even to get angry and/or show that, but of course it's in the way that happens. Anyway. I wanted to post that I feel much less angry because a lot of the frustration has gone. I just go with the flow instead of trying to control the daily flow in our house to my standards. Iykwım.

Now, lol, my frustration has it's source somewhere else.
Now it is with the people of the preschool my Ds1 attends, and for instance with my MIL who's now staying with us for a week or two and their comments. It's not even about real criticism. It's just that those comments give me (and my children at times) the feeling to like to say: 'please leave him alone, and aim your own frustration about losing control at something else'
.
Me saying this, shows I came along a long way myself.

Like I let my lo to decide when he's hungry, what he eats, how much, when, and he can just take it. I stopped offering foods or preparing (just only dinner) and then getting his frustration at me for not wanting it
. So, he gets hungry, or sees me eat, or hears me speak about food, or even sometimes ask him if he wants any, and he may remind himself about eating and goes and get him some food
. He picks it from the cupboard, may ask help for something he can't do. Then eats. He may just take a piece of dry bread but I know he loves that. We often have nut bread available so it's quite nutritious. So are most of the other foods available to him. And some are more like treats but that's ok too. I trust him on food. He knows that now.

And my MIL, EVERY SINGLE TIME when my lo picks some food for himself, or decides to go and get him some other food instead of what he first got, she says 'HE'S/WAS REALLY HUNGRY'. And I hear 'he was very hungry and his mom just did not offer him food in time -why'. It just irritates me so much!!!
Or when he does not want to wear trousers (or anything else) and walks around without (socks, indoor shoes, trousers, shirt...) she states' He's not wearing any...' and/or 'it's cold' or 'come and wear xyz' to me or him. Why I just let him decide when he's ready to wear the piece of clothing (or not at all lol). Same with wearing a jacket outside. He'll definitely give a signal when he NEEDS it and I may remind him a few times there is the possibility for wearing his jacket when he gets cold.
He is a very active little boy (meaning can hardly sit still unless when watching tv or reading books), she's very passive (and has health issues too but has always been a very passive kind of person and homebody, no hobbies etc. anyway she just can't grasp someone being active unlike her) and I don't know how many times she's said to him 'come, sit here, come sit there, come, the floor is cold, your son is not coming to me etcetcetc.' ...
It feels to me like trying to interfere in his own process of deciscion-making. And I do feel that, how often I'd said her that he's allowed to do so if he wants to, that he decides for himself, that I can't tell/make him etc. it just goes ear in ear out and the senseless comments don't stop. lol. Guess I just need to vent a bit. The fact that I speak my mother tongue with my kids which she doesn't understand at all, and some cultural differences may play a role here too, but it's not only that.

Similar at DS1's preschool. Every time I tell them he DOES NOT EAT potatoes, aubergine, olives, and/or other foods and that it's normal for him not to eat much at lunchtime when those foods are on the table. At home I quit pushing or even making him have a bite. And still at school they keep on messaging me that he 'did not want to eat xyz', 'we tried but we could not convince him eating it'. etc. Or the same when he does not want to close/wear his coat. Or them trying to dress him with singlet and shirt IN his trousers which he HATES (who wouldn't
) and then complaining to him and me that he always takes it out again. Well, would do the same when ı would be him. tell them not to do that if he doesn't like, and here too, they just don't seem to get it really.
The manager loves to send out lists to parents on how to 'relate' with your children and all kinds of statements on parental advice (probably picked from a website somewhere, about listening to your child etc.
) But I sense that what they do in the a/m examples is exactly NOT really listening to my child (and his mom) and trying to impose their way/control on him on issues they seem to find too important to let go.
Again venting my own frustration a little
.

How do I get the message through. That that's not the way we're dealing with our kids here (anymore, at least not mom) that they are very capable to think for themselves and have things their own way...

I'm much more strict on discipline when its about violent behaviour between siblings and/or when people (could) get hurt. But still then I like to stress on the agressor going to calm down in another area of the house. I do not give out punishment and ı do not in anyway call it like that or even time-out. I hear the need to breathe some other air and try to redirect to that needed space, and I may have to enforce that in some way at times. I may stay with the child to help calm down when needed. But it helps.

But when it's not about such serious issues, I really let go of the control idssue. It's not worth it.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ernalala View Post
.. that I can't tell/make him etc....
Any chance she's hearing that as you wanting to make him to do things but being unable to? There's a big difference between "I'm happy with how I'm raising my child even if that involves less controlling than you think is necessary" and "I can't do anything with my child so I've given up."
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
"I'm happy with how I'm raising my child even if that involves less controlling than you think is necessary"
I love that statement! How useful and more pleasant I'm imagining it to be. Thank you for posting that.

OP- sapphire_chan might have a point- just rephrasing how you talk about things can give people the message that you are confident in your approach and don't need their help. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post
Any chance she's hearing that as you wanting to make him to do things but being unable to? There's a big difference between "I'm happy with how I'm raising my child even if that involves less controlling than you think is necessary" and "I can't do anything with my child so I've given up."

Well, I think it's just that she has the 'need' for my child to do or be abc and not seeing that my child does not want that in that moment and rather does/is xyz. So it's really like being unable to take the perspective of the child. I often can't believe how very little my ILs actually understand about children while they have 7 grown up kids... It's like they never have grasped that it is beneficial for parent and child or other person to place yourself in the other ones position once in a while.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Also, it is exactly BECAUSE I started to realise that you really CAN't expect to MAKE someone else do sth if they do not want or have other needs at the moment, and not your children so either. So it stems from realising that I can't make or tell them what to do (because they 'won't 'listen' ', let's say 'comply to my wishes'), that I went more towards a parenting style and attitude that acknowledges you can't MAKE or TELL them because you do not have and should not have that control over them.

IT's not that I never expect them to do sth lol. But I let go of it more and more often. I see that taking your time is important too. But when we have to leave, and DS does not want and we REALLY have to leave NOW and I couldn't convince him into it, then IIl have to just take him (carrying cause he wont walk then). I do not like to do that (and killing my back) neither do I love to carry a bunch of heavy, kicking, screaming toddler to go pick up my DS1 from preschool or anywhere else, but then I try so much to have that over soon and not thinking too much about the environment. I can't make him stop crying, stopping it is not my task and it's not his need and is a wrong focus. That's a need other people always feel when seeing a child 'out of control' screaming or crying and that's where all this irritating unhelpful advice and fussing 'in the worst moment ever' stems from (even from total strangers), so often making it all worse or last longer. I hate those horrible tantrums too, but I know it's sth that should get out of my child's system by now and that it'll pass in its own time. Some people tend to see that as letting your child rule over. But I've received few compliments of some watching us that another mom/dad would've long slapped the child to make it stop. Unfortunately others tend to think that when your child has frequent screaming tantrums you are maltreating your child (I mean they think YOU did sth to make him have that tantrum)
. I can imagine that such reactions make many people want tantrums to be over soon and open the cupboard for tricks that don't seem to work anyway and only lead to more frustration...

And still I do think that GD is much much easier on more easygoing children
.
It's a real challenge with one or more highly spirited children.
 
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