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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dd likes to play with stuff on the nightstand when she's in bed. We have to be careful what we leave up there because sometimes she'll knock over a glass, etc.

Today when she was winding down for her nap she was over to that edge and knocked over a cup of dry cereal she'd been snacking from earlier. No big deal. But I was tired and frustrated, so I picked her up and moved her to the other side of the bed and said 'Alright! No more playing by the table. You ALWAYS knock something over when you're over there!" She sat quietly where I put her and got this far away look in her eyes. I could just see her processing what I had said
.

I picked her up, put her her in my lap and said 'Come here, I want to tell you something.' At first she wouldn't make eye contact, thinking she was going to be berated some more. I got her to look at me and I told her 'Honey, you DON'T always knock things over. You are careful and responsible. I'm sorry that I said that. It's not true. I was just feeling frustrated.'

She looked sort of hopeful and said 'Hunter knocked over juice at school!' I said 'That's right. We all knock things over sometimes. Me too. You can play by the table anytime you want. Just be careful, okay?' She hugged me and said 'I'm sorry, mama!' I said 'I'm sorry too, Honey'.

What kind of a moron am I to make my two year feel like a failure over some freakin' spilled cheerios?

 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mamajessica
Oh mama, I have done that a few times too. You made it right by talking to her and even let her know that mama's are humans who overreact sometimes too

:

This may come as a surprise, but no one is perfect
. But the mistake you made actually presented an opportunity, and you took it. What you did was provide excellent modeling to your dd. You showed her that even when you're mad, you still love her, and that is a powerful lesson. I grew up in a home where I ceased to exist when my mother was mad at me. She raged at me and ignored me until I crawled on my hands and knees begging for her forgiveness (never mind who was really at fault). I've subsequently spent the better part of my life trying to keep people from getting mad at me. This means I subsume my own needs and wants and do what I think other people want me to do. It means I freak out whenever I get into a confrontation, and have severe anxiety and strange physical reactions (dizziness, etc.). That is NOT a good way to live your life or be happy.

And by apologizing to her, you modeled how to handle things when you make a mistake. Also an incredibly valuable lesson. Instead of getting defensive and getting into an argument and clinging to the idea that you're right no matter what, you showed her how to admit when you're wrong and apologize.

I think it's awesome that you realized the effect you had on her, and took steps to correct your mistake. Think of how many parents don't even notice that kind of thing. They shame their children and tell them what basically amounts to lies (e.g., you ALWAYS this, you NEVER that, etc.), and go on happily with their lives, never the wiser. Meanwhile their kids absorb those lessons, and 30 years later are still trying to figure out why their life is so messed up. But you saw what was happening and did something about it. I think you are a GREAT mama!
 

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The title of your post is completely inaccurate. If you were an idiot, you would have walked away after berating her (your word) and not felt bad about what you did.

A better title to your post would be "Check out the cool lesson I learned and shared with my daughter!"

You made lemonade out of a lemon, my friend. I thank you for sharing this as it is a beautiful reminder of how we can teach our children that we (their parents) are human, that we make mistakes, and that we can admit it and try to make amends.

Thank you very much!
 

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I was just reading in a really mainstream book that it's actually important for us to admit to our little ones that we were wrong, that we made a mistake. They need to know that everyone makes mistakes, even grownups.

Sounds to me like you really covered your tracks on this one, mama. I know you feel bad for having snapped in the first place, but you fixed it as fast as you could in the best possible way. You should be commended!!
 

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Here, here! Good for you for turning it into a lesson of love. I recently learned that people with "issues" with their parents is usually due to the parent's lack of taking responsibility for errors, saying they are sorry or admitting they were wrong. You're doing it just right, mama.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I just wanted to say thanks. You guys are the best.

I still feel like a loser everytime I remember her little crestfallen face
. But thank you for helping me to at least realize that maybe I was able to back up and undo a little of the hurt.



ETA: Since that happened dd has been sooo careful around the table - much more than usual. It made me a little teary eyed this morning the way she was negotiating her way so cautiously, looking over at me to see if I noticed. She wants so much to have my approval
.

I really think if I'd just scolded her and left it alone that she wouldn't be feeling nearly as motivated to please me. She's such a great kid
:.
 
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