Monday, April 25, 2016

Trying To Keep Your Kids Happy Can Lead To Problems

"I just want my kids to be happy! What can possibly be wrong with that?" Trying to keep your kids happy may actually have the opposite effect.

Accepting the Full Range of Emotions

When you focus on your kids being happy, your unspoken message is that feeling happy is the goal. Emotions like anger, disappointment, frustration, sadness, loneliness and fear should be avoided.

How do you communicate this to your kids? Perhaps you can relate to the dad whose daughter expressed disappointment at having to go to the store with him. Instead of simply acknowledging her disappointment, he promised to get her some candy. She was then happy to go with him.

Maybe you’ve been in a situation like Erin’s whose son loves playing video games. When she tells him it’s time to do something else, he gets angry so she often lets him play a little longer. Even though Erin feels he is spending too much time on video games, she hates dealing with his crankiness when it’s time to turn it off.

Another mom described her son’s limited food preferences. He likes pizza, pasta and hamburgers so that’s what he has for dinner every night. While she knows this isn’t the healthiest diet, it keeps him happy.

When you strive to keep your kids happy, they miss out on learning to handle their more difficult emotions. You may also be sacrificing what is healthy for them in the long term for short term happiness.

Encouraging Self-Centered Focus

Loving parents can unintentionally raise self-centered, unhappy children. How does this happen? One way it happens is when parents continually give their children the message that the children's needs, desires and happiness are superior over anyone else's. These children grow up learning to focus on themselves, not others.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Shunning Classmates Who Behave Poorly Versus Setting Stronger Boundaries

There are kids in every class who struggle more than their peers to behave appropriately. In preschool these are the kids that turn to biting, pushing and hitting to communicate. By the time they are in grade school, their inappropriate behavior often leaves them isolated by their classmates.

There are many reasons kids may lag in developing interpersonal skills. It may be due to growing up in a traumatic environment, having sensory integration issues, being anxious or some other factors.

Kicking Out The Troublemaker Or Helping The Child Grow

A cooperative preschool in Seattle had a boy who regularly hurt other kids. In his article "I Won’t Hurt You", Teacher Tom wrote about his school’s response to this boy and his family. He described “a five-year-old boy in class named ‘Jerry’ who had been diagnosed with sensory integration issues, the kind that caused him to at least once a day, often more, hurt classmates by pouncing on, hitting, or biting them. He was not ‘being mean’ and it was not done in anger, but rather as an act of pure, uncensored impulse.”

Teacher Tom overheard some boys planning to no longer play with Jerry. While this is a natural consequence, Teacher Tom felt it “would result in a kind of cruelty that would do little more than to make a young, confused child even more confused.”

Parents in this cooperative preschool help in the classroom so they saw the problems with Jerry’s behavior. At a parent meeting, some parents brought up the idea of asking Jerry’s family to leave the school. Other parents declared they would also leave if Jerry’s family was asked to leave. So instead they decided to work together to help Jerry.

How did they adjust their behavior to help Jerry improve his behavior?

(finish reading article on PricelessParenting.com)

Monday, January 18, 2016

Parenting is a Sacred Responsibility

You are responsible for the nurturing your child's tender soul. You have the power to crush it or help it soar.

If you try to make your children follow the same path you followed, you will crush their souls. Instead, gather the courage to allow them to follow their own path. It's the only way they'll find true happiness and reach their greatest height.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Getting Kids To Listen To You

My kids don’t listen to me! That’s the number one parenting challenge mentioned by parents who complete a Priceless Parenting quiz.

Although different words are used to describe the problem, most say something like “Getting the kids to listen to me and do what I’ve asked the first time.” When you talk about your kids listening to you, it’s more than just being able to parrot back what you said.

Listening is an active process which involves:
  • Paying attention to what is being said
  • Observing the tone of voice and gestures
  • Thinking about what is being communicated
  • Responding

When your kids are listening to you, they understand what you are communicating. Whether they respond as you would like is another matter!

Understanding Who Controls Listening

If you try to force your kids to listen to you and obey your request, you’ve set yourself up for a power struggle. You may say to yourself “Well I’m the parent! My kids should listen to me and do what I ask the first time I ask!”

(finish reading the article on PricelessParenting.com)

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Brushing Up On Kids' Manners

Could your kids use a little brushing up on their manners? Now is the ideal time to help your kids get their manners in shape before all the holiday gatherings. Do I Have to Say Hello? Aunt Delia's Manners Quiz for Kids and Their Grownups provides a fun way to review manners.

The quizzes have some clearly incorrect answers that will have your kids laughing! The art plus the writing makes for an enjoyable experience learning about good manners.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Talking to Kids About Porn Problems

Kids are likely to be exposed to porn on the internet before they are 12-years-old. It's important for you to talk to your kids about porn. Discuss your feelings about porn along with your concerns like addiction to viewing porn, objectifying women, portraying violence towards women and the link to trafficking girls for sex.

The book Good Pictures Bad Pictures is a book you can read together with your 6 to 13-year-olds. Sexploitation: Helping Kids Develop Healthy Sexuality in a Porn-Driven World will help you talk to your teens.

   

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Protecting Your Kids From Sexual Abuse

Kids who experience sexual abuse are traumatized in ways that can take years or even decades to overcome. This is why you want to do everything you possibly can to prevent this tragedy.

Understanding Likely Perpetrators

Before you can effectively protect your kids, it’s helpful to know some facts. How likely are they to be sexually abused? Who is most likely to be a perpetrator? What makes children more likely to become victims?

According to research presented on Darkness to Light,

  • 10% of children in the U.S. are sexually abused by the time they are 18.
  • Over 90% of the time the perpetrator is someone known by the child or family.
  • Nearly 40% are abused by older or larger children.

While it might feel better to think that only a stranger would sexually abuse your child, nine times out of ten it’s someone you know. The vast majority of abuse occurs when the perpetrator and the child are alone together. Keeping this in mind can help you make wise choices about who is left alone with your children.

If you are a mom who does not live with your kids’ father, you need to be especially careful about any boyfriends you bring home. Men who are not related to the children are far more likely to sexually abuse them.
warning sign of sexual abuse

Older Kids Abusing Younger Kids

How about the fact that 40% of sexual abuse is caused by older or larger children? It’s important to realize that the abuser is not always an adult. This puts a different twist on keeping your kids safe.

(finish reading the rest of the article on PricelessParenting.com)