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Sunday, Dec. 08, 2013 - 7:18 a.m.

The problem with parenting mindfully is that you have an opinion about every little thing. And to others it seems like you're trying to micromanage for it's own sake, rather than because you notice how things they do potentially undermine your own approach.

I don't do punishment. I am trying very hard not to use shame, either.

We're having a hard time with the pushing and yelling. We've tried taking away toys if she pushes because of a toy. I don't think that's especially worked. I find she gets too distracted by her resentment about having her toy confiscated to focus on the moral lesson. So now I am trying to stay calm, tell her other thigs she can do when she has the urge to push someone, and tell her to come to me for help. I reassure her that I know se has a kind, good heart. Plus repeating messages about compassion and empathy for others at every opportunity.

It's slow going.

We used rewards for potty training and it worked. But I really don't want her treatment of others to be rewards-based. I want her to have a solid foundation of sincere empathy.

Ok. Elf on shelf. Mil has purchased it for our stay. I have inquired as to how she plans to use it. As I understand it, though, the usual way is to say it reports back to Santa about behavior. My thoughts: 1. That's creepy. Kinda like a little piece of soviet Russia, in your home for the holiday. 2. It's disingenuous, since the kids will be getting their crapton of gifts either way. 3. But most importantly, it uses manipulation in a way that undermines my approach.

Well, let's see what she plans to do with it.

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