Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Children push buttons

Radio  Commentary

Many times something your child does can make you look at the world in a whole different way, or cherish a brief moment in time. It can be magical.
Sometimes, though, your child will know how to push your buttons. This can make you feel embarrassed, frustrated, or angry.
Often, as parents, our first reaction to those situations is to yell. We can’t always help it — that’s how our bodies respond. 
The truth is that yelling is ineffective, and may be modeling for your child how to react in the future. 
At worst, repeated yelling at a child can affect behavior at home and performance at school. It could even cause long-term issues.
Fortunately there are good alternatives.
First, forgive yourself. If you yelled at your child in frustration, just resolve that you won’t continue to do that, and let it go. 
It has always been true that the most important time in a child’s life is the present moment. Parents always make mistakes. Don’t tie yourself in knots for past responses.
Then, be very aware that you are not alone.  It can feel awful if your child throws a tantrum in a store, bites another child, or fights hard with his or her siblings. Children do these things. It doesn’t make you a bad parent.
Most parents go through similar experiences, and you should take comfort in that knowledge.