Immediately, I found myself snooping into their activities and several times I wanted to step in a correct Jack as he would tell Kyle what he could and could not play with. I felt the need to show him how to be a good host and it was killing me to hear him occasionally say things that I thought might make Kyle feel anything but completely welcomed.
After Kyle left I began questioning if I should have stepped in more or just let them work things out more. It really wasn't anything big at all, but it wasn't perfect. I called my wonderful sister in law to discuss how we as mom's are supposed to handle this new freedom of our children's and she gave me great advice about letting the kids work it out during the moment and then saving my teaching time for before bed. We laughed at how we are so much harder on our first borns and how we hoped that one day they wouldn't hold that against us. That prompted her to share a piece of literature with me that I thought was really interesting and worth sharing with you.
5 Best and Worst Things to Say to Your Kids:
1. "Act Your Age"- Because you are issuing a blanket criticism instead of acknowledging why they may have been acting that way.
2. "I Was Only Teasing"- You should never disguise insults with humor or teach your child to. If you don't mean it, don't say it.
3. "Why can't you be more like your sister (or brother)"- Feeds sibling rivalry and makes them feel like 2nd class.
4. "Don't run or you will fall"- You don't want to communicate that you expect him to fail. Give more specifics like "your shoe laces are untied". I think this can be viewed in a much bigger picture too.
5. "What did I just tell you?"- Communicates that they are too stupid to remember and then if they do answer, it is viewed as sarcasm. Choose your words better and communicate why you are frustrated.
If you felt convicted by these, trust me, you are not alone!
1. "Please make a decision"- communicates that they are responsible for their own actions
2. "I love you but I don't like that behavior"- separate the deed from the doer
3. "I want you to help me solve my problem"- he sees that his input is invited and is less likely to see you as his adversary. This was advised too for when you want your child to quit something that is annoying you.
4. "What did you really want to tell her"- A redirection for inappropriate reactions to conflict. Helps them develop an emotional language.
5. "Different people have different needs"- helps you deal with the complaints of lack of fairness.
TODAY'S SIDE NOTE:
Ruthie and I got away today to my aunt and uncle's house on the lake and of course we worked in a little photo shoot. Tomorrow we are going to feed the ducks and then go into town for some shopping.