If you’ve read my blog for a while, you know that I really ascribe to the “Love and Logic” parenting program. I wish I was a
thousand million times better at it. The following is a conversation where I actually did it perfectly (see my italics for the editor’s notes and L&L descriptions) and, well… why don’t you just read to see my results:
Seth: “Wah wah wah! Gabe is doing blah blah blah same old whine something mean to me!”
Mom: (Displaying empathy, when she really just wants one single solitary morning where the boys do not fight before school) “Oh, that’s no fun! Sorry, bud. What are you going to do about it? (Making the issue HIS problem, not Mom’s.)
Seth: “I don’t know!! I already tried that Ignoring One you always say!”
Mom: (Classic Love and Logic here: helping the child problem solve, but not forcing) “Would you like me to give you some ideas?”
Mom: (As L&L suggests, she throws out some outrageous ones that the child can reject first, because who wants to listen to dumb ol’ mom, anyway?) “Why don’t you go punch Gabe in the stomach!?”
Seth: “No! He would fight me back and he’s better at fighting than me!”
Mom: (Throwing out another TOTALLY outrageous suggestion, while preparing her rational suggestion that Seth go do his dishwasher job and laundry cubbie, so he doesn’t have to be around Gabe) “I know! How about you go cover your ears in TAPE so you don’t have to hear what Gabe says to you!?”
(And here’s where it all breaks down…)
Seth: “Oh! OKAY!”
He returns, 2 minutes later.
Seth: “Mom! That was a great idea! I can’t even hear him in here!”
I give up.
For ideas that actually work…head over to Stie’s How to Tuesday!