06-29-2017 05:23 PM - last edited on 07-06-2017 02:05 PM by Ngaio-RO
After yelling at my daughter earlier in the week, I was feeling really guilty and annoyed with myself initially. I've learnt so much over the years, the biggest thing being to stay calm, don't yell and shout, and model the behaviours I want to see in my 15 year old daughter.
It's so important though that we show ourselves compassion and forgive our mistakes, just as we forgive our kids for theirs. In our little family, we both have mental health issues, so our focus is on the repair if there's been any kind of blow up. When things are settled, we come together and verbalise and apologise for our mistakes. We talk about what was happening for us at the time, and how the argument made us feel. And we commit to our doing our best next time. I needed to instigate these apologies and talks to begin with. Being able to acknowledge and own our mistakes and say sorry, is a huge lesson we can teach our kids.
I've found that positives can come out of the negatives in these situations, as my daughter will now come and say sorry for her specific behaviours if she has lost it at me about something. Modelling does work, even if we get it wrong at times.
I'm interested to hear how other parents deal, and how you get back on track again.
06-29-2017 07:17 PM
Yes totally @taokat. I think it's important to recognise sometimes human-being first, parent second. Nobody is perfect, the fact you are so self aware around the raising of your voice is pretty wonderful in itself, and I am sure your daughter is growing into a stellar human being as a result of your focus on repair and acknowledging our mistakes.
There's a family therapist who runs a blog called imperfect families - there's a pretty decent article on these sort of confrontations with adolescents/kids here
06-29-2017 07:38 PM
Yes, I thought it's an important one because we are human, and we all have our bad days. I used to give myself a really hard time "because I knew better", but have realised with healthy repair it's not actually a complete failure in positive parenting.
I think as parents we can be very hard on ourselves, and I'd like other parents to be able to give perceived failings a positive spin too.
Thank you for your kind words. My daughter is amazing (bias, none) and this year she just seems to have grown so much, it's incredible. I think she'll come out the other end of 'teenagerhood' okay
I'll check out that blog, it sounds like it will be a good read. Thank you for the link
06-30-2017 12:29 PM
07-01-2017 05:48 PM
I find it hard too @taokat. Sometimes I'm really tired, and stressed....and it can be hard to stay positive and calm and wise!! Sometimes I catch myself before it goes to far, and I'll pull out for 10 mins or so, gather my strength, and try again.
Other times I don't pull out, and I'll speak too harshly. It is hard then to come back and say "I'm sorry", but I try. I hope my son sees that I'm trying!!
I have noticed a few times when he has apologised to me for his blow-ups, so I'm hoping the lesson is getting through. So, yeah, I agree with you.
As parents we just have to keep trying, and hope we get it right before they leave home!
07-01-2017 08:41 PM
Hey @Schooner, Yep! Being tired and stressed ourselves makes it so much harder to keep our cool and be the best parent we can be!
I used to struggle so much with apologising, because I kept thinking that my daughter would just see it as 'well I was right and you were the one who messed up', but when she started taking responsibility for her behaviours, it showed me that wasn't the message she was getting.
For your son to apologise to you I think is awesome and shows he has gotten the lesson. High five!!
Haha, love your comment about us hoping to get it right before they leave home! One foot in front of the other...
Thank you for sharing
07-02-2017 09:54 AM
Hi all , I agree with you all , and have struggled with " shouting " too . I came from a family where my Dad would shout us down . We were not ever allowed to have our own opinions or perspective and when you made a mistake or he was angry we copped it . My brothers got it worse than me . Being hit for doing the wrong thing , or just because he was frustrated . My Dad NEVER apologised .
I have since learned about myself that I am hyper sensitive to my husbands interaction with my son , as a result of the resentment I unknowingly carried particularly about my brothers treatment .
I have learned to accept that my husbands relationship with our son is far richer and a million times more healthy than my or my brothers relationship with my dad and it can weather some storms . My son is confident in our love for him and he spends a lot if quality time with my husband so this is a buffer to the times when my husband gets annoyed , angry or irritated and shouts ( never hits ) My husband and I can also easily say we are sorry and that is the crux of what we have all been talking about here isn't it !!
We always have a debrief after a blow up and my kids are always entitled to their anger and their frustration . My kids can even say to their Dad . " Dad you're being an **bleep** ! " Something that would have sent my own Dad through the roof and us running for cover as he " demanded " respect rather than modelled it in his behaviours as a parent .
I think that if we can say , despite our flaws we are always " evolving " as parents and we have learned huge lessons from our own childhood that we try consciously not to repeat then we are good enough !! Not perfect but we are loved and respected - most of the time ! 😜
07-02-2017 12:07 PM
Hi @motherbear, thank you, you brought up a very real dimension to our parenting, which is how we were parented. It is natural for us to either follow in their footsteps as that's the way we have been taught, or be very sensitive to those behaviours ourselves.
I've been known to say to my daughter (gulp) that 'if I spoke like that to my mum she'd have knocked my block off!.' There was no tolerance for anger or upset from us growing up, and I spent a lot of my teenage years especially being scowled down upon and ignored, which was my punishment for being me. We were brought up with the wooden spoon, and very different rules for my brother and me.
Despite vowing to do things very differently I was horrified to see my mother coming out in my parenting style, and to be honest I have to make a really concerted effort to not ignore my daughter if I'm really upset with her. Passive aggressive. But then she wasn't as tough as her mother had been with them. I think with each generation we make changes.
As you say with your son and your husband, things are very different between myself and my daughter, but I'm sensitive to and very conscious of my own behaviours.
Yes, saying sorry is the crux I think parents are coming to realise, acknowledge and implement, which is awesome. I just love your last 3 lines in your comment and couldn't agree more with you!