This article is part of an editorial series, “Discipline Discussion” brought to you by Fort Worth Moms. Join our subscriber list so you don’t miss a moment of “Discipline Discussions” and all Fort Worth Moms has to offer throughout the year.
Being the Hard-Headed Child
Growing up, even after I grew out of my toddler years, I was very hard-headed. In my defense, my parents and all of my family were, too. I was only doing what I saw around me.
However, I was punished for portraying the same characteristics and actions that my family had. I would get smacked upside the head, popped on the mouth, and whopped on the butt just for doing the same things my family did.
As a child, I didn’t understand how that behavior was wrong. My family was doing it, why couldn’t I? So I just kept doing it because they kept doing it.
Parenting the Hard-Headed Child
Now that I’m a mama to a hard-headed child, I get why my parents were always so frustrated with me.
However, I chose not to keep doing things the way they were. When my daughter does something I think is inappropriate, I stop and think about WHY she’s doing this thing. Is it something I did? Something my husband did? Or was it something she saw another kid do?
I can’t control other kids, but I can control my actions and tell my husband how his actions are affecting our daughter and make a change.
If my daughter’s actions make me want to punish her, but it’s caused by her simply watching me, why would I punish her? I need to change my own behavior if I want her to change hers.
Once I know what caused it and what I need her to do, I talk to her about it. Granted, it’s not always in the softest tone of voice because my voice isn’t soft, especially when I’m upset, but I don’t belittle her or make her feel stupid or mean or bad just for doing the things she’s seen me do.
Yes, It’s Exhausting
Constantly having to stop and think and control your actions can be very tiring. Mamas already have so much on our plate that changing our behavior feels like the straw that broke the camel’s back.
It takes a lot of mental, emotional, and physical work to fight every instinct in your body.
But it is so worth it. I know I say that about a lot of things, but it’s true.
Watching your little person learn from you is amazing. Watching your little person watch you change your behavior and teaching them that people are always growing and changing and learning is just spectacular!
Before you know it, your baby isn’t a baby any more but an amazing little kid that continues to grow and inspire their peers.
Until my baby gets to that point, this mama is going to be surviving on coffee and journaling her thoughts and frustrations and bettering herself for her kids.