I believe when parents feel supported and heard they are able to come to parenting more centered.
Nobody can quite prepare you for parenthood. When our kids are born we have expectations as to how our family will interact. What we certainly aren't ready for are the upsets and struggles we encounter with the people we love the most. Peace & Parenting offers everyday tools to help parents navigate the messiness of life and child rearing.
I believe there is freedom in speaking our truth about our challenging parenting experiences—almost a liberation. Making these moments part of the narrative is essential for our generation to move forward in a better way. Why? Two reasons. First, we mustn’t let others believe they are alone in their struggles. Every parent out there has days they feel defeated and alone.
This is the most common question I receive from parents, and it's extremely frustrating when I encounter this issue with my daughters. Defiance is the kind of thing that will bring you to your knees. It’s debilitating, embarrassing and mind-boggling all at the same time.
2. Use empathy, even when you think you can’t...it’s you're saving grace. If we can see things from our child’s point of view, even when you may not agree or feel that they “need” to be upset…they are having feelings and all feelings are valid and important. Conveying the idea that we understand will garner much goodwill with our children.
There is much talk about teaching our kids to self-regulate, use impulse control and learn to react calmly to adversity. This is all well and good but merely talking about it and wanting it to happen certainly doesn't ensure that our children will move through adverse situations with ease because we merely want them to.
I naturally gravitate toward peace and tranquility, so my first reaction when I hear something unsettling from my girls is to say STOP and squash any negative feelings and upsets.
I have never felt more alienated as I did parenting my kids in public or around other adults and family. I clearly remember Esme disobeying me in front of grown-ups. The looks and sideways glances were unreal.