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NO

NO (Photo credit: nathangibbs)

I was surprised at the lack of response to my earlier blog, When Kids Talk Back (or) Learning Assertiveness. Was the title just not ‘catchy’ enough for you? Do not enough of my readers have children or work with children to care? Or did the title simply turn you away in disgust? However, I was quite pleased with the responses that did come in! As suspected, the knee-jerk reaction matched mine. And the end result matched mine as well. (If you missed out on reading the article, click the link above before reading on so I don’t spoil it for you!)

I promised I would do a follow-up post to that one, and here I am, following through with my <gasp> time alone!! 😀

During the days that have followed since reading the article about allowing children to say ‘no’ every now and again, I have tried to keep that in my head. I have discussed it with my husband. I have reminded myself that I was one of those children who thought I had to say ‘how high’ when someone said ‘jump.’ Sometimes I still catch myself reacting that way with my husband. Which makes me feel defensive (and then he looks at me puzzled, of course).

And so, when my darling Edan spouts of ‘no’ to something I really needn’t have even said that word to initially anyway (responding without thinking), I remind myself that it’s okay and move along. On the other hand, I have continued to reinforce respect and obedience during appropriate times, disciplining as necessary for disobedience and disrespect. And I very much so try to pay attention to the times he might have that look on his face that the author of the linked article mentioned: like his dog had just gotten run over; if he gets that look, then I realize the ‘no’ is pretty serious to him and we need to work it out! (Again, if you need to read that article to see what I’m referring to, click the link I’ve provided at the top.)

Has this changed – or is it changing – any of your tactics? What else have you read or implemented lately that you think is helping (or will help)?

_______________________I also just read about a quick method to help end the nagging once the parent has said decided the answer is NO and the persistent child keeps, well, persisting. It goes something like this, if I remember correctly:

Child: May I XYZ?

Parent: No, because ABC

Child: But please?

Parent: Do I look like the kind of parent who would say yes after having said no?

Child: No.

Parent: If s/he says yes explain this is not the case!

Child: But can I please anyway?

Parent: Have I said no already?

Child: Yes.

Parent: Asked and Answered.

And after the first few times of explaining “asked and answered” then it can be a simple ‘no because XYZ’ then ‘asked and answered.’ Haven’t tried this one yet, though. Have you?

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