Looking back

Written by Amie on December 16, 2008 – 2:26 am -

I was reminded today about how much I have changed when it comes to respectful parenting. There was a time when my kids were really young that I felt intense anger when certain things would happen. For instance, if they would fight with each other, I would instantly feel stressed. If I thought they weren’t listening to me, I would feel angry. Sometimes I would find myself losing my temper and yelling at them. When I saw the sadness in their eyes, I knew that something needed to change. I knew that I did not want our relationship to continue this way. I was afraid of the damage that I might be doing to our relationship.

Thank goodness kids are so resilient! I began reading everything I could get my hands on about gentle parenting, and most importantly reading and learning about ways to heal myself. This was the turning point for me. Once I realized that our days went so much better when I was present with my own feelings, things started shifting. Once I focused on myself and how I was being triggered, my healing began. This wasn’t easy because it meant that I needed to really look at why certain behavior triggered my feelings of anger. That meant looking deep inside myself to discover things about myself that I never really acknowledged before.

Once I began healing, things with my kids became more peaceful. I will say that I did most things differently than what the “mainstream” society was doing. This was the key to having a peaceful home. So many of the books out there are based on being in control of our children. This never felt right or good to me. It didn’t feel right to me to think that I should be able to control any other human being. If I would try that route, I always ended up feeling sad later, not to mention how I hurt my children. It would make them push back against me, which made me angry, which made our relationship suffer. So, I knew that approach was not right for us.

There is a belief that if we give kids freedom, they will go wild and do things that aren’t good for them. I have found this to be completely untrue. My kids have complete freedom, and they are a blast to be with, they respect people, they are loving, and we have awesome conversations about things that are real to them. I am only saying this because I want people to know that it is completely possible to have peaceful relationships with their children. It is an incredible thing to have this kind of relationship.

For me, it has been all about healing myself, and also learning that children want to be treated the way that they instinctively know is their birthright, with love and respect. Loving our children for exactly who they are is all part of this. Our children want to be close to us and to be accepted by us, and to be loved for who they are, just like we as adults do! I am not sure why kids are treated differently, they are human, why would it be different for them? Parenting is a partnership between people that love each other, and accept each other for who they are.

Everyone is on a different journey, so this path sometimes takes longer for others to come to. The good thing is, we can start healing and start changing our relationships at any point in this journey.

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Posted in Connection, Healing & personal growth, Kids/teenagers and depression, Mindful/respectful parenting | No Comments »
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