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how would you deal with this


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  #1  
April 13th, 2009, 02:16 PM
KimberlyD0
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My 3.5 year old is turning into a teen..

She has an attitude like no other. She isn't spoiled. We have high expectations for her behavior and generally its not an issue. The last month or so though she suddenly has a huge attitude.

She's still doing what she should, but we have to be stronger handed about it. When we ask her to do something its always met with resistence now. She's even become mouthy. I wont stand for disrespect, attitude, or mouthyness and its gratting on my last nurve.

So far I've delt with it with lost privliges, timeouts, and a stern talking to. DH's approch is more of avoidence, he's just stopped asking her to do things he knows she's going to fight.

As a result I am now the "mean parent"

Kayla has started to say things like
"your a mean mommy"
"I don't like you"
or even "I hate you"

I know she doesn't fully understand what she is saying or how much it hurts, but its brakeing my heart to hear.

Anyone have any advice? or know how long this faze will last? I've had enough..
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  #2  
April 13th, 2009, 08:32 PM
**Jenn**'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: May 2005
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I think it must be the age. Whoever came up with the term "terrible two's" never had a three year old!

I am like you that I just won't stand for talking back, attitude, and being disrespectful. I've dealt with too many children over the years to stand for it with my own.

I'm going through the same thing with Liam and he turned 3 at the end of December. Its been going on a few months but it is getting better. Spending more one on one time with him has helped his behavior. First we try talking to him but sometimes that just escalates the situation and we have to resort to time out. What I've gotten into the habit of doing is talking with him in the morning when he's getting dressed. I'll tell him how we need to do "good listening" today and all the fun things we're going to do. I also will tell him that it makes me sad (which it really does) when he doesn't listen/talks back/argues/etc. because I know he can behave so much better. He doesn't like us to be sad and that usually gets through to him. Now when he starts giving a hard time usually all I have to say is "What did I say about listening?" and he turns his attitude around. Of course we still have our off days but for the most part things are improving. I can see that a lot of times its not just him being frustrated or tired or wanting attention but seeing how far he can push the envelope with me. Because he'll say something and look at me like what are you going to do now? Things will get better as long as you stay consistent with her.
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  #3  
April 14th, 2009, 06:36 AM
broxi3781's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I dont know where the term terrible twos came from either, its definately worse at 3 or 4 when they are questioning their independence and your authority.
I know the I hate you bit is rough, it does seem to be a girl thing, it is quite normal.
And just wait until 13!
But we have had problems with Billy lately too ad I have found one on one time helps too.
Also I dont hear people who arn't talking nicely. I just say I cant hear you right now, if you want to talk nicely, then I will listen. I would expect at least one screaming shouting bit as they think if they get loud enough you will hear, but eventually they usually catch on.
BUt whatever approach you take, time out, time in, selective ignoring, removal of privilages etc... as long as you keep calm and stay consistent, it will pass ( at least for another 9 or 10 years) I do think 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 is the mini teens and in fact I know there are more hormonal changes at this time then any other time except the teens. Also i may be over generalising here, but it seems to me they are often more obnoxious to the same sex parent, both at this age an in the teens.
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  #4  
April 14th, 2009, 07:10 AM
10x_A_Mommy's Avatar Plus 1 :)
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It will pass...................and then it will come back again lol. I'm still trying to figure out how to deal with my teen who has become a teen lol. And now I have to deal with her PMS on top of the rest of the teen attitude. Oh so fun.
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  #5  
April 14th, 2009, 08:04 AM
Sophia1Day
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My family dynamic is very different then yours, but I will share with you how we would deal with that in our family. If something sounds workable for your family that's wonderful, if not it's okay to just disregard what you don't feel would work for your family. Ultimately, you know what is best for your family.

First, I would look into 3.5 year old development. Is this common for most 3.5 year olds, and if so, why? Knowing why would help me decide how best to approach it. I would consider that my child is just learning different ways to talk (ton of voice) and different things to say (to express feelings) . This does not "excuse" what they are doing, but it helps to look at it as a teaching/learning opportunity instead of a disciplinary problem. It is human nature to want to fit in and be accepted, children are born with this desire. If they see others talking rudely (sibling, parents, other children, kids on TV) that is one reason they may start doing it. I think by 3.5 most children have experienced this in one way or another - even if it's not directed towards another person. It could be a tone of voice they heard used talking about something that frustrated their parents, or an overheard conversation. I would ask "how do I sound when I am angry? when I "vent" to my husband or friend on the phone, do I have a similar tone? have I ever said I hated anything? All that aside, it's still pretty developmentally appropriate to explore different tones of voices and the reaction they get - it also helps the child learn if they are expressing themselves clearly - perhaps when my child talks that way she feels her annoyance has been conveyed because she sees I am now annoyed too. It would help to teach that she does not need to make another person feel hurt to express her own hurt or for her hurt to be heard. I really think time in helps to naturally accomplish this. It is okay to have high expectations for your child. In my family what we have are realistic expectations, and with that, acceptance of the child being who they are in that moment. Letting the child self determine expectations. What does my child think they are capable of? Perhaps it may be more then I expect. Perhaps it may be less. I do not impose my expectations on my children.

I try to steer clear from thinking "I wont stand for that" even when something is on my last nerve. Again, just my family dynamics, I find that resistance is caused by resistance. IfI ask my child to do something different then what she wants to do, then I am resisting her. Resistance is met with resistance. Power Struggle ensues. Instead we look for solutions that will make everyone happy, and respects everyones underlying wants and needs. If you would like to share an example of something she is resisting you about doing, and are interested in how that would play it in my home, I would be more then glad to share. I realize though, that I am operating on a completely different dynamic and respect your family is different from my own, so what works great for me may sound unacceptable to you. That's fine - my way is not THE way, its the way for my family, and I hope you understand I am only speaking about how I would deal with this, as you asked, and not saying how I think you should deal with it, because that is up to you.

When something gets on my last nerve, I ask why. Why is this upsetting to me? Example is, one day I find my children drawing with chalk all over the furniture and seeing the mess I felt very angry! Then I realize the reason why I was angry is because I saw drawing all over the house, it doesn't look nice to me. BUT it looks nice to them. AND it washes up easily. Now, I leave the chalk where the kids can draw on the house anytime they want, and we wipe it up together when they are done. I can now see it as a beautiful artistic expression. What is more important - no chalk on the house, or my children being able to express themselves artistically? Walls can be repainted, chalk can be wiped away, and so. Childhood can not be relived. I also find having the freedom to express themselves, they "get it out of their system" so I'm not particularly concerned with them becoming future graffiti artists - as those are generally children who are trying to rebel, and they will not see drawing on walls as rebelling, but at an older age will realize that its undesired in public and will respect that because they feel embraced by family and society and that is what all people want from birth. They only act out against societal norms when they don't feel accepted. I accept my children as they are, and as they get older they learn what these societal norms are and respect them. Alternately, I wouldn't mind putting a concrete slab in my backyard for my kids to spray paint if they had a desire to graffiti for artistic reasons. Just an example I am throwing out there.

When your child says things that are hurtful, do not take it personally. I know its hard to do, but remember she is 3.5 ... This may be hard to remember since she seems to bright - but just because a child is very bright, and perhaps even mature for their age in some ways - they are still at the emotional development stages of a 3.5 year old. Sometimes I lose sight of that with my own children.

My children have never said they hated me, yet. If they did though I would say "You hate me right now. You are so mad at me. I still love you though, and I'm available if you need to talk"

As for asking them to do something, and them not doing it, I usually look at why my children don't want to be helpful, and I am also willing to accept them not wanting to be helpful. Say that I say "I would like some help clearing the table" and they don't help. Well, maybe they are more into what they are doing. So what if I clear the table myself. Does that mean they are 'ungrateful' - not at all. If I don't demand helpfulness I get more helpfulness that occurs without coercion (fear of punishment or loss of acceptance) My children can turn down my request for help. I am the one who wants the table cleared, so I am okay clearing it. That does not make me their slave. Yes, they ate off the plate. They wanted dinner. I want the table clear, so I will clear it. Often, I don't even have to ask, they WANT to help. They want to help me because I help them. They want to help because it is their choice to help, not because if they help I will accept them or if they don't help they will get in trouble. I understand some people feel children should "obey", but I would say we seek more cooperation in our family then compliance/obedience. It's a different dynamic as I said. My children help me just as much... perhaps more? ... as I helped my own mother (who was more for compliance/obedience) only this has been achieved without demanding it because "I'm the mom" and without being strong handed or being in a power struggle. My children know I respect their choice to be their own person, separate from me. They can have their own needs and desires and they can say "no" just as much as I can say "no" but they can say no to what effects their bodies, not what effects mine (they can say no they don't want to eat, but they cant say no mommy you cant eat) The older kids don't have a problem with peer pressure because of this. They aren't seeking an outside source of acceptance, not have they learned to be obedient just because someone has determined they have the right. (Parents often feel they have the right to determine their child. People who use peer pressure usually feel they have that same right - they are either trying to do what their parents do to them, or they are complying to the same kind of behavior their parents used with them - this is why there are so many victim/bully relationships - not saying that parents are bullies or children are victims - just that the sense of "I am the parent, you must do what I say" sends another message that *I* choose not to send to *my* kids, and my kids are just as safe and cooperative, perhaps more so because they have learned to make good choices for *themselves* even when I am not there. Instead of me making the good choices for them, and someone else making choices for them when I am not there. Self control is a wonderful quality - controlling others is not - control in the parent child relationship is usually created by the mindset that the child must obey BECAUSE they are the child and the other person is the parent - or because they want to be rewarded or avoid punishment. There are many forms of control, none of which seem necessary of healthy for my family. The mindset you "must control your child or you are permissive" just has not been true in my life. I am neither permissive, nor do I see a need to control my children. I also do not think I am lucky they have self control or that they make good choices - of coures they make good choices, all children will make good choices when they know what they are and are free to do so of their own will. A child however, will be willing to make a bad choice to assert themselves and feel in control of themselves if they feel controlled by another person. One would rather make a choice that is bad for them then be forced to take the choice that is good for them. However, if they know which choice is good *for them* and which is not, and are free to choose, they will choose what is best for them. This is really just trust I had in my baby that has grown as they have grown and it works for us.

An an aside, another thing I do when my children talk to me in a demanding voice is tell them "I don't like being talked to that way. I like to be asked nicely" This almost always works at first, and with time works every time, and with more time doesn't even need to be said. I am not demanding they talk to me nicely (that would be silly, because why would I demand them not to be demanding - that's like hitting them and saying "dont hit") Children do well when they can. I trust this. My children know their wants and needs can be met (underlying wants and needs, not necessarily what we see on the surface) and they know no matter what they say I will listen and consider. So they know they can talk to me nicely when they need something - but the youngers ones are still exploring how different tones of voice work, and they have also heard me be rude when I'm angry - this is something I need to work on. Working on myself will inspire them to work on themselves. I don't need to impose upon them. Generally the things that really get under my skin with my children are ugly parts within myself that need to be dealt with more so then they need to be dealt with. For them its exploration. For me, its a learned behavior I need to change in myself. The other day my son spoke rudely to my friend and I told him "Please do not talk to my friend that way. She is important to me, and I know she is important to me to. We need to talk kindly to others." As he gets older, as with my other children, I will talk to him about why we should be kind to others even if we DONT love them or they arent important to us. They also know how to be kind to someone who isn't being kind to them, from me modeling this. My children, when they continue to be rude and demanding I will say "I will help you even though you are continuing to be unkind to me, because I am being gracious right now" and I have seen even my toddler be kind to my son when my son is not being kind to her. Does that mean she always wants to be around him when he is unkind? No, of course not, she's not a doormat. And neither am I, though I suppose it may sound that way from my post hehehe. There are times that I do not feel like helping my children, but I will because they are asking nicely. In those times I will say, if they arent asking nicely, "I don't feel like helping right now" Perhaps though, they then ask kindly and because they asked kindly I feel like helping. or perhaps I still don't feel like helping. If I feel like helping though, I feel like being helpful regardless of the other person. I live peacefully with my children and with the world. I can control myself without controlling those around me. I am in control of my destiny, of my happiness. I understand the fears in parenting this way, but my children have all learned to be well mannered. They have all learned that it is better to talk kindly to someone then unkindly. They prefer to be kind because it feels good to be kind, not because it gets them what they want. They also realize that sometimes not being kind to someone can get in the way of getting you what you need. And finally, they have learned that if they want to be helpful/kind, they can be helpful/kind regardless of how the other person is acting.

Well, thats our family dynamics, and I understand its very different then what you do now, so it may not sound good to you or feel comfortable for you. I understand why some people wouldn't feel comfortable with this kind of parenting - because it does mean that sometimes the adult is not going to "get their way" as in, I want my kids to pick up their toys, and they don't want to, since I won't force them, then I am not going to get my way. Sometimes that is hard. At the same time, if I make them do it then they are not getting their own way, AND they are losing something at the same time. I don't lose anything by noy getting my own way. I still have control over my own body. I dont feel I have lost anyone's love or acceptance. I am not in fear. For a child to be forced to clean up means they have lost control over their bodies, feel their parents love is conditional, or fear getting punished. I rather just clean up the toys myself, model cleaning. If I don't like cleaning up toys I will explain to my children since I am the one who takes care of the toys and picks them up I don't want to keep as many toys, and let them pick the ones they really do want to keep. Or perhaps they don't like picking up toys every day, and are willing to take turns cleaning up all the toys instead of everyone doing it every day.... Or come up with some other solution - maybe they have some ideas I haven't thought of! I really don't feel parent should get what they want just because they are the parent. (cases of safety are different, because why your child may want to touch the stove, you know their underlying desire would be not to get burned if they know it would burn and what a burn feels like - so in this way you can respect your child's underlying desire, and find another way to teach them about hot) This works for us, and I am sure you will find something to work for you as well!

Again I can't help but plug this website: www.thework.com. If the thoughts you expressed were playing through my own mind I would think:

Initial thoughts:
My child is being rude.
I won't stand for this.
MY child is resisting me.
My child should obey me.

Turn it Around:
My child is not rude. (how can this be true - exploring tone of voice, they don't know what rude means, they aren't intending to be rude)
I am rude ( how can this be true? is she annoyed and expressing that in the same tone of voice I usually use?)

I will stand for this (I can accept my child doesn't do everything I want her to because she is her own person and this is a *good* thing)
My child should not stand for this (My child is right in not stopping what she is doing to do what I tell her - how can this be true? As much as my child wants to do what she is doing I want her to do something else - what makes me so much more important then my child that my desire is more valid then hers?)

My child is not resisting me (how cna this be true? My child is resisting clearing the table - not me personally)
I am resisting my child (how can this be true? MY child wants to play with her toys and I am resisting her desire to do so)

My child should not obey me.
I should obey my child.
My child should obey herself.
(how can this be true? what is obedience - what would it mean if my child was obedient to any other adult? why do I think my child should obey me. Why does my child want to obey themselves. What would it mean if my child had respect for herself and her needs. What would it mean for my child to be in control of herself)


Not all of these thoughts are the right thoughts. Sometimes its best to look at a though, and ask who you would be without it.

"My child should obey me"

Who would I be without that thought?
What would my relationship be like with my child without that thought?
Who would my child be without that thought?

And all this aside - this does not mean you cater to your child as your child runs amok with no structure or boundaries. It's just a different dynamic. The goal is cooperation instead of compliance. Your methods change, your approach changes, your perspective changes. Lifes goal becomes to live peacefully with everyone around you, to be in control of your own life without controlling those around you. Of course you still teach your child. You still keep your child safe - you could also teach a neighbor, and keep them safe - its all about that 7 letter word: R E S P E C T, and in my opinion, yes child deserve it, and as they become adults they learn how to use it with others from watching it be used with them and those around them, and with being taught how they can choose to use it. My children are in charge of who they will become. I understand how some people would not be okay with this. I give them the information they need. I trust they will do good, because children do good when they can... people do well when they can. Trust, Love, Respect, Happiness, Self Control - these are the gifts I give my children, these are the gifts I model for them, and since they are such beautiful gifts that appeal to every one I have known so far, these are the gifts my children gladly accept and embrace.

I realize the concept to meeting all underlying needs AND wants is not widely accepted. It does not mean we get all of our surface desires. As an adult, we can find happiness if we granted all of our own underlying wants. This doesn't mean we would be happy is only we had a bigger house. This means that we can look at why we want a bigger house, and problem solve a way to meet that UNDERLYING desire. I mean, unless you can afford the bigger house, that could be an option too. We can do the same with our children.

As they say "Change the things you can change, accept the things you cannot". As it turns out, we can change a lot more then we think. An example of that quote would be it is raining. You cannot change the rain. What you can change, is what you decide to do because it is raining. Do you put on some rain gear and go out anyway? Do you sip hot cocoa and listen to the rythym of the rain? Stay in and do quiet activities. Can you be happy even though it is raining, when you really didn't want it to rain? Yes, you can. accepting the rain does not mean accepting misery because its not what you wanted. Ultimately, while you may be able to coerce your child through fear, punishment, manipulation, etc - you cannot truly control them, they are another person. We can accept that. We can also teach our children to accept that in their relationships with others and the world.

There are a few things I Alfie Kohn has said that I love.

One is that the solution to a black and white problem isn't always gray... sometimes it may be more like orange. (example: child wants to eat the toilet - meeting half way mat be disinfecting the toilet so you can be happy there are no germs and child can be happy they are eating the toilet - thats one option, but another solution might not be "gray" like that... it might be orange - it might be giving your child a clean big smooth cold stone to chew on, because the desire to mouth the toilet was based on an underlying desire to chew on something hard, cold, and smooth.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 14th, 2009 at 09:21 AM.
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  #6  
April 14th, 2009, 08:52 PM
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I hope no one minds me putting my $0.02 in but I have a few questions.

I am totally on board with the AP thing for babies but logically in my mind it begins to break down when I see posts like this.

For me, when you're talking a baby, there is no difference between wants and needs. If a baby "wants" to be held, I see that as a very important need that must be met. It's totally crystal clear.

But as a child grows up, there will be times in their life where their wants and needs will diverge. In the above method of parenting, how does a child learn that you don't always get what you want, you can't always do what you want to do and sometimes you have to do things you don't like in order to get to things you DO like? I feel this is extremely important for kids to learn - at a developmentally appropriate time of course, and I guess there might be some discussion about when is appropriate. I taught a freshman college course when I was in grad school and the number of young adults who have never learned that they don't necessarily get what they want just because they want it and who feel like they don't need to work to earn their grades was scary. I believe this starts in the home and although chores are not fun, it's important to pitch in and help around the house (again in a developmentally appropriate way). If they don't feel like helping and I teach them that they never have to do anything they don't feel like doing, I am not sure I am doing them any favors. It's not about obedience per se but instilling a sense of responsibility.

I am not looking to argue, just to understand. thanks
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  #7  
April 15th, 2009, 05:55 AM
Sophia1Day
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I felt I did explain this, but I will try to clarify. And also add, that my way of life is more consensual then AP, though in the baby stage you would call what I do AP and I just carry on through life. Why are babies wants/needs important, and adults wants/needs important - but not in between? Do I give everything to my child that they want? On the surface no. They know I cannot stop the rain, they know I cannot control the way other children or adults interact with them, etc. I look for the underlying causes of their desires. If my child desired something outlandish, I would look at the reason why they felt they needed such an important materialistic thing. Is it because another child they know has it? Is it because they are interested in a "subject" and think they need this to study that? Is it because they need/want something new and exciting to do? Is it because what they REALLY need is human connection and that hasn't been provided to the extent they need? My children do not get all their "surface" desires, but anything underlying we find a way to meet. They learn to be leaders and problem solvers, but they also learn to accept the things they cannot change and deal with disappointment. They deal with disappointment and then move on and find ways they can be happy and and peace despite the circumstances. They learn there are choices in life, and even if we don't choose to take those choices, those choices are still available and we are in control of our own destiny. It puts responsibility where it belongs, on the individual person. Of course I am here to guide and protect them, and also they are in my life, and so my needs are important and must be met as well. They learn how to live peacefully with the people around them. They learn that their happiness is not dependent on what everyone else is doing, but on what THEY do. I am not saying everyone will be comfortable with this, but I have watched many children, including my own, grow up with this and they have no problems. I am always complimented on how "well behaved" they are to which I always say, compliment my children, I do not take credit for their success. I do not need to. I have my own success to take credit for. They are not trophies of mine to "prove" to society "look! I'm not permissive! I'm a good parent!" I dont need a pat on the back. My only goal is their own happiness, and naturally they will not be happy if they cannot "mesh with society" so to speak so it has never been a problem. They know they can touch anything they can reach in our home - but when we go to another persons house they keep their hands to themselves - I never taught them this - children are smart. They are well mannered and kind, as I am well mannered and kind with them. They are respectful as I am respectful with them. They solve problems with themselves and others, as I solve problems with them and others. As I said, you change what you cannot change, and accept what you cannot. Underlying needs and desires are very different from whats on the surface. Some adults cannot see this, but as my children have learned from a young age how to identify these things it has not been an issue for them, where as I myself learned this at a later age in life. If my 4yo told me they needed a cup of coffee that does not mean I would grant their desire for a cup of coffee. Though that's an option, probably not the option we will take. I would figure out WHY. Are they tired? Do they want to be more like Daddy? Usually it would be something like wanting to be like Daddy, to which I would suggest a cup of hot cocoa in one of Daddy's coffee mugs while sitting on the front porch with Daddy in the morning. Or they may suggest something I wouldnt even think of, that would be acceptable. We look for mutually agreeable solutions - which means that I am okay with them, my husband is okay with them, and my children are okay with them. And sometimes we cant do this until they first deal with the disappointment of not getting their "surface" desire, and then when they are calm and collected they can say "I didnt really want to touch the hot stove mommy, I just wanted to learn what hot feels like" (okay, by time they could say a sentence like that they are way beyond desire to touch a hot stove, but it was just an example)

You are right, its not about obedience. It's about responsibility. That is exactly what it is about in our house. This is my home, so if I want it clean, I clean it. My children help because they want to, but I would never make them clean it. They are responsible to clean their rooms, IF they want them clean. Which they do. Two of my children are obsessive about it to the point they can't function if their room is not clean. I did not make them this way, they just know they feel their best when their environment is in order.

As for working to earn grades in college, that was one thing my mom did right. I was responsible to my school work from day one. And I always got good grades, and strived to do well in college as well. There are also kids who find school really easy, and college really hard, which could be why they feel they dont have to work hard to get good grades.

If a guest comes to my house, I do not expect them to do chores, nor do I expect my children to do chores. I do ask them to do things, and because we are so well connected and I help them, they choose to help me. I see the house as my responsibility. They will only be young once, they will have plenty of time to clean their own houses. They know how, because they would rather clean with me then watch TV's because being around me feels good to them. They would rather clean on their own before playing with toys, because they learned its more fun to play with toys when you know where they are. Children need to learn to be successful intrinsically - for THEMSELVES - not for their parents or anyone else.

Does their boss care if they do their job? ultimately no, they only care that the job gets done, but if they don't do it they will find someone else to do it. My children learn this when I say "I would like help clearing the table" and when they don't do it, then I do. When they are older I say "when you don't do your job, people find someone else to do that job, and in this life you have to do your job to get a salary and to survive" They know this though, since their dad works v.v. hard to provide for us all. Their father never takes a day off work - he worked one day WITH food poisoning (though he did leave early) but that was the first time I had ever seen him leave work early. My children understand the value of hard work. They understand what being helpful means. They are responsible to themselves, and that is all I can ask for. They are responsible, because I am responsible. By nature children are inquisitive and they will ask what the man is doing sleeping on a park bench and I can let them know that he does not have a home, and sometimes people are homeless because they do not have a job. Modeling is so much more valuable then many realize in my opinion. You can teach your child one thing and they will still do what they see. Showing a child what the right things to do are, is so much more powerful then telling them. My children show interest in cleaning. To me it's a chore, its not fun, but I have to do it. To my children its not the "most fun" but it still meets their desire for an orderly environment, and we do have fun cleaning when we choose to make it fun. Younger children usually help with the floors, and older children help with making beds, and my husband helps with the laundry. Sometimes they don't help, but I think they are more willing to help because I don't demand help. They feel good that they are choosing to help. And they aren't choosing to help because I will do something to them they wont like, or wont do something to them they would like if they don't help. They help, because they want to help. Sometimes they want my help and I say no - not right now - maybe later - so when they say these things to me I respect they have just as much right to say that as I do. I also know that when I dont want to help its because I need something (rest, a moment of quiet, etc) and so perhaps they need something when they don't want to help me. It's hard to see their need to play with blocks as the same as need for quiet - both those things are actually desires - there are underlying reasons for them though. I don't need quiet simply because I need quiet. I need quiet because I have a headache (pain.discomfort) or I'm tired (physically or mentally - need for health) and so on.

With children we can usually ask ourselves "Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired?" (HALT when they have big meltdowns, but when they seem "oppositional" its usually only because we are being oppositional with them. (we are opposing them playing with blocks because we want them to clean just as much as they are opposing cleaning because they want to play with blocks)

And yes, sometimes they just don't want to help because what they are doing is more interesting. I do this to my husband, and him to me, and us to our kids, so its no secret where they have learned that. Sometimes I am sitting here typing out these lengthly responses and my child is saying "I want to go outside!" and I say "We will go outside soon, I need a 15 (or 5 or 10 or sometimes 20) minute break"

If the concern is will they learn responsibility - yes - it is modeled for them, and they experience the need for responsibility at age appropriate times through life experience, a little bit at a time. They know more at 3 then they did at 1. They know more at 9 then they did at 5. I don't need to impose on them for them to experience responsibility.

More Quotes I love:
Give them an inch and they will take a mile is primarily true only in people who have only been given inches in life
Unconditional Parenting page 174

A doing-to style comes easily to children as it does to adult; its autonomy support that has to be learned. To provide that support for young children is to protect them from anyone who would try to control them unnecessarily.
UP page 171

But the best way to prepare children for experiences where they will be unnecessarily controlled is not to immerse them in similar experiences beforehand. That would be like sayin that, because there are carcinogens in the environment, we should expose kids to as many cancer-causing agents as possible while they are young.
UP page 169

This is just the way our family works, I trust everyone here will find the way their family works best as well

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April 15th, 2009, 05:56 AM
Sophia1Day
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This was originally a double post, but I will add:

Lisa I appreciate your respectful inquiry, I understand that our way of live is not exclusive to parenting, but just a philosophy on how we deal with all the people who come into our lives, adults and children alike. My perspective is very different, and sometimes I encounter people whose viewpoint does not allow them to see what I am saying. I am living this, so I am close to it and can see it clearly.

Here is an analogy...

I am standing in a room, and I am holding rectangle. You are on the other side of the room, and there is a table between us. I am describing this rectangle in my hand to you, but you see a square, because the table is obstructing your view.

That being said, I trust you are exactly the mother your children need you to be, and I know I am exactly the mother my children need me to be. We are all at our perfect place in life, right where we belong. If we need to be somewhere else, I trust we will get there, but wherever we are, we all belong.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 15th, 2009 at 07:17 AM.
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April 15th, 2009, 07:17 AM
broxi3781's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Lisa,
There is a wide range of opion on this subject in AP, Sophia and I would differ quite a bit, but I do respect her opinion, and its good to look at things froma totally different perspective at times. But Sophias style is as she mentioned more consentual parenting then Ap as most basic AP assumes some form of discipline, just more gentle methods whenever possible. Or perhaps just AP from the very far right end of the scale would be a better way to look at it.
Most people will fall somewhere between AP and TP in parenting choices. I actually considered myself pretty much the far right before Sophia joined us
For me and my family, we require more set out discipline. I mentioned an incident with the bomb squad here last week. Of course I fully understand why my son wanted to annoy the police and get them to chase him in front of the other children, but I also must fully understand the point of view of the police whose nerves were well done in at the moment anyway, and the basic safety issue. So this was not a matter for negotiation, it was either stay well behind police lines or get lifted and carried indoors - we ended up with the latter.
I actually consider my parenting to lax, i have difficulty enforcing boundaries, and quite frankly do not care about alot of issues, as long as a behaviour grants other people some respect and is not dangerous, I dont bother much with it.
Other people would need much more structure then we do, but at anyrate, wherever you fit in on the scale, please feel welcome and I certainly can understand your pov as well. Its just a very difficult situation for most of us to know where the line is between allowing our children too much freedom or too little, between being to harsh or being a doormat basically.
I think its great to have as many pov's as possible on this.
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April 15th, 2009, 07:31 AM
Sophia1Day
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Just to clarify Broxi, if you dont mind, It is not consensual parenting, it is consensual living. In aspects of parenting, if you had to label it something, while I call it connection parenting, I believe the mainstream refers to my choices as attachment parenting. Everything I do falls within attachment parenting. Nothing I do goes against attachment parenting. I am no more of an attached parent then you broxi, you are no more "to the left" we are both right where we need to be though.

My way of life considers all parties involved, if that means cops that means cops too. In the situation you described that is a matter of "accept what you cannot change".

It is very hurtful when people bring up situations of danger to explain why they are not consensual livers. I do not negotiate dangerous situations with my children. We act first, talk later.

In your scenario, you knew why your son wanted to annoy the police and get them to chase him. I do not know why that would be, but if it were my child I would think it was the need for adventure. However, my children just seem to "get it" when we are in an emergency situation, and give me their full cooperation. However, if they did have a need for adventure, we would act first (keep everyone safe) and talk later (how can we give the child adventure in a way that is acceptable to everyone involved) If it is a fascination with how cops jobs work, I would check with a local police station to see if they would be willing to give me and my child a tour and talk about their jobs with him. My uncle was a sheriff and I know he would have been more then willing to do something like this, so I'm sure its a possibility.

I know you intention is not to be hurtful, I just want to clear the air that in no way am I saying we would negotiate whether or not my child could put their life in immediate danger. I would remove another adults from the path of an oncoming car the same as I would my child. Because ultimately, I know they want to live. A child wants to play on a highway, well we may be able to figure out a way to fulfill their curiosity about highways, but we're not standing in the middle of an interstate to do so - that may disappoint my child for the moment being, but I trust if they would choose life over death, and feel comfortable making that choice for them when they don't realize that is the ultimate choice at hand, the same as it would be okay for them or someone else to make that choice for me, if I didnt realize my life was in danger.

I don't equate too much freedom to being a doormat, nor do I equate too little freedom to being harsh. I respect that is how you choose to break it down. I do not believe there is such this as too much freedom, nor am I a doormat - because both my wants/needs and my children's wants/needs are valid. If ONLY my childs needs were valid, then I would be a doormat. I am free, my children are free - we don't operate of varying degrees of "free-ness" though. I control myself and they control themselves. Their body belongs to them, and I respect this, but likewise, mine belongs to me. Also, as most children are aware, hence "power struggles" even if a person does NOT respect your body is yours, does not mean they can ultimately control you (unless they physically over power you) but you cannot MAKE you child do anything. You can coerce them into doing something through punihsment or bribes or manipulation, ultimatums, etc. Ultimately they choose though,so if you cant find a way to meet them where they are at they can choose to engage in a power struggle with you.

I look at it this way. My children and I read from the same book, because we are connected. Sometimes though, my children are reading a part of the story I don't like, or are on a different page then I am. So what can I? I don't snatch the book away, demand we read my page, or force them to turn the page. I will read through it with them until they catch up to where I am. "OH you want to jump off the roof, and use a blanket as a parachute. That sounds fun to you. It scares me because it is dangerous. Let's see if we can find something that we would all feel comfortable with."

Then I "read them up to page" to get them where I am at. What would that mean in that situation. Well, depends. Does child want to learn why this would be unsafe? Perhaps we would need to learn a little about physics, age appropriately. from dropping a rock attached to their home made parachute and seeing what happens. Showing them how they weigh more then the rock does, so they would fall even harder. Perhaps I'd be willing to sacrafice a dinner plate for this experiment, so they could see how it would break, and understand how a bone would break. Perhaps we would call some people who know who broke bones and asked them if it hurt. What did it feel like. Perhaps they just "accept" me saying its not safe (this is usually the case, because we have mutual trust) and so we move on to find a way they can meet their need for adventure. I met them where they are at. I found a way to say yes to what their underlying desire. I have tought my children that problems can be solved.

Another Quote:
Naomi Aldort, Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves:
p174
"When you child feels safe to be himself, he will act with competence, not in order to please you but because he wants to succeed. He will be considerate and kind not because he fears you but because he loves you.

By nature, people want to feel accepted. They will conform to what is necessary in society. This does not need to be taught. What we need to teach is how much IS actually necessary. The world needs more out of the box thinkers. People who feel free to be very different. People who know when to accept no for an answer, which isn't EVERY time you hear the word no. People who know how to solve problems, who see all problems as solvable instead of frequently feeling they are in a "futile situation". People who take control of their lives, instead of letting life (and those in it) take control of them. People who will ask if, maybe there is a way to MOVE that mountain, but be able to handle it if they cant (instead of assuming that no, the mountain definitely cant be moved so dont bother trying) People who can work their way around a mountain if they can't go through it. People who will climb over the mountain if they can't go around it. Or fly over it. Or perhaps think of something no one else has even thought of yet. Excuse me, I just get so excited thinking about it - to have more of those kinds of people in life! Leaders who know how to work with and respect other leaders, and well as respect other followers. In other words, people who can be the boss, but without being bossy to their employees. Employees who can be happy even if their boss is bossy.

Again, these are the people who will think, "What is a compromise for black and white" and instead of thinking "well, gray is in between" or "well, neither of us will be happy with gray, if we do black or white at least one of us will be happy" or "but I think black is 'right' and we can learn more from it" and so forth. Then can say "black is important to you, and white is important to me. Perhaps there is something completely different that we would both be happy with. They both name some other colors, and find out they both love purple, and mr black is just as happy with purple as he was with black and mrs white is just as happy with purple as she was with white.

Change what you can, accept what you cannot. Realize though, that both parts of that statement are equal. Too often this world accept what they cannot change, but never made any real effort to change anything.

This world needs leaders and followers. People can be diverse enough to be both though. I think those are the people that are the glue holding it all together. The people who bridge the gap. Our problem solvers. In the long run, the fact my child didnt want to wipe off the table on sunday night really doesn't mean anything in the grand scheme of their ability to learn responsibility. The fact they once used a demanding tone with me, and I was still gracious with them, did not hamper their ability to learn respect or to talk respectfully. They learned respect. AND they learned graciousness. They do not learn to walk all over people, they do not see people are doormats. They are likely to appreciate the person who others see as doormats though, and help that person realize their self worth. They are not harsh, and they are not too free or too confined and they arent some special place of "just right" that is hard to find, because just right lies in each person. Each person is just right. Adults and children all have boundaries to live within, plenty of boundaries without the need to add an excessive amount more. The fact that others have freedom over THEM selves keeps our freedom "in check" the fact that there ARE things we can't change keeps our freedom in check. Nature keeps freedom in check. These naturally occuring unchangeable things are the reason why we do not have to fear that too much freedom will mean we are a door mat. That would be saying that others determine us. That because they are free we are a doormat to allow them to be free. No, because we are free too.

With consensual living, everyone matters, and everyone is valid. My parenting is valid for my family, and yours is for yours. We can be vastly different, but that does not mean one of us are wrong. It does not mean my child will be less safe then yours, it does not mean my child will be more gracious or that yours will be more respectful or that mine will be more creative - it means our children will become exactly who they need to be, and these qualities are within them, and if we nurture them, which we all are doing, these qualities in them will flourish. You can water a flower, or you can let the rain water it, but you cannot force it to grow or bloom. It is all needed - we need the oceans, and the deserts. We need the land and the sky. We need everything in between.

We are all in this world together. I trust you are who you need to be, and I am who I need to be. I think the reason it is difficult to find the line is because there is no line. or perhaps you are looking somewhere in the middle for the line, when the line is that circle that surrounds and encompasses us. I am here, and I let my children be here.

broxi, I think you are where you need to be. Trust I am where I need to be. I really did feel discredited when you said " But Sophia's style is as she mentioned more consensual parenting then AP as most basic AP assumes some form of discipline" I believe my children are disciplined, it is just not what you seem to deem "AP" discipline. It felt as if you were saying "Sophia's way is great for her, but it's not in line with AP" My parenting is exactly what attachment parenting outlines. We live consensually. I only said my WAY OF LIFE is more consensual then AP - because I do not practice AP with my husband or my friends or my neighbors, I live consensually with them. I have really not felt welcome here by a lot of your comments. I am not blaming you for how I feel, as I trust I am misunderstanding you, however I am letting you know this in case you desire to help all newcomers feel welcome.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 15th, 2009 at 08:39 AM.
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  #11  
April 15th, 2009, 02:44 PM
broxi3781's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Sophia,
I am sorry if my wording upset you. I did not mean you are less AP in any way. I do think there is a scale of things, and I think both off us fall far from centre on discipline issues. I see no problem with that, whatever works for each family, most people would not be comfortable with as few rules as my house has, but I dont much like too many rules myself so we go with what works for us. If your family is working fine with even less, more glory to you.
As to the danger issue, my son does not have normal responses to danger and never did.
At 9 months he couldnt walk properly but could take a few a running steps which sometimes ended with him grasping on to a piece of furniture, but more often with him falling on his head. He wasn't three yet when I caught him by an ankle as he decided to dive headfirst over the railings down the staircase.So I have to have different danger responses then you might. I am afraid I know quite well the motivation, beause it makes things exciting, have I mentioned how many broken bones I had in childhood?The risk makes things so much more fun, at least when you are young, I am tired of breaking things now Still I can only marvel that I survived childhood. I am afraid to count on him having the same luck.
I did not intend to discredit you in any manner, I should have put way of life rather then style of parenting, it was just a mistake in semantics. BUt I also did want to express to Lisa that there is a wide range of thought on this.
Again I have no intentions of being hurtful so sorry if you took it that way.
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April 15th, 2009, 05:02 PM
Sophia1Day
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I just don't see it at is as less rules for everyone; I look at it as more respect towards everyone. It's a working with environment - not a doing to environment. At this point I think its apparent that its not a matter of what I say, its a matter of how a person looks at it. I respect that because you are not standing where I am you cannot see things the way I do. I'm only asking you trust what I am saying (in regards to my own family). I wouldn't say I have more or less rules then anyone else, we have a dynamic that is built on mutual respect. It doesn't make sense to me to refer to things as rules or lack there of.

If you say "we have a rule that everyone must clean" and the result of that rule is sometimes the rule is obeyed and people clean, and sometimes that rule is disobeyed and they don't clean. Whereas with my home, sometimes people help me clean, and sometimes they don't. My children don't help me clean any more or less then the family that has a rule about it. Then one can debate whether there is a lack of rules or a lack of need for rules. Honestly, it confuses me, which is why I refer to our family dynamic being one of mutual respect. We cooperate with each other. We work together. It really can't be compared in a sense of rules or lack of. I understand why you couldn't have already known that though.

I understand about dangerous situations. My son has Autism, I am unsure if you remember me mentioning that earlier... there was a time he cracked his head from hitting it so hard (just a flesh wound and bruise, but still alarming) Another child of mine took to jumping head first off the couch. I of course caught her every single time, until she outgrew this dangerous behavior. In your situation with a child who wanted to take off running even though they couldn't balance yet (I have a child who is doing that right now) I understand. A consensual approach allows for them to do this, but stops them from falling and getting hurt. My child wants to learn to run, but I know they do not desire to fall and hit their head. If you are giving an example of different danger responses I am unsure if that is a good example. My response to dangerous situations is to stop the child from getting hurt, or prevent the child from doing something where they would get hurt. Is this different then the way you respond to danger?

I find a way to meet the thrill seeking behavior SAFELY... I wish there was a way I could word this in an understandable way for you. I hope that what was understood though, was that I do not blame you for how I feel. They are my feelings, and I knew you did not intend to make me feel that way - they are my feelings, and I take responsibility for feeling that way.

ETA: I have read, and agree, that it is not enough to imagine being in someone's shoes, but to also imagine having their feet. It's not enough to simply look at things the way you think they are looking at it, but to imagine what things look like to them when they look at it. This is called Perspective Taking. Which is also something we can teach our children to help their moral development, but that's subject entirely.

I have more insight on the "hate" issue, I will have more time to type it up later for your Kimberly.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 16th, 2009 at 07:44 AM.
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April 16th, 2009, 08:54 AM
Sophia1Day
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Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves by Naomi Aldort has a chapter on Emotional Safety. I wish there was a way I could share the whole chapter with you, it's so insightful and refreshing and reassuring and enlightening, however, I revisited the chapter last night so I could extract some insight from it on the subject of "hate" in hopes that it would be helpful to you or someone else in a similar situation who may be tracking this discussion.

Feeling Hate Towards Parents
Page 187
As human beings we are bound to make mistakes that violate our children's dignity. When we do so - interrupt, impose, control, or demean - and the child vents her hate towards us, we can listen, validate, and then acknowledge our errors and regrets so she can feel safe to be open with us.

Page 188
She will feel reassured to know that you are aware of her feelings and that you love her just the same.

An example on page 189 I highlight part of a conversation between Betty and her child:
"Do you know I that I love you" asked Betty
"Yes, even when I hate you, Mom, which I don't really"

Page 189
If occasional feelings of hate are acknowledged as they come, children can let go of those very fast.

Page 190
REMEMBER THAT HATE IS AN EXTERNAL EXPRESSION OF OTHER EMOTIONS AND RECOGNIZE THAT YOUR CHILD'S FEELINGS OF HATRED ARE ABOUT HER, EVEN WHEN THEIR CONTENT RELATES TO YOU.

This chapter also explain how hate masks other emotions like hurt, frustration, disappointment, and teaches how you can help your child get in touch with what they are really feeling AFTER they are given a chance to let go of the hateful feelings that are masking those feelings.

Page 182
By accepting the expression of intense feelings without acting on them, we grow to live with intimacy, vulnerability, and the ability to love and to be responsible for our own emotions and choices.

Safe to express hate
Page 177

Like anger, hate covers up other emotions that must be revealed and expressed so the child can see what is true for her. Even when the cause of the feeling is based on misunderstanding, the feeling is still experienced;; only after the child expresses herself fully is she able to converse and reexamine the facts and possibilities. If we want to get away from hateful verbal expressions, we must help a child get in touch with the emotions that trigger the hate. Our task is to make is safe for children to express the emotions that lead to hate, while providing verbal tools and settings that prevent hurting one another.


There is just so much in this chapter, I hope that the message can still be heard without the rest of context, I really found all of it so relevant, and if any of it sparks your interest I would recommend getting your hands on a copy of this book - perhaps a local library would have a copy you could pick up, even if its just to read the section on hate. It even explains how to handle hate when children express it towards their friends, siblings, and other children.

Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves by Naomi Aldort has a chapter on Emotional Safety. I wish there was a way I could share the whole chapter with you, it's so insightful and refreshing and reassuring and enlightening, however, I revisited the chapter last night so I could extract some insight from it on the subject of "hate" in hopes that it would be helpful to you or someone else in a similar situation who may be tracking this discussion.

Feeling Hate Towards Parents
Page 187
As human beings we are bound to make mistakes that violate our children's dignity. When we do so - interrupt, impose, control, or demean - and the child vents her hate towards us, we can listen, validate, and then acknowledge our errors and regrets so she can feel safe to be open with us.

Page 188
She will feel reassured to know that you are aware of her feelings and that you love her just the same.

An example on page 189 I highlight part of a conversation between Betty and her child:
"Do you know I that I love you" asked Betty
"Yes, even when I hate you, Mom, which I don't really"

Page 189
If occasional feelings of hate are acknowledged as they come, children can let go of those very fast.

Page 190
REMEMBER THAT HATE IS AN EXTERNAL EXPRESSION OF OTHER EMOTIONS AND RECOGNIZE THAT YOUR CHILD'S FEELINGS OF HATRED ARE ABOUT HER, EVEN WHEN THEIR CONTENT RELATES TO YOU.

This chapter also explain how hate masks other emotions like hurt, frustration, disappointment, and teaches how you can help your child get in touch with what they are really feeling AFTER they are given a chance to let go of the hateful feelings that are masking those feelings.

Page 182
By accepting the expression of intense feelings without acting on them, we grow to live with intimacy, vulnerability, and the ability to love and to be responsible for our own emotions and choices.

Safe to express hate
Page 177

Like anger, hate covers up other emotions that must be revealed and expressed so the child can see what is true for her. Even when the cause of the feeling is based on misunderstanding, the feeling is still experienced;; only after the child expresses herself fully is she able to converse and reexamine the facts and possibilities. If we want to get away from hateful verbal expressions, we must help a child get in touch with the emotions that trigger the hate. Our task is to make is safe for children to express the emotions that lead to hate, while providing verbal tools and settings that prevent hurting one another.


There is just so much in this chapter, I hope that the message can still be heard without the rest of context, I really found all of it so relevant, and if any of it sparks your interest I would recommend getting your hands on a copy of this book - perhaps a local library would have a copy you could pick up, even if its just to read the section on hate. It even explains how to handle hate when children express it towards their friends, siblings, and other children.
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April 16th, 2009, 09:55 AM
broxi3781's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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LOL Sophia you just dont understand thrill seeking behaviour, if you find a way to make it safe, thats the thrill away. I can remember when I was child thinking nothing could ever be fun in heaven, because you knew you werent going to fall, get hurt, killed etc... It was that taking it just to the limit that made it fun, no limits, no fun. I do wonder if this is genetic.
Please forgive me laughing, it not at you, its just one of those concepts that you have to feel it to understand I think. Likewise I do not understand your specific situation, so you can have a good laugh at my misunderstanding too
And no I do not always try to prevent my child getting hurt. I know this sounds horrible, but I would have had no fun at all as a child if someone was always stopping me from getting hurt.
Billy is 4 now, so I try to prevent things that may lead to serious or permanent injuries, if its just bumps and bruises, I'll advise him to be careful, but he can make his own choice.
With Ian of course it is different as he is too little to understand so I do try to avoid more accidents for him, I follow him up the stairs to make sure he doesnt fall, have a fence around the hearth, etc... But with older childrne its only the really serious issues. I have no desire to protect my children from all hurt, whteher physical or emotional, just to limit it to acceptable levels and be there for them afterwards
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April 16th, 2009, 10:26 AM
Sophia1Day
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I do understand thrill seeking behavior. I understand that my son would get more thrill out of a roller coaster or a parasailing adventure then he would from jumping off the couch. Please do not tell me what I do not understand. You understand something one way, and I understand it another. You say to the limit makes it fun, and no limits makes it no fun - to me that would say there would be less thrill seeking behavior if thrill seeking behavior was not limited. That I can say I find true - perhaps that is why when I meet my children's needs for thrills as they arise they more quickly subside then when I try to put a cap on it.

Aside from that, I would never laugh at someone I perceived to be misunderstanding. I like to think I have a good sense of humor, but I laugh with people, not at them. I know, and have now been reminded, how hurtful it is to have someone laugh at you, implying you are in some way ignorant (unable to understand). I do not see the comic genius in that unfortunately, but I understand from your perspective you may not be intending to be hurtful, and I cannot assume that because I was hurt that you intended to be hurtful. To you perhaps, it is innocently funny. You may even claim this to me. Only you can really know though, and I respect that, but I'm also respecting myself by being truthful about my experience of what was said to me.

While I don't feel comfortable with the way things were said, I understand that what you are saying is your truth. I trust in myself as a person, and I accept that my truth and your truth may be different, without either of us being wrong - your truth is true to you, I believe that your truth is correct. I also believe that of my own truth.

Perhaps to explain why I feel this way, I will use another metaphor. I am standing to the right of a light, and you are standing to the left of the light. Your truth is that the light is to the right. My truth is that the light is to the left. We are both experiencing the same light, even if we express our experience differently.

You can also visualize the world to be a clear sphere. The core of the earth has a coin that is visible to both of us. I am at the south pole, and you are at the north. We both look down, and we both see a coin. To you the truth is the coin is tails up. To me the truth is the coin is heads up. Neither of us are wrong. Our truths are simply different given that we are standing in different places. Perhaps even yet another person who is to the east cannot even see whether the coin is heads up or heads down. The truth to him may be more simply "there is a coin there" in contrast to our truth that "there is a coin, heads up/tails up, there" Nobody is wrong. You could not say "we'll the person to the east just does not understand" or "the person to the south just doesn't get the concept" They all get the concept - a coin in the middle of the earth. They all understand - they understand what is true for them. What I am doing is I am saying to you, I understand that from where you are standing, the coin does not appear to be tails up, but it is IN FACT tails up. That what you say is true, to you. At the same time, the coin does not appear heads up to me. It is IN FACT heads up. What I say is true, to me. Neither of us our wrong.

I do understand thrill seeking behavior. You trust you understand thrill seeking behavior. I have felt the concept (and somehow managed to live to tell about it!). I also trust you have felt the concept. We understand as it is true to us. We have felt it as it is true to use.

Alternately, we may both see a heads up a coin. You may see an upside down head, and I may see an upright head. We see/feel the same thing, but express it differently.

I have no way of knowing what thrill seeking behavior feels like to you. You have no way of knowing what thrill seeking behavior feels like to me. Perhaps we both have two very different truths about it. Since we aren't each other though (we can only experience our own lives and feeling first hand) we also have to realize the possibility that our truths are the same, even if we express them differently - such as in the light metaphor. Anything is possible, no one is wrong, no one "doesn't understand" and no one "hasn't felt the concept".

Like you though, we provide limits, you keep saying that YOU do this, I hope you are not implying this is exclusive to you, because you keep saying this, as if to make a point, and your point is hear and agreed with. We limit the behaviors too - we just don't limit our allowance of finding other ways to meet the underlying desires. All feelings, need, desires are accepted - but not all behaviors. We accept the need for a thrill, we meet it, but we may not meet it by letting our child do something that is going to crack their skull open.

The more I tried to stop my DD from jumping off the couch the more she wanted to do it. When I put a big pile of pillows and stayed close by to prevent injury and let her jump off the couch, she had a lot of fun. It did not take her fun away, it did not take the thrill out of it, it just kept her safe. Yes though, you are right in that it ended that particular thrill seeking behavior more quickly when we found a safe way to do it. After weeks of trying to stop her with no success when I found a safe way for her to do it it was all she wanted to do for several days straight. Then it lost its novelty. That novelty has recently returned, but I realize that because my children are allowed to fulfill their need for this thrill it does in fact lose its novelty more quickly.

I have felt it. You are trying to tell me both what I feel and what I think. I don't feel comfortable continuing conversing with someone who continues to do this after I have brought it to their attention and asked they please be considerate and stop doing so. Because I have continued to converse with you above despite my knowledge of that, I blame myself for my discomfort.

I really feel humiliated, alienated, undermined and made an outcast. I feel extremely misunderstood right now, and above all I feel utterly disrespected and I have to respect myself at this point and just say that I feel I have the right to disagree with you. I do understand thrill seeking behavior. I have felt that concept. I know better then anyone else what I have felt in life and what I understand. I really don't feel you and I are so vastly different, but I feel the portrait being painted of me is not accurate. I personally would never feel the need to discredit someone else to make myself seem more right. I realize that is something done to someone who is actually experiencing self doubt, perhaps sub consciously, and needing to convince themselves more so then needing to convince someone else. The same rings true for defensive behavior - I have to ask myself if I am defending myself to you, or to myself. Since I trust in myself, then I can accept that I do not need to defend myself to anyone, so I will stop doing so. I hope you can find the same trust in yourself or get to a place where you can find the same trust in yourself, and not feel the need to discredit anyone in the future in order to feel self-validated.

I tried to resolve this by sharing my feelings before, but I continue to feel ostracized, singled out, and picked on. If you wish me to leave just say so, I have no desire to stay somewhere I am not welcome. I feel very uneasy/unsettled right now, I'm getting that sinking feeling in my stomach, and these are the kind of feelings I know I need to respect in myself - the feeling that lets me know something is wrong and I am not in a safe place (in this case, emotionally). I joined this board after much lurking because it felt like a safe and supportive place. I came from a toxic family and I am very sensitive and aware of when someone is gaslighting me. I do believe in the best of people though, so I am going to assume anyone who gaslights does not realize they are doing so.

I hope we can continue to co-exist on this board, but for the time being I hope you can understand why I would feel more comfortable stepping back from this back and forth banter. I am freeing myself from the desire to defend myself now and from the desire to help you enhance perceptive taking, and will disregard any future passive aggressive comments. I take full responsibility for this situation as I realize the first act of war is defense (thank you for the reminder Michelle - I love Byron Katie!)- I never should have defended myself to you. I am sorry for that.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 16th, 2009 at 11:36 AM.
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  #16  
April 16th, 2009, 11:39 AM
beck12's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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No offense Sophia - but it seems to me that you are constantly nit-picking at Broxi. I am not sure if there is an issue I am unaware of, but it is making me uncomfortable here. I love your posts when they have nothing to do with Broxi - and I love Broxi's posts....but for some reason it comes across like you feel like you have to teach Broxi something & I don't understand it. And now it seems like you feel you are being nit-picked - and I am baffled. I have been feeling this for a while over a number of posts & have gone back & forth over whether or not to say anything about it...maybe it isn't my place. I don't know. I just know I don't feel good about not saying anything either...so I would rather speak up & at least express my feelings on it. I hope that you can sort out your feelings on this & come to a place you are at peace with it & stay & continue to contribute. I absolutely do not read (as a bystander..who BTW really doesn't know EITHER of you any better than the other) Broxi as being negative toward you. I am not sure why you read it that way.

I hope this can just be settled & we can move on and not have the back & forth over this stuff. It really isn't helping the unity of the board. We all have our own approach to parenting - even in what AP means to us & our families....and there is plenty of room for ALL kinds of approaches here.
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If a man has been his mother's undisputed darling he retains throughout life the triumphant feeling, the confidence in success, which not seldom brings actual success along with it. ~Sigmund Freud
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  #17  
April 16th, 2009, 12:37 PM
Sophia1Day
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I felt she is nitpicking with me, but I understand your point of view as she has seniority and also it is clear that you share the same view points with broxi more so then you do with me, so your natural empathy towards her will be stronger, even if you know neither of this better. This is not a bad thing, this is human nature. Saying you do not have a reason to side with her would strengthen in your eyes the validity of your statements. This is no necessary, even without saying that I felt your statements were valid. Likely, you did this subconsciously and not intentionally.

How some other see it may be that I came into this thread and posted nothing in response to her, just shared my personal insight to the original posted with nothing in relation to anything broxi had said.

you are right though, and as I stated in my previous post, it is MY fault for defending myself, I do not blame her for my feelings. I was not trying to teach her anything in my attempts to defend myself, other then to try to look at things from another point of view, while at the same time I was trying to understand and embrace her point of view. You are right though, in that I do not need for her to embrace my point of view. That is her choice to do so or not do so, and I realize my error in trying to defend myself, I do not need to be ganged up on though or berated. I feel that there is room for all approaches to attachment parenting here, except mine. I appreciate your view as an outsider, and I appreciate others who have also shared their views privately. It seems some understand what I am picking up on here, yet, I respect those who feel I am wrong as well. I respect your right to express your feelings on how you view what I have said. You have just as much right to do that as I did to express my feelings on how I viewed what broxi has said to me. You would not feel good having not said anything about your perception of what I have replied to broxi the same as I would not have felt good not having said anything about my perception of what broxi has directed towards me. As I said, I will not continue to banter with broxi even if I feel provoked to defend myself because I realize that she may not be intending that, that I do not need to defend myself to anyone, and also that *I* am the one who is wrong in doing so, as I stated in my previous post, because as Byron Katie says, war begins with defense. I agree that once people start taking sides that can really effect the unity of a group, and that the best resolution for this is that even if I feel what I am saying is being nit picked I can choose not to defend myself for the reasons stated above. My feelings are sorted out, I expressed what those feelings are, as for staying if I continue to feel (not saying anyone is MAKING me feel) but if I continue to feel ganged up on like I am here then I will respectfully leave for my own sake. It is clear that you share the same view points with broxi more so then you do with me, so your natural empathy towards her will be stronger, even if you know neither of this better. This is not a bad thing, this is human nature. I too hope we can move on, which was what I was trying to do before you replied, and now here I am defending myself to you instead of broxi and allowing myself to feel ganged up on. Oh well, you all get to witness my spiritual growth in progress as I think out loud here and realize the error of my ways. I cannot change others. I cannot know others intent. I can choose not be defensive though, so I am just going to move on at this point. Thank you for sharing your third party insight on what you see transpiring between broxi and myself though. It has been very helpful to me in understand more about myself and others.

I felt she is nitpicking with me, but I understand your point of view as she has seniority. I came into this thread and posted nothing in response to her, just shared my personal insight to the original posted with nothing in relation to anything broxi had said

you are right though, and as I stated in my previous post, it is MY fault for defending myself, I do not blame her for my feelings. I was not trying to teach her anything in my attempts to defend myself, other then to try to look at things from another point of view, while at the same time I was trying to understand and embrace her point of view. You are right though, in that I do not need for her to embrace my point of view. That is her choice to do so or not do so, and I realize my error in trying to defend myself, I do not need to be ganged up on though or berated. I feel that there is room for all approaches to attachment parenting here, except mine. I appreciate your view as an outsider, and I appreciate others who have also shared their views privately. It seems some understand what I am picking up on here, yet, I respect those who feel I am wrong as well. I respect your right to express your feelings on how you view what I have said. You have just as much right to do that as I did to express my feelings on how I viewed what broxi has said to me. You would not feel good having not said anything about your perception of what I have replied to broxi the same as I would not have felt good not having said anything about my perception of what broxi has directed towards me. As I said, I will not continue to banter with broxi even if I feel provoked to defend myself because I realize that she may not be intending that, that I do not need to defend myself to anyone, and also that *I* am the one who is wrong in doing so, as I stated in my previous post, because as Byron Katie says, war begins with defense. I agree that once people start taking sides that can really effect the unity of a group, and that the best resolution for this is that even if I feel what I am saying is being nit picked I can choose not to defend myself for the reasons stated above. My feelings are sorted out, I expressed what those feelings are, as for staying if I continue to feel (not saying anyone is MAKING me feel) but if I continue to feel ganged up on like I am here then I will respectfully leave for my own sake. I too hope we can move on, which was what I was trying to do before you replied, and now here I am defending myself to you instead of broxi and allowing myself to feel ganged up on. Oh well, you all get to witness my spiritual growth in progress as I think out loud here and realize the error of my ways. I cannot change others. I cannot know others intent. I can choose not be defensive though, so I am just going to move on at this point. Thank you for sharing your third party insight on what you see transpiring between broxi and myself though. It has been very helpful to me in understand more about myself and others.

You said:
"We all have our own approach to parenting - even in what AP means to us & our families"

This is what I have been saying. I am only asking this same respect be shown towards what AP means to me and my family, as I have shown towards everyone else. If you have read what I have said you will see many times that I share my thoughts that I trust everyone is doing what is right for THEIR family, and that I trust their perspective is just are true as my own, and that we all have our own truth, and no matter how different that may be, none of us are wrong. I said this many times, in many ways, and I hope it was understood as this is probably the thing I feel most strongly of all.

Oh the things that usually follow "No offense, but-" : I always manage to find a way to grow in these times. Thank you again.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 16th, 2009 at 12:47 PM.
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  #18  
April 16th, 2009, 01:17 PM
(.Y.)mom2dd(.Y.)
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Sophia ~ big hugs to you hon. I love your posts, and I love Broxi's. AP is a spectrum and if you're feeling a little nitpicked/attacked/need to defend yourself from Broxi, then please try the ignore feature. The problem with the internet is that somethings are meant a little tognue n cheek but it's hard to convey that on the computer all the time. There are lots of things I don't do or agree with everyone on but I just started to ignore a few people. It's feel silly at first but the truth is I want to come to the AP board and other boards feeling good. I want to leave feeling good or better. The ignore feature has helped me just let go of those negative feelings until I can address why I'm feeling that way about certain people. I was feeling bullied not too long ago. Again, the ignore feature is helping me cope with that until I can figure out those feelings better. The spirituality board is a great place to talk about things at a level of life philosophy without absolutes. (I learned about absolutes the hard way there.) I know Sharron, one of the co-hosts, would welcome you with open arms. I'm not suggesting you leave here, just try both boards. Ap for parenting and the Spirituality board for life philosophy.
Broxi, you know I love you too girl. I don't get the feeling you're trying to hurt her feelings, just engage. I'm not asking you to stop. I wish you could continue but if Sophia is at the point where she always feeling under the microscope, maybe just best not to address her posts until she can get to know you better?

I feel terrible that anyone feels bad. The goal of AP is to leave feeling refreshed. I hope we can just move on. If either one of you would like to, pm me anytime because I love you both and I think you guys are very similar with parenting approaches and have great insight.

Cheers,

Michelle
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  #19  
April 16th, 2009, 01:55 PM
Sophia1Day
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Thank you Michelle. I will check out that board. I have a lot of work to do on myself and in no way am blaming broxi for how I feel, in a sense really I should thank her because it was her words that stirred these feelings in myself - my feelings, that I am responsible for - and as I have said previously on this board, when you feel shook, its because you need it! I must need this. I can grow from this - this is good. I think you are right though, that it would be best to use the ignore feature anytime I start feeling like this so I can work through it and heal myself - as you said find out why I am feeling this way about a person. I was shook, the feelings are here, I need to deal with this on my own - NOT cause an earthquake and shake everyone else with me.

This is what I have done with my family at one time, because I had to be healed enough to interact with them without having a constant stream of negative emotions. I had to stop placing blame (on my family, or on myself) and find a way. I see a lot of my mother in broxi and perhaps I am letting my mother issues get in the way of seeing her differently. She may be like my mother in some ways (the way she communicates, not the way she parents), but she is not my mother, and she did not do to me the things my mother did, and so I need to remember that. I am still learning how I can find a way to keep myself emotionally safe when having contact with people who I initially feel emotionally endangered by. (To clarify, I am sure you understand what I am saying Michelle - but that *I* am feeling emotionally endangered, does not mean I am committed to the idea that the other person is emotionally dangerous - whether or not they are is completely irrelevant to how I can feel and who I can be as a person)

I appreciate your insight and support, see you on the spirituality board eventually I'm sure... I will probably lurk first... it took me lurking here a long time to feel comfortable to post... not really sure where that leaves me now, just started posting and already I feel I have stepped on some toes when that was in no way my intention. It would just be nice to be heard and understood, but I need to keep sight that what is important is that I understand myself and others, not to have others understand me.

Last edited by Sophia1Day; April 16th, 2009 at 01:57 PM.
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  #20  
April 16th, 2009, 02:29 PM
broxi3781's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Sophia,
It has never been my intention to nit pick you, that is really not my personality. If I have a problem I go for full frontal assualt, not nipping at the heels. I was actually trying to be friendly. There is an old saying "You either have to laugh or cry, its better laugh", So I try to make a joke of things, make light of issues.
I have actually felt that you seemed to feel you needed to teach me something, as many of your posts to me have seemed very condescending and repetitive. But I thought perhaps we just started out on the wrong foot, and by making a few jokes it would lighten the situation.
I also live in culture where joking or slagging is a means of showing friendship, and I gathered by your posts about turning everything inward you were not overly sensitive about other peoples opinions anyway.
We do have very different views on some issues, I have always been very careful to mention I respect your views whenever discussing it, and have tried very much to be kind and respectful. I am not threatened by your differences, I do enjoy conversing with people who hold different viewpoints from my own, you really dont learn much iff you surround yourself with all people who think the same (Not mention no one thinks the same as me, I'm a bit odd, but I enjoy being different) But I also feel like you seem to look for any mistake in my wording to take offense.
There is no need to search for offense in life, if your like most people, enough will fnd you without going out of your way to look for it.I am honestly only trying to be friendly, it does seem to a bit of culture shock here, but please at least understand that i approach life totally differntly from most people probabley. I can follow social niceities if i need too, but here i am basically just relaxed and myself. I am very upfront, I make no pretences of anything, if i dont like someone I have no problem telling them outright which at least is honest.
But I really have had all the philoosophy and psychology course too, I am not ignorant or uneducated, i just find no need for twisting everything about. If you do have a personla issue with me, I invite you to just be open and let me know the problem. You can not possibly hurt my feelings, because i dont upset easily, so feel free to speak your mind.
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