Parenting

Can I say something? I can’t wait to have my partner back home so that we can parent together because it’s rough figuring it out alone! (Although, I know its rough figuring it out period!) I know we are all trying to figure this crazy parenthood thing out and doing the best we can. So- this conversation happened over email with Sam yesterday after a discipline situation with our son.

Sam- “Looks like he’s got quite the personality.”

Me: “oh my gosh its definitely coming out. we have a stubborn, strong-willed but wonderful child on our hands. if you could continue to pray for me as i discipline him. i’m desperately praying for guidance and discernment so that i discipline him in a Godly way that points him to the “why” he acts out and to the glory of God instead of just the “messing up”. i know he might not cognitively understand what i’m saying right now but i don’t want the first time he hears it to be when he’s 5 and understands. plus it helps me claim truth over him and not just see it as an action but also a heart issue. it’s 24/7 nowadays and i just need a little prayer for patience, grace, but most of all that i’ll do it in the way God wants me to. he is throwing major tantrums when he doesn’t get his way and is starting to scream for things instead of ask. and the other night, when i told him no, he hit me in the face. soooo, that was great. i just removed him from the situation and we sat in the chair and i told him that he couldn’t hurt mama because we love our family and we love everyone because God loves everyone so much. we have to have a kind and gentle heart because thats what God calls us to have. i popped his arm, and sat with him while he pitched his fit and told him that we needed to have an obedient and respectful heart and it should show through our actions. i made him sit in the chair until he was done pitching his fit. then we hugged it out and i told him that i forgave him. he definitely understood he did something wrong. is that all ok?”

Sam- “All that is great baby.  You’re an AWESOME mom and I want to be a parent like you.  I can’t wait to learn from you. And I’ll take care of the whole “hitting mom” thing when I get home – you teach him new testament, I’ll teach him old.”

Me- :/

What I love about parenthood is that everyone can do it completely differently, and I think that’s pretty awesome. Seriously, it would be really lame if every kid turned out the same.

That being said, there are days when I end up yelling in my head WHAT AM I DOING AND WHY IS IT NOT SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE TO DRINK BEFORE 5PM AND WHY IS THERE POOP EVERYWHERE AND WHY ISN’T CANDY CORN A PART OF THE FOOD PYRAMID?!?!

Anyone else have those days? No? Just me? Well, Bud has been pitching some major fits as of late and he can be set off from anything like telling him that he can’t play with the rectal thermometer or that he can’t throw himself down the flight of stairs.

This is after I told him that he couldn’t throw my nice camera off of the bed.

Let it be known, this kid is some kind of acting genius. He was crying over the camera then the dog ran in the room and he went from this face to laughing and yelling “DAWG!” within 5 seconds. Super….

I’m navigating my way through figuring out my discipline style and I think I’m kinda getting it. But, I miss having a partner. How do yall handle tantrums? Time out? Spanking? How do yall handle discipline with your partner/spouse/family? Tag team it? Good cop/Bad cop?

 

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  • Alicia

    Hi Martha,
    Once again I must say that our babies (or little boys…argh,time flies too fast!!) have quite a resemblance when I read your posts. That face…hahahaha, I had to laugh at it, it looked so much like Aimar this morning! He goes into a tantrum because I won’t allow him to bang the walls,wardrobes, tables, chairs…of the house with his latest toy, because I tell him the spoon goes into his mouth full of food instead of emptying it first on the table… anything,one minute,and then something happens and he is back to smiling and babbling away in his language in a second. Full tears roll down his cheeks! So yes,I feel ya!
    We are not into spanking at home, we let him through the fit,pay as little attention to it as possible, and continue whatever we were doing before. I think they need to express what we do in words, somehow, but giving him extra attention with negative behaviour is not good. We are also very consistent and firm in what things are a no, and we make sure all the people that take care of him (i.e.grandma’s) respect the same “noes”. We talk them out and decide our position together,then each one has his/her own way of communicatint it to Aimar. Finally,he has tried to hit me a couple of times when he gets in a tantrum, I sit him down,tell him no,etc. till I make sure he has understood that that is wrong. I know he understands when he gets sad, he cries differently then. Then we hug and continue our lives. But my God,I have never,ever in my whole life had to have as much patience as I have had to use in the past 13 months!
    These are just the things that work for me,for us, but each family is different and has to find their way. I am ano spanking person, I don’t think it helps deter a negative behaviour and I think that you can teach your child to behave,to communicate,to manage anger without being physical.Again,that is what works for me, and how I grew up.
    You are doing great, I mean,just look at that little boy of yours!!! And soon you’ll be back to a family of three under the same roof and able to share all this (although the patience needed is much the same,and if for whatever reason you don’t agree/like the way your partner is pareting,it does not get easy either).

    • Thanks Alicia! Amen on needing patience! Thanks so much for your wisdom!

  • Melinie

    Hey martha
    I couldn’t read without saying something. First and foremost, putting God at the forefront, like you are doing in your talks with Bud is what I think is so important. Huge shout out to you for taking the time to talk to bud a million times a day and continually repeat the same lesson over and over in a gentle way. We are a no spanking family because it felt weird to say no hit and then do something physical about it and we choose to just talk about what is going on. What I have found is that like Alicia said, kids need to have the emotions and communicate them. Our job is to help them learn how to communicate those emotions in a healthy way. For us, that looks like stopping whatever we are doing/moving away from the situation, crying or yelling while either being held or just around mommy depending on what he needs, and then talking about it. When he was as little as bud I would really wonder if anything was going in and get frustrated by the 500 million times I had to have the same “conversation” with him. Now, we are no where near perfect but I have a 2.5 year old who will scream and cry and then really talk about his feelings and what God wants us to do and pray and ask God for help with whatever. All of that is still guided. I do not let him hit me or physically act out at me if he is upset. That, for us, is not an appropriate way to respond emotionally so I would remove him from me and sit at a safe distance. Now I can just ask if he wants to be near me or go by himself. Sometimes he says he “just wants to cry” and I tell him that it is is ok, he can go ahead. But we never get to just hit mommy or daddy or throw things like missiles because we are angry. If you hear anything in my comment I hope you hear this, you are doing an amazing job. It is soooo hard to parent solo and to feel the burden of shaping your sweet little one’s heart “by yourself.” I am encouraged by the way you lean on God and cling to his promises for you and your family.Bud is one very blessed little boy. The constant discipline that goes with this next year is a way of showing him appropriate ways to interact with the world, respond to feelings, and it gives him security to know what the boundaries are. Stick with it, it is hard in the day in day out but so very worthwhile.

    • Thanks Mel! Love the input and I can’t believe how big your kiddos have gotten!

  • laurieparks

    You are such a good Mama! Rockin it for sure. My little guy is 10 months and just getting to the point that I have to say “no” for safety’s sake. I just pray daily for guidance from our Lord to show me the way as he gets older. Raising little ones seems so daunting at times. Thanks for a little insight into “life after 1”!