I have been making a lot of mistakes lately. For the past week, I have been threatening to take away his pillow pets to make him do things like getting dressed for school and brushing his teeth at night.
I know there is a better way to parent!
Parent Effectivenes Training to the rescue! I read a couple chapters last night.
It turns out I have been doing too much sermonizing, preaching, lecturing and not enough active listening. When I do too much sermonizing, preaching and lecturing it takes away his freedom to do the right thing on his own. He feels controlled and manipulated by me as evidenced by his comment, "I don't want you to be the boss of me." and "I don't like you to tell me what to do all the time." I don't like it either. And I really don't like it when he refuses to get dressed for school, saying he will not do anything and buries his head in his pillow pets on the couch.
This morning I changed how i said things. For instance, instead of saying, "Change your socks." I said, "I noticed you threw your clean socks back onto the couch." He sort of smiled and hoped I didn't notice. I said, "I know you don't want to change your socks." He smiled. "But I know what might happen if you don't. If you wear socks for more than a day, they could start to stink and then when people get near you, they might smell something funny and want to move away." I acted out holding my nose and he thought it was funny. ( I still did too much lecturing, but at least I was not angry and exasperated like i have been lately) In a loving tone, i went on, "And the other thing that happens is if your socks are smelly then your shoes get smelly and we have to replace them sooner." He added, "And that takes your money." I was happy, "You are right, it takes more money." He said quietly, "Ok, you can change my socks."
Not quite the outcome I wanted, but it was better than the struggles we have had earlier in the last week! Yay! We quickly moved on without incident.
Thank you, PET! We had a better morning!