20 May, 2015

A parenting strategy that's worked

I'm a single mum for a few days while David visits his dad one last time. His dad lives about nine hrs from here by car, but thankfully David flew up, leaving me with the car. 

It isn't too bad because the boys are at school, but on the other hand it's been a challenging time in parenting, even with two parents around a lot of the time. We're finding the teenage-type behaviour difficult at present. 

But I'm thinking I've found one strategy that seems to work, if you can be fast enough to use it.

Turn their complaints about you into your complaint about them.
Sounds bad, but it's really helping them to see a situation through your eyes. For example, the other day I was accused of raising the hopes of one boy and then dashing them. It was a case of me not having all the information I needed to make a decision, but not knowing I was missing information. 

However yesterday I was able to use that same statement back to my son when he refused to do a job he'd practically volunteered for (in his defence, he didn't specifically say yes to this job, he just insinuated he might say yes). His attitude change was dramatic (a hallmark teenage feature that he's exhibited most of his life, but recently it's become even more dramatic) and the job was done for me. It caught me by surprise but with David away I was very happy to receive our son's help.

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