Saturday, December 11, 2010

Wild Child?

So I was thinking, right... Attachment parenting. I LOVE IT!! I have had people insinuate I will be raising an "entitled little shit" or that I am letting my child run wild, ruling the household.

That doesn't bother me, I understand comments like this are from people who don't get it. I truly believe that parenting my daughter peacefully will lead to a more secure, happy and confident child.

If you scoff at that, and believe it won't, thats OK. Parenting isn't just about the outcome, its about the journey... and personally, I am LOVING mine!

I love breastfeeding... cosleeping... babywearing... having the freedom to enjoy my child!

OK so I don't wake up every morning farting rainbows. I have bad days, I get angry, I get frustrated. I don't always get it right. But I'm TRYING.

And most of the time, I am happy! WE are happy.

Parenting peacefully, I find, yeilds the best results. Its not about letting your kids do whatever they want and never telling them "no". Its about respectfully guiding them towards positive behaviours. In my experience, 9 times out of 10 Butterfly will choose acceptable activities. Sometimes she doesn't. Like, she always wants to turn the oven on. She knows she isn't allowed, and every time she doesn't she is told "no" and redirected to something she CAN do, but she persists. WHY? Because it gets our attention when we are busy in the kitchen. She'll learn eventually... at 18 months, she can't be perfect all the time! Screaming at her, smacking her, when all she really wants is attention, would only break her little heart.

I am finding people don't truly empathise with their children. The mentality is, "They are my kids and they have to behave how I want them to, when I want them to". They use tactics on them they wouldn't dream of using on their partner. Like, say every time you changed the channel to something your hubby didn't want to watch, he scolded you and smacked your hand. How angering and humiliating would that be? What if you did it a few times in a row, and he told you that he wasn't going to take you out to dinner for your birthday because you are so naughty? Who would want to be married to THAT guy?

No one likes to be told they can't do something they want to do. Toddlers especially. I try to understand my daughter's reaction and give her something she CAN do. If I asked my husband if we could go out to dinner, and he simply said, "No", I'd be pissed. If he said, "We really can't afford it, but we can get takeaway" I'd respect that.

Sometimes my babe isn't happy with an alternative and will cry. She's not trying to be naughty or manipulate me into giving in. She is truly upset that she can't do/have what she wanted. I don't give in, but I will give her a hug to comfort her through it. Yes, 'tis hard when they are kicking their legs and throwing a tanty, I know! Sometimes she wants space. Thats OK too. I've just never felt that matching a child's tantrum with an adult version, with yelling, to work. For me.

This blog isn't about preaching or telling you how to parent. Your journey is your own, and you have to own it. This is just about explaining how I parent and why, to those who don't "get it".

Butterfly and her best friend, Fee. If they are supposed to be "entitled little shits" no one has told them...



    Oh and what is with people getting annoyed at kids for venting frustration that they can't have what they want? Oh okay, so you think I'm spoiling my kid by not giving them everything they want (and by that I in no way mean 'need', I mean toys you can't afford, or more lollies or turning the oven on' but then if the kid reacts - and rightly so - they are not allowed to react at all, get in trouble if they do - have time out etc.

    I see so many kids at the shops getting in trouble - when chances are, they are tired, hungry or have a wet nappy - or have been there all day. Half the time people discipline for show, just to be seen to discipline.

    Recently, we were at BIG W and SB found a bike like his (but not pink) and he was having the best time driving it around. It was time for us to go after a while, and SD wasn't sure how to handle it. He just said 'we have to go now' and picked SB off and SB was instantly very upset. As you would be. He put him back down and was like 'what do I do?' and I just knelt down next to SB and said 'we have to go home now. We can go ride your pink bike like this when we get there if you like'. SB stood up, got off and asked for a hug. He was sad, but he understood.

    What I love about my journey is that I'm only a parent. I don't have anywhere else to be. So SB can have a decent look or turn of anything, and then happily leave it. I could always say 'no' so he learns he can't have EVERYTHING. But he's learning that this way anyway - why bother with the trauma and screaming in public?

    You're doin a great job AC xxx

  2. as always, so well put SM! I learns much of my things from you, you are such a great mum! You are so right, kids are punished for showing emotions and its plain wrong.

    I am the same at the shops, I feel its best to give them some time to relax and enjoy it, because most of the time Butterfly is being dragged around with me while I do what I want! If she wants to stop in a store, hide behind a dress and play peekaboo, well, I can spare 2 minutes. It is hard at this point in her development because she wants to run far and wide and touch EVERYTHING, but I try to stick to places where she won't break anything or get lost in huge aisles. K-mart is not my friend right now!

  3. love it,as always!i totally agree+love the husband's so true that little ones are not allowed to express emotions,it's ridiculous+sad.i like the point you made that 2 minutes to stop+do something they want to do,will not affect us,except maybe to gain a happy little face!
    you are an awesome mama xx