HOW TO RESPOND TO YOUR KID’S FEELINGS
Hello LIPTalk Nation, I’m Laura Spragg and I’m your host here at Life in Purple. Today I want to share my thoughts on “How to respond to Feelings” Specifically to your kids feelings. But this will also help you and how you respond to your own feelings. We’ve discussed already that having feelings is a gift. In my opinion it’s a SUPER POWER. We just have to learn how to use it. But the question has been posed….
Are we punishing our kids for having feelings or the reaction from the feelings?
I’ve been thinking about this for quite sometime. In fact, the thought occurred to me a couple months ago, when I was listening to a friends story and at the end of her story, I said “no one is supposed to tell you how to feel”. And it was that same day, when my daughter found out that some of her friends were moving away. Now my daughter was very upset at first. And I let her be upset. I told her I was sad they were moving away too. But, Sydnee couldn’t get over it. Her complaining turned into crying. But I didn’t want to deal with her crying. I found it very annoying. In fact, I got frustrated with her and I sent her to her room. As the day continued, She would complain and cry even more. I just wanted her to stop crying. So, while I was on my way to “yell” at her, it occurred to me that I was about to punish Sydnee, yet again, for her feelings. I’m telling HER how to feel. I really had to stop and reflect at this point. I just told my friend that no one should tell you how to feel and I’m doing that very thing to my daughter. When I entered Sydnee’s room, I gently put my arm around her and gave her permission to feel sad about missing her friends. We talked it through and wouldn’t you know it, She stopped crying. Now I know it didn’t take the sadness away. But She was able to process the information and we both had resolution. Could it really be this simple?
I just told my friend that no one should tell you how to feel and I’m doing that very thing to my daughter.
LIPTalk nation, can you relate to this??? MAN, I messed up. I find myself reflecting on multiple occasions where I punished my kids for having feelings and not the reaction to the feelings. BUT< the good news is …. There is HOPE. It’s not too late…. Even if your kids are grown, ask yourself if you are punishing yourself for the reaction to your feelings? If you are, It’s called self destruction…. Negative talk.
Let’s learn how to retrain our brains together. This First step you may have heard me say before, and you probably will hear me say it again…. The first step on “How to respond to feelings”
1. GIVE YOUR CHILD (AND YOURSELF) PERMISSION TO FEEL.
Let them be sad, angry, frustrated or even give the permission to not want to do something. Let yourself not like the situation you are in. I know that my first response used to be Stop the crying. But I found myself using threats like, “If you don’t stop crying, you can’t have dessert”. This may solve the reaction to the feeling, but not the feeling or emotion behind it. It only builds suppression of more feelings which will then lead to a bigger explosion.
2. LET YOUR CHILD (AND YOURSELF) TALK IT OUT.
Both of you need to process the information. When you do this, it will remove the anxiety that both of you might be feeling. Logic just might set in and you may end up hugging at this point. God designed us to feel and to communicate. We must process the information. If you are dealing with an older child, they may need you to say that it’s okay to have a bad day. Quite frankly, it’s okay if you have a bad day.
3. TEACH YOUR CHILD HOW TO RESPOND TO THEIR FEELINGS.
This will take more effort. It’s so easy to respond out of anger or frustration. Especially when they throw a temper tantrum. It’s easy to yell. But the right thing to do is not throw a temper tantrum. The right thing to do is explain that they have a choice. I’m not saying by any means take away the consequence. If the punishment is time out, take away tv privilege or even you can’t hang out with friends tonight, it is still a choice. So after you have talked out the situation, and they understand that if they continue to act out or disobey then they choose to be punished.
I really wanted to simplify the information for you LIPTalk Nation.
Give permission to feel, talk it out and teach your child how to respond to their feelings. I know that we live in a busy world. But in reality it won’t take any more time to do this than being frustrated with your child who isn’t obeying.
Give permission to feel, talk it out and teach your child how to respond to their feelings.
So ask yourself if you’ve been punishing your kids or even yourself for having feelings or the reactions to the feelings. You just might an AHA moment!!
Thank you for reading this blog on Life In Purple. Where the broken can heal and the successful can conquer. If you’re thinking that this blog was just for you, or you have a story to share that connects with other blogs or episodes, I would LOVE to hear from you. Send me a quick email to Laura@lauraspragg.com or check out our website at www.liptalknation.com. Let’s all rise together LIPTalk nation and create a community that stops the negative talk. We ARE wonderfully made. What you say is what you become.
Laura Spragg is the host of the growing podcast and blog: Life in Purple – A place that fosters the journey of new perspectives, renewed energy, and a passion to be the best version of ourselves. Visit our Website or Facebook page to learn more… who doesn’t want a little extra positive in their life?