It’s just normal sibling stuff but I just feel awful when they get at each other. Especially with our recent move, things have been pretty out of whack. I don’t do well living in boxes, so I’ve been so focused on unpacking that our schedule and their emotions have been on the fritz.
So, we had a “situation” today. The outcome ended up being better than I expected and, since my main motivation for writing on this blog is to help encourage you guys, I wanted to share it with you.
Here’s the lead-up:
Child A and Child B are fighting downstairs. Child A walks away in the midst of the upset. Child A comes across my path and begins talking to me about something else.
Child B is still mad and comes to find Child A. I see the look on Child B’s face and intervene. (Side note: I canNOT say or type the word “intervene” without hearing Tim Hawkins’ voice in my head!!! Lol!!! I linked the video for your giggle-of-the-day but forward to 1:53 if you just want to hear him say it!)
Anyway, back to the children. Ahem.
I took both kids into my room and had them sit on the bed while I discussed better ways of handling the situation. Neither of them were particularly chipper by the time this teaching moment was over and I excused them to go finish what they were supposed to be doing. Child A was obviously still upset by the sound of the stomping.
Surely You DID Something About That!?!
In the past, I’ve been taught to deal harshly and swiftly with that type of behavior – the stomping, the fuming that goes along with it, the attitude. I normally would have called her back over and corrected her by pointing out that her attitude was way out of line and that she needed to fix it.
But, recently, I’ve seen some other ways to deal kids in these tough situations. Situations where it seems like no matter what I say, I make it worse. Where I am trying to teach them something valuable but they just aren’t receiving it.
So, I did something about it.
I called Child A back over by me and had her sit on my lap – she’s 9 but sometimes, she still needs mama’s lap. First, I hugged her for several minutes. Then, I gently smiled at her asked in a warm voice, “What do you need? What can I do for you?”
So, I just rubbed her back for a little bit.
“Well, I guess you don’t really ever let me talk. You just talk and then make us carry on with what we’re doing.”
This was said sadly but respectfully and sweetly – no bad attitude was left at all.
We talked some more and they she went back to her story from before Child B entered the picture. It was really nice. I felt like we connected and she understood how the situation could have been handled differently.
It’s now late afternoon and she has had a wonderful spirit about her all day.