Blended Family’s and Bonding
Blended families are commonly referred to as step families, and are increasingly common among society…
I must admit, I am guilty from time to time of feeling overwhelmed and wondering “am I doing this right?!” Then I stop and really calm down, get those nerves settled and realize that I am doing this right.
Who are you to tell another parent that they are not doing it right?
For example; with my youngest having separation anxiety in the mornings — many will say I need to just leave him kicking and screaming, that is not something I am comfortable with. The reason I am not comfortable with that is this; I feel its my job to safely and securely get him into his classroom ready for his day, I feel it’s a job between the teacher and myself to have compassion yet firmness about ensuring my child is able to stop crying and relax enough to let go and move on with class. I have found in the past when dealing with separation anxiety that if I stick around too long or make the goodbyes last forever, then the child acts out longer. I have also found out in the past by dealing with separation anxiety that if I have a quick goodbye and let the child know “I am saying goodbyes one time only, one more time and then I am leaving”, that the child takes that easier. They accept the facts and while they may still have some tears, they are not kicking, screaming and trying to run away from the teacher. I feel my job is to be swift, compassionate, caring and yet still be firm about the fact that he is staying in school.
This method has worked well for my middle child and is seeming to help my youngest this year. That doesn’t mean every parent is going to do that method, I simply feel that my kids and I have a close bond and for me to just say BYE as I walk away without a genuine hug, kiss and love you, that they will eventually grow bitter with me. I do not ever wish to have my child grow this bitterness inside of them, we live happily blended after all, right?! I am a positive person and I believe in positive reinforcement. I also, when this first happened last week, work with what I have. This means, I did tell my youngest we would go out for ice cream cone after school so he would have something to look forward to. While that didn’t help him the following day, I thought it was worth a shot. Now I know, that doesn’t work long term and probably won’t utilize that method again.
As parents, we all live and learn. Many will judge me for saying “ice cream cone for staying in school and not crying”, but honestly, I don’t care. Every Mom or Dad finds themselves in unfamiliar territory with their children from time to time and test out various methods to see what works. Right now, I am testing out what will work with my youngest and his issues leaving me for school. So far, all that his Dad and I can get him to open up about is that his day is too long. Which makes sense, as I am leaving the house 50 minutes earlier this year than last year. With that being said, he usually is awake early so it’s not like he is really waking up earlier, my sons wake up on their own around 6am if not earlier most days.
And more on parenting stuff that makes us question our ways … again .. seems the news is full of it these days …
Watching the Today show yesterday, their are professionals now saying that labeling our kids is bad for them. Such as saying “oh this is my smart one” or “oh this is our comedian of the family” or “oh he is just the class clown” will develop this stigma where the child will grow up thinking that is all they can or ever will be. I say BS on that, honestly. I believe that establishing what each child is great at by saying that to them and others is great, it’s a positive compliment. With that being said, my kids also know I expect certain things from them, I encourage them to always do their best, and I thrive on ensuring they live each day to their fullest ability with effort and happiness.
I feel like professionals, such as psychiatrist and pediatricians, are constantly tossing all of these new “no no’s” into our parenthood lives that many parents feel like they should question their existence as the parent they choose to be. Stop questioning things, my biggest pet peeve is when people follow everything others say to a T … here’s my advice for all parents;
Listen to what others say about parenthood tips, suggestions and advice. Think about your children and what makes them thrive. Think about what works within your household. Think about the advice, suggestions and tips given and mold them into something that works for you and your family!
Never take 100% for sure, unless it’s LAW obviously, what another person says. It’s all guidelines, no one can foresee the future and guarantee you are doing it all right … we all do it right, we all do it to the best of our abilities based on what worked for our elders, what works for us and what works for each of our children!