“I know we had a massive argument last night, but I can’t remember what it was about.”
These were the words my deflated Senior Son uttered to me as I pulled into our driveway after a long day a few weeks ago. These words hit me right where they were supposed to and they hit pretty hard, but the pain made its point.
I understood the message loud and clear. My children are going to remember me shouting, but they are not going to remember what I was shouting about. They’ll remember the fight but not the cause or the content. So, I have the choice to shout or not, and I choose to stop shouting. I was pleased too when Ian Lillico confirmed this for me a few weeks ago in his presentation to us. It boils down to the atmosphere you wish to create in your home.
Ever since Senior Son threw his comment at me, I have been more mindful of the decisions I make when it comes to parenting my boys. I do not want to be perceived as a moaning, complaining, shouting mother. Yes – there are rules, but there are other things I have let go of because I know that shouting, fighting and moaning are not going to change the behavior of a tween. I want my boys to remember me for the important things… for the things that really do count in relationships and so I have to let go of some of the stuff that, in the big picture of who we really are, doesn’t count for much at all.
Eliminating the shouting, moaning and fighting forces you to come up with creative and calm solutions to bad behavior. I’m not going to blog about those, because I think each problem has its own solution and that depends on your parenting style. For me – when the clothes are left in a heap on the bathroom floor, I use them to quietly leave a heap on his bedroom floor. He laughs, I smirk…it’s over. I’m calm, he’s calm and he won’t remember me blowing up about something that he perceives to be totally insignificant.
Decide: Is it honestly something worth moaning about? My decision is creating peace in the house and I like it. So does Senior Son. Maybe you will too…