Sunday, October 13, 2013

Child Rearing

I alright friends, I need some advice. Boo is great in a million and one ways however, I have a growing list of concerns that I need to figure out how to address:

1.  My daughter is entirely TOO concerned how she looks.  She has become increasingly picky over the clothes, shoes she wears and how her hair is done. I understand there is preferences -and I try to let her pick out what she wears most days with some guidelines-like "it's cold outside where long pants and long sleeves, etc...." She has her own opinion what matches and what does not. I'm fine that she has preference on what she wears. However, I am not okay with her reasons- especially for the way her hair is done. "My friends won't like it" or today she said about wearing socks with her boots instead of bare foot, "my friends will laugh at me."  The other day we were going to the park so I put her hair in a pony tail quickly so it would be out of her face and it was a fast easy hairdo. She cried, not a tantrum cry, all the way to the park. When we got there she hid her face behind my legs, saying "my teacher won't like my hair" (her primary teacher was at the park). She would only went to play when I took her hair out.

I'm not sure what to do with this reasoning. And I don't like that she cares SO much at the age of four.

2. She doesn't care when she makes her friends cry. She's runs off playing and happy as can be. I feel like she is starting to turn into a little bit of a bully. I talked to her a little bit about it on the way home from church. I asked her what she wants ME to do when she's sad and crying- she then brought up that I make her cry when I take away her toys (which is done as a consequence for not cleaning up or like the other day I took away her crayons after she colored all over her dresser). Am I teaching her to be a bully by taking away her toys (I try to explain to her consequences and why I'm taking them away)? Am I teaching her not to care about other's crying by not giving into her crying to get what she wants?

3. She has been trying to police other kids. Today in church during the opening prayer she was telling one of the kids behind us to close HIS eyes.  It's funny that kids don't get the logic yet that OBVIOUSLY she doesn't have her eyes closed if she can see that his eyes are open. Anyway, I feel like she tries to tell other kids what to do often

these are just a few of the concerns I have but I think the most important when it comes to interacting with others. .

I realize that the answer lies with me and my behavior but I think I need some parenting opinions and advice so I can figure out how to remedy these situations.


Stephanie said...

Lol... You are a great mom - I hope any advice I give you take with a grain of salt. You know Bekah better than anyone. ANYONE. Well, I guess Heavenly Father knows her better... but. You are the only person on this earth that knows her everything.... :)

Either way.

1. I would just continually tell her that what she looks like isn't as important as who she IS. How nice she is, etc. I'm sure in the future it will get crazier and crazier, but start young.

2. You aren't bullying her by disciplining her. She is smart enough to know the difference between getting in trouble and you taking away things, and her taking things away from kids if she just wants to play with what they have. But a good explanation always helps. Get down on her level, look her in the eyes, and tell her why you discipline and what you think about her actions and what you expect of her.

3. I think every kid does that.

Remember, it's not only you. You are awesome. You are a great mom.

I love you lots!

Becky said...

Amen Stephanie! I totally agree with her on each point. But, of course...I can't leave it at that, I have to add my two cents.

1. I think image is a big thing for girls at an early least in our house too. Probably in our society. We are constantly having talks about how important being nice and kind and sharing and caring are WAY more important than how we look or how our friends look. (If you want to know our specific struggle for awhile, regarding image, email me! If not, no worries.)

2. I agree, getting on their level and having eye contact is important for some talks. Talks in the car are totally effective too, but sometimes topics need to be reinforced with alone time with mommy or maybe over a meal? Or a family home evening lesson? Our Mops group just had guest speaker talk about how sometimes we think our children know better but really we haven't conveyed in a way for them to understand our expectations. Her main way of teaching young children our expectations even when it comes to behavior is through pictures. Pictures of places (the park) of feelings and consequences etc. And talking about the pictures before you go somewhere that there seems to be a reoccurring behavior problem. I also agree with Steph that Boo is old enough and smart enough to know the difference between getting in trouble and you taking away things, and her taking things away from kids if she just wants to play with what they have.

3. I don't know about this one. Sometimes I think it's funny when other kids are policing other kids. Especially when the policer is younger than those they are trying to police. So, I'm no help.

There is a youtube video of a toddler, that can talk, buckling herself into her carseat and her sibling or someone is telling her how to do it or something and the toddler keeps saying, "just worry about yourself!" We think that is so funny in our family because that's what I always say when someone is getting too bossy or nosy or whatever.

I think you are a great mom. All children are so different...even in the SAME FAMILY! I think that's why there isn't a standard parenting book. You just have to try things and do the best you can.

Stacey said...

All of these problems are age-related and are phases. However, that does not mean you should ignore them and wait for them to pass. She's four and just realizing that there are other people in the world and she is trying to figure out how to interact with them. She is trying to figure out where the boundaries of human interaction lie. She needs to hurt a few kids to realize she likes making them feel good more than she likes hurting them. She needs to think about how other people see her, it's important to being a well-adjusted grown-up. I bet you think about what your friends will think of your outfit all the time. Remind her that she's important and other people are important too. These skills take years to learn so don't stress when she makes mistakes, but make sure to use those times to teach her the correct way. Most importantly, PRAY. LOVE ya!