Let’s say you gave unwanted advice to your child about homework and your child responded with hurtful comments like “I hate you. Why are you so mean? Leave me alone. I didn’t ask for your help. You don’t understand. I hate my life.”
You realize you did a communication block of unwanted advice and you want to reverse the hurt. Even though you didn’t start out on the right foot, you can apologize and try again. You can start responding as a supportive parent at any time as long as you fess up that you hurt their feelings and want to try again.
Here is an example of how a parent can start again.
Parent’s thoughts: I’ve hurt her feelings. She just wants to be listened to right now. She doesn’t need my advice.
Parent’s response: I’m sorry. You don’t need my advice. You’re feeling really bad about your homework right now.
Child’s response: It’s horrible. I just can’t do it and I’m not going to. They give way too much homework.
Parent’s response: I bet you would rather be doing anything but homework right now.
Child’s response: Yeah! I’d love to watch a movie and forget about all my work.
Parent’s response: I know.
Child’s response: It just isn’t fair. Why do they give so much?
Parent’s response: That’s something to think and talk about. What about tonight, though?
Child’s response: I know I have to do it but I just don’t know how to do it all.
Parent’s response: How about if we talk about ideas together and come up with a solution to try?
Child’s response: Okay. Thanks
Your ability to listen openly will lead your children to their own thoughtful solutions.
To learn more about responding so your kids keep sharing, read my article Learn Empathetic Responses to Keep Your Child Sharing on my website.
©2014 Cynthia Klein, Bridges 2 Understanding, has been a Certified Parent Educator since 1994. She guides parents to create a caring, cooperative, and courageous family. Cynthia presents her expertise through writing, speaking, and private parenting coaching sessions. She is a member of the National Speakers Association, Parents Place Parenting Educator, and is a columnist for the Parenting on the Peninsula magazine. Contact Cynthia at bridges2understa.wpstagecoach.com, cynthia@bridges2understanding,com, or 650. 679.8138.