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~ Questions and Answers ~

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Mike: What do you do when a child just will not do what you ask the child to do?


     Reason with the child! Explain! Ask the child to talk with you, to say what he or she thinks! Above all, remember to work with the child rather than against the child. Be on the child's side because you are, aren't you? You, as a parent, are hardly against the child. Perhaps some parents have read that hitting the child is the way to teach the child, but please think about that. What is a better way to teach a child, hitting or talking and explaining? Why act as if you are against the child when really you want to help the child be the best he or she can be!

     If the parent works with the child instead of against the child, what you asked is not likely to even happen! The child will know that you want to help and explain and make the child happy with life.  It is wonderful and easy

     Respecting the child as a worthy human being from the moment the child is born helps the child realize that he or she is, indeed, worthy!   Isn't that what a parent wants?  Feeling happy with one's life is so important.  Those who do not like themselves, who do not feel comfortable as a respected human being are those that sometimes hurt themselves or others, sometimes in very big ways.  Self hate is the start of hate towards others.  Important!

     Some parents, unfortunately, have been told that obedience is important. That was the question here.  The child will not obey me.  Think about it. The child a parent brings into the world is not an unworthy servant to the parent, but a brand new human being ready to learn from the parent.  A kind parent makes a huge difference.  Punishment is harmful.  Talking and explaining and discussing with the child is the way!  As Bruno Bettelheim wrote:
"Punishment may make us obey the orders that are given but at best will only teach an obedience to authority not a self-control which enhances our self-respect."

     The parent really chooses whether the child will be unhappy with life or happy and kind to others.


Sara: I need your book now. My children are testing me...testing me!!!


     Please try this, it will work. If they are "testing" you, then take the test. You need to do that! Ask your child to come sit by you on a sofa and talk. Take two coca colas or two lemonades or whatever the child likes.  Do not be hurried. This is important. You care about helping your child, don't you? If so, please do this! You will be glad you did. Ask your child to talk, to tell you whatever the child feels is bothering him or her. Listen. Listen. Listen. Listen to anything the child wants to talk about. Say nothing. Just listen. Then hug the child. Maybe say you are sorry about whatever the child says has been bothering him.  Say you are sorry you have caused any unhappiness for the child, and.... most probably... if you think this is true...say you want to be on his or her side, and say you want to be a help from now on. Say you can change!  Say that you just read something, or whatever is true, that is making you think you should have been different in the past.  You thought what you were doing was best but now you realize you should have been less bossy and always on his side, deciding things together.  Say you want to do that because you want him or her to be happy.

     (If, in the past, your relationship with child had been at all unpleasant, take the blame for it because it is probably your fault. If from the beginning, the child had known you want to help him or her always, that you are on the same side, that you are not planning to be a dictator but a caring mother who wanted to make her child happy with life, then the child would not be "testing" you now. Instead you would be having fun.)

     And then smiling happily say you are glad to be listening and hope you had not been unkind. Say you want to be kind always and perhaps you need to change. Then ask your child to remind you if you ever act grumpy with him or her. Apologize. Start over. Ask your child to help you be a better mother. Say you really mean that. And then start enjoying being really kind, really helpful, and really interested in having your child enjoy wonderful life. Be different from what you were.

     You will be glad. Have fun. Enjoy every minute with your child. It is definitely possible and up to you, the parent, to make it happen!  

~ Article Responses ~

NEW from Emily Slingluff, Dec. 22, 2016.

Several days ago, I read an article online by Julie Revelant,on Liberty Headlines .that broke my heart. It was called "10 Strategies to avoid raising a spoiled brat."

I almost totally disagree with everything that was written.  I shall respond here.  Her words are written in italics and my responses are in bold letters.

1. Don't make it easy       Do make it easy!

It is more difficult in many ways for this generation to raise a wonderful child than it is to raise a brat, said Elaine Rose Glickman, author of "Your Kid's a Brat and It's All Your Fault." It is not more difficult to raise a wonderful child than it is to raise a brat.  It is very easy to raise a wonderful child.  

Parents in previous generations acted like parents: They expected obedience and respect and wanted to raise children who were resourceful and happy, "but they didn't expect their children to be happy at every single moment," she said.  Parents in any generation can act like parents, for goodness sakes!  What does she think a parent should do to act like a parent?  Perhaps the writer believes that a parent should act like a dictator? Oh how sad!  A  parent, in any generation, can be kind isntead of mean.  A parent need not order the child around as if the child were a servant to the parent. After all, the parent asked for the child.  The child is a human being, just as worthy of respect as is the parent.  And if the parent wants a child who is, to use her words, resourceful and happy, then the way to do it is different from what is suggested in her article.   

We know that the goal of psychiatrists in treating patients of any age is HAPPINESS.  People who go to psychiatrists are not happy with life. Perhaps the writer should consider why some children are bullies and why some people even choose to commit mass murders.  There is a one word answer in both of those cases.  Bullies and mass murderers are unhappy.  It is unhappy people who feel a need to lash out, to hurt others, emotionally or physically. Happy people usually care about others and want to be nice to others.

And we can all remember that parenting is a pleasure.


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