Browsing CategoryEmpathic Child-rearing

Peaceful Parenting for Non-Peaceful People

I am quite a volatile person. I used to take a lot of pride in this but now it’s a daily tide I have to swim against. I am only 5’2’’ so perhaps it’s a mixture of small person syndrome and having a fierce and wonderful firecracker as my greatest heroine and role model (also known as my Mum) but I always wanted to leave that “Oh, don’t mess with her!” impression. I have always been great with kids and had a very strong connection to them so when I came across Peaceful Parenting, it sat beautifully with me and…

What is Staylistening?

“Sshh” “Don’t cry!” “You’re alright, buddy!” “That’s enough now!” “Come on… it’s not THAT bad!” “Chin up!” “Where’s that big smile?” “I’ll give you something to cry about!” Have you ever heard any of these? Ever said any of these? That’s OK… but I’m going to ask you now to try and stop. It turns out that crying is actually a good way of healing ourselves and that the people who know best what they need in terms of emotional offloading and stress-relief are our children. They come into this world with a very simple mechanism for offloading their stress…

What Does Progress Look Like?

It’s really important to remember that children are always going to be led off-track. There are dysregulating experiences they face every day even if (and this is incredibly unlikely) both you and them have healed every earlier trauma/hurt you’ve experienced. Any activities outside the home (especially day care or school) will most likely cause them to experience social strain, witness or be privy to name calling or physical hurts, as well as any number of small confusions or painful interactions which add to a larger sense of uneasiness. I’m by no means suggesting we bubble-wrap our kids, I am just…

Attention Seeking Behaviour

One of those things you hear so often is “They’re just doing it for attention!” So what should you do with attention seeking behaviour as a parent? Well, this will be a really short article because the answer is to simply give it to them! AND be glad your child is so efficient in communicating their need. It may feel frustrating but it is actually incredibly helpful and emotionally intelligent of your child to send a clear signal that they are feeling off-track. Off-track behaviour is always a signal and as you become more and more of an empathic parent,…

Taming The Tantrum

You’re in the supermarket and (despite the promise you make to yourself EVERY. DARN. TIME.) you have a child with you. It’s gone as well as could be expected. You’ve only said “No” 20 billion times and it’s been handled reasonably well. Then you see it but not before they’ve seen it too… in it’s characteristic red and white foil, right near the finish line… (completely intentional, of course) and Little One has grabbed it and even before the “No” comes out, they have started the tirade of insults and complaints and your face has already shown them the answer…

What Is A Listening Partner?

If you’ve been following my stuff (yay! and thank you) then you will have heard me harp on and on about a Listening Partnership and getting Listening Time. So what is it and why is it so important? The Listening Partnership was invented by Patty Wipfler of Hand In Hand Parenting (and author of Listen) whose Parenting by Connection approach is centred around 5 tools: 1. Setting Limits 2. Staylistening 3. Playlistening 4. Special Time 5. Listening Partnerships The other 4 are mostly child-centric but the 5th is born of the underlying fact that parenting requires good support and that…

7 EASY Ways To Become A More Empathic Parent

1. Start journaling your parenting experience Writing things down can help you on a number of different levels, one of which is diffusing the situation and often putting your thoughts into words helps you find clarity. It’s also quite cathartic! 2. Come up with some mantras In the heat of the moment one of the best things we can do is take a pause. A physical action like jumping or shaking can help and repeating a mantra such as “My child is not a problem, my child is having a problem.” Or “This is not an emergency…” (as our limbic…

Q & A: Aggressive Play

Question: I have a 3 year old, 17 month old and number 3 is due in 3 months…. My 3 year old tends to have outbursts and act like a dinosaur and attack his cousins and sister… He’s always roaring like a dinosaur.. We’ve taken all dinosaurs away and he still keeps going. He head butts his cousins and sister too like a dinosaur would! Is this normal? Answer: Whoa!! Busy household!! That must be tough at times? Children under 3 have negligible amounts of impulse control and it (very) slowly develops as they grow older. They used to say…

13 Reasons Why: Not Another Teen Drama

NB: As I was writing this post in my head, I had decided to put it somewhere else as I felt too vulnerable and exposed with the idea of putting it on this page with my normal content. As it transpired, I changed my mind as I still feel it’s somewhat of a parenting post even if it covers some controversial topics and some personal information. [UPDATE: I have just watched the “Beyond The Reasons” special and I highly recommend everyone watch that too to really process what they intended.] I hate spoilers. I prefer to go into something with…

Why You Shouldn’t Smack Your Kids

NB: I was initially commissioned to write under this title for Petite Bebe blog a few years ago so my children’s ages have changed but the sentiment remains the same. I think we’ve all seen that meme that says something along the lines of “I was smacked and I have something called respect for others!” and after seeing it for the umpteenth time I decided to take a breath and really reflect on how I think smacking DID affect me. I try to practice Peaceful/Gentle/Positive Parenting and I have found in a lot of different forums that people have often…