“Our children’s behavior is driven by their emotions. So the best way to help our children to behave is to teach them how to manage their feelings.”
This blog couldn’t be more true. I’ll be the first to admit, I often said the things in column one when my kids were little without realizing. It’s common and goes from one generation to the next. End the vicious cycle and make a conscious effort to change for our babies mental health. I have been working on this for a long time now and column two works beautifully on my babies.
I grew up believing that emotions are bad and wrong but they aren’t. Most people are taught to hide their emotions but I think expressing them, man or woman, in a positive way is a sign of strength. We can’t stop our emotions but we can manage them.
As a single mother with BPD, aka emotionally sensitive, I often struggle with managing my own emotions and leading by good example to my two little ones. When I have a tough time emotionally, I often turn to my DBT skills and it has helped tremendously! You can read the entire blog here.
The Three Goals of the Emotionally Attuned Parent:
- Your child feels a part of something. He knows he’s not alone. You’re always on his team.
- Your child knows that whatever she feels, it’s OK, and it matters to you. She will be held accountable for her behavior, but not for her emotions.
- Your child learns how to tolerate, manage, and express his feelings.
Any parent who accomplishes these skills well enough is raising an emotionally healthy child and an emotionally intelligent child. You don’t have to do it perfectly. You just have to do it well enough.
|WHAT WE ALL SAY||WHAT THE IDEAL PARENT SAYS|
|Stop Crying||Why are you crying?|
|Let me know when you’re done with your fit||That’s OK. Get it all out. Then we’ll talk.|
|Alright, enough! I’m done with this.||Let’s take a break so we can both calm down.|
|Fix the attitude!||You sound angry or upset. Are you?|
|You need to think before you act!||How’d this go wrong? Let’s think it through.|
|Go to your room until you can behave better.||I see you’re angry. Is it because…?|
|OK, OK, stop crying now so we can go in the store.||Look at me. Take a deep breath. Let’s count to five.|
|There’s nothing to be nervous about.||Everyone gets nervous. It’s OK.|
|Don’t talk to me with that tone.||Try saying that again, but nicer so I can hear it.|