I don’t know about anyone else’s household, but I do know that my household has to have seen at least 1000+ temper-tantrums over the course of my motherhood.
Umm, I don’t think so.
Our most recent bout with temper-tantrum was a trip to the grocery store. All the kids were behaving in the store so I decided to let them pick one treat to put with the groceries. Each little daughter picked what she wanted and the clerk proceeded to ring up the grocery bill. After everything was rang up and paid for, my youngest daughter decided she didn’t want what she got, she wanted the same treat her sister got. At that point, the major melt-down was in the very early stages. I told her no because everything’s been bought and paid for so now she has to take what she got or she didn’t get anything.
Okay, now we are at slightly louder crying so I decide it was time to leave and we chaotically took our exit. In the car, she just broke down and cried/screamed all the way home. Once home, I put her in her room – before I lost my temper – where she proceeded to scream. This went on for about 10-15 minutes.
I wasn’t giving in. I’d had enough of the temper-tantrums, the complete meltdowns, and the screaming because they don’t get their way. Finally, after what seemed like ions, the screaming quieted and I went to check on her. When I walked in the door, with the sweetest, little voice she told me she’d stop screaming now, aww, be still my heart. I felt my muscles relax, and my arms opened. She came willingly and we cuddled for a minute and then I explained to her about fit-throwing. She’s almost 3, but her comprehension is still that of a small child. Everything I said probably fell upon deaf ears. But, hey, I’m hoping she will remember it.
Throughout my adult life and many, many hours reading parent books (and they are aplenty), I have learned:
There Is No RIGHT Way To Parent!
There are parenting classes available at your disposal. There are books, magazines, movies, and internet searches galore. There’s the doctors (that don’t have children), the child psychologists, counselors, teachers, other parents and a whole host of other people who can tell you how to raise a child. However, none of these have God in their name and that’s where you will find the most help.
And nobody has the magic words that are going to make your toddler temper-tantrums, teen explosions, and girl drama (Yes! I said that!) suddenly disappear. It’s a hard thing, parenting, but it requires all of a healthy mind and heart to do. It requires patience, understanding, boundaries, compassion, listening skills, affection, commitment, confidence, discipline, love, grace and, most of all, God.
“He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity.” 1 Timothy 3:4
I’ve been a parent for seventeen years now. Each year gets a little harder, but it’s gets a little easier, too. I have learned much along the way. Some things I’ve learned have stuck with me. Some things didn’t quite work with who I am and who my children are, so got tossed. But, we keep striving for a better day.
*disclaimer* I am just a mom trying to raise 8 beauitful, faith-filled, God-seeking individuals. My manners of raising children are in no way the only way to raise children. As I said, there is no right way to parent.