child) to be open to learning and growth. Every parent or teacher I know is
willing to admit that they learn so much from their children. That’s great news, but on top of that we want
to cultivate the ideal learning environment for our children through our words,
actions, and discipline strategies.
Control Parenting. I actually still prefer that one, but I thought it would
give off the wrong impression. The point is that when I let go of the idea that
my sole purpose as a mother of young children was to control them and make sure
they controlled themselves, then everything changed. I could stop living in fear at church, the grocery store, or a relatives
house because suddenly I realized having compliant children that had my rules
memorized was an inferior goal to the long term heart issues that I was really
wanting to speak to and the self control that I myself needed to model.
heart, and all the other sibling trail blazers out there) I was just figuring
it out. He was so stubborn and bull headed around age two (shocker!) I thought
that I was doing something wrong or that maybe there was something wrong with
him. At one point I considered the possibility of behavioral disorder.
Since then I have learned that my son was perfectly normal for his age. At the
time though, the struggle was very real. I did what I thought a good Christian
parent should do and I spanked him with a wooden spoon when he needed to be
corrected. I had friends that had wooden spoons with a sad face drawn on the front. The paddles name was Mr. Do-Good. It was something they picked up at a parenting
conference or something and the concept was that Mr. Do-Good would make you do good. So I tried that. The problem was that it wasn’t working. Neither I nor “Mr.
Do-Good” could MAKE my son do anything. I wanted him to eat healthy food, but I
felt like I was fighting a loosing battle. I considered the idea of chewing the
food up and putting it in his mouth like a momma bird, but ewwww. I couldn’t
make him go to sleep or stay in his crib. Believe me if there was a way I would
have done it, but nothing legal came to mind. I couldn’t make him pee in the
toilet. Don’t even get me started on that one! I read Baby Wise before he was
born followed by many other parenting books and blogs. No
matter how determined I was, I was a young mother that was coming to terms with
the fact that either I was just a failure or my son had a personality and
mind of his own and there was no secret weapon or super nanny that was going to
change that. I could nurture, teach, and guide, but I couldn’t control him.
pastor, and author Danny Silk has a quote that was the ultimate light bulb
moment for me. It was like a switch clicked and my mind was illuminated
when I heard him share this on a podcast. He was speaking to parents at this point and he said
“You cannot control others. The only person you can control- on a good day- is yourself.”
And THAT is the basis for what Teachable Parenting
means to me. It is about honoring our children and treating them like the
individuals that they are. It’s about applying a new covenant Biblical approach
to our interactions. It’s about creating a loving spiritual environment in our
homes rather than one of intimidation, manipulation, or fear. It’s about being set free.
discipline is a hot topic. That is why the mommy wars are so prevalent in our
society because we all want to do what is best for our children and when
someone says or does something to make us feel like we aren’t doing it the
right way we get very defensive. To me there is no greater insult than to imply
that someone is a bad parent. For the
record that is NOT what this series is about. Different things work
for different families or can even vary from child to child. I have so much
more to elaborate on, but that’s what the 31 days are for, so I’ll leave it at
that for now. Tomorrow I will talk more about Danny Silk’s book and two other
fantastic reads for parents. I hope you will join me.
For the Index Page to this 31 Day Series click here.