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Parent Coaching Tip: Types Of Crying & Then What?

What Type Is This?

What Type Is This?

There are 6 Types of Crying if you care to learn them.  BTW the crying behavior looks different at different ages, so by crying I also mean, whining, fussing, yelling, bickering, complaining, name calling, and general verbal outbursts.  This could turn your Power Struggles around instantly. 

Sad or Hurt Crying is when you need to respond.  Don’t assume though, ask.  Are you hurt crying?  Are you sad about your friend moving?  If they are, provide kisses, bandaids, ice, hugs, comfort, listen and sympathize at will.  This is when they need you and need to deal with a feeling to get it out. 

Happy Crying is just like it sounds.  When they are that Happy, join them!  If you happen to be the one weeping with joy, say that so they don’t fret over you!

Tired Crying or Attention Crying are a means to an end that you may be able to help them with.  Think long car trips with cranky kids or upsets when you are on the phone and you see the problem.  It’s not what they need, it’s how they ask.  Teach them to say, “I’m tired,” when they need help settling down or the activity to quiet.  Model for them saying, “I want attention,” when they crave a piece of you.  Let them know that you will indulge them unless you absolutely can’t but they need to ask another way.  This works amazingly, try it!

Silly Crying is when they are trying to manipulate those around them to a different result.  Think of this type of behavior as a fire which must be starved of any and all oxygen in order to smother it!  As soon as you have a cryer, make sure it is not another type, if they just want something they can’t get (at the moment), that’s TBSS (Too Bad SO Sad).  This is where our parenting backbone is tested.  Be clear that if they use this crying, NOTHING will happen and NOTHING will go their way.  Be confident and do not undermine yourself!  Let’em wail and wait it out (preferably in another room) when they have self control back, you talk.  Not before.

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April 17, 2009 at 5:45 pm Leave a comment

Parent Coaching Tip: Pissed Parents Get Piss Poor Results

I am noticing a hidden trend with the Parents I am currently Coaching.  They get good at the basic program and deliver it well.  But there is a difference with their results.  They get more resistance, it takes more struggle to have a child choose to help create a family that works.  I began to wonder, what’s that about?

I figured it out.  Each time I talk to a family, I learn things.  What I learned this week, was this.  Take two Parents using the same program we teach.  One says, “You are not listening the first time, either do it now or we will talk abour privileges.”  They are calm, fine with this development, and ready to act if needed.  The other parent says, ” YOU are NOT listening the First Time, do you want to lose a Privilege, young LADY!?”  They are personally upset, disappointed and disapproving of the child. 

If you think there is no difference, you are wrong.  A child who has already lost your approval is not as motivated to choose what works because your family is not working RIGHT NOW.  A child who has a pissed off parent will find another way to get revenge or do other odd behaviors to avoid dealing with you the way you are.  It is truly facinating. 

Here’s the Coaching- Deliver the parenting in a calm, friendly manner.  If kids know they aren’t triggering your emotions, they won’t do t on purpose.  If they know you haven’t gotten upset, they deal better with being parented. 

Be cool, great job, good luck!

April 11, 2009 at 1:11 am 2 comments

Parent Coaching Insight: Who Gets Mom In The Car?

Where Do You Sit?

Where Do You Sit?

What do you think when you look into another car and see Dad driving dutifully but Mom in the back next to a car seat?  Marriage out of focus?  Poor Guy?  What’s with the Mom?  I think of power.  If you know me at all, you are not surprised.  

Any baby worth their salt has used their power to wrap parents around their chubby fingers.  I teach families that this is the way of the world, the design of humankind.  I coach parents to marinate an infant in love and show them that the world is a trustworthy place.  Be there, meet their needs, comfort them and all that. 

But I must admit I am jarred by the sight of a woman forsaking her place next to her mate in a car.  I can understand that at times, rare times, a baby may need a bottle held on the way to a scheduled event.  I get that.  What I don’t get is when the child is past infancy, facing forward and not currently in need.  What I don’t get is when all the players in this drama have the look of familiarity borne of habit. 

What are the concerns of a parent that has them sit in the back as a matter of course?  Entertainment?  Boredom is necessary to teach inventiveness.  Crying?  If avoiding simple crying has you jump through these hoops, I fear for your parenting backbone.  Connection?  As parents, you need to model the primary connection to your life partner so they see how critical that bond is. 

If you are a parent that has talked yourself into this choice as a need for your family, take another look.  Your child has seized too much inapproriate power in this, and perhaps other, instances.  Talk with the other parent and get some clarity.  Habits you don’t think about can cause other issues .  And get your butt in the front seat for gosh sakes.

February 1, 2009 at 5:29 pm 1 comment

Alignment With Our New President

Families Are A Priority

I am so touched by what President Obama said in his Inauguration Address: “It is a parent’s willingness to nuture a child that finally decides our fate.”

Thanks for my new favorite quote Mr President! I hear you, I’m on it.

January 21, 2009 at 1:07 pm Leave a comment

Parent Coaching: Can Kids Earn Privileges Back?

The "Earn Back" Puzzle Solved

The "Earn Back" Privilege Puzzle Solved!

Not really.  This is a total FAQ when I work with families.  It seems to them that if a child misbehaves they lose something, if they behave again they can get it back, right?  Nope.  Here’s what gets left out.  Reality in adulthood.  Oh and creating another power struggle.  Let’s take one at a time.

Real World

When you speed you may or may not get a ticket.  If you do get “caught” and have to pay, if you stop speeding (forever? a week?) you don’t get your money back.  Having a privilege at risk means it is at risk.  The best privileges are the non-physical ones of opportunity: getting to choose a restaurant, spending extra alone time with a parent, having free time to do as you please, computer time.  You can never get these back. 

If you DO remove a physical thing, it comes back into play after a set time that works for your family, say a day.  You want the emphasis on the fact that the child’s next choice will have an impact.  Then provide the impact and allow them to experience it fully.  The goal is for them to know that when you say you will take a privilege, you will and they will notice it is gone.  Then they will choose the behavior that works more often (without having the thing even removed!)

Power Struggle

When you give a child a moment to consider if their behavior works for your family (through Agreements) you give them the appropriate power to choose the next move with our without a consequence.  Once they choose to do what doesn’t work, they experience the impact of that choice.

If you then allow them to “earn” back the privilege through doing what works, you are giving Inapproriate Power by letting them say when the impact is complete.  Putting them in that driver’s seat creates them knowing that your consequences are only as temporary as they choose them to be.  That’s a parenting red alert.

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November 28, 2008 at 4:40 pm 2 comments

Parent Coaching: A Gift On So Many Levels

Pre Paid Coaching in progress!

Pre Paid Coaching in progress!

Four people have signed up for the Pre Paid Parent Coaching in 24 hours!  I am so excited to get started with each of them.  I could hear even in the set up call just where I need to start with one family.  This Mom really wants a set schedule for her kids to display more independence.  I know once she learns how to turn over parts of the daily routine to them, she will see a different result. 

Giving appropriate power not only reduces Power Struggles, it sends a critical message to kids:  You can do this, I trust you, go for it.  So often that message is:  I’ll do it, you can’t manage it as it should be done.  That instills doubt in a child.  Imagine your boss sharing your office and telling you what is next on your to do list!  How long would we put up with that? Kids have little choice. 

My little chef!

My little chef!

For the first time today my 6 year old chose a vegetable at the store (yellow squash), washed it, cut it (less oversight with a butter knife), and learned how to saute and season it.  He was so engaged.  He requested we add cheese, we did!  And he ate it , it was good! It was different than I would have done it but he had the golden egg of Appropriate Power. 

The gift of parent coaching...One person got the Coaching Program as a Holiday Gift for someone.  It feels very rewarding to be able to provide parent coaching both easily and affordably.  The parent plan makes such an impact on the child, the parent, the family, and the people those kids will grow into.  A gift on so many levels.

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November 25, 2008 at 11:45 pm Leave a comment

Parent Coaching Tip – How to Parent Your Neighbor’s Kids

Parenting is at first a physical challenge, then slowly, it morphs into a mental challenge. As you begin to unravel the intricacies of this central relationship, you may notice there are natural laws at play. You hear just how closely you are observed when your choicest words fly from your child’s mouth. You watch them test the boundries over and over with amazing stamina and endurance. Still they are special beings, they belong to your family in a way, and at times, you wonder about the miracle of it all.
Until they bring the neighbor kid over. Or a new friend from school. There is nothing quite like getting a glimpse into the world of another family than to hang out with their kid without them. It all seems to go very well at first. They play nicely, get along, take turns, but at some point you need to step in to be the authority. This can be a sticky moment. The reaction can be surprisingly good, or turn sour when you least expect it. It seems the measure of a successful playdate might be how many times I was called upon to have a parenting moment with your child.
For my sister, it was an older child who brought her Demand to a halt with one little question. As he began to take a helmet style toy outside, she told him to choose something else since that was an inside toy. He turned and asked “Why?”
She scrambled, her two were a few years younger so her skills were not up to speed with his cunning and diversionary tactics. As she began to explain her reasoning to a 7 year old, she realized she had stepped into his trap. A moment later she saw an even bigger dilemma. Now that she had aswered his query, he was sharing his differing opinion and she was forced to PUT HER FOOT DOWN so to speak. Her concern lay not in getting him to do it, but in his retelling of the incident to his mother later. Not knowing her very well, she wanted to seem like a reasonable mom, of course.
Later she asked me for parent coaching for that situation. What I worked out with her has worked so well, she shares it often when others complain about simlar expereinces.
We began by assuming some intentions:
The right to parent your child is sacred between that child and their own parents.
By sending a child over to another household, you include that parent in your authority equation.
Having a plan within your own house makes it very simple and clear when parenting a visiting child.
You want them to have fun, learn and keep the agreements, but not walk all over you.
Any retelling of interactions must seems logical and reasonable yet not pass judgement on the child’s home base.
Step One-Before Parenting Moment: Declare
When the child arrives, you state the basic agreement you need to have. In this case it was, “Hey Garrett, nice to see you. While you are playing we have an agreement in our family to Listen the first time. Can you do that while you are here?” Garrett agrees. “OK, if you forget, I’ll remind you once that you made the agreement and you can choose what to do next. If you don’t keep the agreement, you can go play at home and come back another day. Got it?” He does.
Step Two- During Parenting Moment: Act
When the parent sees the need to use their authority as a Demand. Garrett either keeps the agreement and gets praised for remembering (Hey Garrett, great job remembering the, listen the first time agreement!) or doesn’t. Let’s say the same scenario happens:
“Keep that toy inside, please.”
“Why?”
“Choose to keep it inside or not. Then we will discuss why if you like.”
OR
(Garrett, remember that agreement about listening? This would be what I was talking about, what do you choose?)
Notice that the Why? is more of a diversion to buy time and avoid that he was told to do something.
Step Three-After Parenting Moment: Consistency
If Garrett choose to listen he is free to play.
If he takes the toy out or continues to haggle, “Garrett, it was nice to see you today. You can come back another day. Bye now!”
Can you imagine that when he goes home there is no worry that he will turn the story around to make you look incompetent? You can easily explain the steps you took to his parent. Impressive. The best outcome is that on the next visit, you will be listened to the first time, since his experience is that you do what you say.
Here’s the best part, in managing this moment with a child she was not emotionally attached to, my sister saw that her own children were getting away with asking Why? of a demand instead of choosing their behavior. She immediately began to respond newly to this with awesome results. If you are too close emotionally to figure your way out of a Parenting Moment, switch kids with a friend and try out some new skills. You will get a whole new perspective on your family!
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October 28, 2008 at 5:39 pm Leave a comment

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Dawn Roth

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