|Child's Embrace/ BB|
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of the issue as if you were ... mentoring.
As you are aware, a mentor guides, advises, teaches, and counsels another who may have less knowledge and understanding or experience. This other could be your child. Of course, when it comes to your child, you must have personal attributes which run hand in hand with mentoring another, such as love, compassion, flexibility, and perhaps a lot of understanding. Mentoring your child starts when they can share dialogue with you and can ask good pertinent questions. You want this kind of dialogue with your child
"Mentoring your child starts when they can share dialogue ..."
to start early; expressing your concerns calmly on the issue at hand in a language they understand.
Guide your child with your understanding and acknowledgement of the issue. Advise them on better choices with healthier consequences. For example, in the case where someone may have been hurt and expressing what could have been done to prevent this outcome. Make sure your loved one is clear on your concern by asking for clarity on the issue. Get their acknowledgement on the mistake, mishap, or bad decision. Counsel your children on the importance of the issue to others and where there is virtue. In the end, you will have taught your child a valuable lesson that will keep them open-minded and listen the next time a situation arises. In the process, you have shown you can respect your child when they are just trying to grow up; that you regard their shortcomings in lieu of their lack of experience. Your wiser child is now empowered with knowledge and perhaps regret, instead of feeling chastised or reprimanded.
"In the process, you have shown ... respect [to your] child when they are just trying to grow up ..."
Discipline should never result in your child feeling bad. Punishment or penalizing may not be wise if the result means your child is repeatedly not happy as a result or disagrees angrily stomping away. Something is seriously wrong. You don’t want your child feeling bad, distressed, or even worse, humiliated. You want conclusions where both parties are in mutual understanding. If not, then more work is necessary.
"You don’t want your child feeling bad, distressed, or even worse, humiliated."
Another tactic not to impose is the quick punishment (when no questions are asked and quick conclusions are drawn based on impressions or assumptions) which means someone is going to have to feel bad and that may be both of you if you cannot separate yourself from the grief you just inflicted. Someone is going to have to take time away because of the conflict, which just occurred; ultimately designating each other to understand the extent of the problem on their own. There is no long-term benefit to this. Rather take that time more wisely and use it to gain understanding and common ground on the issue together.
"... someone is going to have to feel bad and that may be both of you if you cannot separate yourself from the grief you just inflicted."
Mentoring fosters trust and respect in your relationship instead of control, restraint, and consequently disorder. At a minimum, always allow your loved one to walk from the issue with understanding and clearly accepting their actions and subsequently your actions. This enhances accountability and worth, in light of the issue, and this is an outcome you both can live with together.
"... your actions ... enhance[s] accountability and worth ..."
© 2012 Bruce Buccio