Opening up to the notion of peaceful or gentle parenting can ironically be like smashing into a brick wall. Repeatedly. While little people stare at you like you’re insane.
Something that has hit me hard in my efforts to become a more gentle parent is the idea of winning battles with our children. For example… “You will use this blue cup. I don’t care how much you would like the red.” Or maybe “No, I will not read you a story, go to sleep!”
Traditional (modern?) parenting would have us believe that we, as parents and rulers of the home, should require, demand, and enforce total subjugation of our children. If they disagree, we still have to make them do what we want. We don’t even have to listen to why they disagree because it doesn’t matter what they think.
I firmly believe in appropriate discipline methods, but it’s really eye opening to realize that for in order for us to always be the winner, our child has to always be the loser.
In order for us to be a “successful parent,” our child has to become a conquered and defeated enemy.
The feeling of accomplishment we have every time we win is countered by the feeling of failure our child has.
Every win for us is a loss for them.
Imagine if we parented our children as if we’re both on the same team.
I no longer try to fight battles. I encourage and assist. I explain and also listen. I’ve learned to value my child as a person, not someone to defeat, and I strive to have them value me as an ally.