Our children do not cause our poor parenting behavior–yelling, demanding, demeaning, belittling, overpowering, physicality, threatening, arguing, meanness, etc. Those behaviors belong to us and no amount of attachment challenged child behavior is responsible for our “low road” reactions.
Because this is true, I have mastered the art of the sincere apology. I often owe that to both of my children. Whenever I suggest that parents owe an apology to their children before expecting their children to sincerely apologize, I get push back like there is no tomorrow.
“Absolutely not!” retorted one parent, when I asked if she had something to apologize for after she wrongly accused her daughter of something she had actually done herself. “If she didn’t lie all the time, I wouldn’t have falsely accused her.” Okay, but you did wrongly accuse her, and really you owe her a sincere apology for wronging her, right? “No.” Hmmmm.
If we expect our children to sincerely feel remorse and apologize for their wrongs, then we have to model it first. Otherwise, we are blaming them for our behavior.
Isn’t that what they often infuriatingly do to YOU?
Ce Eshelman, LMFT
The Attach Place provides a monthly, no fee Trust-based Adoptive Parent Support Group in Sacramento, every 2nd Wednesday of each month. Next group is October 14th at a NEW time–5:30 pm.Join us. Online RSVP each month required when you need child care.
The Attach Place offers a 10-hr. Trust-based Parenting Course every other month. Our next course dates are October 10th and 24th. Child care provided for an extra fee. Sign-up by calling 916-403-0588 x1 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Being the grown-up is so hard sometimes.