I Let My Kids Talk Back at Me
Children should be polite and respectful to elders. They should listen and obey.That’s called well-disciplined children. I concur. But, I beg to differ in my ways.
I let my kids talk back at me when I talk to them. I even let them raise their voice. They can turn their backs from me. Yes, you heard it right. I let them do those things.
Contrary to what we traditionally believe that kids have to follow the elders, hold their tongue and bow their heads when they are being scolded, studies show that youngsters who argue with their parents or guardians grow up to be more mature and less violent.
So let me tell you why I allow this unconventional behavior from my kids.
Why The Unconventionality?
First, they are also humans. They have feelings such as anger, resentment, worries and anxiety. These emotions, when bottled up, can be destructive to their mental health. According to some researches, bullies and juveniles are usually those who were oppressed,, sometimes the quiet children at home. Pent up anger can explode and result to violent characters while anxiety can lead to teenage depression. As we all know, depression can be serious when left unaddressed.
I let them turn their backs from me during an argument. Why? Because it allows them to cool off and be back to their logical self after a while. It also allows them to analyze their own behavior, whether they have really done nothing or they were wrong. It gives them a chance to reevaluate themselves and earn the courage to apologize. We made it a rule that whoever realizes that they are in the wrong should say sorry regardless of the age.
According to some experts, letting youngsters to defend themselves makes them more logical and develop into a more level-headed individual. It is because they have the freedom to verbalize their thoughts and frustrations. Who else can they talk about these matters better than their parents and family members? It can create a stronger bond between child and parent if handled properly.
The Limiting Conditions
But these liberties are not without restrictions. Of course, I have to draw the line as to what extent they can express themselves with me. I let them be as long as they don’t use violence, profanities, swearing, and personal attacks. Should they refrain from using any of these, then they can pretty much say what’s on their minds. This method must be unheard of in more conventional homes.
But of course, this process doesn’t only benefit my kids. It does the same things on me; give me time to rethink and do some self-introspection. It gives me an opportunity to adjust my approach to them. I don’t let such misunderstanding go for longer than necessary. After few hours of letting off the steam, I find a way to open the topic again and talk about it in a less intimidating way. I don’t just impose my opinions o authority, rather, I ask questions and make them speak. I try to understand why they behave that way and let them get it off their chest. They are young and they need guidance, not punishment. I don’t usually let the confusion last more than a day.
The Impression and Conclusion
For some, they might think I am far too westernized in my ways. There is no formula in handling family affairs especially in raising kids but for us, this seems to work. I may seem cold and calculating because I don’t usually baby talk them despite their age. We are way past that. I give them praises when they deserve it, not when they are sulking or just having tantrums. I don’t bribe but I am generous with rewards when necessary. I want to raise young, independent and thinking individuals who know their rights, and know when they are right. They may be too young to understand, but maybe, we underestimate their young minds. If only we open our eyes and minds, we can see that we can learn a thing or two from children, too.