Tough lessons. This is where it happens.

Parenting Transformation Journey – page 6 
(Click here for page 1)

I just went to check on my daughter to see if she was ready to follow instructions yet, so that her 24 hours could begin. She flipped out because she thought that the time in her room counted toward the 24 hours, but I reminded her that the 24 hours begins when she is calm and ready to follow the instructions she’s already been given.

Heavy sigh. I know this is hard for her. She started crying and thrashing again and saying, “I don’t want to follow instructions and I don’t want to talk to you because I didn’t know that this time in my room didn’t count!”

I reminded her that she was never sent to her room – she didn’t have to be there. I also reminded her that it was explained several times – even her sister reminded her – that she needed to come talk to me when she was ready to begin. But she never came because she was still mad at me.

Sooo… then she’s clearly not yet ready to begin.

Nicholeen tells me that she’s had foster children – or at least one? – who went three days before realizing it wasn’t worth it, and finally decided to begin the 24 hour consequence. And by the way, there are no larger consequences than this.

I’m assured that the predictability and consistency will ultimately help the children feel safer in the home. Mine have many times complained to me that they were getting a consequence that they didn’t expect – something I just made up on the fly – and they have also complained to me that their siblings do things and never get consequences for it.

I expect this transition to be somewhat painful for all of us – but just for a short time. These are tough lessons. This is where the change happens. When the new habits are in place, there will be more harmony in the home, more respect for each member of the family, more structure, more predictability. Choices will be made more wisely because cause and effect will be understood more clearly ahead of time.

This is teaching self governing.

If you disagree with anything I’m doing, then before leaving your comments, all I ask is that you please first watch this BBC episode so you can see where this is going. They say that in the middle of a life-saving surgery it can appear as though there has been a murder in the room. It might get a little messy in the middle, but I do believe and trust in the end result. Each of my posts – standing alone – will not provide the big picture… but the episode does. Enjoy!

Leslie Householder
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