With Kids Persistence is a Noble, but Difficult Goal

by on March 8th, 2015
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If you have kids then you have been there. That moment when they, whether they know it or not, decide they are going to be the tougher one and take a stance that might wear you down. Maybe it is over the food you placed on the table for dinner, or getting them to realize they need to shower, sometimes kids bring an iron will that is more formidable than yours. What is a parent to do in these moments. It is difficult, especially since we all have worked a long day, the kids included, and whether rightly or not we just want the day to end easy and stress free.

Then suddenly, BOOM, the moment happens. For me it was homework. That might seem mundane and ridiculous to some but I am sure all of you know how trying it can be. I think it was the 3rd time I asked my step-son to get it out on the table and simply show me what he had to do. He was distracted with a bouncy ball and really why shouldn’t he be seeing as he has been working hard all day as well. The last thing he wanted to do was more school work. However that is the students lot and we all went through it, and so shall our kids. I was proud of myself for not snapping, even when the minor amount of back talk occurred. I calmly asked him to go to his room and sit on his bed and think about it for 10 minutes.

This seemed to do the trick and when I went to see him he just came downstairs, sat down and did his homework. Which took about 10 minutes. Then I gave him a 15 minute break and after he was happy to do his reading for the night.

I guess the point is that we should not be afraid to just tell our kids to go away for a moment. It should be done in a time-out manner, and I believe the point is not lost on them. In telling my step-son to go sit on his bed until I called for him he both understood I was mad and understood he got me there. I did not over react I just diffused the situation. After he came back he was calmer and more willing to meet me where I needed him to be, and where as a family we all needed to be. This is because if it got later in the evening getting the homework done would be more difficult. My wife and I, and our child as well, want to relax and enjoy each others company, and for a family unit I think that is the most important thing.

Sometimes it is difficult to not get angry and lose sight of the fact that they are who they are, selfish in nature and perceiving life through the lens of one. We as adults, with responsibilities to provide a safe and secure home for our family, might not see life as they do. After all we have a family to consider, not just one. So I think that before anger sets in, because God knows kids are going to test you, it is up to us to be capable of stepping aside for a moment and telling them, get out of my sight for a minute. There is no shame in that, especially if it helps you come back to the table with a clearer and more objective outlook. Remember they are just kids, as we once were, and they too will one day grow up and be in our situation.

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