Friday, July 17, 2009

A Successful Week of Screamfree Parenting

Yes I had a successful week and hope to continue it to the weeks to come. I feel relaxed and happy. I truly do, making an open diary of my thoughts makes me feel proud of myself.

Motherhood does not get any appreciation from any one, not even the DH or friends. DH does care the least, as long the house is running right and all is well. Friends have different views and envys, but such is life.

But today, i had a very dear conversation with my MIL, she was so proud of me with the progress I am making. She said, you are gifted to help analyze yourself and make a change in your life for the better. Many, many live in self denial and dont want to accept the mistakes openly. I was happy and pleased.

I am a very open and frank person who has open thoughts and give my children their space and time and get my time as well. I have a perfect routine, without which I cannot live without, but to some routines are not their best friend. I am sure you are one of them and many are. I have been living with routines since a child, not because my mom told me, but it was me, it was my dad. Yes, my dad, who used to travel all the time, the fond memories I shared with him. He had a routine, he loved it, punctuality and perfection in his field. And I am a copy of him.

So why the anger, well, I have two children of almost the same age, who have an immense competition with each other. The younger was ignored for the longest time and he was traumatized by me for the longest time. Well until I realized my screaming was not helping me and my children.

A week later of practicing self control, I see P getting closer to me, I see him beginning to understand my reasoning. My screaming had become a habit for his childish behavior, caused due to sibling rivalry/love/competition. Many termed it as terrible twos, but I know what they are, I have been through those with my first. This was not terrible twos, it was sibling rivalry/love/competition. Yes I got Sid involved. Started positive reinforcement and reasoning to P 's good behavior. Sid always got that from both his parents, he always required more attention, but P lacked it and was craving for it. It took me thing long to understand the child's mind. So now I address P's bad behavior screaming, I just mention his bad behavior and reason with him. And leave it, I don't question him, I don't say "WHY DID YOU DO IT" to him. Yes no "WHY". Realized they are too young, they are children, I need to make them understand through explanation and reasoning. I am forcing myself self not to repeat my reasoning and torment him and it lessen my anger. And he was happy and so was I.

All these things are simple right. All you guys have been doing it or are doing it. But No me I guess. A fact I am accepting. Basic things every parent does? But I guess i faltered with my younger son. The younger got ignored because the older got more attention. A nice way of talking without screaming was easy with my first child and it still is, not that he is easy, but he has been always spoken to and the younger is always shouted at. Now that was wrong on my part.

Also realizing that P never liked to see Sid with his friends. So its another thing I want to work on hence forth, make a set of friends for P different from Sids. He loves his brother so much, but cant see him with someone else.

Sibling love and rivalry has to be dealt with at its growth and I am feeling proud of myself to have caught it at the nick of time. Helping Sid and P work together and giving P positive reinforcement to undo all the nasty things I have said and done to him. I have seen this sibling rivalry among many cousins of the same sex and age. My DH will agree on this?

As much as I feel I am relieved with the progress I am making with myself to be a Scream-free parent, I do see that many judge me as a over doing parent. Well as one person rightly put it, each child each parent is different. Each parent has a different philosophy or parenting and how to bring up their child. And having more than one child is different.

I thank my friend Jandy for giving me huge inspirations to start writing.
I thank my mom and my mother in law for helping me and giving me good encouragement to change myself and progress through my behavior positively.

And thank my children for putting up with me for so long. Kids I am human, hope you read these when you grow.


Shilpi said...

Hi your heartfelt post and all I can say is kudos to you for accepting a problem and working on it with so much of determination..I have been around a couple of times where I have seen you not loose your calm and composure and try your best to DEAL with the issue instead of screaming or being angry..both P & Sid are great kids and will definitely respond to the positive reinforcements..don't blame yourself too you said parenting is not something anybody becomes an expert at just by having kids..and having 2 kids doesn't translate into just double the responsibility, but it is much more than that.. So continue whatever you are doing and Wish you all the best :-)

Priya Rajan said...

Good read Archana! Interestingly, I am a mother of two as well - but then the age difference between the two is 9 years. When my son was born 9 years after my daughter, it was a strange feeling.... I felt my daughter pulled in to her own cocoon. she became so very independent.... like her dad would wake her up to go to school while I am dealing with her brother... she would dress herself, dad would make her breakfast and pack her lunch etc. All I would hear was "Good bye Mum". I was so happy that my daughter understood that the little one needed the attention now. She was a huge source of help to me when I needed her to look after her brother. The problem now is... with my son.... Shilpa (my daughter) is grown up... she is an adult now - we are like friends - but Sandeep can't stand that I talk to her like her friend, where as he has to listen to my advising him, my correcting him.... Sandeep is now 9 but not the same as what Shilpa used to be at his age. He has so many questions. Why is she getting treated differently, when am I being screamed at to do my homework, why do I have restrictions on the computer etc....etc.... I tried time-outs, not talking to him for an hour etc.... but the story continued.... You will be interested to know I found a solution finally - and that is, I got hold of Sandeep one day and gave him 3 choices: The three choices are on what he wanted to be in life.... He can be a house boy or a car cleaner - the job does not need an education nor is it going to give him a wealthy life. Choice 2 was to work as a delivery boy, a petrol filler, a clerk etc which only needs basic education - probably till class 10 when he has a bit of knowledge, can do basic counting, can talk a little english. If his choice was any of these two he will not hear any more of my grumblings or advises. Choice 3 was to work in a senior position like a CEO / director / inventor or what ever - if that is his choice, he will have to have patience and listen to what me, his dad and his sister says.... The choice was his..... believe it or not, it did the trick..... he went away for half an hour and came back to me saying "mum - I was thinking about what you said - my plan is to have a huge house, with a blue mustang with two stripes in the middle of the car.... I would need money for it which means I will have to yeah...yeah...yeah... study. That is going to be my choice" The story does not end there. He being a boy the whining continues and every time it starts off I tell him - the choice is yours.... and it gets back on track....." funny isn't it.

By the way, I am still stunned to read the blog - I remember you as a small girl outside the School auditorium at lunch time waiting to hand over the lunch bag to your brother.... you have grown up indeed.... God Bless!