Live Life with Flavor Challenge Day 7 – Children and Natural Consequences

Today is Day 7 of the Live Life with Flavor Challenge and Timely parenting Tuesday!

Last Monday was Labor Day. So, the family decided to celebrate the holiday with a bang at the beach, with friends and family! As you know, summer in sunny South Florida can get very HOT, and at times the heat in combination with the sun exposure can have extremely negative effects on our skin…

Gus and I asked every child to put sunscreen on before leaving the house. The older boys and our older girl took care of themselves. In turn, I went to help the youngest two. However, when I got to my seven year old, he stood with arms crossed and looking at me with an expression of “I don’t want to…”

Could this be rebellion??

Through my 19 years of parenting, I have come to understand that sometimes children are unwilling to do what you ask, not out of rebellion, but a desire to be powerful and make decisions for themselves... Shirley Solis, Tweet This

Through my 19 years of parenting, I have come to understand that sometimes children are unwilling to do what you ask, not out of rebellion, but a desire to be powerful and make decisions for themselves… As adults, we often forget we are the one who makes the choices for them everyday! We choose what they eat, what they drink, what they wear, how long they sleep, and what they can do throughout the day. Often to a child, this becomes overwhelming, and like any powerful human being, they want to express their own perspective.

So, I use a technique that to some seems a little controversial… Instead of forcing him to do what I know was best for him, I give my child choices and explain the consequence of each choice. In this case, my son’s choices looked like this:

1. He could choose to not put the sunscreen on and he would get burnt – I immediately reminded him of the last time we had forgotten to put sun lotion on and how badly we all felt afterwards.

or

2. He could put the sunscreen on and not have any pain later.

Do you see what I did? I made him responsible for his choice and the consequence that would come with the decision he was going to make. After all, we want to raise children that are responsible. (Note: This doesn’t mean I let my child play with kitchen knives because he wants to! If what he wants is dangerous, then I use a different technique to teach him what is best… The choices available depend on the child and his/her level of maturity.)

When he made his decision, I was good to my word, I allowed him to choose option 1, despite the fact I wanted to spare him the consequence. While many of our friends disagreed with allowing him options, Gus and I both know that sometimes this is the best way to teach them to be powerful individuals. That evening when we came home, Gus, my seven year old, and I had a deep conversation. When we asked him if he would have done anything different, he said that he would put the lotion on and that next time he would remember it was best for him.

One thing I have learned is that Life takes care of giving our children consequences. While my son is still young and still with me, I would rather he learn that there are consequences to the decisions we make. This way, I am still there to help mentor him through the process of his decisions. Shirley Solis, Tweet This

Everyday, we learn great lessons! Some of them are fun and exciting, others are hard and painful. But, if we experience them correctly, hopefully, we won’t have to learn them again! One thing I have learned is that Life takes care of giving our children consequences. While my son is still young and still with me, I would rather he learn that there are consequences to the decisions we make. This way, I am still there to help mentor him through the process of his decisions. Yes, I make the consequences very clear for him, but regardless of his choice it was important that he learn that he is powerful enough to choose and that there are consequences (good and bad) to our actions or the lack there of.

Ladies, we must learn to live out of power not out of force, if we want to be the women of Flavor that we are. Remember, this is my own wisdom that I have gathered over time, but always take it with a grain of salt. First, discuss it with your spouse and evaluate your child before applying any technique!

Question- Think of a situation where you and your child disagreed on something. Tell me how you handled it, and if you would change the way did? 

Tag...now it is your turn to put a comment below!