This week has been an examination of my parenting abilities as I learned and re-learned and observed LM’s cues and desires of accepted practices. She is fierce and has no problems telling anyone if things are not to her liking, if her space is being challenged, or if she is just generally done with someone.
The problem I have encountered is adults, and sometimes other children, who refuse to see her as her own person with her own needs. Many adults try to handle every situation with every kid the exact same way and that is not practical because every child/person is different even if they are only 13 1/2 months old. When approached on the subject they are upset at the prospect of changing THEIR tactics to meet the needs of someone else.
This week I have learned and re-learned the following about my fierce, beautiful, independent, strong willed, amazing Little Miss.
1.She does not like help unless she asks, helping without permission results in a scream followed by some “not mommys” and a head shake.
2. While taking a shower with mommy is fine, mommy taking a bath with her is highly unacceptable and results in “not mommy” followed by attempts to push, pull, shove, or head butt mommy out of the tub. Once out mommy is told to “stay” with hand motion included.
3.Cuddles must be indicated by her otherwise they are unwelcome.
4.Talking close in her face (something aunts and uncles love to do) results often in a slap and shout and push.
5.If she signs indicating something and I do not acknowledge her she will take my hand and sign it on me and then give me the ” well…” Look.
While all these things are good in the aspect that she is exerting her will and making it known what she wants and how she wants it, it is a balancing act to make sure that not only are other people, young or old, respecting her boundaries but that she is learning to handle it appropriately when they don’t.
At a less interactive level I love watching her apply herself and “take the lead” so to speak. To see her grow into her own little being is truly a remarkable thing to watch happen. We have been working on using words or signs to express when we are unhappy about a situation vs hitting or being mean and it is slowly getting through. Every moment that something like that happens and she handles a situation a little differently than she would have preferred is such a proud Mommy moment for me. She truly is amazing.
Every child is different, and just as you wish to be treated in manners that help you be the best person you can be remember to show the same respect to other people especially our children who are searching for their sense of self.
How did/does your child(ren) express their personality/needs/desires and preferences? What have you found works well for helping them deal with more tense moments, perhaps when someone is not respecting their boundaries?