The days of “Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me” are long gone. Yes, a broken bone will heal in time but your words have been proven to have a “Lasting effect” on people for years and sometimes a lifetime. It’s not just kids on the playground that have to watch how they speak, parents need to take more care and choose their words wisely.
In The Heat of the Moment
Let start this section off honestly. Kids sometimes get on our nerves and like to try adults’ patience but that does not give the parents the right to “talk down” to them. Yes, in the heat of the moment we can say some hurtful things and expect our kids to just be able to get over the problem just because we say so.
Instead of reacting to a situation with “what are you stupid, why would you do that?” try taking a second to compose yourself and ask them if they knew what they were doing was wrong and after they answer, explain to them what was the correct way to handle whatever the situation. Next, explain to them why they will be punished.
Handling it this way takes out the negativity and will not have the child feeling like a stupid failure or confused as to what is going on. I have heard kids say that they were stupid and they only feel that way because their parents call them that all the time. A simple “you’re smarter than that” may have been all that was needed to give the child the push to do better.
The Bad Child
Once again, if you continue to call a kid something they will eventually start believing it and also become it. I see young mothers and fathers letting their younger children get away with murder. They laugh when the infant curses or swings at them and will just laugh and say “he is so bad.” What these parents don’t realize is that their children see this as a way of getting attention (positive and negative) and will continue to do the things that get a reaction from them.
Fast forward a couple years and now the child is cursing at them in the store in front of a bunch of people, but now the parent doesn’t think it is so cute. Now the parent will go to the other extreme and are no longer laughing but mad and calling them bad and/or popping them. Remember you already ingrained in them that this behavior was a way to get attention but now the child is confused because you are now angry at what use to make you laugh. Your lack of disciplining inappropriate behavior from the beginning now pushes you to the other extreme, which will also have a rippling effect on the way your child acts.
You’re still calling them bad but now they get in trouble for their actions which is not entirely their fault. It is because of the parent’s words, reaction, appearance of acceptance and the child’s non acceptable behavior is having a “Lasting Effect” that has the child growing up thinking that they are in fact bad. I wonder how things would have turned out with this same child if you expressed disappointment in their action from the beginning instead of showing acceptance and then anger later.
You need to go on a diet
Now let me start off by saying that I cannot stand seeing an overweight 6 yr. old scarfing down a big mac, fries and soda. But that is not their fault, it is their parents fault. What makes this even worst is when the parent continues to call the child fat or is constantly telling the kid that they need to go on a diet. The child is now getting picked on in school and this is all due to the actions of the parents and the unhealthy choices that were made for the child.
Some parents don’t take into account that their actions and words will have a “Lasting Effect” on their child or that they may grow up with an eating disorder, health challenges or just continue to get bigger because that is all they know. What if the parents instilled good eating habits from early on and had the child eating mostly healthy food when they were younger?
Parents, your words and actions have a “Lasting Effect” on your children which means that you have to find positive ways to reprimand them. You can’t feed a child chicken nuggets and burgers every day and then one day show up with a salad. Parents please model and encourage the behavior that you want from your children early on. Instill in them consequences for their actions and healthy eating habits and other things that will have a positive effect on their attitude and health. I know each child is different and some can shrug off the negativity and still continue to do what is right.
But, are you willing to take that chance with your child?