Friday, March 14, 2008

We have seen the enemy …

… and it is us. The greatest barrier to teaching our kids self control is … yup, you and me. Over dinner we say, “You will never believe what my stupid supervisor did today …” Behind the wheel we say, “Hey idiot, get out of my way!” Then later, “That cop was such a jerk to give me that ticket!” What about when you don’t want the phone call, “Tell him I’m not home.” Our kids have just picked up our practices concerning four very important areas of life: submission to authority, patience with others, obeying the law and honesty. Our attitude toward our boss, will become their attitude toward us! Our level of patience, will become their ability to be patient with those around them. If we don’t obey the laws of the land, why would we expect them to obey the rules of the house? And if we allow dishonesty to come from our lips, why are we surprised when they lie to us?

Now here’s the real kicker … we lose our temper with our kids. We allow anger to get the best of us and we yell and engage in battle with one of our children. The problem here is, we have just taught the child how to lose their temper when faced with a difficult situation. On top of that, anger shows the child that the parent is not in control of the situation and not in control of himself, thus the child loses respect for the parent. Do you respect people in authority over you who cannot control their own emotions and anger?

Next time … how do we take the anger out of discipline?

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