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PARENTS AND PARENTING
We, as parents, furnish the necessities, along with as many luxuries possible; and we mold the behavior of our young the best way we know in accordance with what we believe is right, healthy and safe. We cushion all this with the hope that our child will mature into a healthy individual contributing to the welfare of our society and capable of parenting his/her own young when the time arrives.

The tragedy is that all our love and good intentions is simply not enough...not nearly enough. Even with the text book help of child development courses and recommended child-guidance books, things don't always go the way we had thought they would. Something obviously is going wrong in the parenting of our children; and with the awareness that our best efforts are not good enough, comes the pain, which is so often accompanied by feelings of guilt.

So where are we going wrong? And how can we avoid those unknown pitfalls?

Dear concerned parent: Let's consider the area of COMMUNICATIONS. This is an area in which there are many incongruencies. Are you really saying to your children what you think you are saying? (Do your verbal messages match up with your non-verbal messages?) Example:

    A mother says to her little daughter, "Come here, dear" then as the child starts toward mom, mom's body stiffens (so habitual to mother that she doesn't even notice), immediately after which she continues, "I want to hug you." With the good intent of giving her daughter a loving hug, mom presented a confusing and incongruent message. And that child had to "choose" which part of the message to hear and act on and which part to avoid.

Children make all their decisions in just such a way. This means that what our child hears and "chooses" to act on may not be what we wanted that child to hear and act on.

Thus, this series of instruction will be offered to acquaint interested parents with the communication system involved in parenting. Information will be presented with accompanying forms to help you personalize what is learning in the privacy of your own home. It is still under construction; however, when it is up, some areas examined will be:

    1. Family communication styles (verbal/non-verbal) 2. Child development (using simple theories) 3. Healthy "permissions" children need 4. The needs of the parents while parenting 5. Childhood manipulations 6. How to hande bed-wetting, temper tantrums and other difficult situations 7. Autonomy/maturity is the goal

Here is a poem I wrote many years ago out of frustration with the therapeutic system I was working within. "Our Children Cry"

Should you want to discuss any of this, please feel free to contact me via regular email at "3motdaugrnds@hughes.net" (without the quotes of course).