Friday, March 05, 2010

At our MOPS meeting today, the speaker topic was "Sensitive Parenting". Before you fall asleep, briefly, it was basically that to prevent behavior(s) that we don't want to see, and to create strong and healthy relationships with our children that result in an array of good things like stronger cognitive skills and other things that I simply cannot remember and am too tired to go get my purse and notes, we need interact with them in a more sensitive way. Pay attention, not be dismissive, acknowledge their feelings, be present, etc...I'm not fully expressing it like I want to, but again, I'm tired. It's been a long day.

I buy into all of it. Really, I do. However, this speaker was a Ph.D. and presented a room of (mostly) stay-at-home-moms who are with their children for all intents and purposes, all day every day. I sat there and started thinking about how many (millions?) of times per day Duncan tries to get my attention. Whether by saying, "hey mom! Look at me!" or by something a bit less subtle. And I try, every time to at least acknowledge him. But how many times do I say, "Honey, I'm cleaning the kitchen right now" or "Give me a minute" or "Mommy's on the potty." So, where is the balance? This kid loves attention, and we do give it to him, but some days it feels like no matter how much I give it's not enough.

I wont even get started on Claire and Finn...and the guilt...because that's another post for another day.

Then, the videos. Videos of parents and their children, in fabricated scenarios of sensitive and insensitive parenting. In one scenario, the mommy was playing with her baby, tickling him. He loved it! She would stop, and he would kick his little legs practically begging her to tickle him again. That was sensitive! She knew he loved it! And when he turned away, she knew he wanted a break. More sensitivity! Then, it showed less sensitive parenting. The mommy instead was tickling the baby with a toy, and was waving it in his face, about an inch or so away, and would not stop even when it was clear the baby was (really, really) wanting her to stop. That's when I got the giggles. Like, the kind of giggles you get in church. Because that is also what goes on in our house every day. Not by me...but by a certain older brother. I thought, "that's exactly what Duncan does to Finn and Claire." And I got the giggles so bad I had to get up and walk to the back of the room because I had those laughing squirty tears. Insensitive brothering.

Ah, good times.


  1. Linda4:29 AM

    That sounds like a good class. I attended a parenting class where they talked about how kids just get "commands" all day and how much better it is when you can have an exchange with them,,,at their level. I resolved to try to do that more often. It is hard.

  2. I was wondering what gave you the "funeral giggles" (as I call them).

  3. Sounds like you got some good information. I personally think that it's good that you do not drop everything for Duncan everytime he needs you. I think kids need to learn to wait and know that they are not the only ones that need tending to. I believe kids that have more siblings learn this at an earlier age. And, I do feel as though it carries on into adulthood.