An article caught my attention that originated from a parent’s question. It included responses from the community.
Reading the responses I found myself surprised and then shocked as the replies to the questions did not connect with the original letter writer. Those responding talked at her and identified her actions as problems in a way that did not meet my need for consideration. What I read was generalizations and identification of the parents actions as being problems through the letter writers personal opinions including; judgement, diagnosing, prescribing and giving advise.
For me, what was missing was the piece that made sense on a behavioral level that would create a feeling of relief on all levels of my understanding not just my mind. Therefore rather than deepening into a shared connection to what I was reading, I was struggling with what it was bringing up for me.
I felt frustrated and annoyed reading these letters as all I took away from it was my thought that they were meeting their needs for expressing and sharing their professional opinions. I felt a deep sadness at the same time imagining the experience of the questioner reading these answers that sounded like a lecture and being told what to do. I recognize how I would like the support to be simpler, personal and emphatic. I would have enjoyed reading was how both the parent and child had different and conflicting needs. I didn’t read any steps and examples for sharing how to identify these two sets of needs and move forward with the child hearing back they where deeply cared for.
Imagine the personal power for the parent to connect in to was was important to them, not the action they themselves took. Let’s give parents tools to relax and guide their children not rules to break themselves! Followed by the gift of knowing what need the child was meeting so the parent could realize the child’s action was to meet that need.