1. Children want boundaries. Kids DO NOT want unlimited freedom in their life. They don't want it when they are toddlers, they don't want it when they are in elementary school or junior high, or even high school. They want you to draw a line for their behavior and KNOW beyond a shadow of a doubt that you WILL carry through with the consequence if they cross the boundary you have set. Boundaries give kids security. Boundaries make kids feel loved. Boundaries make kids feel safe. Boundaries help a child control himself. Your child wants you to tell them what you expect out of them. They want to know what will happen if they choose to do the opposite. They want to trust you will be strong enough to follow through.
2. Children want YOU to be the boss. Kids don't make good bosses. We have all seen a mom or dad be totally whipped into submission by the behavior of a two year old. It is NOT a pretty sight. Mom and Dad...YOU ARE THE BOSS of your house, of your car, of your stuff, of your dinner table, of your TV, of your phone, of your iPAD, of your EVERYTHING! You get to decide what time your kid goes to bed. You get to decide what they will eat. You get to tell them what to do. It should NEVER be the other way around. If you don't want your kid to eat his snack on your new couch, you tell him, "Son, you are going to eat your snack at the table, not on the couch." "But daddy! I want to eat my snack ON THE COUCH!" "If you take one step towards the couch with your snack, I am taking your snack and you will wait to eat until dinner." BAM! Boss.
When I worked at a Mothers Day Out as a young mom, I watched a mother have a discussion with her two year old daughter about whether she wanted to wear her coat out when it was freezing outside. She tried to convince her she would get sick if she went out without her coat. She kept asking and pleading with her "Don't you want to put your coat on?" Finally I could take it no more. I gently took the coat out of the mother's hand, looked down at the little girl and said, "Put your coat on right now please." She held out her arms and I put her coat on her. Geez. She is two. years. old. Be the boss of your children.
3. Children want to be told NO. What we have today in our society is a generation of kids who don't know how to handle being told "No." They don't know how to respond to not getting what they want, when they want it. They don't understand that life is sometimes unfair and you can't have everything everyone else has. They can't grasp that sometimes to get what you want, you have to work your rear end off to get it, and still then you might not end up getting it.
I purposely would tell my kids "No" so that they would learn to handle not getting what they wanted. Sometimes, I would go to Sonic and get myself a drink. They would ask "Can we get a drink?" Some days my answer was "Sure! What would you like?" But some days my answer was "No, not today." It was good for them to hear "no" and learn to receive it. If your child throws a fit when they are told "No, you can't have that toy, or that candy at the check out, or a cookie thirty minutes before supper" then you need to begin to teach them how to respond to "no." You will create a content, the world does not center around me, lovely to be around child. Ahhhh.
Ok...sorry this word is a bit strong today. I hope I haven't offended, but if I did, I encourage you to pray...ask God if there is any truth in this blog and if you might have needed to hear it. I love you. Know that.