Monday, June 20, 2011

How to Land Your Kid in Therapy

A friend of mine shared this on Facebook and I thought I would re-share it here on my blog.  It's a long article but an excellent and important one to read.  I must admit that it kicked me in the pants a bit.  I've always considered myself to NOT be a helicopter mom (the kind that hovers over their children to ensure they don't experience any pain and discomfort)  "I'm not as bad as other mom's I would justify myself."  But after reading this....perhaps I am a bit of a helicopter....I think of my behavior in regards to my children's birthdays, Christmas, holidays, etc....and how I try so hard to make everything perfect and full of happiness.  I have to resist the urge to buy them everything they might possibly like (I don't have the money to buy them everything but that still doesn't stop my urge to just get them everything).  The streamers, balloons, cakes, invitations, decorations, food...blah blah blah blah.  It really is all meaningless and the kids don't notice.   After reading this article, it reminded me that, things don't bring happiness.  That sometimes it is better for us to pass to sorrow so that we can know the good.  My childhood was not full of things, lessons, or any of the other luxuries and choices we give our kids (catering to what they want for dinner, lunch, where they want to go) but I can say with no doubt in my mind that I have turned out happy.  My life has not been perfect, and some look at it and say that it's full or sorrow...but I've been able to deal with the big sorrows and the small bumps in the that, when you boil it all down, I'm truly happy.

Here is my favorite quote from the article:

Consider a toddler who’s running in the park and trips on a rock, Bohn says. Some parents swoop in immediately, pick up the toddler, and comfort her in that moment of shock, before she even starts crying. But, Bohn explains, this actually prevents her from feeling secure—not just on the playground, but in life. If you don’t let her experience that momentary confusion, give her the space to figure out what just happened (Oh, I tripped), and then briefly let her grapple with the frustration of having fallen and perhaps even try to pick herself up, she has no idea what discomfort feels like, and will have no framework for how to recover when she feels discomfort later in life. These toddlers become the college kids who text their parents with an SOS if the slightest thing goes wrong, instead of attempting to figure out how to deal with it themselves. If, on the other hand, the child trips on the rock, and the parents let her try to reorient for a second before going over to comfort her, the child learns: That was scary for a second, but I’m okay now. If something unpleasant happens, I can get through it. In many cases, Bohn says, the child recovers fine on her own—but parents never learn this, because they’re too busy protecting their kid when she doesn’t need protection."

For the full article go to :  
How to Land Your Kid in Therapy - The Atlantic