"Thanks so much for all the wisdom and inspiration you share. I have a son (age 11) who zapps so much emotional energy from me. Over the last several months, I've really been trying to see things as they are and trying to determine how to handle things. He is a great kid. He's the first one to help a younger sibling who is hurt or to give up his ice cream cone is one of his younger siblings dropped theirs. He is also the one who complains the most, rolls his eyes back into his head and gets "that look" when things do not go his way. I know that he is often "out of instructional control," but for some reason, I haven't "gone all the way" with consequences with him. After asking myself why just this morning, I realized that I'm scared I won't be able to emotionally handle all the fuss he will dish out. I am trying to avoid it. I know that this is not benefiting him or me and is hurting us both. So, my question is, now that I've realized this and know that I must go the distance and utilize the 24 loss of privilege consequence, how do I get the guts up enough to do it? Is there anything you've learned that will give me strength to see this through? I know that once we make it a habit in our family, it will be much easier, it's just the starting that's hard."
I have felt what you are feeling. It is so hard to want them to follow through with cause and effect when you know it will initially make life harder for you.
The only thing Ican say is that this parentingcalling you have isn't really about you as muchas it is abouthim. If he isrolling his eyes and arguing, he is not happy. You want him to be happy. That is why, up until this point,you havecontinued togive him more chances and tried not to make big deals out of some of his behaviors. He is abusing you, your family and most importantly, himself. The only way tohelp himchoose not to be so selfish is to show him that choosing tohave an attitude problem is choosingemotional bondage.The best way I knowof to helpchildren understand this is to havean ultimate consequence inplace that illustrates bondage. Loosing privileges for 24 hours is physical bondage. Understanding physical bondage will help your sonnot choose emotional bondageand disconnection from the family mission.
You have to justDO IT! Tell yourself that you are going to follow through NOW because you want life to better as soon as possible, for everyone. If you nevergive him a reason to choose control, he might not choose it.You have to use your system.
I had children that would self mutilate, threaten suicide, get violent, get depressed, cry, argue, youname it. I knew exactly when they would not be able to control themselves too. I dreaded their outbursts, butI also knew from experience that after they lost their privileges for 24 hours 1-3 times, theywould rarely loose that much control of themselves again.
Being able to loose 24 hours of privileges will freeyour son of many of his selfish behaviors and help him find happiness inhis relationships at home.24 hours of no privileges is a GIFT that you as a loving parentgives to himto help him changehis heart.
Jump in! The water is fine!