My friend's husband died a few years ago, leaving her to raise 4 boys. Her oldest is now 9 and her youngest is 3. She is having a really rough time with one of her oldest right now, who is hurting his siblings & her when he doesn't get his way or when he loses privileges.
She longs for a better way to manage the boys, but is also under way more stress than a mom with a husband to support her would be. She is going through nursing school & has some babysitting support from her sister-in-law. I am not close enough to help out, but she calls me whenever she is upset or has no idea how to manage the boys. The teachers at school have brought up behavior issues a lot.
I have talked through the basic skills with her, the calm down spot & emphasized the importance of having good connection time with her kids. I think she needs way more help & support, though.
Do you have any materials that specifically address raising kids alone? Or any deep discounts on your materials for single parents?
You are so kind to try to help your friend who is single parenting.
I have a few articles on the site that discuss single parenting, or that acknowledge the difficulties of parenting without support.
But the good news is your friend has support, you. What a blessing to her! Keep those lines of communication open. Maybe a weekly chat, kind of like a couple’s meeting could help.
She also has a babysitter that helps her out. Maybe even extended family. She may even have more support than some women who are divorced or who have spouses at home who don’t want to get involved in family life or parenting.
I guess what I’m saying is that she is probably doing better than she thinks she is. Everyone looks at their situation and assumes that there must be nothing worse, but others might call them blessed.
What she can do:
Without seeing the family, or hearing first hand from her, it’s really hard to give suggestions, but here are a few thoughts.
It sounds like the violent child isn’t being caught enough. Maybe some consistency is lacking. He might be bullying more often than they know. It could be that the issue only comes up when someone cries, but behind the scenes it’s happening all the time.
The teaching needs to be firmed up. She needs to correct more, and the corrections need to be the same. The babysitter is going to need to be taught the same skills for consistency for the best results.
She might need help controlling herself most. Maybe her tone is off because of stress or overwhelm.
Maybe the Dare to Take Command Event this Saturday would be good for her. If she can’t join it live, she could watch the replay. Or, maybe the Power of Calm class. She can get that on the site.
If she sees her parenting world through the lens of burden and loneliness then she will not have the tone of optimism and joy required for hearts to change, good bonding and a desire to improve.
Her children might also be suffering from lack of attention due to her taking so much on her shoulders. Babysitters aren’t usually great at giving attention over the long term.
We are new to the TSG , but I have already seen wonderful changes in my girls , and my relationship with them. My question is :
How to make a Mission statement, have family meetings , when my husband is not walking with the Lord at this moment?
Also, just recently, my 5y.o daughter started to complain , and I was ready to calmly talk to her about "no" answers. But at the same moment, my husband screamed ( his method of discipline) at her, and totally stole my opportunity to implement TSG. What should I do in those situations?
In situations like these we have to switch our focuses. We have to choose not to focus on what he isn’t doing or what he is doing that is difficult. But, we must focus on our own hearts and on what we know we must do.
Be sure to pre-teach the children about the difference.
Be sure to always think and say charitable things about your husband who is acting in selfishness. Screaming at a person is a sign that he is uneasy within himself. He is out of control at that moment.
Keep setting the example.
In a situation like you mention, you can’t stop his screaming, so after it happens instruct your daughter to come with you.
When you are away from your husband, just do the teaching. Don’t talk about what he did wrong, unless she says something. Just calmly and lovingly do your training. She will see the difference in the teaching. She will learn to love your teaching moments, even if she earns a consequence from them sometimes.
Brand new to the course and currently making my way through the book and the Implementation course online.
We have 4 children (12g, 10b, 7b, 4b) with varying diagnosis and the house is complete disarray.
My 7yo son has a severe ADHD diagnosis, along with ODD, SensoryProcessingDisorder, PANS/PANDAS and anxiety. He is medicated for various reasons and it’s been the best decision for him.
I feel like my 7yo would benefit most from the program but know it’s going to be the hardest with him. We’ve struggled with getting compliance with him. Everything is always, always a fight. It’s been a struggle just to get him to do weekly chores and then to do them correctly.
What would chores look like for him? I would say very rarely is he in “instructional control”.
He doesn’t like to make eye contact, struggles with getting his body calm and just constantly bounces around from thing to thing. I absolutely understand a lot of what we are seeing is his severe ADHD symptoms, however; the behaviors (lashing out at siblings, constantly annoying them, hitting, breaking toys, constant disrespect) is unacceptable.
When we’ve corrected in the past and added chores, he flat out refuses to do them. He will go in his room, throw a fit, break stuff and scream/cry while yelling. He shares a room with his 10yo brother, so this is also a problem.
He has been in therapy, behavioral therapy, OT/PT etc but without positive changes.
Any particular section I need to look at first? I feel like we need to jump in without getting through everything first to try to get some of these behaviors under control.
Good question. You don’t have to go through the course in order.
I would do these sections first… Then…Then…
With his multiple processing issues, your son will take longer to fully be able to self-govern. In fact, due to his anxiety and history of ODD he will likely fight harder before he actually decides to accept consequences.
Here is the good news. This system was designed for your type of child.
The bad news is, as I mentioned, it takes time, and parent endurance.
But, you are already using endurance, so that isn’t new. Now you will just stick to the script and the skills. It should make things a little less emotional on your side and more predictable on his side.
Don’t give up.
It sounds like you will need to use the Rule of Three. You may need to decide if you will modify it. With this extreme of a diagnosis, he could be out of control often and need a shorter loss of privileges time so that he can actually break out of it.
Start with that initially. But, tell him it will go up in time quickly so he should really work on learning it while the time is short, so that he doesn’t ever have to do the longer time period.
If you need to, you might have to do a soft hold. I’m sure you already know what that is by now with a child such as this.
He needs you to be really confident and practical. He needs to lose all signs that he is able to manipulate you emotionally.
But, he needs emotional attachment to you when he is doing good. So, be sure to focus on relationship building.
Important, don’t neglect the other children because he needs so much time. He shouldn’t feel like the main problem. And, be sure to correct the other children more too. :)
I have 2 questions if you have time. I have a teen daughter who is a type four personality. I’m assuming you are probably familiar with the child whisperer? I’m trying to honor her personality type while doing TSG. I get hung up when I read about type 4’s needing to be their own authority and treating them like an adult when they are immature and haven’t caught onto all of the 4 basic skills yet. How do I honor her as a type 4 and still teach her the skills she needs to honor my role as mother and teacher.
Also, what have you done in the summer time with your children? We live in Las Vegas where the summers are torturous to be outside unless you have a swimming pool which we do not. We have lots of friends and family that do, but there is only so much of that you can take. I want my kids to work, but I’m having a hard time seeing beyond household chores.
I haven’t read that book, but am familiar with Tuttle’s 4 types theory. I’m not sure this concept is meant to be taken literally. It could be a figurative understanding.
About your type 4 daughter: Authority comes with maturity. It’s one thing to want your own authority, but another thing to give someone authority when it is unethical for them to have it just because they want it.
You have to honor both roles. What is her role? She must have that discussion.
Have you read the Roles book yet?
You need to explain RBA accounts with her. When she honors your role by doing the 4 basic skills and communicating well with the family, then she ends up earning trust and responsibility to make more of her own choices.
A wise leader teaches first, then gives responsibilities, not the opposite.
A person must first understand right and wrong to choose right, and really call it a agency.
The VERY BEST way for her to see herself as in charge of herself is to get a family focus, lay out the plan with all the consequences, positive and negative, and then explain that her success with the plan is all up to her. Your only job is to follow the plan and use it when needed. It is her job to gain her freedom.
That is the real power.
Going against your leaders is never real power. That’s fake, uneducated stuff.
That’s a hard one since I don’t live in Vegas. But, my brother’s family does and we visit there. So HOT!
They come visit us for a week or so where it’s cooler each summer to go camping. Maybe consider that. Good work to be done, but good play time too.
Sounds like you need to take on projects. Remodel the house. Maybe do some serious art projects like real painting or stained glass work etc. Start quilting or creating home made board games. The possibilities are endless. Projects create their own kind of work. And fun…
Go places. The pinball museum was fun! Free too.
Create a family band. Have read-a-thon…
Have family Iron Chef competitions. ETC.