Learn from your kids : A psychoanalytical approach

Kids are master manipulators. They play up their charms, pit adults against one another, and engage in loud, public wailing. So it’s your job to keep up with them. Believe it or not, they are the most innocent teachers to learn from. Gain this knowledge so you can be the “adult” in your home.

  • Make them lie, make them honest

Perpetuate their lies by lead enquiries. If you suspect your kids haven’t done their homework, nail them with specifics. Which subject? What did you learn? How long did it take? Hardest part? Even if they manage convincing answers, the act of sustaining an elaborate lie exerts psychological discomfort. Eventually, they’ll figure out that being honest with you is just easier. Isn’t it better?

  • Threaten them – for real

Assure the credibility of your threats. Screaming “Don’t make me turn this car around!” never works. Kids see through it because they know it means you’ll suffer too. So pick punishments that benefit you. Like: “Stop punching your sister or we’re going to Grandma’s instead of the movies.” That’s just their loss, so they’ll behave better.

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  • Infuse cooperation

If you have siblings, you know how difficult it can be to put up with both of them. Let them help each other. Assign them a task they can do jointly, like picking up the toys, then give each of them, the same reward or punishment based on their performance as a team. If one kid slacks off, the next time the other one is likely to refuse to cooperate, and both will lose out. Over time, this setup compels teamwork.

See, good parenting, right?

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  • Reality – every now and then

If your kid is in a bit of trouble and is sobbing pitifully, resist the urge to swoop in and save her or him. Avoid this fate by establishing clear rules and meting out punishment when necessary. They should be in touch with the reality of life.

  • Apologies repair children’s trust

Well, you know you can’t always be hard on your kids. That’s the mother’s heart. Don’t worry. Children who receive an apology following a transgression are significantly more likely to demonstrate trusting behaviours and positive emotions compared with children who received no apology. Henceforth, if the mistake is yours, you should be sorry. Shouldn’t you be?

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