“No Daniel, don’t play with the wipes!” I motioned for Ian to help me. Daniel’s little fingers can do some real damage. “He is so naughty.” I continued as Daniel laughed. He is 11 months old, and as much as I think that he does things to get reactions out of us. I KNOW that he is in fact NOT naughty.
Naughty is definted as badly behaved, disobedient children.
Strange how naughty only describes children, we never really use it to describe adults. Even though in reality, adults are more “badly behaved” because they know the difference between right and wrong. For adults we describe their behaviour instead of just chalking it all up to being “naughty”. Why not for children? Are they not at an age where we need to teach them all different emotions so that it’s easier for them to describe how they feel? Should we not be teaching them different describing words for their behaviour too?
These questions I am throwing out into the internet are questions aimed at myself, while I think of better ways I could be handling my children’s behaviour. I do it with Emilie as well. Naughty describes messing cool drink on the floor which really could have been clumsy, or messy. It describes not listening, being distracted, forgetting what I had told her to do. At that age you can forget you know, mom? I mean – there’s TV, games, crafts, words, stories so much more than just what you had asked.
Calling our children naughty is a way of shaming and blaming them. When really the parenting, teaching is our responsibility – we are failing when they aren’t doing what they should be doing. I really need to learn to not do this for Emilie and while getting out of the habit with Daniel too.
What we really mean to say when we say “naughty” is they are doing something that we would prefer they didn’t do. Putting it into context helps I think for me. Sometimes Emilie makes a mess when doing something independantly, and although I don’t “respond” my irritation is noted. How unfair! As if the wisdom of how to do all these things is just granted. She’s learning right? And the best way to learn is to do the wrong thing.
I read a beautiful facebook post this weekend that insprired me so much! It was about someone who witnessed a dad and his son (6/7 years old) in the mall. The son had messed a slush puppy everywhere, his immediate response was to apologise to his father. And instead of getting angry, his dad responded and said “Hey, it happens. Let’s get some serviettes and I will show you how to clean it up.” They then clean up the whole mess together.
When throwing away all the dirty serviettes the father said to his son ” you are going to be a human being for a long time, and you have such a smart brain that it’s important you learn how to be more aware of what you are doing. So next time just be sure to pay more attention so that these accidents don’t happen. They can be prevented, but it’s also okay if they happen. As long as you take responsibility for your mistakes, the clean up is a breeze.
He added after that big messes seem overwhleming and you might feel like you can’t do it by yourself, but it’s always okay to ask for help. There is no problem with asking for help when you need it. WOW! This dad deserves a parenting award. A long story to illustrate a small point. Something I need to learn too.
When something small happens and I’m so quick to react, to scold and blame. Ask yourself…did you die? LOL just kidding. Is it really necessary? Was it intentional? You’re not always going to be the perfect parent. You just need to always want to.
disclaimer – the facebook story is not my own, it was one that was virally shared that I enjoyed and thought valuable to share with you