I used to pride myself in the fact that my kid only occasionally was a smarty pants, but things have change. Now at 5 my son has found his independence in telling me exactly how he feels and pretending not to hear me when I’m talking. I’m sure this a typical part of childhood. I was just hoping it wouldn’t happen to me.. lol
Lately my son’s favorite phrases are:
1. I know that Mommy!
2. I can do it!
3. I already washed my hands (as he walks back to the bathroom to do as I asked).
4. Telling me “actually….” to correct whatever he thinks I incorrectly stated.
5. I’m coming. (after I’ve asked him to come on multiple times)
6. Don’t yell at me Mommy. (I rarely raise my voice but sometimes, it happens)
I find that I’m way more tolerant of my son speaking his mind (back talk was what people called it in my childhood) than my parents. Speaking your mind to my parents might get you grounded or a spanking. Luckily for my son, I accept some exercise of independence as I think it’s an important life skill as an adult. I just don’t always appreciate it at the time. 😉
My son is growing up in a different time. My grandparents would say “children are to be seen, not heard.” I didn’t dare “back talk” to Grandma. I wasn’t sure if she would follow through with her threats.
Although I don’t necessarily like my kid’s smart mouth, I think it’s healthy to have an opinion. Even if I don’t like the opinion. I’m not raising a robot. I also want him to feel like he can tell me anything, so I know what is going on in his life. As a kid I kept a lot of things from my parents, because I wasn’t sure how they would react.
Coming from a legal background, I understand the importance of being able to express yourself fully and clearly. Unlike my son, my parents were more demanding of respect, sometimes undeserved. Unfortunately, the price of that respect was less open communication.
I request respect from my son because I also give it. It’s mutual. Sometimes I have to “kindly” ask him to lower his voice. I also tell him when I don’t think he’s talking to me “nicely.” I want to model good behavior not just expect it to be given to me because I’m the mom. I know one day my son will discover I’m not perfect. No one is.
I’ve learned people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but they never will forget how you made them feel. – Maya Angelou
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