Thursday, January 31, 2013
Learning to Stay Out of Things
I've mentioned it before, Josh (8y) and Papa Bear have a bit of a strained relationship. Papa works long and hard, and he's just not home as much to practice this peaceful parenting business. Understandably, its difficult for Josh that he and I have made pretty good progress being around each other almost 24/7 and Papa isn't "up to speed", so to speak. Papa is off work for the rest of the month (don't be jelly, its without pay, just how his job goes), so what better time for them to work together, right? The head butting was in full force last night. One will get angry with the other, and usually that ends up with Josh running to his room very upset. Then I've got Papa on one side talking me through what happened and how hard this is for him, and Josh on the other telling me how mean Papa is and how hurt his feelings are. I'm done being caught in the middle. They need to work this out themselves. They had been wrestling around when Josh screamed at Papa and went running off. Me- What happened? Josh- I just wanted to walk around the other side of the kitchen and he wouldn't let me! He can't make me stay! Its my body! M- So you were tired of wrestling? Did you tell Daddy that? J- No. M- Well, no one can read your mind. You have to communicate things like that. Daddy thought you guys were having fun playing around. Now he's upset that you screamed at him and ran off. You guys need to talk it out. J- Can't you go talk to him? M- No. J- Why not? M- Because I'm not you. This isn't between me and Daddy, it is between you and Daddy. You've got to remember that Daddy's dad didn't raise him this way. He spanked him, grounded him, took his things away, yelled at him. He wasn't respectful in the way we're trying to be. Daddy is having to learn this and practice this the same way I am, the same way you are. Its really hard, but it would be easier if everyone would talk together to work these things out. J- I don't feel like going out there right now. M- Well when you do, will you please go talk with Daddy and work this out? I'm not going to be the go-between for you two anymore. I love you both the same and I'm tired of being caught in the middle and feeling like I have to pick sides. I'm not doing it anymore. J- But who do you love the most? M- Nobody, I love you all the same. Okay? Will you talk with Daddy? J- Yeah... So I go out to the living room with Papa Bear. M- He's not ready to come out yet. He says he'll talk later. P- Fine. *grumble grumble grumble* *some complaining I have since forgotten* M-Seriously, I'm tired of being caught between you two. I'm not doing this anymore. I'm fine supporting you when you need to cool down or talk through things, but you can go in there and talk to him. You're the parent, go initiate the conversation if you want. This is your relationship to fix, not mine. P- Fine (grumble). And they talked it out later. Some short and sweet exchange across the living room. Maybe it is wrong of me to step out of my mediator role like this. Maybe it was wrong for me to take it on in the first place. Maybe it has delayed a lot of progress, or maybe it has helped. I don't know, but it is what it is. Here's hoping all this time together over the coming weeks does well for them.