Thursday, November 14, 2013

Papa's POV

A day late, my apologies. Here is Papa's write up about getting dads on board with peacefully parenting.

When Mama told me we were going to start peacefully parenting I said, “Sure! Whatever that means…” It means no more spanking, no more yelling, no more punishing? Oh boy…… Mama was very patient with me, always advising and never pushing me to conform to this new idea. My advice would be to not criticize and be supportive, talking certain scenarios through, leading by example, and to present the research and information without forcing it.
Men hate nagging. I’m not saying to stop talking and just give up, I’m just saying take it slow and set some time aside to have a talk about certain issues you would like to discuss. Take one issue at a time and ask for his input. Support his good actions or advice, like “I saw how you were teaching Johnny how to hammer a nail into that 2x4. That looked like a great bonding experience”. Bring up some facts, like “studies show that verbal abuse is just as damaging as physical abuse” and ask him what he thinks about that.

Try to seek out learning experiences with your kids and husband and talk through the situations as they happen. If Johnny loves to run in the street, take the time to talk to him and explain why running in the street is not a good idea. When he learns, point out that he learned that from the little talk you had with him the week before. Or if your husband talks to Johnny in a similar fashion try to bring up statistics on the effect that may have on him, be it good or bad. “Johnny really seemed to listen to you just then. Statistics show that ….” When you get these chances to show the NAP really does work, take full advantage of it and let him know how much better Johnny’s self-confidence is or how his mood has improved since implementing a non-authoritarian parenting style.
Never force the issue. I know Mama has handed me a book and said, “Here read this”. Automatically I just have to grumble for a minute. But I will read it eventually. Lay out whatever information you have available and just let him know that it is available for reading if he’s interested. Maybe suggest reading it to him, or paraphrasing some interesting sections of the book.

We’re guys, and we’re going to screw it up. But just be patient and have the information handy at all times. You’ll have to be on point and constantly be attentive to everything that goes on in your household. Be supportive and encouraging, and most of all stand your ground and don’t give up.

On a side note, you will probably here the response “I was spanked and I turned out okay”. Are we really okay?? I work around children every day, and the second I hear a cry from a punishment being issued, physical pain, emotional pain, or whatever the case, the words will follow each and every time. “You’re ok!” So of course we are trained in that mindset, “We’re ok”.

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