Monday, March 17, 2014

Battling Control

I finally understand what it is that sets us apart from other families and leaves me thinking and rethinking what we are doing.

Our personalities collide. I am strong willed, stubborn and demand reason. My husband is quite the same, rejecting most authority aside from his own. It is only natural that we either raise children who follow command and trust without doubt or we raise children who demand justice and reason; kids who are always questioning of situations.

I don't want my kids to be followers I want them to be confident and lead themselves. But they are young and they don't really know how this sort of personality affects those around them. My kids run around trying to tell each other what to do. Trying to take charge of situations and each other. They do this while resisting each other and resisting the parents in the chance event that we're being unfair or unjust or bossy.

They need constant reassurance. They need to know "why". My kids need to know that when they're requested to do something it is to benefit them not control them. Not to resist something just because they can, after all, "those are your teeth kiddo, not mine".

I've not always been the patient parent I try to be now. This gives them reason to doubt me. I deserve that. They doubt each other because they are young.

For them, you must be willing to show respect to gain respect. If for some reason I am impatient or unappreciative (or just short or moody) they do not trust that my intentions are good. This starts up a cycle.

I apologize frequently. If I am a jerk or having a bad day I explain myself.

Our personalities require a lot more maintenance to formulate strong relationships. It makes me wonder if this is something that everyone needs to assess within their families to ensure they are building strong relationships too. To ensure that they are meeting the needs of themselves and others.

I need to maintain "control" over something but not people. I plan parties, meals, chores, outings, I balance the bank account and I maintain control and order in ways that allow me to express myself and ways that don't hurt anyone else.

My husband and I agreed that everyone needs their own "job" to control and allow them feel like they have purpose. So they are less likely to boss each other around because trying to control people never works. Especially in a family full of strongly opinionated leaders. I compared it to being like certain dogs that need jobs to keep them happy.

Perhaps this is nothing new. Finding ways to fine tune our family to ensure happiness for everyone is quite important to me.

“There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.”  - Ernest Hemingway

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