Introducing the Idea of No

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There is this wonderful program that we take advantage of called Alpha Pregnancy Resource Center. My little family goes weekly and it’s been a great resource for us. The way it works is that we sit there, with a cold or hot beverage in a rocking chair, for an hour watching a video about parenting. For each hour each of us is there we get ten points. Twenty points gets you a box of diapers, two points get you a thing of wipes, and anything else you could need for baby is another price in points. We rarely have to buy any diapers thanks to them. The only issue is that the videos for the most part are incredibly out dated and a lot of them have safety issues or seem not to have any real meaning. Last week on the other hand I watched a very informative and thought provoking video about all of the milestones and what changes have to be made to keep babies safe as they get older. I also highly appreciated that it was very supportive of attachment parenting including an anti-cry-it-out message. Something that it touched on though is saying no.

I really didn’t think about it until on the way home from my aunt’s house she mentioned something about Caleb being able to understand what we are saying. We say come see Mommy; he crawls over to me. We say sit down; he sits. It makes sense but I started thinking how well he could understand such an over used word and if it was even needed. The more I thought about it I realized how often I actually do say no to him. It’s really only when he pulls my hair. Sadly, it backfires. He will laugh at me and pull harder. Then I thought about dogs. I hate the term baby training so I feel bad even mentioning this but it makes sense in a way. My mom was a dog trainer and rule number one is to not say no. We say no all the time in life so it is often ignored and they say dogs wont realize it means anything important. Instead they say off, stop, sit, and steer the dog away from whatever trouble they are getting into. With attachment parenting, that seems to be the goal. Guiding our child to do what’s right rather than saying no and expecting them to just understand and obey makes so much more sense.

Not saying no is okay; saying no is okay as well though. Once a child can understand, and assuming it is said and done gently so that a child can understand it, no can be a quick tool. Say you see a child running near a pool. To prevent them from falling in you would say, “No running!” You see them about to touch the stove, “No! Don’t touch that!” If your child is upset and hitting you, no hitting isn’t the first thing I would be saying. I’d be saying, “Caleb I love you. It hurts my feelings and my skin when you hit me. Please don’t do that.” Letting him understand why he shouldn’t be hitting is going to make a little baby or toddler, child or teen even, not want to hit more than just saying no. No is not an explanation, it is backed by no emotions, and it’s a word that is said five plus times a day by each of us.

What I’m trying to say I suppose is that take a step back next time you want to tell your child, no don’t do that. Instead, think of why you don’t want them to do that. Is it important? Is it dangerous? Is it really worth getting frazzled? If the answer is yes, then go ahead and take that time to explain to your little one that because it is so important, they can not do that action anymore. Then when they say they understand, show them how glad you are. Reward them for understanding instead of punishing for acting out. Everyone reacts much more to praise than punishment. No one wants to be yelled at. It will pay off.

Thanks for reading lovelies. Tell me what you think! Feel free to email me at sami.jordynn@gmail.com.

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