It’s all those little things that together add up..
The special way you always say goodnight to her with a last song and kiss
Her routines of chores, homework, bath, teeth cleaning at set times
The ‘high five’ you give each other in certain circumstances
Your secret farewell sign together as you drop her off at school
The day of the week you always go for a soda together
That every year New Year is always a family barbeque for everyone at your place
The way the family always play board games on Saturday nights
How you have her grandparents over on Sundays
That Sunday morning is ‘Pancake Day’ for breakfast in your family
Eating one meal together at the table every day
What are some of your ‘Family Things’?
Providing stability also means when you say something – you MEAN it.
This is a biggie really.
We have all been guilty of giving in even when we have made a fair and reasonable requirement. You do your child no service by giving in to whining and nagging. And kids are past masters at it aren’t they. The more often they can wear us down, the more often they can wear us down! One hint here is to give her fair warning – ‘Okay you have 10 minutes now, then it’s bedtime’; ‘Pack up now, you need to be in bed in 5 minutes’ then insist she goes.
If you have fallen in to a habit of letting her stretch you night after night, it may be smart to tell her that you are changing the rules from now on. Agree on the time, and then EXPECT her to do it.The same scenario can apply at the shopping mall. Kids learn when they nag enough they get something. Set the scene before you step out of the car. ‘Today we are not buying extras, we are just getting the groceries’, and ‘This week you can have an ice-cream when we have finished the groceries’.