WGKDBT has gone electronic. So happy I met fellow Blogger Fionna Gatt of Metaplume. Without her, WGKDBT would not have been reborn. All credit goes to her, proof again one cannot just do it on one’s own. Thank you Fionna. You have made this Grannykat proud and happy.
I did spend time revising and up-dating. As I look back on that process, I have two thoughts. One is how the “Keep kids happy” movement has not been good for either parents or kids. Happiness is a by-product of several things–being kind and caring thought by thee sages of the ages and most of today’s researchers to be main the way to find the good life. The happiness gurus aided by the media don’t emphasize that. Hopefully most parents still do.
Yesterday, I was walking Punky, the Pup on one of the many paved hiking trails that abound in Colorado. All was quiet except for birds chirping, when I heard a “Get out of my way.” I jumped to one side just in time for a skateboarder to fly by me. I let out a yelp of fear. He said, “F— you.” and gave me the finger as he sped away. He was about sixteen or so.
My worse fears? Had Punky been in his way–dead pup. Had I not been able to jump aside or had I jumped to the wrong side–dead me for hard falls start me bleeding quickly and badly. Of course, maybe he would have tried to avoid a head on and ended up the hurt one, sometimes justice prevails. That is not my point.
My point, he was doing his thing and the rest of us be d—ned. Really bothered me which why it is food for today’s post.
Bothers me more that parents are held accountable for this kind of nonsense, when the parenting gurus and media push against the idea that concern for others matters. Parent Effectiveness Training by Thomas Gordon was where I first read that parents were more blamed than trained. Still happening and unfortunately, the training offered has not always been helpful. Gordon’s PET is useful, but only for teens who have already learned to behave with respect for others. Too many advisors do not take age and stage into account. Gordon didn’t.
So one of my thoughts on revising the book was that the parent educators need more training and their theories more closer attention and books need to pay attention to age and stage.
I recommend three must read books for parents. Jo Frost’s Super Nanny for parents of kids just starting to walk and talk She nails time out. Next comes , Thomas Phelon’s One, Two, Three, Magic for kids from two to ten. He says parents need to stop treating children like young adults. Finally, Haim Ginnot’s Between Parent and Teenager for any child entering adolescence. He has a better hold on letting go than Gordon. You know when your teen has become an adolescent when “ever-loving , proud to have you as a parent” child” suddenly wants to lock you away in a closet and rejects not just your good advice, but your hugs and kisses and praising.
Second thought runs parallel to the above. When I was in graduate school, the word was “Smothering mothers cause asthma in children.” Now it is know that was hog slop. Asthma creates smothering mothers. You try watching an asthmatic child turn blue in the face trying to breathe and see how that ratchets up your protectiveness.
So much more is known today about what makes us and our children the people we are today and we become tomorrow. People rail against the psycho-tropic drugs and over diagnosing that goes on in today’s world, but the psychiatric wards are mostly empty and more people able to live better lives than was possible sixty or seventy years ago.
And yes, the Pharm industry profits and abuses exist, but I for one don’t want to go backwards. I do want more research, more awareness of when parents and children need added care from mental health professionals and better assessment about what good care means.
One of the chapters I spent lots of time revising was Getting Professional Help. Good professionals abound, but so do kooks and creeps. If as a parent you think you or your spouse or your child need professional help make sure the help you get is good help. Start with yourself and before selecting a therapist ask these three questions of at least three before deciding who might be helpful to you and yours:
- What are your ideas about what causes this kind of problem?
- What do you do in your efforts to solve this kind of problem?
- How do you measure success?
Be wary or those who make you feel to blame or who offer miracle cures or have no agreed upon way you and the professional will know progress is being made.
I am proud the book has been republished and hope some will find it helpful. Staying strong.
IMAGE BY FIONNA GATT