My (almost) nine-year-old Zachary was terribly frustrated doing his homework a few weeks back.
“I’m so mad! I just want to throw something!”
Now, think. As a parent, what do you say to that?
- It’s ok, honey.
- Calm down. Let’s see what’s the problem?
- Zach, you’re over-reacting! Can you just do your homework quietly?
Beth went to the cupboard and took out a bag of marshmallows. “Here,” she said, “Throw this.”
You should have seen Zachary light up and it put his temporary setback in perspective â€“ a perspective he gained on his own, without any hectoring from us. “Really?! I can throw this?!” Soon after, his rage gave way to laughter and a loving “marshmallow fight” with mom.
The fact that he got to eat the projectile afterward didn’t hurt either.
I picked up Zach from school the other day. His friend Joseph was coming over for a play date and Michael overheard. “You’re going to Zachary’s house?! You’re lucky. You get to have marshmallow fights!”
Now, that’s a happy ending.
Have any “my child is so mad and this is what I did” stories to share?
Good luck from a fellow dad,
:: Joe Hage ::
Other posts from Joe Hage: Dad’s Life Lessons: Rule #1