Archive for February 1st, 2017

February 1, 2017

Loving “permission”

by Rod Smith

Loving couples offer each other permission even when permission is not required:

  • Permission to mourn losses both great and small.

The loving partner says, “I will not diminish your grief or try to talk you out of it or hurry you through it.”

  • Permission to have all the friends needed, both male and female.

The loving partner says, “I will not determine your friendship circle any more than I would expect you to determine mine.”

  • Permission to be with family as much or as little as is desired.

The loving partner says, “I will not get in the way of pre-existing relationships and will honor the people you loved before you loved me.”

  • Permission to dress in any manner desired that is both pleasing and is comfortable.

The loving partner says, “I will not presume anything about your choice of clothing except that you must find it both pleasing and comfortable otherwise you would not wear it.”

  • Permission to speak your truth even if it doesn’t match with my experience.

The loving partner says, “We all have our own filters through which we see the world and I am not going to tamper with yours.”

February 1, 2017

Letting children help themselves

by Rod Smith

Allowing children of all ages to face the inevitable challenges that come their way:

  • If you “help” and run to their aid, your assistance and anxiety suggests your children are incapable without you.
  • Your anxiety becomes another task or challenge your children must endure. They probably have enough on their hands without having to assist you with what you are facing. Make things easier by getting out of the way.
  • When children adjust and accomplish things without their parents’ help the children get the helpful message that they are capable of facing tougher and more crucial challenges in the future.
  • Your children are probably going to be better at life and facing life’s challenges than you are. Letting them face things without you shows them that you believe in their abilities and are more invested in their success than you are in their dependence.
  • Your children deserve the freedom to explore the world and to discover their capabilities. That’s close to impossible if the parents insist on paving the way for them.
  • Your children need you to step in, and nothing should stop you, if your detect cruelty or neglect or bullying, otherwise, do the loving thing and let them face whatever it is without you.
February 1, 2017

My grandson and his social skills

by Rod Smith

“My grandson (13) is of very high intellect. However, his social graces are lacking. He struggles to look people in the eye and show gratitude. His sister, brought up in the same home, is quite the opposite. The parents are embarrassed by his anti-social behavior. They reprimand him continually. This has been going on for years. I am wondering whether this type of behavior is typical of very intelligent people, and if so, should the lad be reprimanded so severely?”

The challenge the boy’s parents appear to face involves giving your grandson room to be his own person – a social or an anti-social one.

While they so intensely connect his behavior with their parenting, they afford him a lot of power over their emotional wellbeing.

Embarrassment, followed by reprimands, suggest a greater commitment to image than to pursuing what, if anything is going on with a family member who may or may not need professional help. If reprimands work (which I doubt) and he falls into line (becomes socially competent) one should not believe his pain or distress or discomfort has somehow disappeared.

Please read “ALL MY STRIPES” by Shaina Rudolph. It is a very helpful book for children – and for adults.