Are you an emotional coach or an emotional-dismissing parent? Do you coach your child or a child through their angry, tired, hungry emotional breakdowns or do you dismiss them? I found this entire topic to be interesting… I would have to say that my husband I are both emotion-dismissing parents, to a certain extent. We have always had very strong opinions on certain aspects of parenting such as sleeping with your child in the same bed. Its not ok! In certain situations we choose not to acknowledge our daughters angry outbursts when she doesnt get what she wants, or when she whine’s for a snack and a drink. We always talk to her after she has calmed down (especially if discipline is involved) and explain our reasoning behind whichever debacle we had just encountered but we do not find it beneficial to coddle, and to react to certain behaviors.
If there is one thing I learned from the second I became pregnant it was that everyone has an opinion about your parenting decisions. From how you divert your morning sickness, to which shampoo you plan on using. I was shocked to read in my Development of Life-Span book for school that emotionally coached children are “better at self soothing, more effective in regulating their negative affect, focus their attention better, and have fewer behavior problems. I understand I have one child out of billions along with a biased opinion, but my daughter has accomplished and/or met all of these behaviors. After spending time around children her age I cant complain about my daughter’s behavior; it tends to be better than others. Am I missing a piece of the puzzle? Are there long term effects to this that arent mentioned in my book? I did some outside research and started to become slightly offended. This theory originated from John Gottman who has a ton of material out there on relationships and parenting. Take a peek at www.Gottman.com if you’re interested; I was for a quick second.
Gottman presents emotional-dismissing parents to be cold, unresponsive and and irresponsible. Have I mis-categorized myself or do I just need to be validated at this point? Scenario: How many of you have seen your child or a child trip and fall from a distance? If the child doesn’t see your reaction to the fall (I would venture to say) they most likely would get up and keep doing what they were doing. If your child or a child falls and you react by saying something to the effect of “oh no!!! are you ok?” and make a big to do about it, they would most likely cry. I’m a strong believer that children are underestimated in emotional response and that they can feed off of how the adult reacts and then play off of it. I am interested to hear others opinions… Where do you stand? Take the Poll!