We all enter into parenthood with the best of intentions but, more often than not, we end up feeling our way through – and we can all learn a thing or two from each other and our individual experiences.
Well, people all over the world are sure to be taking a leaf out of Jaime Primak Sullivan’s book, if the reaction to her latest post is anything to go by.
The mum blogger has come in for major praise today, after sharing a candid video post about how she recently dealt with a worrying habit her eight-year-old daughter was beginning to display.
In the post, Jaime detailed how her eldest child, Olivia, had recently begun to show signs of ‘manipulative’ behaviour, and when matters came to a head over the 4th of July weekend, she had to take action.
Jaime recalled an incident over the weekend when her daughter asked if she could eat an M&Ms yoghurt as a treat. Like many of us, Jaime is vigilant when it comes to her kids’ sugar intake, and so she gave her daughter permission to eat the yoghurt – but told her she would have to choose between the yoghurt and the cake she had set aside for after dinner.
Olivia opted for the cake over the yoghurt – but about 15 minutes after tucking into her chosen dessert, the following happened:
“She comes back to me and taps me on the shoulder, and says, ‘Mum; Dad said that I could have the yoghurt – so is it okay if I have it?’ Now, the reason she came back to me and didn’t just go get it after her father said she could have it, is because she knew that she was wrong…She knew that if she asked her dad if she could just have some yoghurt he would say yes,” explained Jaime.
Now, this situation had gone far beyond treat time and sugar intake – Jaime was concerned over the bad habit Olivia was exhibiting, and she decided that her daughter ‘had to own her manipulation’.
And so, Jaime explained why her daughter’s behaviour was wrong; and by the end of their conversation, Olivia understood that is wasn’t right for her to go to the other parent when one had already given their answer.
So, it was all sorted – until Jaime’s friends began to question her decision not to let her daughter simply eat the yoghurt; they didn’t understand the root of the situation.
“It isn’t about the yoghurt – it’s about the manipulation and the bad habits that are starting now. It’s easy to let her have the yoghurt – and overlook the manipulation. But an eight-year-old who manipulates – even from a non-malicious place – becomes a 12-year-old who does it, becomes a 17-year-old who does it, becomes a 21-year-old who does it…Why would I risk it? How can I parent properly if I see dangerous behaviour, and I just let it go?” explained Jaime.
There are two lessons to be learned here: firstly, it’s not only okay but it’s IMPORTANT to nip bad habits in the bud; and, equally, it’s essential to stick to your guns if you feel passionately that something is right or wrong – no matter how fellow parents may be dismissing it.