Experienced Mom lesson #2
By the time the children are teenagers and older, most moms feel fairly confident in their mom skills. They should. After 20 years or so, moms have heard it all, seen it all, and “been there, done that.”
If I hear a new mom complaining or wondering about some small child woe, I pipe right in with all the wisdom of my 20+ years of mothering.
New moms might not like hearing the truth, but hey! I’m just trying to help!
- Every stain can be removed! The question is how long are you willing to work at it?
- You must learn to multi-task or nothing will ever get done
- If there’s a sharp corner in your home a toddler will fall into it.
- Don’t buy white-upholstered furniture.
- Always have enough gas in the car to drive to the emergency room.
- Don’t tell siblings to “love each other.” They’ll just rebel. Allow that feeling to grow on its own. It may take many years.
- Work on perfecting “The Look” while they are very young. It serves a mother well when children need to be reprimanded/warned quietly in public.
- You cannot treat your children equally because they are different. The exception: When they are younger you MUST buy each the exact same number of Christmas gifts. When they are older—beware! They will add up $$$ amounts in their head.
- If children are permitted to get away with sassing, disobedience, & disrespect when they are 2-yrs old—it will be virtually impossible to change the learned behavior when they hit their teens. What’s “cute” when they’re little will prove disastrous when older.
- Don’t cave in to food demands.You’ll only create picky eaters.
- Children lie. Teenagers lie. Young adults lie.
- Moms need to lie to their children sometimes.
- Learn the body language indicators each child has when they lie. NEVER tell them how you know. NEVER.
- Children learn from what you DO and how you ACT. Every day. Every hour. Every second. That means you must be a role model. (Scary, right?)
- Being the “mean mom” takes courage and will break your heart but you have to do it.
- Be prepared to be hated.
- Your child shouldn’t be your friend until they are an adult.
- Don’t think that boys are “this way” and girls are “that way.” Personality determines traits more than gender.
- Teach children to do things for themselves.
- Make them do a chore/task over until they get it right! Not completing the task or doing it poorly is just their way of getting out of it in the future.
- Don’t do their homework for them. As a teacher, I can assure you that your child was taught the skill in class before it was assigned as homework. Maybe next time they’ll pay attention.
- Let your child experience failure. Failure is necessary in life—without it we would never learn anything.
- Use humor when possible.
- Pick your battles carefully.
- Teenagers will go to great lengths to get a rise out of you. Don’t fall for it. Green hair? Whatever.
- Don’t argue with them. A broken rule has consequences. End of discussion.
- Give lots of hugs.
- Use humor. Frequently.
Remember, you may not see the rewards for being the best mom you can be for many years.
Any experienced mom wisdom you’d like to share?