to have mutual respect {peaceful parenting 101}

I mentioned something in my first peaceful parenting post that raised a few eyebrows. I said that I am a yes mama and gave examples of areas where I just say yes. I mentioned that if I am making dinner and someone asks for a bowl of cereal, I will give them cereal and how I let my kids stay up if they are not tired. A couple readers sent me confused emails asking why, telling me how irritated they would be if their kids asked for cereal while dinner was cooking.  And I get it, I have been there.

But see, I began to view parenting from a place of respect and that caused me to question a lot of society's parenting norms which are just quite arbitrary. Take food for instance. How much sense does it make to shove specific foods down a child's throat at a specific time? And how would you feel if it was done to you? Instead, I fill my home with healthy, natural, organic, non-gmo foods and allow my children free reign of our pantry when they are hungry. Just as my husband and I have free reign when we are.

What about bedtimes? Have you ever gone to bed and, unable to fall asleep, laid there for hours? It's awful. Now imagine being forced to lay there, unable to get up until you were tired, tossing and turning, far from sleep. It's like that for so many children. So my kids go to bed when they are tired.

What does that look like in our home?  Most nights my littles have a rhythm. Moses and Pearl are ready for bed between 630 and 700. I nurse Pearl and she falls asleep. Moses will find me and ask me to rock him to sleep, climb into my lap and I will read him a story until he turns around, lays his head on my shoulder and I sing to him as he drifts off.

Typically the twins are in bed between 8 and 9.  They will get in pajamas and pick out clothes for the following day, play or watch a show with us and then I ask them if they are ready for their book {currently we are reading Arthur of Albion}.  If they are, we snuggle in their bed, read, pray and then I lay with them a bit.  Some nights though, one or both of the girls aren't ready when I ask and so they stay up with us, watching whatever we watch or coloring or playing, until they climb up with daddy and I and fall asleep.  Josiah decides to go to bed around 930-10 and Layla stays up reading and writing later than anyone in the house, falling asleep on the couch or crawling into bed when her eyes finally begin to get heavy.

We just really try to have a family where mutual respect flourishes.  We ask ourselves how we would want to be treated and if what we are asking of our children is something that we would want to be asked ourselves.  If it is not, then we don't ask it of them.  Peace is our goal.  Mutual respect is one of the means.

Have you considered how arbitrary some of society's parental norms are?  Do you go against the grain in any way?

*for part 1 of the peaceful parenting 101 series, go here

1 comment:

  1. Awesome post Amy! I'm loving your thoughts. Thank you so much for sharing!