What effect does it have on children when they receive conflicting messages?
Anita Renfroe’s ‘Mum Song‘ captures our ludicrousness with her opposing instructions: the child must chew her food slowly and hurry.
It makes us smile as parents.
But inconsistencies are frustrating and confusing to children and sometimes damaging to their self-esteem.
And often the incongruity isn’t so blatantly obvious.
‘I love you,’ says the Parent without making eye contact or any other warm connection.
‘You know I love you.’ –‘Don’t bother me.’
‘Do what you’re told.’ –‘Can’t you think for yourself.’
Are your children getting mixed messages from you? (Not only with your words – but what about your body language or way of being with them?)
What impact might this be having on your children?
What is the message you really want them to get?
What could you do differently that would be more helpful?
“When a child has no doubt about your love and admiration of him, his contentment is the ground on which he can succeed in his endeavors. He will be able to act on his own behalf authentically …” Naomi : the child must chew her food slowly but must hurry., Raising Our Children, Raising Ourselves 2006, p. 43