- Be more firm with him
- Not put up with that
- Make him clean it up
- Ignore her when she does that
- Reduce the sugar
- Give him coffee
- Stop relying on medication
- Tell him to stop that
“Wow, you DO have a lot to deal with!”
Somehow, we’re in a pattern of other people- random people, people who love us, people who know our children- giving us advice where they know the answers because our answers aren’t somehow good enough or aren’t working well enough. Or at least it feels that way. I know that, for people who love us, such advice, solicited or not, comes from a place of shared frustration, a place where you have to try something else, because whatever “this” is now, isn’t working. And for those who know us, it comes from a feeling of confidence- a place of “well, this works for our child when our child is acting out, so I suggest that you try it too”.
But I have to say- I’m getting really tired of it.
Yes, I know that my son is disorganized. Yes, I know that my daughter is whiny. Yes, I know that James and I are dysfunctional at times. Yes, I know that our household is noisy and chaotic. This is not news to me. And yes, I know that I have to be firm, and make them clean up and help him replace behaviors and tell her to stop acting that way. I know all of this. I know that there is a fine line between spoiled and autism. A fine line between poor parenting and Oppositional Defiance. A fine line between labels and excuses.
But I also know that we’re tired. We’re tired of constantly battling- battling fear and anxiety and contrary behavior and overload. We’re tired of always having to be “on top of our game”. We’re tired of the stress when the other parent makes a choice we wouldn’t have and the fall out is extreme. We’re tired of making sure that we’re on the same page at all times. We’re tired of managing our children and not enjoying them. We’re tired of dealing with our own anxieties, sensory overloads and sadness- the issues that our children inherited naturally. We’re tired of finding our own coping strategies and losing the balance of our lives. We’re tired of people who have had only one child, or no children, or three perfectly-behaved children make judgments about parenting two children with a variety of needs. We’re tired of people sympathizing at the daily challenges we face, and then implying that it’s our own fault.
- To those who love us- we’re doing our best
- To those who know us- try walking in our shoes before you pass on your words of wisdom
- And to those random people- I would like to tell you what you need to do…
But I am a good Southern woman, and I will simply say “Bless their hearts”.