The examples in the last post may seem harmless. I believe a better word may be innocuous. Let me assure you they are not. At times I still need to work to negate those messages and a few more.
I no longer want them to stand in the way of my relationships, my work, my aspirations, my life.
Perhaps that is one reason I write. I’d like to be heard and I’d like to have a voice. I’d like to navigate obstacles. I’d like to surround myself with people who can compromise and are flexible. People who care how I feel and what I might want.
Here are a few more statements people have shared with me. Statements that impact them to this day. Many are familiar.
“You never listen.”
“Don’t be selfish.”
“What do you think you’re doing?”
“You’re so dramatic.”
“Don’t cry about it.”
“Pull yourself together.”
“Don’t talk back.”
“What would ‘they’ say? (or think?)
Perhaps you’ll add a few of your own.
Please take some time to consider what messages you heard and how you interpreted them. How they might operate in your life to this day? And better yet, think how you might counteract them when they appear.
Once you have worked to address some of these messages, you may have a better understanding of the importance of your words.
When tempted to say some hasty comment to your child, please pause and ask yourself about the implications. It may take a moment or two longer to be genuine and respectful of their wants and needs.
Reflect on how you might honor them by offering some care and empathy in your responses and not falling back on simplistic and outdated comments.
Our children deserve better.