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Just Say No

- 29th Apr 18

Garry
Here, look at this…

I’ve not written much lately, not that I have been prodigious anyway. Partly due to reasons that aren’t excuses really – two kids under 4 require a lot of energy and by the time they are both in bed, I’m ready for down time. The Current Mrs W gets home from work usually during dinner, which gives us all a great boost to get through the last hour or so before bed. It’s really given me a new appreciation for getting home on time!
The shifts are long but I’m loving being the at-home-parent, and am finding the mental challenge interesting (more on this later).
Having read a few good posts on The FMLY Man site recently, I’m trying to give myself a push to write more. I’ve realised I don’t need to be writing a major epic – I enjoy just reading about what other dads are doing, even seemingly mundane stories (boy do I have some of my own!)

In that vein, I’m laying down the high roller. I’ve recently read a book!

I know, I know. Pretty. Sweet.

At the turn of the year, I’ll admit I found looking after the kids difficult. I was having trouble getting through to our eldest just about day to day things mostly (getting ready on time, staying close when we were out) and I was letting my frustration get on top of me. This led to us all being more emotional but still not on the same page.

I picked up a parenting book in the library post ‘Rhyme Time’, had a flick through and got interested. So I took it home and got stuck in. It took a while for me to get through the whole thing mainly because I was taking notes as I was reading, but I was able to put theory into practice along the way. Theory that worked and that made the kids and myself happier:

Happy kids cooperate.
They’re on your team.

And this is great! Getting results made me want to keep going with the book. And because I’ve made some notes, I know I can swot up if I need to.

One of the points I’m taking to heart is saying ‘no’ to the children. Obviously there are times when children need and should be stopped, redirected or saved! But unsurprisingly, always saying ‘no’ can be quite negative…

It’s demoralising to hear all the time.
It’s tiring to say.
It can have an impact on a growing mind.

The solution?

Don’t say no!

Say something else. Redirect energy. Find another toy. Get the nipper to help you do something. Read a book.
Be positive about their enthusiasm and explain why you need them to do something else.

This is good for me to as I’m called upon to divert attention. I could be mid-sandwich making and need to come up with an activity quickly. Gets the old grey matter whirring!

This has made our days better. I’m more positive with the little ones. I’m not demoralising myself and them. We’re getting along better.

I’m getting their buy-in. We’re a stronger team. I definitely feel closer to them now and they both have been growing and popping out of themselves every day which is so interesting to see at this level.

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Garry

Father of two, documenting my transition to stay at home parent in October 2017.

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