Most parents recognize that their child undergoes a transition around toddlerhood—commonly called the terrible twos! But that stage would be less traumatic if your parenting made a transition, as well. Learn more on today’s Home School Heartbeat, with HSLDA President Mike Smith and parenting author John Rosemond.
John, on our last program, you described the seasons of service, which lasts for about the first two years of a child’s life. But there’s a really important transition in parenting that has to happen after these first two years. Would you tell our listeners how to end the season of service?
Well, between the second and third birthdays, Mike, it’s essential that parents move from service into leadership and that they claim the legitimacy of their authority during that critical year. What this requires is you take the child out of the center of your attention, and you begin to occupy the center of the child’s attention. You cannot successfully discipline a child who is not paying sufficient attention to you. And it is a fact that most American parents don’t appreciate that the more attention you pay a child, the less the child will pay to you.
It is also necessary during this critical transitional year that you redefine yourself to the child, that you stop being a servant primarily and that you redefine yourself to this child as an authority figure. And if this is done by age three successfully, then discipline ought to proceed fairly smoothly from that point.
John, obviously that is a transition that parents can’t afford to miss! Thanks for joining us today! And until next time, I’m Mike Smith.