I have been friends with the founder of Fighting Dads for many years. He has both watched me and I have watched him go through many things that some should never go through. As someone that has both been divorced and remarried with a now blended family, there is a lot of different advice that I could give and some of it would almost sound contradictory. And currently as a life coach, I would like to tell you about three things that really worked for me and those that I have coached over the years. If you would like more information or coaching please visit me at www.valuetovictory.com.
First point, I remember my ex telling my son how I didn’t love him, that I didn’t want to spend time with him, that everything else in my life was more important than him. I was not doing many things right in my life, such as previously having affairs and being a workaholic which was usually 80+ hours a week. So please do not let me paint the picture that I was a saint in any way. But the one thing I did was love my son and I was doing my best to be a father. So my first lesson would be to understand the value of:
I have heard it quoted by many “Consistency is the Key”. But I have learned many of times it is really true. There are countless parenting books, psychology books all telling you that kids need and love boundaries. But many of us change our decisions by the day! This is both ineffective and contradictory, to us and what are goals are. If you do decide to do something different because you have learned something, explain to your kids what you have learned and the reason for the changed behavior and most like a form of an apology. This has multiple psychological effects as it teaches your children you are also willing to change, learn, be teachable and mature enough to apologize. These all will have everlasting effects on you and your children.
Secondly, I see entirely too many relationships that are just full of manipulation. If you don’t do this then I am going to _________ (punish) you in some way. Not talk to you, withhold sex, withhold rights to see your child, try to take you back to court, etc. The kids version of this is, I won’t come see you, I won’t hug you, I won’t say I love you, I will tell mommy I don’t want to see you, I will sulk, have a bad attitude, etc. So my second lesson would be to understand the value of:
The reason why this principle is so powerful in dealing with both children and people in life, is it eliminates the requirement of having to say things multiple times. But without consistency, manipulation will always come back into the conversation. Because if I can make you change your mind then I just need to add enough pressure to do so! But if you are consistent, then you are stable, which means your decisions, moods and responses are all consistent, removing room for manipulation to become part of the interaction.
Lastly, in order for manipulation to NOT be the middle of all your decisions and affecting your every move. You have to learn to love with selflessness. Let me elaborate some on this by giving some examples of things that I have experienced. When you tell your kid to do something and if they do not do it, then there is some consequence involved such as time out, spanking, restriction, etc. Now, the second you do that, the child is mad at you.
So the next time you go to make that decision you are leery because you know if you do this it will result in you getting hurt because of the kids anger. Other examples are: the kid not wanting to see you, telling you they hate you, not willing to spend time with you, sulking the entire weekend that they are with you, you having to not get to do something fun with them the only weekend you have them, because you now have to ground them. If you consider any of them and then alter your decision YOU ARE NOT LOVING THEM, YOU ARE LOVING YOU!
Love with Selflessness
I think by far this was one of the hardest lessons I had to learn. If I make a decision, determine a set of consequences and then give you a choice. Then I have to be consistent, allow zero-manipulation in my decision, and stand behind what I said regardless of how much it may hurt me emotionally. If I do not do this, then I believe that I will teach them that those decisions don’t have consequences and that if I you can make someone feel bad enough then they will change things to suite me, but after being a youth pastor, as well as teaching at the juvenile detention centers for over 4 years, I have never seen it works for the juvenile standing in front of the judge.
I also believe that you are teaching them that decisions are not valuable and can cost them their life. You are enabling them to establish bad patterns and to not learn self-control. You are teaching them that love is only getting to do what you feel like, which is self-love which then makes this entire cycle perpetual!
I know the fight can be hard. Some of your decisions may affect your child never wanting to talk to you again! But I tell you, make the right one anyway, stand strong anyway and have courage anyway. Because I know if you will be consistent, do the right thing no matter the manipulation, or how much it may hurt you! To train them in the way that they should go, that when they are old they will not depart of it! This is a promise in the bible! And because of me learning these things, my son graduated with honors and we have a great relationship. My step son just went from 9th to 11th grade today and we also have a great relationship. This is not something I say, but something I have had the honor of hearing them tell me! So stay strong and Fight!
If you have any other questions, what ifs or situations I would love to hear them and will do some additional blogs per the topics that you think will help you best! Looking forward to hearing from you!
If you would like more information or personalized coaching please visit me at www.valuetovictory.com and we can set something up for you today. One of the best things about a life coach is that you are paying us to help you be successful in your life! To win in everything you do!
Value to Victory
“Between what you value and your victory is always the cross”
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