Friday, 10 May 2013

Parenting is not for wimps.

Although, it might turn you into one or a blubbering wreck.  :)

We have had an issue bubbling around in our house for a very long time.  It has effected our family in a massive way.  My daughter had got into the habit of screaming.  All the time. It has been her 'go-to' response to everything.  As her mum I thought there was nothing I could do, it was the way she was made.  I was in a lot of despair about the whole thing as it was becoming the background soundtrack of our family.  I prayed.  I prayed with my husband.  A very close friend prayed.  Nothing seemed to help.  I got to the point where reading facebook was painful; my family was nothing like all the shiny, happy ones I read about on my friends' pages.

Last week we got the answer to our prayers.  I was expecting a very different answer, not one that required  humiliation on my part.  One day last week very early before school, something triggered my daughter to go into one of her screaming sessions.  I responded in my usual way. And then there was a knock on the door.  Our neighbour came to tell us she couldn't stand it any more.  She had put up with it for nearly 5 years.  It had to stop.  (And lots of other things that don't need repeating here.)  It was not a pleasant experience to be told your daughter was awful.  It was not nice to find out your neighbour thought you allowed your daughter to rule the roost.  I did not want to be told that my parenting skills were lacking in that area.  It is something I never want to have to go through again.

BUT it was the answer to my prayers.  It was the wake-up call I needed to put my parenting onto another track. It was the jolt I needed to apologise for mistakes made and to promise to do things in a different way.  I would not have chosen that answer; my answer looked more like this:  My daughter came to the understanding that her behaviour had consequences through her own maturity.  I am sure that the road ahead will be rocky but so far, it has been easier.  The structures in place leave more time for building positive relationships in our home, and I have been reminded that underneath all that screaming a beautiful girl has been hidden all along. 

I thank God for this happening and am grateful to my neighbour for having the courage to come around and let us know her thoughts on this.  I somehow feel liberated now that the screaming has (all but) stopped, my head and heart are clearer and I am able to work other things through better. 

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