Tag Archives: quotes

THE LIARS CLUB – WE ALL BELONG

#Parents take heed, this Word Press Prompt Truth or dare prompt asks  if honesty always the best policy? My answer? Almost always.

IMAGE FROM: Marie Lamba’s blog

Lying is a fact of life.  Kids learn to lie long before reaching their teens. Moreover, almost all teens belong to the Liars Club. Most likely so do you, certainly the majority of advertisers, most other people trying to sell something, the media, and 99.9% of all politicians lie.

Here is a quote by Teddy Roosevelt, one of our better thought of Presidents,  proving my point. “Whenever you are asked if you can do a job, tell ’em, ‘Certainly I can!’ Then get busy and find out how to do it.”

I hate lies, but know even just by keeping quiet about some things I lie lots. Moreover, there are kind lies, honorable lies, mean lies, and cruel lies.  When I lie it is usually to protect someone else’s feelings. Nevertheless, I hate lies and try to avoid telling even the kinder ones. Is it really kind to tell someone a dress looks good when it does not?

However, the main problem with “make nice” lies is it makes lying a habit. Minimally, rather than lie, do what another generation of parents suggested: “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.”

#PARENT_Advice ABOUT LYING

Lies are viruses which might do no harm sometimes, but also can spread like a cancer and destroy much that is good, particularly in relationships.

#PARENT_TIPS FOR TEACHING HONESTY

Tip one: Until children can read, they are not always clear on the difference between wishes and reality.  Don’t expect or worry about lies for the very young. If you know it is a lie, label it as imagination or a wish.

“You are wishing I won’t get angry that you broke a dish, so you said you didn’t do it. Not telling the truth is called lying.”

“You are imaging there is a monster under your bed, imagine chasing him away.”

These are the steps needed to lay the ground work for sorting out the real versus the not so real. You can also label cartoons, the puppets on most children’s shows as not real, but fun imaginings.

Tip two: Once you know your child can tell the difference between real and imaginary, make the importance of being honest the topic of a family meeting.

Don’t have family meetings? Start having them now.  Get a jump starts by reading my eBook How to Hold a Successful Family Meeting. Costs less than a fancy latte and is better for your family.  Meanwhile. end of that commercial and back to lie prevention.

Tip three: Remember as Mark Twain said, “There are lies, damned lies and statisics.”  Rating is an Emotional Fitness Exercise so you can focus on what matters.  Given the prevalence of lying, outlawing  lies won’t work. Better to teach the difference between white lies, harmful lies, and damned lies.

Tip four: Label  lies that you know are lies, including your own.

“I really don’t like Grandma’s hair that way, but I didn’t want to hurt her feelings., so I told a white lie.”

“That is gossip, nasty mean gossip, and not true.  Kind people never tell nasty lies about others.”

Tip five:  When kids can read, so they can start figuring out true from fiction, use television shows you watch together as a ” Catch the Lie Game.”

Tip six:  Another commercial.  My eBook When Good Kids Lie is full of more information about how to handle lying. Really worried? Buy it now for 99 cents. Not so worried or a bit broke?  Get it free this this Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

WGKLieFree

A PLEA FOR HELP: Help me share my knowledge. Like, comment, share, endorse, write a review if you buy or get one of my eBooks free. Reviews are particularly helpful. Here is a link a blow post I wrote about how to write reveiws.

Why I hope you will help:  My parent advice combines two streams of knowledge most other “experts” have not experienced.

The first: life as a foster parent housing youth in trouble with the law.  My husband and I offered short term care to nearly 400  while the courts decided their fates.  We were called a non-secure detention home.  Most of our kids were good kids, others were criminals – burglers, theives, rapists, an arsonist. Most of these eventually ended up in prison as adults.

The second.I am also a trained clinician and licensed therapist. For over ten years I directed the Visiting Nurse Service of New York’s mental health mobile crisis teams throughout the poverty ridden South Bronx. I trained New York City’s crisis teams as a consultant. I taught graduate level courses at the Columbia Universisty School of Social Work for over twenty years.

All of the above to say I combine  practical and clinical knowledge as no other parent adviser can or does.  I also know my advice is only true for some, some of the time.  You have to pick and choose from all advice, which is why I try to provide lots and lots of tips and choices.

STAY STRONG

Parents have two jobs: To teach right from wrong and to preserve a caring relationship with their child. Lying threatens important relationships.

As I tell myself a thousand times a day, stay strong, give lots of love, be grateful, practice kindness, live now, give and seek forgiveness, and always hope  the blessing of the forces beyond our control are with you and those you love.

Katherine

DISCLAIMER ONE: ADVICE IS ADVICE  and only works for some parents  some of the time.   Moreover, what works for one child in a family might not work for  another child in the same family.  You must experiment to find what works for you and yours.  Good luck.

DISCLAIMER TWO: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIA.  If you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. Dysgraphia is a not well-known learning disability and means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are.  If this troubles you, feel free to read elsewhere.  If you persevere, you are practicing kindness by lifting my spirits for that means you find what I say helpful and that is one of my missions. Kindness always repays those who spread it.

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INSPIRING TEENS

 These five coaches  were give-a-ways at  EFTI Parenting workshops or training events.  Which would you put somewhere in your house to inspire your teen?
!2 Easy Emotional Fitness Poster

Poster one

Children's quotes about peace

Poster two

Look for the helpers

The best advice for helping a child, a teen, or an adult deal with the bad things that are part of life.

Poster three 

hAPPINESS

Poster four

If you cannot abide by these rules, more is needed, see a drug counselor or explore AA.

Poster five

Emotional Fitness Training Exercise promoting EFTI's Twelve Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises

This was in response to a Word Press Daily Post Prompt:  Simply the Best: NASA is building a new Voyager spacecraft that will carry the best of modern human culture. What belongs on board?

Thank you Word Press for this prompt which allows me to share some of my Poster Coaches.  These will be on sale come November 1, 2013 in the EFTI Store.

I used them to motivate my staff, my children and myself.  Would any of these motivate you to think more carefully about what matters?

STAY STRONG

Life is hard and relationships often hurtful; staying strong is far from easy.  I fail often. But persistence and keeping on with what matters makes all easier.  We need to calm our self talk and think about what matters.  Send me your favorite Staying Strong Quote and I will include it in one of my Poster quotes. 

Thank you for all you do. And share if you think another parent will find this useful. That will be practicing kindness and practicing kindness makes a difference in your world and mine.

Katherine

 

PARENT BASHING

I just read four consecutive articles on Psychology Today, all of them bashing mothers. I will not link you to those articles. I trashed them. Parents and therapists need to stop this tirade of parent bashing and in this blog post I’ll explain why and discuss how you can be fair to yourself as a parent.

A picture about the joys of parent bashing.

 Image found on Pastordk’s blogspot. 

THOUGHTS ABOUT PARENT BASHING

First a quote by Augusten Burroughs, American author of Running With Scissors, a quote that most psychologists and parenting gurus would do well to think about.  Then a few thoughts and some advice.

If you have one parent who loves you, even if they can’t buy you clothes, they’re so poor and they make all kinds of mistakes and maybe sometimes they even give you awful advice, but never for one moment do you doubt their love for you–if you have this, you have incredibly good fortune.

If you have two parents who love you? You have won life’s Lotto.

If you do not have parents, or if the parents you have are so broken and so, frankly, terrible that they are no improvement over nothing, this is fine.

It’s not ideal because it’s harder without adults who love you more than they love themselves. But harder is just harder, that’s all.

This is a reality based quote, not an ‘awfulizing’ quote. The psychologist Albert Ellis coined the word: ‘awfulizing’.  You awfulize when you turn the proverbial molehill into a mountain; you make a broken fingernail into an amputated arm; or parental mistakes into life long rants.  I am of the sad belief far too many therapists do just that when listening to their patients rants about parents.

Therapists who awfulize parental mistakes  probably do so  because most were wounded themselves as children and have not moved beyond those hurts that all parents inflict on children. Instead of moving on, these keep parental behavior in the floodlight of therapy practice.

Oscar Wilde noted, “Children begin by loving their parents; as they grow older they judge them; sometimes they forgive them.”

Theodore .Reik, Author of Listening With the Third Ear, believed until a person forgives their parents AND hopes their parents forgive them, no matter what the person’s age, they remain a child.

So blaming, bashing therapists and parenting gurus, please grow up.

I personally believe forgiving and hoping you will be forgiven is usually accomplished when our dreams of being the kind of parents we wanted to be crash and shatter. When is that?  When the reality based parts of our brain  realize we are making many of the same mistakes our parents made.

PARENTING ADVICE ABOUT PARENT BASHING

Check reality:  Some parents need bashing, probably to be arrested, and then  convicted of their crimes. Read the book A Boy Called It for an example.

If you have sex with your children, beat them so they break and bruise, you are engaging in criminal behavior. Criminal behavior needs stopping.

If you are continuously emotionally bruising and battering a child, while that is easily proved to be criminal behavior,  it should be bashed and stopped.  The child protective  laws calls such behavior emotional abuse.

Now here is a problem related to emotional bruising. We all do it. In one way or another we all hurt our children and hurt them badly.

Here is another quote, this one by John Steinbeck from his book East of Eden, “When a child first catches adults out — when it first walks into his grave little head that adults do not always have divine intelligence, that their judgments are not always wise, their thinking true, their sentences just — his world falls into panic desolation. The gods are fallen and all safety gone. And there is one sure thing about the fall of gods: they do not fall a little; they crash and shatter or sink deeply into green muck. It is a tedious job to build them up again; they never quite shine. And the child’s world is never quite whole again. It is an aching kind of growing.”

Sadly, most children, even those with the best of parents, eventually deal with the fallen gods that were once their parents – life as it is, not as we wish it to be.

Check your flaws: Admit you fail to always be a good or good-enough parent. Think of these common examples:

  • Children victimized by adult temper tantrums.  I hurt my children with my temper.
  • Children witnessing your inappropriately expressed anger toward others. Emotionally bruising.
  • Children made pawns in divorce actions or custody cases.
  • Children living parent’s failed dreams. Think of Toddlers and Tiaras.
  • Children hurt or bruised in a hundred smaller ways.

Check the balance: We all fail to be good enough all the time.  The difference between good enough and not good enough parenting in terms of the above list of flaws lies in two things

First: The balance between good parenting and not good enough parenting. My temper tantrums were flaws, and acts of emotional abuse.

Second: Can and do you apologize? The ability to say you were wrong and to apologize turns parental flaws into human flaws and teaches important life lessons.

My temper tantrums echoed my mother’s.And believe me when I realized I was behaving as she had, I sunk into a pit of shame. However, I was able to own up to how wrong those tantrums were and to apologize to my children; and to try to do better. I tried and sometimes failed. My mother never apologized. My father never told me her tantrums were not my fault. It took therapy to get me to understand that.

Have faith: When we realize we fail as parents, it is painful.  It helped me to realize how few parental mistakes are fatal, how strong children are, and how most parents are  good enough parents.

Forgive yourself for being human.

Hug, love, laugh and play lots with your children, young and old.

As always, share and care and thank you for doing so.

Katherine

TWO DISCLAIMERS

The first:  Although built upon evidenced based practices, there is no guarantee my advice is the right advice for you and your family. Experiment, try my tips; if they are not useful to you try another parent adviser. You are the expert on you and your child; the rest of us experts on many different things.

The second: I have dysgraphia, a learning disability that peppers my writing with mis-spelling and punctuation errors. All my books are professionally edited. Not so my blog posts. Although I use all the grammar and spelling checks, mistakes slip by. If they bother you, seek another source of support for life’s less savory moments.   Life is too short to let problems you can avoid annoy or stress you.

WHEN TO LIE TO CHILDREN

Honesty is usually the best policy, but when bad things happen to others, children need comforting. Sometimes that means lying.

I didn't cry when Santa died for me, but I was angry, my parents had lied to me.

I didn’t cry when Santa Claus died for me,my brothers killed him.  I was upset, angry at  my mother for lying to me, and feeling stupid.  

parenting thoughts

All parents lie.  Even when they don’t lie, kids upon reaching adolescents think parents have lied about at least one or two things. I urge honesty.  But also think there are times to lie to your children.  When bad things happen to others is one and the prospect of your death, another. 

PARENTING TIPS

First about the prospect of  bad things happening to your child.  When a child becomes aware of news events about bad things,  Fred Roger’s mother gave the best advice.

She said …. “look for the helpers, there are always helpers. ”

Follow this up by teaching your child to be one of the helpers.  If you can help another when bad things happen you are strengthened.  Build resilience in your child by having him or her help when disaster strikes anywhere in the world. How can vary, but a toddler can help you put stamps on a donation letter, a two-year old can put coins in a charity box or help you pack a care package.

Next about your child’s fears about you dying.  These start when the child has a pet die or another loved one die.  Some children ask directly, others don’t. Use those occasions to say something like, “We all die, but I intend to live a long time so I can dance at your wedding and hold your children in my arms.”  The younger the child, the more that will satisfy. 

When your children are able to read if you are asked about the possibility of your death, say  “I work hard to stay healthy, I want to dance at your wedding.”   Follow with a question about what is worrying them.  

When adolescence comes,  take the time to talk to your kids about your will, and who would care for them if the worse happens and you die.

If you have an illness that is clear and is moving you closer to death, the task becomes trickier.  Mostly the above advice applies, but you might want to add one of the following thoughts:

Living as much as I can right now.
Loving you as much as I can right now. 
Memories keep us all alive. 
Now is good. 
Remember me, and know I always love you.

Finally, here are five things you can do to help a child of any age deal with your death.  

  1. Have a will and as much life insurance as you can afford, particularly if your children are young.
  2. Make your own funeral plans.
  3. Create a memory book with each child.
  4. Write an I love you and am proud of you letter for each age and stage.  Include these in the memory book.
  5. Write a good-by letter, either one for each child or one for the family.

stay strong

It may seem the above strayed a bit from lying.  Reality check, we all deny that bad things will happen to us and our children. We deny that we will at one time or another die.  Finally, we are all tempted to keep our children innocent as long as possible. Human nature, and for the most part a way to keep going.  

But also can turn into a big lie if something bad happens; that could leave a beloved child feeling lied to and betrayed.  

Making peace with the horrors of life and the fact that bad things like dying  are part of life is healthier.  Discussing those facts with awareness of age and stage strengthen those hurt or left behind if you die.  

For more specific tips about lying , see yesterdays’ blog or get my When Good Kids Lie.  Buy it now or wait to get it free this week end.

WGKLieFree

Help me share my knowledge. If you found this post helpful like, comment, share, or endorse me. If you  buy or get one of my eBooks free please review.  even a few words helps me.  And yes, even a bad review has value.  Of course,   good reviews are particularly helpful.

Here is a link too a post I wrote about how to write reviews. But even a comment on my blog or Facebook pages helps as endorsements.

As I tell myself a thousand times a day, stay strong, give lots of love, be grateful, practice kindness, live now, give and seek forgiveness, and always hope  the blessing of the forces beyond our control are with you and those you love.

Katherine

DISCLAIMER ONE: ADVICE IS ADVICE  and only works for some parents  some of the time.   Moreover, what works for one child in a family might not work for  another child in the same family.  You must experiment to find what works for you and yours.  Good luck.

DISCLAIMER TWO: FORGIVE MY GRAMMATICAL ERRORS FOR I HAVE DYSGRAPHIA.  If you need perfect posts, you will not find them here. Dysgraphia is a not well known learning disability and means that sometimes my sentence structure is not that easy to follow or I make other errors. Still, most people understand me. All of my books are professionally edited, but not all of my blog posts are.  If this troubles you, feel free to read elsewhere.  If you persevere, you are practicing kindness by lifting my spirits for that means you find what I say helpful and that is one of my missions. Kindness always repays those who spread it.