Who knows why kids act the way they do? This is a question that most mums ask themselves at some point, but rather than find out an answer to it some parents use it as an excuse for bad behaviour. If you’re finding your child’s behaviour frustrating or are worrying that how your child acts reflects badly on you as a mum then don’t hesitate to find out how best to change it. Ask the experts, discuss your discipline choices with your family and even investigate parenting support classes. By being pro-active not only are you tackling your kids behaviour issues, but showing the world, and your kids, that you are trying to be the very best mum possible – something that everyone should applaud.
Ask the Experts
Many young mums worry that asking questions makes them look as if they don’t know what they are doing. Never feel this way! After all, if you don’t ask questions how can you get any answers? When it comes to kids’ behaviour the old age “there’s no such thing as a stupid question” holds particularly true. Ask your own parents, your GP, your child’s carer or teacher, other current mums or even total strangers on an Internet forum. The important thing is that you find someone you feel comfortable speaking with and whose advice you trust. Once you have such an outlet, ask any question you might have and use the answers to formulate a new strategy for dealing with your child’s behaviour.
Discipline and Family Support
There is a big difference between discipline and punishment, but it is easy to forget this difference in the heat of the moment when a child is behaving in a challenging way. Punishment is a way to make a child feel bad or suffer for a choice that (s)he has made while discipline aims to teach children why the choices were bad and how they can choose better in the future. Once you decide on a method of discipline, such as time out or the naughty step, share your choices and enlist family support. For young mums living with their own parents it is particularly important that everyone in the household uses the same form of discipline so that the child understands what will happen each and every time (s)he makes a bad choice. If a family member refuses to go along with your wishes, speak with him or her privately and explain what you are doing and why you are doing it. Often when others understand the reasons behind a particular method of discipline they will be more likely to use it.
Parenting Support Classes
Some parents think that going to parenting support classes is the equivalent of admitting that they are total failures when it comes to raising children. Nothing could be farther from the truth! Parents who know that they need some support and go out to find it are incredibly brave. Often parenting support classes are offered in local community centres, schools and churches, and your GP will likely know where to find more information if you are interested in enrolling in a course. Family Links (www.familylinks.org.uk), a registered charity working for literacy, nurturing and better family relationships, also offers a coursebook of their Nurturing Programme that you can buy and use in the privacy of your own home.
Young single mums can very easily feel as though they have no help and nowhere to turn when they have questions. Finding an expert to answer your questions, explaining your choices to family members and investigating parenting support classes are all ways that young single mums can made informed choices for themselves and their children.