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Respect

Respect

What does it mean? 

How do you teach it to your children? 


Mostly children will learn what respect is by the way you treat them and your spouse. But they still need to learn how to express themselves with respect when they experience emotions they are not familiar with. 

This is something we are struggling with in our home. The level of respect we see in our children seems to be plummeting.  

It is hard to teach when raising a family, especially blended. There are many different influences on our children's lives and ours. 
Take me for example, not just my husband and children effect my day or my mood but sometimes things from exes or other parents can seep into my day and cause changes. 
For children in blended families in addition to their 2 separate sets of parents, and sometimes siblings, they also have school children and teachers. 

These are all triggers for different behavior, including respect. 

One resolution we are looking at is taking responsibility. 

Not only do we want to teach our children they are responsible for their actions but being able take responsibility as a parent. Showing them the right thing to do. 

Taking a look in the mirror at my own actions and where my children are learning some of their negative actions or disrespect is not pretty. 

Taking responsibility for a negative action that I don't (or didn't) realize I portray and not only facing it and admitting it to myself but to my husband and my children is difficult to say the least. Apologizing for the examples I have set is heavy. 

We have seen more genuine apologies since we have also apologized to the children. 

The kids are also giving out apologies freely without being asked. Recognizing when they have been disrespectful and making the effort to change. 

This is not yet happening as often as I would like but it is progress. 

Another resolution is giving more responsibility 

After feeling taken advantage of or being told I NEED to do things for my children by my children my husband and I decided it is time for them take on more of a load. 

If what we as parents are doing is expected and not appreciated then we are doing something wrong. 
(Now don't take this as I don't enjoy doing these things as a mother or that my children are fully responsible for themselves. There is a bigger life lesson to be learned here. Future relationship foundations need to be set) 

Some of the responsibilities we have given Doll Dragon who is in first grade are 

Getting ready for school in a timely manner
Getting ready for bed in a timely manner
Packing her own lunch
Clearing the table after dinner

These are things I used to do or I was helping with. 
She now takes full responsibility for them and loves it! 
I don't have to nag or fight with her about it. She gets it done. If she does not she knows she is the only one to blame for not having leisure time for other activities she may enjoy. 
She has control and she respects that we trust her enough to give it to her. 

These are only a couple of the solitions we are trying. We have other punishments in place because the disrespect has not stopped we are just looking for long time solutions. 

I can attempt to change the behavior in my children but ultimately they make their own choices. I can make their daily life full of commands and not fun, but that results in my day also being no fun and a disconnect between myself and the kids. 
That is not the mother I want to be. 

Going through just these two steps has helped me reflect and be a better mom. This is not the end though, I have many things I can work on. This is just the one God is revealing to me right now. 
I want to continue to show love and grace towards my children as Jeaus does for me in the midst of my mistakes. 

I will loose a few battles and feel disrespected but I will win the war and make my family better! 









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