Tip of the Month: And what are you going to do about that?

Most parents with more than one child are familiar with requests to solve their offspring’s inter-sibling issues.

While your immediate intervention is necessary if someone is hurt, try to otherwise not adopt their problem for yourself.

Turn things back to your children by replying to tales of woe with a concerned “And what are you going to do about that?”

This response stops you from becoming over-responsible for your children (which breeds co-dependency rather than inter-dependence in later life).  It also empowers children to find solutions to their own problems, which helps build true self-esteem.

If they offer solutions in answer to your question, praise and empathise as appropriate and let them go put their solution into action.

If they don’t know what do about it, you can follow up with something along the lines of:  “I’m confident you’ll think up something to do that’s fair.”

Good luck!

Note: “And what are you going to do about that?” isn’t meant to be a sarcastic comment but don’t be hard on yourself if the first time you try it some sarcasm creeps in!

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