Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Midweek Pick Me Up

The "h" word came out of my five year old's mouth for the first time last night directed toward me. You know, the one that rhymes with fate? Is it fate that brings this word into a child's vocabulary? I reacted as calmly as I could, ignoring what he said and telling him he was going to get a time out anyway (refusing a time out is why I heard this ugly word). So, when both of us had calmed down, I sat down on his bed and said, "I am going to listen to you. You talk for as long as you like, telling me how you are feeling using feeling words like frustrated, tired, upset, angry."

Later on, I got on and searched "I hate you." And I found this:

When your child blurts out "I hate you!" he's really saying that he's tired
and overwhelmed and doesn't know how to deal with the situation.

So, what does this have to do with a pick me up?

It helped me realize that:
  1. My child is normal. This is something most kids do at one point.

  2. My child really doesn't hate me. In fact, he loves me.

  3. The more a child understands the concept of hate, the more fiercely he can love.

  4. The internet can be a great source of information and consolation!

  5. Websites and blogs like this one are needed for us moms to lift each other up.

I'm sure many of you can relate, if not with this exact situation, then with something similar. I'm so glad I have fellow moms and friends like you who are willing to help and uplift me. And that's what we're all here for -- to do the same for you!


Melody said...

I totally wrote about this for Parenting (based on real-life experiences, I might add). The story is at, but my biggest advice is to teach your kid what to say instead of "I hate you." Put words in his mouth, like, "You know, when you say you hate me it hurts my feelings. Next time you can say, 'I'm angry at you.'" Or whatever. We taught Ella to draw pictures of her feelings, so now we get these elaborate cartoons about the ways in which we're terrible parents, but I'd rather have that -- a more measured response -- than a big tantrum-y outburst.

At any rate, you're not alone. And no, he doesn't really hate you.

Deneal said...

Wow, how calm and collected you are! These are some helpful suggestions and reminders. Hopefully I'll remember them when I'm in the heat of the argument!