Thursday, September 27, 2012

how do you teach your child if you can't parent her?

today we got into an actual screaming match. 

i pride myself that my screaming matches with my pre-teen and teenage girls usually only have 2 exchanges before we de-escalate.  de-escalation is a huge tool in conflict resolution that we are fortunate to have many opportunities to practice :-D

sof kol sof, we both accused each other of being the first to raise her voice.  in truth, after analysis, i believe that she was speaking to me nastily 2x and then i raised my voice to actual "yelling" first.  then we bickered back and forth about who started. 

i asked if it would work for her, if when i began to feel upset that she was speaking "not nicely" to me, if i would very very nicely ask her to please speak to me in a nicer tone.  we shall see if that indeed can be implemented.  i find that i usually don't notice when i'm being spoken to obnoxiously until after i've reacted badly. 

anyway, i just want to say that i don't think that i fight with my pre-teen more because she's homeschooled.  it happens to be that this time the argument was over chumash. 

actual argument:

chana: 430 years?  really?  they weren't in mitzrayim for 430 yrs.
me: maybe it's counting from when yosef or yaakov went down.
chana: i don't understand.
me: maybe it's from when yosef or yaakov went down. 
chana (a bit obnoxiously): i don't understand what you're saying.
me: you remember yosef? and yaakov?  maybe it's from when they went down.
chana (a bit more obnoxiously): i don't understand what you're saying.
me (loudly, ie yelling): just listen to what i'm saying!

i believe at the time, elazar was also interrupting us many times.. something about blood coming from his toe..

chana devolved into tears, then the de-escalation, then the recriminations about who started, etc. then the offer of a resolution for next time, then you are all caught up.

but just because that argument was over chumash, doesn't mean that homeschooling causes more conflict.  on the way home, chana said, "i had a dream last night," and i said, "so did i!" and that got her upset.  she thought i was saying, "so what, everyone has dreams," when i was actually sharing with her that i, too, had an interesting dream last night.  then she didn't like the next 2 things i said.  then i told her i would be absolutely silent.  and that annoyed her too.  so there you go. 

if anything, homeschooling provides us with a lot of time to be together and develop our relationship and have a lot of nice interactions, so it's not all about conflict.

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