it’s all about me!

Have you ever stopped to think about how selfish children are! Just listen! If it isn’t someone whining, it is someone crying or someone asking yet for something else. Though much of the asking and crying is legit…it is selfish really. Children are naturally concerned about themselves most of the time.
–The 18 month old is sitting in the high chair and is out of food. She screams and starts reaching her hands out in a grabbing motion. She wants more obviously. But the tack and manner in which she operates is downright rude and selfish. Can you imagine me sitting at the table eating my dinner and then all of the sudden started screaming at you for more food while reaching my hands out in a grabbing motion!
–The baby cries the moment you put her down. Now granted it is getting better with more frequent times of contentment. But what would happen if I just started screaming and carrying on the moment someone stopped paying attention to me.
–The toddler boys whine and although it is met with discipline, the whining isn’t extinct around here….yet. What if someone asked me a question and I answered in a long, moaning, sick whale sounding whine?
–Another child is upset because another sibling has a toy that is better than the one he has. So first he tries to talk the sibling out of the toy, then he just takes it. Can you imagine if I went over to a friend’s house and saw that she had better cooking pots and pans than I have. I then tried to talk her out of her pots and pans, then I just took them.
All this had me thinking that though the methods of communication and actions in children are unique, it doesn’t mean we should be satisfied with that method and let them continue on in their ways. Of course newborns cry. That is how they communicate. That is all they know at this stage in life. As mothers we have a unique gift to interpret those cries and meet their needs and nurture them with lots of love. Yet over time, we as parents, are given the responsibility to love and teach them how to properly communicate. As they become toddlers and the newborn cry progresses to a torturous toddler whine, we are needed to train that whine into the proper verbal skills. We should not convince ourselves, “ohh, they just don’t know any better” and just accept whining as the means of communication. We can however say, “ohh, they don’t know any better” and I am going to see to it that they do know better. Consistently, we should address the whine and reinforce the acceptable means of communication by showing them how to communicate properly.
Some moments can be chaotic, the baby is crying, the toddler is letting out some tribal sounding yell, the boy toddlers are whining for more, the other children are asking for more food or asking when we are going or asking if I could get them this or that. Recently, I humored myself and scared my kids by unexpectedly crying back at them and answering them in the same whine they asked the question in. It was a simple lesson to them, showing them how scary and ugly whining is.
These seemingly little squabbles we deal with on a daily basis seem frivolous but looking deeper, we can see that these little things are what the big things in life are made out of. Daily, we are dealing with and correcting life long social skills and manners as well as correcting character issues and communication skills that are necessary to for our children to know. Teaching your child not to whine when he is 3 years old will have lasting implications when he is 30 years old. Have you ever seen a 30 year old whine and complain and stomp out of the room when he doesn’t get his way? I have and wondered why his mother didn’t teach him when he was 3 that life isn’t a bowl of cherries and we don’t always get what we want.
Parenting is about transitioning the selfish, “it’s all about me” to the serving, “what can I do for others”.


  • Sarah Walston says:

    just a few minutes ago i changed my blog description to read “it’s all about me” – just for fun, to be a little sarcastic…

    then i read this blog post

    too funny – but i feel a little guilty now and i might have to go change my description! ha!

  • sarah says:

    “What if someone asked me a question and I answered in a long, moaning, sick whale sounding whine?” “the toddler is letting out some tribal sounding yell” These descriptions are cracking me up. Did you get these observations from watching my house??? Yeah, we are a LONG way from the transition to serving…. Encouraging post though, thanks! :o)

  • admin says:

    HA! No kidding! You have the same thing?????— Sick Whale and Tribal sounds! You know what I am talking about then!!!! Seriously, they actually sound like that at times!!!