Just came across this interesting blog post titled "How To Love A Diaper Change". Hmph, I thought, when reading the title.
"Diaper changes are built for intimacy. And all we need to turn diapering from a difficult, dreaded chore into a mutually gratifying experience is to change our perception, to appreciate the moment as an opportunity for developing a closer partnership with our child. Remembering to slow down, to include our baby instead of distracting him, ask for his assistance, use gentle “asking hands” instead of busy, efficient ones can literally transform a mundane task into a time of mutual enrichment."Hmph, again.
They suggest timing the change to when it's convenient for the child, paying attention to the whole child vs. just their lower half, talking them through the entire process (I'm going to wipe your bottom now)...you get the idea.
I like the thought of respecting LM as an individual who has preferences about his own body. And there definitely are a few tips in here that I'll try to incorporate into our diapering routine to see if it helps.
But after reading this article, I'm again contemplating one of my favorite (as of late) subjects--overindulgent parenting.
This is one thing the author said that gave me pause:
"A baby might wish to roll to his tummy to be wiped, or be in an all fours crawling position. The toddler may need to stand and be changed on a pad on the floor. Continue to ask for cooperation, but compromise and allow the child to do things his way if you can make it work."Does this seem strange to anyone else? Ummm, no. Not going to happen. When LM starts rolling around, it's not because he wants to be wiped on his tummy. It's because he wants the diaper change to be over. If I cater and wipe him however he might be (on tummy, standing, etc.) then what am I teaching him?
Granted, this is *just* a diaper change. But I see a diaper change as an opportunity to learn some life lessons, like, sometimes you have to be a part of things that are annoying, and you have to follow someone else's rules. There are things in life, like diaper changes, that are just plain poopy (pun intended!). And you learn to deal with them.
This brings me to the point of my diatribe today...overindulgent parenting. It's turning into one of my favorite subjects to contemplate.
Now, talking about parenting styles is always a bit like talking politics. I realize this can be a hot topic for some. Everyone has a different opinion---sometimes strong ones---about what is right and wrong for children. One size does not fit all. And there is room for many opinions without slinging the judgement hammer.
For me, allowing a child to dictate the rules of a diaper change is overindulgent.
I believe in parenting with love, kindness, and respect. But I also believe in preparing children for the real world, which has rules that they will be expected to follow. I'm not talking about running the house like a Marine. I'm just saying that you learn there are rules out there and you follow them, whether you want to or not.
Like laying on the changer when you are getting your diaper changed. I know it sucks to take 5 minutes away from your toys and have your butt wiped. We have bodily functions that get in the way of doing what we want to do sometimes. I'm not saying he has to be happy about it. He can cry and shout if he wants to express his frustration. I'm just saying that diaper changes are a non-negotiable item in our house.
I don't know where exactly, the line between overindulgent parenting and a more disciplined parenting style is exactly. More specifically, I'm not sure where my line between the two is. Basically, we are still developing our parenting style, which is heavy on the positive parenting aspect. But I also know kids need and thrive on rules and discipline. It's how those tiny scientists figure out how the world operates, and their role in it.
Of course, when I really go into deep thinker mode about this, I think about the difference in parenting styles between cultures. My approach to parenting is very American. In Korea, parents are often much more indulgent (not sure if they are overindulgent or not) with children. What would a diaper change for LM be like in Korea?
Too much thinking for a Friday.
So how do you define overindulgent parenting? And what is your parenting style?
Have a great weekend!
To learn and read: Learning During Read Alouds: Print Referencing
To consider: Is 'Choice' Less Accepted for Mothers?
To understand your brain: If My Brain Were An Imaginary Friend
To recognize emotions: Ghost Expression Game
To make an awesome lunch: Halloween Joke Lunchbox Notes
To decorate for Halloween: Spider Webs From Coffee Filters