Your child is in her room, device free, cooling off during a time out.
The biggest lesson you’re about to show her is that in your family, you recognize bad behavior, address it, and then move on.
Because you are the adult, you must teach her how to do this. It is difficult but healthy, from both an educational and a developmental perspective. It demonstrates respect for your child and the consistency shows her that you love her and commit to helping her.
- Choose a reasonable amount of time to let her cool off. About twenty minutes is right for most children this age.
- Find a quiet corner and ask her to return and talk.
- Revisit the issue of lip and what it means to your family. Avoid arguing about what happened. Focus instead on the behavior–giving lip, back talk—and speak calmly.
- Olivia, do you remember the rule about back talk we have in our family?
- Why do we have that rule?
- You seemed angry about —-. Let her give a short explanation. There’s no need to argue over details.
- I know that you can think about a better way to handle your feelings.
- What will you do the next time you get angry?
4. End with a hug and move on.
I’ll write more about the importance of moving on in Part III.