with Talyaa Liera
I'm Talyaa, the poster child for the concept that there's no one right way to be a parent. I went from stay-at-home attachment-parenting mom of four to being the non-custodial parent, working as a professional writer and channel-psychic. Let's talk about throwing away the parenting manual and exploding the myths and mystique of motherhood!
Check out my personal blog at Juxtapositioning.
I was a Yes Mom. Not the good kind. The out of control kind.
I think you know what I’m talking about. We’re the ones who can’t say no. Oh, not all the time. Maybe we can say no in our jobs. Maybe we can say no to community. Maybe we can say no to our friends when we need to, or to our partners. But to our kids? Who pull the Puss in Boots cute sad eyes trick whenever you even look like you might say no? [Seriously. If you didn't click on the Puss in Boots link, do yourself a favor and do it now. You could use a cuteness break.] No, to our kids we are the Yes Mom (doormat edition).
And they know it.
I was a Yes-to-everything Mom. My kids had me wrapped around their wee grubby fingers. And I liked it that way. It made me feel good, to be needed. To give from my heart. To satisfy so deeply, just for something so small as handing out an extra cookie, or reading “just one more” story, or rearranging my entire life to accommodate a small tyrant who slept so peacefully in the crib…
We know from reading helpful articles in parenting magazines that we are not supposed to sacrifice everything for our children. We are healthier when we set boundaries. Our children grow up feeling more secure when we say no sometimes. They want something to push against! They want to feel secure, and they equate security with love.
But how does this translate into action when there is a three foot tall troll of cuteness — who once occupied your uterus — hammering its tiny fists outside your bathroom door, where you had escaped for a moment’s quiet and to poop in peace?
Take control of your Yes by taking control of the time in your house. Here are three ways.
1. Become a Time Lord. A wind-up kitchen timer is your friend. It’s not YOU saying that it’s time to stop playing Angry Birds and go to bed, it’s the timer. Wah-wah-wahhh.
2. Carve out Mommy Time. And then allot Me Time to everyone in the house, kids included. If your wee trolls are receiving the same benefits you get, chances are they’ll respect yours more.
3. Schedule the good stuff. Make a list of all the things you really WANT to do with your kids. Assign priority to each item. Then enter it into your calendar. No time left? Then you’ll have to say no. But you’ll have a list of activities you really love doing.
[Hint: Saying Yes is powerful when you really mean it. If you are saying yes in order to avoid saying no, that's when you've become a Yes Mom.]
What do you do to take control of your Yes?
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