Sometimes the gravity of raising a wounded child makes parents focus on every last negative behavior as if it might be the one that sends their child over the edge and straight to jail.
Some of us are so incredibly scared by the constant behaviors of attachment challenged children, that we treat them like they are candidates for perpetrating massacres of tragic proportion. Let me remind you that most media covered tragedies are committed by children living in the homes of their biological families, not attachment challenged children living in adoptive families.
I am not discounting the hell some of you are living in that is real and continually threatens your sanity. However, the fear of eminent tragedy has loving people parenting fiercely and without humor. This is my point--playful correction is easier than it seems and super effective.
As an example, one of my colleagues shared that her three-year-old son was introduced to the F-word in preschool and couldn't get enough of saying it.
Since he is possessed with a three-year-old’s oppositional nature, she was quick on her feet to say in response to his repetitive expletives, "Just don't call me MUSTARD!" Of-course, mustard was all he could call out after that.
We can get freaked out and fierce, or we can be playful and silly. Which better supports the parent/child relationship?
P.S. Check out the Love Matters Parenting Society membership for more support.