GreenishLady

Originally Blogging the Artist's Way. Thoughts, musings, experience of the 12-week course, January to March 2006. And after that?.... Life, creativity, writing. Where does it all meet? Here, perhaps.

Friday, March 06, 2009

Listen Up Because This is IMPORTANT!!!

Well, that's the prompt at Sunday Scribblings this week, and as I didn't make a post last week ("Lost" ... appropriately), or the week before ("Trust"), or... ooops, even the week before that ("Sports"), I need to get back in the game, and trust that there is something I need to say that is important, and in fact, there are many things, but right now, today, what I want to say is going to be very short, but it is really, really important:


Listen up, parents, because this is important! If you have a child or young person in your care, and they're acting up or acting out, and someone says to you "They're only looking for attention. - Ignore them."... well, think about that. Your child wants or needs attention, and is asking for it in the only way they can find right now, and your response is going to be to IGNORE it? Please don't do that. Please, please, if it's possible they are looking for attention, don't dismiss them as a "drama-queen", an "attention-seeker", or any one of a dozen other negative labels. Offer them some attention. See what happens. If you're tempted to say to them "You're just looking for attention.", stop and ask yourself what attention you can give them. Then give it.



I said it would be short. It is. And it applies to teachers and others who find themselves caring for young people too. I know it's preachy. I know, I know. But it's important enough to risk saying.

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Other Sunday Scribblers have important things to say too. GO SEE HERE!

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21 Comments:

At 6/3/09 1:59 pm, Blogger Fledgling Poet said...

I'm reading some wonderful parental advice today! Your words are very true...kids often 'speak up' by using actions instead of words.

 
At 6/3/09 2:30 pm, Blogger dormouse74 said...

yours i the second post ive read saying this... as i said on the last one, as a youth worker i see the effects of young people thinking that th adults in their lives dont care... preachy or not im glad youve written this.

 
At 6/3/09 3:10 pm, Blogger Lucy said...

bravo! not enough can be written about 'good parenting' I totally agree with your opinion. Ignore them? How absolutely ridiculous! If they are crying out for attention... Positive attention should be what they deservedly receive!

 
At 6/3/09 3:24 pm, Anonymous Molly said...

Preach it sister ;)

 
At 6/3/09 7:29 pm, Anonymous floreta said...

i always thought raising kids was similar to raising dogs. ok, maybe not. but you're suppose to ignore bad behavior from dogs.. i could see ignoring their behavior but compromising in other ways by giving them attention that they need. it's true that acting out means they're probably looking for something else that they just can't verbalize.. but what do i know, i've never parented.

nevertheless, i don't agree with ignoring kids (esp. boys) when they cry. you don't teach them good emotional health that way.. just my opinion.

 
At 7/3/09 3:44 pm, Blogger Youvegotmaille said...

Amen! So many times I see kids doing this... if they're seeking attention, the adults in their lives need to ask themselves WHY they need to seek attention in negative ways. It almost always means they're not getting positive attention.

 
At 7/3/09 8:16 pm, Blogger Judy Merrill-Smith said...

Amen!

 
At 7/3/09 9:10 pm, Anonymous bluebethley said...

Dear Greenish Lady. Thank you for posting today. These ideas need to be shared. I hope the parents who still have the gift of kids at home use their actions positively -- and that you keep on writing!

 
At 7/3/09 9:46 pm, Blogger Linda Jacobs said...

Well said! I'm always telling my high-school students that pregnancy doesn't last just for 9 months; it's an 18-year-long commitment. Great advice!

 
At 8/3/09 2:32 am, Blogger Tumblewords: said...

Oh, yes. Some times the most simple things seem to be those that fall by the wayside. Good advice. I remember when my granddaughter was going through the tantrum stage. I laid down beside her and asked her to show me how to do it. Funny little girl. She showed me how and we formed a tight bond while she learned a more positive way to get attention.

 
At 8/3/09 1:01 pm, Blogger SweetTalkingGuy said...

Yeah, thank you, a lot of us still have a lot to learn!

 
At 8/3/09 9:02 pm, Blogger Marguerite said...

Great advice! Very often kids are starved for attention and know of no other way to get it.

 
At 8/3/09 11:25 pm, Blogger Tammie Lee said...

This is wonderful advice, thank you so much for saying (writing) it out loud!

 
At 9/3/09 12:12 am, Blogger AdellBeek said...

It is very good advice for any parent. I also believe children are good at making sure that you don't ignore them.

 
At 10/3/09 12:51 pm, Blogger Lisa said...

My mom used to say this about my children (and me before them) all the time. I remember thinking, "well, if they're looking for attention, why not give it to them?" Sometimes I remembered to do that and sometimes I did what my mom thought I should do. They're teenagers now and they seem happy. That's my biggest wish for them...happiness, peace and joy.

Thanks Imelda!

 
At 10/3/09 5:34 pm, Blogger Wenda said...

Amen! Falls in a category near to "don't praise and compliment that child so much; it will go to his/her head".

 
At 11/3/09 3:13 am, Blogger Mary Isabella and Kiley too! said...

Good Words!!!!!

 
At 13/3/09 5:46 am, Blogger yyam said...

I'm not a parent but I have 2 nephews and they act out in front of their parents but not me. I realized it's because when I play with them, I give them my full attention and engage actively in the interaction. I guess some parents think that just ensuring that the basic needs of a child are met is good enough. Sometimes, kids just want you to participate in their world.

 
At 18/3/09 3:01 am, Anonymous skyla said...

I have often pondered this very thing as my tot is screaming and the voices of others rattle in my head saying, "You're giving hime exactly what he wants!" It's a fine line between recognizing the need for attention at all costs and rewarding bad behavior. My take? If you shower them with positive attention their whole lives long, you never have to feel bad about being a disciplinarian when the little sweethearts start to test the limits.

 
At 18/3/09 8:32 pm, Blogger Amber said...

Gosh is this true! I never got that idea. When I became a mom, and people would tell me i was wrong for not going the "cry it out" way...Why would I do that? Why would I ignor them, when they are trying to tell me something? It just takes a little thought, and you can figure out how best to give them what they need. No one would ever say my kids are spoiled-- I am a hard ass. They are good kids, period. But sometimes they need "attention", and they get it, even if sometimes what it is, is me getting down on their level and looking them in the eyes to tell them to knock it off. LOL! They may not get what they thought they wanted...but at least they know I SEE THEM.
Ignor it. Pft. Whatever. Lame and lazy.

:)

 
At 19/3/09 12:57 pm, Blogger Teresa C said...

I LOVE THIS POST! I feel as if we live in a world of selfish parenting. We give birth to them and let them cry themselves to sleep. Then that mindset sits with people right through toddlers, school aged kids, preteens, teens..... And people wonder why their kids are acting out. When they cry: pick.them.up. Babies cry because they need something. Sometimes just to be held. Sometimes just to have touch. They don't know how to soothe themselves and aren't supposed to for a long time. And teenagers don't know how to really examine their lives and know exactly why they feel the ways they do. Sometimes it is social, sometimes hormonal, but adults, parents specifically, are there to notice, guide and pay attention to kids. And while they may resist, they really do need what they don't know they need or know how to get.

Great, short, post!

 

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