For the past little while, I have had some problems with my kids getting into arguments with each other or getting upset by something a sibling did to them, and then running to me to tell me “all about it”……….hoping I would go take care of the problem.
Well, I have been thinking long and hard about this. Like always, I relate it to my life and what I have learned from similar experiences, or what I want them to ultimately learn from it to help them when they themselves are adults.
I have a HUGE testimony of the power of communication! As a nanny, I saw a couple I worked for pick each other apart and then go to friends to “vent” about the other spouse. (So they would feel validated I assume)
When they ultimately decided to get a divorce, I asked the wife (who I was super close with) what she thought was the biggest issue that drove them apart. She hit the nail on the head when she said “we did not communicate very well.”
Communication is HUGE in any relationship. I would even dare say it is the MOST important key in any relationship. (How can you love if you cannot communicate?)
Look at any relationship you have and you will see that this is 100% true.
Look at your relationship with your Heavenly Father. When you stop communicating with him, your relationship suffers GREATLY!!
So when I saw my kids struggling in this area, I decided to teach them a VERY important lesson that will help them in ALL of their relationships in the future.
1.) TALK to the person who offended you.
I think it is human nature to run and tell other people (gossip about) what someone has done that hurt us. By doing this, it not only makes the offender look bad to MANY other people (which is very hurtful……and virtually impossible to stop from spreading) but it does NOT take care of the problem……..it only makes it worse.
2.) EXPLAIN how that person’s actions really hurt our feelings or made us feel offended.
Sometimes we may have taken something TOTALLY wrong and the person who offended us had NO idea they even hurt our feelings.
But you will never know that unless you TALK to them. By addressing the problem right there where the problem started, it lets all of that hurt and pain die right there and not be spread around.
So now when my kids come to me and try and tell me how their sibling did this or that and it made them feel bad, I simply say “well, since I was not there and I didn’t do that to you, you need to go to (sibling) and NICELY let them know how that made you feel and then ask them to please not do that to you again.”
It is AMAZING to see them TALK it out!!! They are learning at a YOUNG age how to be mature and to take care of their own hurt feelings rather than spreading the negative feelings around or expecting someone else to always take care of their problems for them.
The hurt and anger are killed right where they started.
It is also fun to see the offender say how sorry they are, hug the person they offended and move on as FRIENDS.
(And my job is no longer referee)
Communication is HUGE!!!