The Dad Tantrum

Anyone who’s had kids knows that it’s hard to control your emotions sometimes or, actually, most of the time.  Layer in all the new and hard things that you’re learning to do with no roadmap or manual to follow, sleep deprivation, anxiety around if you are doing things correctly, thoughts about you as a “bad” parent, and you have a recipe for disaster!

I remember driving in the car with the kids one fall afternoon.  The kids start getting bored, they start whining, they start fighting and before you know it…a shoe has hit you in the back of the head. My first thought was “what is going on back there!?!?”

I snapped. The same tired, old cliches started pouring out of my mouth. “If I have to pull this car over….. You don’t want me to have to come back there…  Why can’t you two just get along?”

Of course, this scared my kids and they were quiet for the rest of the ride, but that wasn’t how I wanted to show up as a parent. I was disappointed with myself, I acted worse than them.  I had a dad tantrum.

I do not claim to be a parenting guru.  I deal with all the same struggles every parent is presented with while raising my kids. I’ve tried lots of different techniques and methods, I’ve ferberized (unsuccessfully), I’ve yelled, and I’ve even spanked my kids. Each time I tried these methods I felt shame inside, regardless of what may have worked for other people, this wasn’t working for me. I didn’t want to act this way. After many, many hours of personal coaching, I realized that I didn’t have to.  I have a CHOICE on how I want to show up and behave.  I can’t control my children and their tantrums, but I CAN control mine.

We are the parents. That doesn’t mean we have any less challenges, but it does mean that we need to hold ourselves to a higher standard than we hold our children to.  Next time listen to how you talk to your kids, are you shaming them, yelling, judging, criticizing? 

Ask yourself this question: Would you listen to you? 

That’s the first thing I do now. I stop, take a pause, and look at the situation.  Then I figure out how I want to act in this given situation.  The key is to act, not react.  It must be a mindful response.  Maybe you do want to yell, maybe you want to show compassion, but choose your actions, don’t just have a tantrum. 

The bottom line is…you can’t be a parent if you’re acting like a child!  

Just CTFO This Holiday Season!

These days anything that is anything has an acronym.  IMO, SMH, TTYL, WFH, IDK, YOLO, and the list goes on.  So, I created my own.  It’s CTFO.  That’s right.  CHILL THE *F* OUT.  A constant reminder

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