Parenting kids, Seriously, Parenting Questions, Concerns and Responses

Big Emotions With My 2 Year Old


Question:

I need some advice on how to teach a very emotional 2 year old about emotions, feelings, and calm mindfulness? I am in no way trying to stop her feelings or emotions. I just need help teaching what each emotion means and just helping her understand what feelings are. I could really use some resources or tools to help us!

The Judgemental Mom’s Response:

Start with helping identify her emotions. Talk to her about why she is feeling the way she is and what she “wishes”. Until she is older and commication is more established, I would say back to her what she says for both her sake and yours – to acknowledge you understand how she is feeling and why.

Try not to invalidate her feelings with statements like:
• “you’re okay”
• “it’s not that bad”
• “you just ate, you can’t be hungry”

These statements often don’t have the intention of disregarding their feelings, but this is how they are interpreted by our littles as they take things very literally.

You can respond instead by just acknowledging her feeling:
• “you’re still hungry after all that food”,
• “you sound really hurt”
• “You are frustrated because you still want to play”

You can help her connect with you in these moments and trust you by validating her feelings and letting her know that they have a big importance to her -regardless how miniscule the reason behind her feelings are to an adult.

Some connecting statements in example:
• It must be so FRUSTRATING when you want to finish your show but we have to get going
• I know it’s really DISAPPOINTING for you that you couldn’t have that toy from the store. I WISH that you can have that toy for your birthday!
• I bet when your brother took your book it made you so ANGRY. If someone just took something from me like I would be so mad!

The point in these examples is not encouraging the child’s tough emotions, but connecting WITH the child about their tough emotions.

At this age, your daughter may have a hard time understanding the different emotions. You could start simple, with 4 or 5 main emotions with a picture on the wall to help her find which one she identifies with (shown below).

Even letting them look in the mirror during their upset can be helpful so THEY can see how THEY look. Once you have talked about what happened, help her find how to do something differently or alternatively when possible.

To help her find her stopping point, consider these statements:
• How about you leave your game/show right here, so it will be waiting for you when we get back
• Let’s take a picture of that toy you really want so maybe I can get it for your birthday
• Your brother is still learning about waiting his turn for things. Let’s make sure your spot is saved in the book so when you get it back you can keep reading

Now is also a good age to start reading books about emotions together. Pick a calm time to learn about them though, as littles won’t absorb much in the heat of a feeling.

Some safe ways to express tough emotions:
• Stomping her feet
• Hitting the carpet
• Hitting a pillow
• If she wants to yell, show her how to yell what she’s feeling i.e., “I’m so ANGRY!!” and scream as hard as she can into a pillow.

You may find it beneficial to also begin teaching your daughter breathing exercises. A wonderful tool for guided breathing and meditation for both adults and kids is an app called Relax Melodies, found on the Play Store

Reccomended books about kids and their emotions for parents:

• The Whole Brain Child by Daniel Siegel
• How To Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish

Reccomended books about emotions for preschoolers:

• The Feelings Book by Todo Parr
• Happy Hippo Angry Duck by Sandra Boyington
• Moody Monster Manor by Jenn Simon (Scholastic book)
• Baby Faces by Kate Merrit
• When Sophie Gets Angry – Really Really Angry by Molly Bang

For more helpful information regarding children’s big emotions, selecting your response with your children, and guiding them to talk about their struggles, visit https://thejudgementalmom.com/kids-seriously/5/

Parenting kids, Seriously, Parenting Yourself, Seriously, Voice boxing it

8 Benefits of Classical Music


Did you know classical music is soothing for all ages? Both parents and children finding themselves stressed out can try dim lighting and soft classical music – piano is optimum.

Research shows classical music can actually raise dopamine levels too – helping with depressive moods, trouble focusing, over stimulation, and chaotic thoughts.

• Positive auditory sensory stimulation
• Calming
• Clears chaotic thoughts
• Inspiration
• Healing and nurturing to the mental and emotional spirit
• Improves sleep
• Improves focus
• Lowers blood pressure

Reccomendations

Some of my favorites are Claire du Lune and Reverie by debussy, feure de leis by Beethoven, Nocturne by Chopin, BWV 988 by Bach, and Piano Concerto 21 by Mozart.

Parenting kids, Seriously, Parenting Yourself, Seriously, Voice boxing it

Rome Wasn’t Built In a Day


Many parents that grew up in an athoritarian, strict, cold environment remember how difficult it was on them as kids, and chose to parent differently with their own kids.

Those parents face many hard situations feeling alone, as they try to teach their children understanding, empathy, compassion, and patience in situations when big emotions are being felt because they lack some of these skills themselves.

If you’re not sure if this is you, you can read up here on what it’s like to have unknown, unresolved issues from your childhood.

It’s hard to parent differently, because we only know what we have been taught. So I’m just here to remind you today, that you’re not alone with this battle to do better than what you know, and that your efforts alone are doing great work for your babies and future generations.

Don’t listen to those voices telling you “its not working”, or “you’re spoiling your kids”, or “you need to be harder on them”.

Rome wasn’t built in a day. 💕💕