You have something to share that means a lot to you, something you feel is important and the response you get is immediate and dismissive.
You then shut down. You know if you respond it can get ugly. You were never taught the skills to have an adult, mature conversation. You cave. You hate yourself for doing it! The cycle never ends.
Two Things just happened.
1. You were manipulated into thinking that what is important to you doesn't matter.
2. Your feelings were dismissed.
You go years and years into many different types of relationships believing that someone is allowed to "dismiss" you and it's ok. You become resentful and passive aggressive and start to have unhealthy relationships. You teach your kids these patterns. It's like a hamster wheel and the hamster never stops.
I started Girl Code Inc for this exact example. I myself used to not be able to verbalize my feelings and I do not want that for GG. (Anthony too!) I want my girl to be able to verbalize how she feels.
This doesn't mean I want her throwing up her middle finger to anyone who dismisses her and not care about hurting others. This means that as a woman, no family member, friend, partner, co-worker will ever take away something that means something to her. Does that make sense?
As children we think with the back part of the brain called the amygdala which makes us very impulsive. It isn't until around age 25 the front part of the brain , the frontal lobe, is built that aids in reasoning, thinking and helps to make decisions. It is my job to help her speak up appropriately and respectfully when addressing situations until she is capable on her own. Unfortunately, we will be learning at the same time. GG 12, Me 42.
What if every child was taught this phrase:
"I felt dismissed mom, dad, friend, grandma when you said or did _____________."
- You are a child and you are wrong.
- I command respect. (Ummmmmm-That's a 2 way street no matter what age!)
- Children are seen and not heard.
- No, we can't discuss it because I am the adult. (Hey, I know there are some things that are non-negotiable but I am speaking about when a child needs to be heard)
- I can go on forever.......
Could you imagine if we taught this to every child. What would adulthood look like for them?
I wish I had learned this at a young age. Instead I screamed, pouted and made passive aggressive comments. I have been practicing verbalizing my feelings and will now teach my kiddos this phrase as well. Changing learned behaviors takes time! But, it's never too late! Our kids need this life skill. They need this phrase!
I will be sharing this phrase with my kids today and the next time they need to be heard in this house. I am giving you all my word that I will let them speak and let them be heard. This parenting stuff is crazy but if I can teach them a skill that can help them with future relationships, why not? Never too late! I mean I am 42!
If you have a hoo-ha join Girl Code Inc. on Facebook. It's fun! Our goal is giving these girls the tools to be successful and strong. It's a community of women and daughters who crave a support group!
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