Do you believe that children fighting is completely wrong, and anytime that happens, grown-ups should intervene immediately?
Many parents believe that children shouldn’t fight, and because they believe that children shouldn’t fight, they interject themselves in that fighting when it is taking place.
What if that belief is an old, hand-me-down belief? What if we were to discover that what we are truly bothered by when our children are fighting has nothing to do with the fighting itself? What if we were to discover that the true disturbance in those moments is the emotion and feelings that are triggered inside of us by that event?
I was recently at a park with a group of parents and children. A little girl wanted to go up the ladder to a slide. A boy jumped in front of her by pushing her aside. In response to that, the little girl hit his leg. The boy immediately turned his attention to his mom as if to say “Please do something about this, she just hit me.” The mom then walked up to the girl and asked her politely to not touch her son again.
Want to know more about how you can handle children the right way? Read Understanding The Psychology Behind A Child’s Behavior
What did that boy learn for himself in that event? Did he learn that he can’t or isn’t responsible for his own battles? Did he learn to call upon others to help him out of situations, instead of learning something about them for himself? Yes. And I do want to make something clear. I’m not saying that intervention is not necessary for some circumstances, so please don’t misunderstand that.
If you observe children in their play, they don’t hold grudges as we do. They move on. The moment comes and goes and is not carried forward. We could learn a lot from them in that regard.
When I was growing up, my parents didn’t intervene like parents do these days. They allowed us to work things out for ourselves. When did we stop allowing our children to work things out for themselves?
What if we were to understand and then share with our child that the only reason that the desire to fight with another comes up inside us, is because we feel the other person is not giving us or doing what WE want, or the other person is not being what WE need them to be in the moment. We basically fight because what another person is doing or saying doesn’t “match-up” to what WE believe they should be doing or saying.
If that is true, are we really fighting with “them”, or are we actually fighting with ourselves and just don’t know it? And if we are really fighting with ourselves, can there ever be a “winner” in such a fight?