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Apr 27, 2023Liked by Brad Kelley

Thank you for your honesty. Yes this shit is hard! My other children are adults and then late in life I had a child. He has adhd and anxiety, just like my husband. I had to learn everything over. And even with the resources out there you still have to figure it out. I enjoy your writings. They have been helpful!

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A great read, thank you so much. I think you are right - many of my “buttons” are related to my own experiences of being parented. Have you read Philippa Perry’s book? (Called The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read etc). She brings this up a lot. But for me, knowing all this is one thing and keeping my cool is another! I hope I manage it 70% of the time but I am not sure I do 😬

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I've been meaning to pick it up for a long time actually! This is my reminder to finally order it.

Agreed - putting everything we hear and learn into action is the real test. But I think the fact that we're actually trying to do things differently and are engaging in that process in the first place is the most important thing. Thanks for reading! :)

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Definitely get hold of the book, I really think it would resonate. Yes totally, we’re too hard one ourselves really but it all comes from a good place!

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Gentle parenting is hard! Some days I feel like I'm rocking it. Other days, like today, I just can't. The good thing about it though, is that I've normalised having feelings, so after I've blown my top (which fortunately doesn't happen too often), I can explain to my kids that I had big feelings, and that's ok, but the way I acted was not ok.

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You make a great point - even on the days when we don’t get it right and maybe say something we’d rather we didn’t, being able to acknowledge it with the kids is almost just as useful as if we’d said what we wanted to say in the first place.

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Apr 13, 2023Liked by Brad Kelley

Great piece, Brad. Thank you for sharing. I can relate to a lot of your story. When I was a kid, spankings were the norm for discipline in our family. I never had to contend with that reality until I became a father myself. Very quickly it became evident to me that that small t trauma still lived in my body. I was horrified by myself, and the anger I was capable of when I perceived my kids as deliberately miss behaving. It’s taken me a lot of focus over the last few years to come to terms with this reactionary style of parenting that I learned from my parents, but I’m committed to it. That sort of corporal punishment stops with me. It’s not something I want to pass on. On this journey, I have definitely found, as you mentioned, that becoming aware of what’s happening inside of us is a huge part of the solution. Not to be overly simplistic, but one strategy I have used to some degree of success, is simply to slow down. just slow down. So much of our rushing around and daily life is truly unnecessary. And when you stop thinking that you’re in a time crunch with every little thing, you suddenly have time for not only yourself to feel things but for your kid to have space and time for their feelings as well. And the things that you do let drop away, turn out to not be that important anyway. I call this approach the “ruthless elimination of hurry,” which I took from a book by John Mark Comer. Obviously, there’s more to any parenting technique than a simple mantra, but this one has been a gateway for me, and to many of the other gentle, parenting techniques that you mentioned. Thanks again for sharing your story.

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I think I nodded all the way through reading your reply Seth! Such a simple yet game-changing piece of advice when it comes to those stressful situations. It can be hard to take that beat in the moment but whenever we do, our response to the situation will always be different, more considered, and better for it.

I’ll be checking out John Mark Comer as well - thanks for the recommendation!

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Apr 6, 2023Liked by Brad Kelley

great article! I had pretty good parents but a bit of an overbearing mother who pushed me to study all the time. And often takes credit for my strong academics.

But i always thought she was wrong.. haha. I always thought i would have done the same if she'd just left me alone and stopped sending all the tutors at me.

And so this is the approach im taking with my 8 year old and he's rocking it..

Sorry mom.. im gonna prove you wrong :)

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This is a great example of the subtleties of this issue - on the face of it your mother getting you to work harder might not look so bad compared to our typical definition of “trauma” - but it still sticks with you.

Good for you for changing the narrative! Thanks for your comment :)

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yes for sure.. it wasn't exactly trauma.. haha

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I absolutely loved this issue! It put to words exactly what I think about on a daily basis. Thank you for this!

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Thank you Dahlia! :)

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