How To Balance Family Part II
Bringing EQUILIBRIUM to the FAMILY
HOW TO BALANCE FAMILY
Bringing EQUILIBRIUM to the FAMILY
I believe that both of the families that participated in this particular segment of "WIFE SWAP" benefitted tremendously! No doubt that there were lessons learned, even in the event if it was only what one discovers is, what they do not want to do. In this case the family with no rules began to implement many of the rules that were introduced when the rules changed. They continued to clean and keep the house regularly, they all participated and felt this was really a great idea. They now all share in taking on the responsibility of preparing healthier meals as well. They have begun working together and now value having a degree of structure and order within their home environment. As an additional assignment they all had to go to work on a farm. There in the hot sun they worked long and hard and were paid for it. Now the young adult children have begun to look for jobs. The son was also required to write a “clean rap” which he composed and it was sung at a country style party they all enjoyed together, including the conservative visiting Mom. All and all a quite favorable outcome.
The family with all the rules had to allow the children to play video games during the rule change. Which they too now enjoyed! The children thought they were enjoyable but called it “ unproductive fun” so they are able to now earn video play time. Their father had to take on all the chores around the house as the children played. The two sons who were of age were assigned to go out on a date. Although reluctant initially they really enjoyed themselves and decided that they would continue to do so. Together the children had to write their own “rap” song. They sang it at a venue and all thoroughly enjoyed themselves including the visiting Mom. Although there were some rough moments during the exchange, each family came away with some very valuable lessons.
It is within the construct of the family unit one learns how to live with and deal with problems, grow together, develop, mentally, physically, spiritually and become productive citizens. It is important to bring equilibrium to the FAMILY! If an appropriate value system is not taught it will be quite difficult for the children to be respectful, reach self actualization, develop a healthy self esteem and become autonomously independent. This is why parents need to create a healthy balance. Our responsibility as parents should be to create a loving, warm, safe, stable, nurturing home environment that helps them flourish. It is important to know that each child is different and their temperaments vary. What is good for one is not necessarily good for the other. Although, a balance is necessary.
Creating a balance is not always easy. There is not a one fits all balance each individual in the household needs to be taken into account. Balance meaning: mental or emotional steadiness; a state in which a body or object remains reasonably steady in a particular position
One can see during the course of “Wife Swap” that it is a good idea for a family at times to assess if their own home environment is healthy? How and what do you communicate to your children? Do you yell and scream at your children? Are you verbally or physically abusive? Or are you too lax and don't discipline at all? If it is not producing the results you want. Then you need to make some changes. Setting aside time for having a “family “powwow” is a great idea as well. It gives all concerned time to vent how they are feeling. Feelings need to be validated. Time is precious! You do not want to wait until the children are teens or all grown up you want to do it now. By the time they are grown it is much more difficult to change the family dynamics. Yes, it still can be done but one first must realize that there has to be a conscious effort put forth to do so.
It is both beneficial and rewarding to recognize and reward good behavior. Pointing out the differences when one misbehaves can be beneficial as well. “Time out” or suspending their privileges according to one’s age is a way of saying you have taken away precious time misbehaving so “chill out.” Yelling and screaming is really very ineffective and unproductive it just shows you are out of control and you teach and aggravate them to do the same. If you do this on a regular basis you might want to think about making some changes in the way you communicate. Now I realize that everyone has their limits so could you just perhaps leave the room, when you feel that you are going to lose it! Remember your children need hugs!
It is my opinion that physical punishment, name calling or extreme yelling does not really help much in the long run. A tap on the bottom or hand for a toddler can be a reminder that they are endangering themselves is appropriate to a degree. But when used obsessively it also becomes ineffective. It really just incites anger in them. By the time a child has grown to the point that you can really reason with you I think parents should keep their hands to themselves. Think about it if I hit you, how do you feel? Does it make me want to hit you back? Well if not you or something or someone? We have too many out of control angry teenagers and adults. Anger has to go somewhere. Suppressing anger it is not good either. Too much suppressed anger turns to depression. So keep your self a set of nerf bats handy or a punching bag and let it rip. Keep your hands to yourself!
Here are a few things to think about. Are you giving your children rules and not letting them know why? Are you just letting them grow as weeds and do whatever they please with no consequences? Are you controlling them by punishment rather than disciplining them so they can learn self control? Is your discipline age appropriate? Do you want to be their friend rather than be a parent? Are you over or under protective? Do you hug them and let them know that they are loved? Simple contracts are a good idea for teens. It helps them to realize the importance of commitment and rewards of taking responsibility. Or have you ever really thought about how they are feeling? Do you remember how it felt to be a child, teenager, an adult living at home still? What if something were to happen to you, how would they manage?
Life is so very interesting. When God created us He in fact had a purpose in mind for each one of us. The family is very important to Him. He is the ultimate Father and has a plan for each one of us. He intended for His principles to be an integral part of the family. No matter how young or old we get we are children as far as He is concerned. Love, patience, kindness, gentleness, self control are all a part of the Fruit of His Spirit. Therefore as long as we are here we can learn and improve as long as we are open and willing to new ideas. Life is too short! Once we make it a goal to develop healthy boundaries and live healthier balanced lives, life takes on a new meaning. We cannot change what has happened. But together we can build a better future. To some degree every family has an element of dysfunction . All we need to do is continue to seek innovative and creative ways to balance it all out! Yes, it is possible to bring equilibrium to the FAMILY!
* I would like to especially thank our oldest and first grandson Julian II! We LOVE you and are so very PROUD of you! It is my prayer that we leave all of you a legacy of love, care concern and a growing desire to LOVE the LORD!
- Deborrah K. Ogans