Those words “Don’t react” go through my mind as my son is having a bad moment and saying words he may or may not mean. The words are triggering for me but I can’t react. If I react he will just become more upset and then we will spiral out of control together. “Don’t react”
That is so hard to do. Probably not just for me but for any parent. Well maybe more so for me but I really don’t know because I only know what goes on in my head.
Switching from brick and mortar school to online school had some positives and some negatives. When he attended brick and mortar every day was a fight to get him out of bed. And then he would have an issue at school. Another kid, a pep rally, a teacher annoyed him, or maybe he wouldn’t like or understand an assignment. I would get phone calls. In middle school they had me pick him up but in high school they gave him a place to chill and kept him there. And then another day he would do great. This has been the pattern for years.
The bad days have gotten better for the most part. But I have noticed since doing online school I take it more personally. Maybe because I feel I am personally responsible for the education. When he has the bad day and says “I don’t care”, “I don’t care about school, I’m not doing it anymore.” “I’m dropping out” It cuts me like a knife. It always feels like this is it, he is really done. And I engage in the discussion with him. I can’t do that because I have to remember he is having bad day or something triggered him. Another day, maybe even the next day he will be cooperative and do the work.
I need to take deep breaths and not react. That is so hard as a parent. The same could be said for anytime that he melts down. I have to remain calm. I can’t react, it just makes it worse.
And thinking about it I am working on applying this to all areas of life. On twitter when someone says something I don’t agree with I don’t always have to react. Some people have very strong opinions and reacting just causes an argument. I am not going to change their mind.
Same thing at work. People will drive me crazy with what they do or don’t do. I get upset and my boss sees me getting upset more than what they did. It sucks but it is true.
Don’t react. Don’t react. Don’t react. Don’t react….
I will try to remember that on Monday when I return to work.