How to find the energy to connect with your children even when you are exasperated.

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You feel like you should be loving and compassionate all the time, morning to night. But let’s be honest. Sometimes your kids get under your skin and that frustration slips out sideways. You can try to turn it into a joke as it comes out of your mouth, but . . . you find yourself “labeling.”

We do it all the time: My spouse is so selfish. My co-worker is lazy. My boss is an a–.

Is it ever OK to label your children? “They know I’m joking, right?”

Nicole admits that she jokes that her son can turn into a one-kid wrecking ball in stores. She calls him “Wreck-It Ralph” to get his attention and prevent further breakage. She isn’t trying to box him in or hurt his feelings, just modify his behavior. But she wonders if other parents judge her: “Ugh, did you hear that lady calling her kids names? What a bad parent!”

Today we field a listener question: “What do you say when you hear another parent bad-mouthing their kids . . . in front of their kids?”

Robert and Nicole discuss what you can do when you reach your “wits’ end.” Listen in to figure out how to find the energy to connect with your children, even when you are exasperated. Parenting can undoubtedly be the most challenging job, but you can stop freaking out and keep from giving up when things get tough. Instead, get tough (and honest) with yourself so you can PUT IN THE WORK.

 

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