“Restructuring Family Power”
Anytime you have two or more people in a group, there is a power dynamic. This is also true in families, and always has been. Every family has its own power structure, and understanding how yours is built can give you insight into what your children are experiencing.
“This chapter explains in detail the dynamics of families that support a culture of bullying, and shows how those families can be restructured so that all those involved can be happier.” (p. 252)
Q: Looking at the bullets on pages 252 and 253, which of those common and widespread childrearing practices sound familiar to you?
“This section will illuminate some familiar parenting patterns that emerge when we are parenting on automatic.” (read “Autocratic Parenting Style” pp. 255; “Permissive Parenting Style” p. 258; and “Finding a Balance” p. 260)
Q: Were you raised by autocratic parents? Permissive parents? One of each? Ping-pong parents? What are you?
“Old family patterns feel ‘right’; they seem like the way we ought to or have to do things. When unexamined and unquestioned, old patterns get automatically passed on from one generation to the next…. Evaluate each one, and then repeat the good stuff, repair the bad stuff.” (p. 254)
Q: Thinking of your childhood, what patterns helped make you a good person? On the other hand, have you ever declared, “I’ll never do that to my kids?” Talk or write about the troublesome and/or painful family dynamics you do not want to pass on to the next generation. Do you have a plan or strategy to help you do that?
“Nurture and structure are both important. Without structure, a nurtured child becomes self-centered. Without nurture, a structured child feels unloved. Both permissive and autocratic parents attempt to build these dimensions—but fail.” (p. 262)
Q: Why do children crave structure and thrive on routines? Why is nurturing essential? Working together, how can moms and create develop a balance?
This question is always a good one:
Q: What sentence, paragraph, or idea popped out at you, or stuck with you after reading?
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