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Have a New Kid by Friday with Dr. Kevin Leman
17 minutes | 21 hours ago
My 3-year-old throws tantrums when she doesn’t get enough attention. – Ask Dr. Leman 162 (Episode 349)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “My 3-year-old throws tantrums when she doesn’t get enough attention.” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Jan 14 – 31: Have a New Husband by Friday ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
22 minutes | 8 days ago
How do I communicate with the man I love? (Episode 348)
Calling all wives: do you struggle with communicating with your husband? On this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast, Dr. Leman breaks down the do’s and don’ts of talking with your man. **Special Offer– Jan 1 – 13: The Intimate Connection ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** **Special Offer– Jan 14 – 31: Have a New Husband by Friday ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
21 minutes | 15 days ago
My 17-year-old ran away from home and won’t come back, because of her dad. What do I do? – Ask Dr. Leman 162 (Episode 347)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “My 17-year-old ran away from home and won’t come back, because of her dad. What do I do?” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Jan 1 – 31: The Intimate Connection ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
19 minutes | 22 days ago
An Unhappy Child is a Healthy Child (Episode 346)
Is it healthy for a child to be unhappy especially when it comes to discipline? Find out more on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Dec 1 – 31: The Intimate Connection ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
20 minutes | a month ago
“My hyper 4-year-old runs around the house every single night.” – Ask Dr. Leman 161 (Episode 345)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “My hyper 4-year-old runs around the house every single night.” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Dec 1 – 31: The Intimate Connection ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
20 minutes | a month ago
How can I instill good habits without cajoling, bribing, or punishments? (Episode 344)
Do you find yourself resorting to coaxing methods or threats of punishment when parenting your kids? Listen in to Dr. Leman’s no-nonsense advice on this episode of the Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Dec 1 – 31: The Intimate Connection ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
22 minutes | a month ago
I can’t finish a conversation when my 4-year-old is around. – Ask Dr. Leman 160 (Episode 343)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “I can’t finish a conversation when my 4-year-old is around.” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Dec 1 – 31: The Intimate Connection ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: Don’t we all just love that person that we work with who as soon as we start talking, they break-in and we don’t get to finish our comment? Or do we just love it when we’re trying to have a conversation with- Andrea: Hey, Doug. Hey, Doug. Doug: Andrea, Andrea, Andrea. Yes, that’s it. Well, that’s the question Rebekah asked. Her four-year-old interrupts everything she said. Every conversation. So we get to ask Dr. Leman, how do you stop it? Where does it come from? Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: I’m Andrea. Doug: And it is so good to be with you today. If this is your first time with us, this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. So funny, I got thrown off on the intro because I was waiting for you to do it again. So we all know we hate being interrupted. So let’s hear what Rebekah’s question is. Rebekah: I have a four-year-old son. He is my oldest and he many times will interrupt adult conversations. If my husband and I are speaking, he will constantly try to talk over us because he wants attention. If I tell him I have a phone call, he will purposefully be loud and make noises. If we’re in the car and I am talking to my husband or his brother who is a small baby, he will try to talk over us and it’s just getting out of hand. And we’ve tried different types of discipline, taking away things that he enjoys, but he’s very persistent and it just seems like we need some help with this. Dr. Leman: Okay, Rebekah, let’s start with the good news. You know you have an attention-getting child, but do you know you have a powerful child as well? See, kids are attention-getters by their nature. They’re going to get attention positively or negatively. And for whatever reason, this little four-year-old got off track and he’s learned how to get attention negatively. Okay? It’s still attention. That’s the point the parent has to understand. So when you say you’ve tried everything, hey, I appreciate that. I talk with a lot of parents who tell me they’ve tried everything. Taking away things a four-year-old enjoys is never effective with a kid who just wants to always be seen and always want to be heard. This kid is playing whack-a-mole. You ever played whack-a-mole at an amusement park where these things pop up and you whack them on the head and as soon as you whack the one that pops up at the other? And that’s sort of what you’re dealing with. You said he’s very persistent and you could use a synonym, you could say he’s very powerful. Dr. Leman: So again, as a kid progresses into the of discouragement, and that’s what I want you to hear, this kid is discouraged already at age four. And one of the things we talk about is encouraging children and how important it is. Okay? But the discouraged child will go from attention-getting to power to revenge. You don’t want to go that far. So again, this is one of those situations where you need to pick one tact, one avenue to deal with this guy. And the problem is it’s extremely difficult because he’s so persistent. You’re going to have to be doing this all the time to turn the tide. Dr. Leman: And what am I suggesting you do? As soon as he starts his little dog and pony show of interrupting, he is removed from the scene. Okay? That is to say, he starts this thing when you’re on the phone, you take him to a room you can lock from the outside. You say, well, we don’t have a room we can lock from the outside. Well, have your husband put a little lock outside the door, a real simple little locks. And four-year-old is now … He can howl at the moon. He can throw a temper tantrum. He can scream and yell, but he’s in the back bedroom somewhere. And you have your phone call wherever you’d like, okay? If you live in a climate or a location where it’s easy for you to put him outside, I’d put them outside on the back lawn, immediately. Dr. Leman: So as soon as he opens his mouth and he starts interrupting, without any words, you take them by the arm, take them by the hand, put them on a place, close, separate yourself from him. Now what I’m telling you with a persistent little guy like this guy, little Mr. Whack-a-mole, you are really going to be taxed because he will be at you constantly. Okay? So you’re going to have to extinguish his negative responses as consistently as you possibly can. And so that would be my challenge for you today, Rebekah, to think, how can I deal with this realistically? Dr. Leman: Now you mentioned in the car, notice that powerful children know when they have you over the barrel. What are you going the do when he’s in the car? Well, depending upon where you have your baby, it sounded like you had a younger child as well, this may not be appropriate, but one of my favorites with kids in the car, like if I’m driving him to preschool or something and they have some kind of behavior that you don’t really like, you just turn the radio on as loud as it’ll and put the rear speakers on. And that’ll usually get their attention. They don’t like that. They’ll be screaming, “Mommy, turn that down. Turn that down.” Dr. Leman: So again, some of these things might sound harsh to you, but again, you have to realize that for whatever reason, you and your husband have created this … You probably made the mistake that many parents do. You probably just tried to make sure he’s happy at all times. Well, good luck with that. Quoting my own book, Have a New Kid by Friday, “An unhappy child is a healthy child.” So there’s times your four-year-old if you do this right, he’s going to be miserable. He’s going to be really unhappy, but he’s going to figure out that he’s the only one that can keep his mouth shut and not interrupt. You can’t do that for him. Dr. Leman: But you can set up situation after situation where pretty soon he feels like this is fruitless. I got to do something different. So for openers, that’s it, Rebekah. Andrea: So, Dr. Leman, you said you started off with he’s discouraged. How did he get discouraged? Dr. Leman: Kids strive for significance in their own family. Okay. And they get encouraged by parents who know the difference between vitamin E and traditional praise. When you just praise a child when he’s doing something right, the kid figures out within a short period of time, oh, I get it. They only really love me when I’m doing these things right. There’s something wrong with that. Where the parent who uses encouragement, the kid sees the relationship in much more healthier terms. They see me as somebody who can contribute to this family, who can give back to the family. I’m a part of this family. I’m not the enemy of these two people. These two tall people who live with me. Dr. Leman: And so the process of encouragement comes from Adlerian individual psychology theory if anybody’s interested in where does that come from. And one of the things that Alfred Adler talked about years ago is that there was a striving for superiority in the family. For example, this little four-year-old is the oldest and he hears those footsteps of those younger kids. He’s threatened by their being around. He’s asking himself if there’s enough love from mom and dad for him because these little ones are taking an awful lot of time, a lot of mom and dad’s time. So that’s where the adventure starts. Dr. Leman: And just like as kids, we played on a sand pile or a dirt pile and we played King of the hill or queen of the hill. The idea was to be on top of the hill. That striving for superiority is what gave birth to my writings about the birth order and why firstborns are natural leaders and why babies of the family tend to be attention-getters. They can’t compete with the firstborn. The first part has got way too much of an advantage, so they become the class clown or the kid that demands attention in other ways. So it’s all about a psychological striving for meaningfulness in their lives. Dr. Leman: And so kids, like I say, all kids are born attention-getters and they’re going to get it positively or negatively. And so how you start off, I mean, talk about the infant. You’ve heard me talk about kids need schedules and the kid will probably help determine their own schedule, but the parent who goes out for an evening in the first two weeks of that child’s birth without the child is moving in the right direction. They’re already establishing some independence for themselves as a couple and they’re beginning to teach the child that mommy and daddy will not always be there. So getting off to a good start in parenting is very important. Dr. Leman: And as all your mommy’s know, when that little firstborn is placed in your arms and that little lip is quivering and you count those fingers and toes, and you’re fully aware of the wonderful blessing you just received, it’s easy, I mean, it’s immediate, you fall in love with this little child. And it’s so easy just in the very get-go to sort of overdo. And when you do, you end up with a child who feels he or she has a license to misbehave and do their thing and become so independent that they become detrimental to the smooth running of a family. So that was a long answer, Andrea, but it comes from psychological theory. Andrea: I have another question. If I were Rebekah, I would wonder, okay, so now I’m going to start locking him up in the room when I’m trying to have a conversation, removing him from the situation, can she also balance that with, “Okay, now we’re putting baby down and now is my time to snuggle with you and read a book, giving him that vitamin E and giving him that special attention that he does need? Dr. Leman: I think it’s a real natural thing. That’s what you want to do as a mom. You want four-year-old to be a helper. “Help me with your little sister. Hey honey, would you go get a Pamper for mommy? Thank you, honey. I really love it when you help me.” And with a happy face, “Thank you, honey.” That’s encouragement. That’s vitamin E. That’s giving attention to a child in a positive way. So keep in mind for those of you who think we’re too militaristic here, the balance is always what Andrea just shared. You want to be loving to that child. Kids need textual stimulation. They need time with you. They need cuddle time. They love stories. But there has to be a clear delineation in a child’s mind that this is acceptable and this isn’t. And the one that makes that call is you, you’re the parent. Doug: Well, so the eBook fits perfectly with Rebekah’s question, Have a New Kid by Friday. You can get it from December 1 to December 31st of 2020, you can get it for $2.99 wherever eBooks are sold. So, Dr. Leman, why would any parent buy Have a New Kid by Friday? Dr. Leman: Because you got a brain in your head and you realize you need some help. That is the best book. Read the reviews. It’s a New York Times bestselling book. You have no idea how difficult it is to get a book to that level. It’s just a high mountain to climb. So if you write books about marriage, and family, parenting and you get that high of a ranking on a book, you know that book has been extremely helpful and millions of people’s lives have been touched by that book. So if you don’t want to read it for 2.99, you go on and do your thing, parent and I wish you a lot of luck. If you want to see a change in your child’s behavior, a change in your family’s atmosphere, take the time to read that book. Dr. Leman: And as I’ve said on other podcasts, if you’re not a reader, we have a DVD series you can watch. You can obviously listen to it as well. And it’s $25. It’s a six-part series. It’s been extremely popular and you can get that at drleman.com. You spell Leman right and you’re there. L-E-M-A-N, drleman.com. So it’s for your reading. The publisher downloads these things to put them in your hands. We bless it because we think that information is really necessary. If you take a look around our country today and ask yourself, “Are kids where they need to be?” No, they’re not. They’re not even close. Are families where they need to be? No, they’re not. So this is a book that’ll help right the good ship family and steer you toward a port of call that’s healthy for everyone. Doug: Super. And now, a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: You know, parents, after your son or daughter completes high school and they’re working, or maybe they’re going to community college part-time or whatever, the question comes up, should your son or daughter pay rent. Maybe. If you’re a kid has taken a big load and they’re living at home and going to school, I wouldn’t think of charging them rent. On the other hand, if my kid has passed up an opportunity to go onto school, they seem to be looking for themselves, and he’s working and not for a lot of money, I would charge him rent because I think it’s important that kids learn early in life that life is free. Dr. Leman: So it’s one of those judgment calls, parents, where if the question is, can I charge my son or daughter rent? Yes, you may, but use your head. One kid might pay rent, the other may not. Well, that’s unfair. Do you really want to treat your kids the same? Oh, boy, I hope not. God created us all differently, so don’t be afraid to teach your kids differently. This is a judgment call, parents, exercise good judgment, and keep that relationship intact with your son or daughter. Doug: So, Dr. Leman, going back to Andrea’s question just a little bit more, vitamin E, how then can we give, so she gave a great example, I’m going to sit with you and read a book. What is it about the right way to encourage the kid that we want to do with our kids? Dr. Leman: Well, if I told everybody praise is destructive, a lot of people wouldn’t believe that, but it is. It says I hold you in high esteem because you did this, because you did that. It’s just part of our culture. All of us grew up with praise or reward or punishment. That’s how we were raised. But using encouragement, what I try to help people understand is you need to really pay attention to the act and not the actor. In other words, I mean, that was so helpful for you to go and get the umbrella for grandma. I know she appreciated that. That’s encouragement. So the focus is on the act, the action. It was helpful that you went and got the umbrella for grandma. It’s not, you’re the best kid in the whole world because you went and got that. There’s a big difference in how kids receive that. Dr. Leman: So again, if you want to read a book that really helps you really get good at that, read the book, Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours. And yes, the book we’re offering has some of that in it as well. But the Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours, there’s another book, sold well over a million copies for a reason. There’s some really good reading there for you as parents. Take advantage of it. My goodness. Doug: So, Dr. Leman here’s my other critique of your advice. This poor little guy, he’s only four-years-old. He’s so tiny that he’ll probably just grow out of this. Why can’t I just be sweet to my four-year-old? He’s only four, Dr. Leman. Dr. Leman: Well, because 80% of his personality is already formed at age four. At age three it’s about 60%. So I’ve often said to adults, the little boy or little girl you once were, guess what, you still are. So those early years, Doug and Andrea, are really important. And that’s why when you see these negative patterns in a three or four-year-old, you want to jump on that. I always said kids are like wet cement, their personalities form so quickly. If you’ve ever worked with wet cement, it’s very malleable. It’s sort of fun. We used to put our initials in it and our girlfriend’s name in the sidewalk, if we could get away with it. But once it hardens up, it’s really hard to do anything with concrete. Dr. Leman: And so that’s a good analogy that kids’ personalities forms early and their behavioral repertoire so to speak develops in those early years. About 18 months is when a kid gets powerful and they realize the little things they do has a great reaction from the parent and that’s where it starts. So those of you who got little nine-month-olds, circle look calendar at 18 months because that little cherub is going to give you a run for your money starting then unless you handle it well. Andrea: So, Dr. Leman, earlier on, you said that she’s going to have to do this a lot for a long time. How long is this going to take? Dr. Leman: Let’s start with this, if you’re really consistent and you really do a five-star job, it doesn’t take long to change a kid’s behavior. I say it with tongue in cheek, you could have a new kid by Wednesday. But the point is that a behavior that you take on well and you’re consistent with it, the kid will fall in line relatively quickly. If you struggle through it and you’re hit and miss, you’re lengthening that out and it could take a long time, and I mean a long time, several months if you don’t do this right. So the key is to be a consistent parent. Let your yes be yes, your no be no. Don’t threaten. Use action. Few words. You’ll get his or her attention real quick. They’ll figure it out. They’re smart little suckers. Andrea: I have another question for you. What do you think of the idea of teaching a child when they want to talk to you to come and put their hand on your arm or something if you’re in another conversation? Dr. Leman: Sure. It’s an easy way. You’re telling your kid, “Okay, here’s the deal. When you want mommy’s attention, you come and touch mommy and what you have to know is I felt your touch. And now your job is to wait patiently until mommy off the phone or ready to talk to you.” So yeah, sometimes that’ll work. It’s a proactive thing you can do. Again, what you’re doing there, Andrea, is you’re exerting your authority and authority has become a bad word in our society, but I believe it’s a great word that every parent and every child has to thoroughly understand. Doug: Well, Rebekah, we really appreciate you asking the question and I think there’s a lot of parents out there that are struggling with this too. Thank you. If you would like to leave a question, you can go to drleman.com/podcastquestion. There’s a microphone, click it, and we would love to answer your question for you. And again, I got to say it, Have a New Kid by Friday for only $2.99 is amazing. Get it between now and the end of December 31st of 2020. Well, it was great to be with you today and add to your parenting toolbox. And we look forward to the next time we get to be with you. Andrea: And Rebekah, it would be fun if you ever called in and told us how you’re doing. Doug: We would love to hear it. Andrea: Thanks for the good question. Doug: Take care. Andrea: Bye-bye.
21 minutes | 2 months ago
Blowouts Are Way Better than Slow Leaks (Episode 342)
Is it better to confront the problem with a blowout or to show restraint and let things go? The answer may surprise you. Listen in to today’s episode to learn how you can effectively deal with conflict in your family. **Special Offer– Dec 1 – 31: The Intimate Connection ebook for $2.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: Is it better to be nice and just kind of let the thing hopefully get better, or do I get to come out with a shotgun and blast them? What does it mean that blowouts are way better than slow leaks? Who wants to cause a blowout, all the shrapnel, and all the craziness of it? It’s better to be nice and hope it goes away. Well, that’s the question we get ask Dr. Leman. What’s his crazy phrase that he uses that blowouts are way better than slow leaks? Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: I and Andrea, Dr. Leman, are so glad that you are with us today. Welcome. If this happens to be your first time we want to let you know this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you, or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. Well, Dr. Leman, one of your favorite things to tell us all the time is, Hey, is it better to slow leak it to death or is it better to just have a big blowout?” But, blowouts cause shrapnel, and all sorts of craziness out there? So my question is, A. What does that phrase mean, and why am I going to use it in parenting? Dr. Leman: Let me start with this. For you parents who had a rough school year last year, or you had a rough time with your child’s smart mouth last year, or your husband continued to dish you, or your wife continually hammered you for every small indiscretion on your part, any kind of a booboo you were hammered. I want you to think about that. Now, that was a year ago. Now, is there any difference in any of those relationships today? My point is that whatever was in the past is going to continue, so if you have a kid who is smart mouthed and disrespectful chances are he, or she, is going to continue to be disrespectful and mouthy, or they’ll even increase their maladaptive behaviors. So, my point is, if you’re going to deal with it let’s bring it to a head. Let’s have that blowout. Let’s have that. “Hey, I’m done,” because the other things that you’ve tried, and you talked in your introduction, Doug, about being nice, just letting things go. How’s that working out for you, parent? So, when all of a sudden you hit a kid where it hurts, and that is you don’t let him go to the ballgame. You don’t let him go with his Friends. You don’t let him play next door with his favorite playmate. He doesn’t get to watch whatever. You really, to use a colloquial term, you lower the boom on him, you’re going to get his attention. You’re going to blindside him. He’s going to say, “What the heck is going on here?” At that point, at that blowout, from then on you have to be really consistent, because if you just have a big blowout and get mad and think that somehow that that’s going to turn around behavior you’re mistaken. You have to follow up with sticking to your guns, as I like to say, “without shooting yourself in the foot,” which means your decisions are deliberate, they’re calculated, vitamin N is distributed profusely within your family, which is “no” for you new listeners. Saying no to a child is a wonderful disciplinary measure. So, we have the vitamin E which we talk about a lot, encouraging your child. You want to be an encourager but, again, God did not put you on this earth to be walked over by a smart-mouth, 13-year old, or 11-year old, or 9-year old. So, that’s where forcing the blowout comes from, Doug. It just says, enough is enough, we’re going to turn the good ship family in a new direction. Guess what, parents, you’re the captain, or co-captains, of that family. That’s your job. Doug: So, Andrea, again, you’re the resident mom, and you like to be nice, a lot. Andrea: Well, I don’t think it’s just moms that like to be nice. To me this sounds like starting a fight. Doug: Ooh. Andrea: So, how is that different, Dr. Leman, than either blowing up in anger, because this sounds like, Okay, we’re going have this big, it’s okay for me to blow up in anger and start a fight. How is this different?” Dr. Leman: Well, a couple of things. Remember, fighting’s an act of cooperation. There could be no fight unless two people want a fight. Number two, we’re not talking about anger, we’re talking about an abrupt change in your demeanor, and your behavior. So, it’s not a matter of fighting. Is that child, young lady or young man, are they going to like this? No, because you’ve blindsided them, and for 9 years, or 11 years, you’ve tolerated this. You’ve done everything. You’ve been that kind, wonderful mom who’s probably, in retrospect, done way too much for that young woman or young man. Now they’re getting into those years where, and by the way if you’ve never read Planet Middle School, that’s a wonderful read for you parents who are getting into the 6th, 7th, 8th grades, the middle school wonder years. That’ll help set you straight. There’s also a book called Have a New Teenager By Friday, which is an award-winning book that everybody loves. So, there are ways to get the kid’s attention, or the person’s attention, that says, “I’m done. I’ve had it. I am very unhappy.” So, there’s a difference between being mad and blowing up and telling your kids. “I am very unhappy with what’s happening in this home,” because kids don’t like that. That’s what you have to keep in mind. Doug: So, Dr. Leman, there’s some people that they can’t get there until they’re so wound up that they have had enough of this, right? How does that person address this without the anger part coming with it, or not even the anger part just the, what is that, the poor delivery of it? Andrea: Just the emotional outburst. Dr. Leman: Well, again, if you’re lucky enough to have a partner in life, and you’ve got that husband, or your wife, this is a time where if you know that you have a short fuse, and your way of dealing things is to tuck things under, tuck things under, and then have the big explosion, you are not the person to be able to throw that switch, it’s got to be your mate. The one that has a much more tempered approach to life who has to say, “I’m done. I’m unhappy.” In fact, you can replace the I with the we. A wound-up person can take some notes from the more level-headed, even-tempered mate, to be the forerunner here, because what you don’t want to do is just spark rebellion in a kid’s life who’s already got a rebellious streak. Andrea: So, you wouldn’t recommend this to anyone who already has a short temper? Dr. Leman: Well, let’s take the single mom who has a short temper. She doesn’t have any choice, but she better do some, whatever it takes. When something starts to happen with the children, okay, single mom, you’re a veteran mom, you’ve been a mom for nine years. You’ve seen how these things escalate. So, as soon as something starts I want you to act, because if you wait your rubber band is just going to get wound up tighter and tighter and it’s not going to have a good result. So, it’s action, not words. The more action you make as a parent, and you show the kids that things are changing, the more they’re going to pay attention to what you have to say. So, it’s action, and then words. Andrea: What you’re advocating is that you’re forcing a blowout. What do you mean by that? Dr. Leman: When do you want this to end? Do you want this bickering that gives you a lump in your stomach every night and a headache, do you want it to continue the next 30 days, or would you rather have it end tonight? That’s my question. That’s why I advocate the blowout, because the quicker the better. Doug: Why are we as parents so reticent for the blowouts, or really to just confront them, that we just hope it kind of goes away? Dr. Leman: Well, I think because we want to be our child’s best friends. That’s prevalent in our society. Most kids are reared to think they’re the center of the universe. Some of these kids, I mean, they ought to be in drama in school, because they’re drama queens and drama kings. They play you like a fiddle. My latest book, Why Kids Misbehave and What To Do About It, is loaded with example after example about how parents just cave in. They’re actually the ones that teach their kids how to misbehave. Now, think about that what I’m saying. Hey parent, you’re the one that has taught your kid to misbehave through faulty parenting, through faulty assumptions on your part. You’re the creator of this. You’re the conductor of the family orchestra. When you owe up to that then you’ll be ready to pull off the blowout and feel better about it. Doug: Well, I think we should give people an example of what a blowout would look like versus a slow leak. Before we do that, this is like perfect timing to be honest, the ebook for this week is Have a New Kid by Friday. So, wherever you get your eBooks, however, you get them, from Kindle’s, through NOOK’s, to whatever, for $2.99 you can get it between now and the end of December 2020. This is perfect if you’re trying to figure out how to do blowouts. What did they say about it, Andrea? Andrea: Evan says, “Possibly the last parenting book you will need. If you have a child who challenges every aspect of your parenting, or even any aspect of your parenting, I highly recommend this book. This quite possibly will be the last parenting book you will need. I’m pretty sure it’s the last one I will need. My young twins, age four, were transformed in about a week, and others who know them well commented on it.” Doug: So, this is the book that got us launched down this road. I cannot say enough good things about it, that if you want the confidence to have the blowouts get the book. Now, a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: Parents, one of the smartest things I ever did was take my daughter out of the gifted program at school. I know there’s parents right now are cringing hearing me say that, because you’re so proud that your little Drucilla is gifted. Well, one of the things we know about gifted children is that they have the highest incidence of mental illness, there’s a corollary there between the two. In my estimation, if a son or daughter has to travel to another school that would be lockdown, “No, it’s not going to happen.” I’m going to keep my child in the local school. I think gifted programs are overblown. Are some of them great? They are, but there’s an awful lot of them that I don’t think do your son or daughter a great service. Is your son or daughter a reader, do they achieve on their own, do they dig for information? Keep them where they are. Doug: Dr. Leman, so let’s do an example, a role-playing, of how a slow leak would look different to a parent. So, let’s say, what’s a good example, Andrea, chores? Andrea: Chores are always great. Doug: Chores are always great. Andrea: Not doing their chores. Doug: Not do their chores. Sally is supposed to always be doing the dishes, and she’s a one out of seven days kind of a dishes person. So, if you’re the parent, and you’re going to do a blowout instead of just doing the dishes yourself, how would this sound and what would it look like? Dr. Leman: Well, let’s set up the situation where mom comes in and the dishes, which were not done last night, are still sitting there. Let’s start with that. Doug: Okay. Dr. Leman: The kids are home. The daughter just came in from volleyball practice, and the son just came in from his activity, and everybody is glad it’s the end of the day. What everybody’s got on their mind is food, hunger, and maybe it’s 14-year-old son that goes bouncing in and says, “Mom, mom, I’m starving. What’s for dinner?” Now, here’s the blowout. “Honey. I don’t have a clue what’s your dinner, but I am very, very upset to walk in here and see these dishes still here. I work all day, so does your dad. To come home to this really makes me angry. Your dad and I are going out,” and get in the car and leave. I don’t care if you have to go down to Denny’s and get the Grand Slam. That forces a blowout. How do the kids feel? Do the kids feel good about themselves? Do they have positive regard? Good self-esteem? No, they’re very upset because mom just laid it on the line and said, “Hey, I am very unhappy.” That’s all she had to say. She didn’t have to start a fight. She didn’t have to lose her temper. She just said it with authority and, again, that’s a God-given right, parent, that you get from Almighty God to be in healthy authority over your children. So, let’s fast forward after we’ve had our little treat down at Denny’s, and an hour and a half later you come home. Here’s my question. Are the dishes cleaned? Doug: Did the kids do them? Andrea: Yeah, they did. Doug: Oh yeah, they did. Dr. Leman: Oh yeah. Well, that’s what I’m saying. In 99% of those cases those dishes will be cleaned. Now, if they weren’t cleaned, ut oh, now we really are setting into a power struggle here. Again, you got to be careful how you do this one. Trust me kids love maid service, and that’s what many kids get in our homes across America is maid service. Parents do way too much for their kids. Their laundry is laundered perfectly and put in their drawers, and all that. When all those things come together and start stopping, the kid is really going to notice. Is he going to be happy about this? No, but you continue to express your dissatisfaction with their willingness to pull their weight in your home. So again, usually with most kids when you just pull a rug out and let that little buzzard tumble at that point. Like, “Hey, we’re out of here,” and they know that you’re upset, usually that will take that kid who’s been lazy, to call a spade a spade, and they’ve shirken their responsibilities, that alone will usually get a kid back in line. Doug: So Dr. Leman, I got a little confession here. Why does that sound so harsh to even me, just to be like, “Wow, we’re disappointed and we’re going to dinner.” Dr. Leman: Some of you are thinking, “Hey, Leman, couldn’t you do better than Denny’s?” Yeah, go wherever you want. Name the kid’s favorite restaurant if you want, I don’t care. It sounds rough, I guess, because that’s not what parents do today. They’re into, “Brittany, have you chosen to go to bed yet?” I mean, it’s crazy. We’re permissive parents for the most part, and within the Christian community there’s a lot of authoritarian parents around who are just way over the top. They try to just control everything their kids do, and that does, as we’ve talked about many times, plant the seeds of rebellion in a child’s life. You said it before, Doug, about Have a New Kid by Friday. Hey, parents, I’ve written a lot of books on parenting, but what that one person said is, “Hey, you’ll never need another parenting book if you read Have a New Kid by Friday.” I believe it’s true. That’s a book that will get your child’s attention. It’ll empower you to realize that you are in healthy authority over your kids. It’s jammed full of examples of how to handle about everything that’s going to come your way. So, we’re downloading it for 2.99 to you. My goodness, take advantage of that. Tell your friends about that one. Doug: You know, the other thing … Yeah, it’s, oh it’s phenomenal, and the whole back half is great. The other thing that I think that parents need to know, because Andrea and I have done a couple of blowouts with our kids, is how many times do you have to do it to get the kids’ attention? Is it 1, 20, 100? Dr. Leman: I think your average is once. It’s not many. I mean, I think you get a kid’s attention real quickly when you stick to your guns. Doug: Well, that’s what I was going to say. Most of our blowouts, we’ve only had to do it one time. The interesting thing you say about that is, now that our kids are a little bit older they’ll even reference that blowout time as the time to be like, “Yeah, that’s when we realized we were doing something wrong.” Dr. Leman: Let me add one other thing. I know a lot of people are not avid readers, to read a book for them is sort of a chore. I’ll just make mention of this, if you would like a DVD, we have a six-part DVD on Have a New Kid by Friday. It’s available at drleman.com. I think the cost is $25, drleman.com. You just got to spell Leman right, L-E-M-A-N. So, you might have a spouse who isn’t going to read that book, and you’d love them to read it, but they might take a look at this DVD series. It’s been very, very popular. The nice thing about DVDs is you can play them over, and over, and over again till you get it down. Andrea: So, I’m just trying to replay how this blow out goes in my mind, to wrap things up for myself, and for everyone. The key is that you are making a change in the way you normally treat a situation, and that you are going to just be abrupt, and you’re going to be authoritative about your decision, and you’re not going to let them drag you into a fight. Did I get that right? Dr. Leman: You got a five star on that one, Miss Andrea. Doug: Andrea, we’re going to Denny’s after that. Way to go, Sweetie. Andrea: Woo-hoo. Dr. Leman: That’s one of my favorite jokes, by the way. Sometimes I’ll tell people. “Yeah. I took my wife out to dinner to a really nice restaurant, and it really ticked me off she ordered the most expensive thing on the menu. Yeah, she ordered the Grand Slam.” Doug: Well, for all you parents out there, this is one of those phrases that helped Andrea and I. We even know it works and yet we still need to be re-reminded blowouts are way better than slow leaks. Slow leaks don’t work. You think you’re hinting at your children, and you think you’re hinting at your mate. It doesn’t work. Be direct. Blowouts are beautiful, and you only have to do them once. Andrea: I don’t know if beautiful is the way I would describe them. Doug: It’s not the word you would describe them? Andrea: Yeah. Doug: Yeah. But you only have to do them once, and it doesn’t harm your relationship with your kids and all that craziness that we’re afraid of. So, great. Well, and honestly to feel even more confident about blowouts go get the book, Have a New Kid by Friday. It’s fabulous to give you confidence on how to stick to your guns to do the right thing. So, it was great to be with you and add to that parenting toolbox. If you want the DVDs, go to drleman.com and get them there, as well. If someone’s not a reader and wants to watch it while they’re running on the treadmill, or on a Saturday night, I highly recommend it. Well, it’s great to be with you to add to your parenting toolbox. Andrea: Have a great week. Doug: Take care. Bye-bye.
17 minutes | 2 months ago
My teenagers fight like dogs. What should I do? – Ask Dr. Leman 159 (Episode 341)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “My teenagers fight like dogs. What should I do?” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Nov 1 – 30: The Intimate Connection ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: “I hate you. You are an idiot, you are stupid, and I never want to see you again.” These are the words that Sommer, I imagine, hears from her two kids. And she says, “Help. My kids fight like dogs, and I don’t know what to do. How do I get them to like each other?” Well, that’s the question that Sommer asks that we get to ask Dr. Leman. Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: And we are really glad that you are with us this beautiful day and want to let you know if it’s your first time, this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please visit your local professional for help. Well, let’s hear what Sommer’s question is about her kids’ fighting. Sommer: Hi, Dr. Leman. My name is Sommer. I’m from Missouri. I have a 15-year-old daughter and a 13-year-old son. We found Have a New Teenager about three months ago, and it has been amazing in the transformation of my daughter’s reaction and responding to us. However, the relationship between my two kiddos is horrible. My daughter has been mean to my son since he’s been born. And of course, we would get onto her immediately whenever these things would happen. Fast forward 13 years, and they both are saying and hitting each other and just being really horrible all the time to each other. We don’t take sides. So both of them will typically either get sent outside if we’re at home. But there are times I’m just about to pull my hair out because they cannot seem to ever say anything or do anything nice for each other. So how, as a parent, can me and my husband foster their relationship now, going forward? Any help would be great. Dr. Leman: Okay, Sommer. Thank you so much for that question. 15-year-old girl. I love… I’m just quoting you, Sommer, “She’s been mean to him since he was born.” So the little princess heard that she was going to get the special present. The special present came home, and she figured out this guy is nothing but trouble, “He is competition to my throne of queen of the home.” And, again, I’m just using your words, whenever she was on him and nasty to him, you were right back on her. And what’s happened here, and you have to admit, you sort of trained her, that one of the ways she’ll get your undivided attention is if she’s mean to little Brutus, her brother. So that’s what you’re up to, historically. Now the good news is I want everybody to hear what you said. You found Have a New Teenager by Friday. Now, I’m not smoking you. That is the best little book. You have a teenager. If you got a middle-schooler, read Planet Middle School, and if you want to graduate from Planet Middle School, read the book that Sommer has just referenced, Have a New Teenager by Friday. Yes, you’re familiar with Have a New kid by Friday as well and Have a New Husband by Friday, Have a New You by Friday. Yeah, I get it, I got hung up on Friday, but my point is that these kinds of issues can be dealt with practically. Now, you’re asking for the miracle of how do we get these kids to really love on each other? Well, I’m going to make a brave statement. They do love each other. Right now, they love each other. They’re brother and sister. They fight like cats and dogs. I get it, but they still love each other. When somebody picks on little brother, sister will be there to defend him, believe it or not, and vice versa. And as a predictor of great things to happen, the day is coming, Sommer, when those kids will be in each other’s weddings. The bad news is that’s probably about 10 years away or more. In the meantime, your question is, “How do I foster, as husband and wife, a better relationship between those two?” Well, you’re not going to have a lot of success with that, quite frankly. Those of you who heard my podcasts over the years are maybe raising an eyebrow on that one, but these kids are very close in age. They’re obviously competitive. It’s not going to turn into a love fest, but I want to tell you straight out, one of the things that got my attention when you first started asking your question is you held both of them accountable. And so to answer your question, I would suggest you continue to do so, keeping in mind that fighting’s an act of cooperation. You said you didn’t pick sides. That’s step two. I mean, you’ve got the book, you’re taking the right steps. What you need is time and maturity. Stick to your guns. Don’t try to figure out whoever did what. Let both of them pay, so to speak. You mentioned putting them outside. I love that idea. Canceling an event that you were going to go to, they were going to enjoy is good, because “I’m just so sick of you guys going after each other. I don’t have the emotional courage to get in the car and drive anywhere right now,” those kind of things. So the kids see there’s a direct connection between their misbehavior and your non-compliance to make their life a little nicer and better. So that is the prescription that I would write for you, Sommer. I’m telling you, I don’t think things are going to be night and day different in two weeks. I think they’re going to go after each other. I think it’s going to lessen in time. And you’re already on a good trajectory here, you’re a good mom, you’re doing the right things, not holding them accountable, not picking sides. And I’d be very matter of fact about, “You two are horrible to each other. It’s disgusting that you don’t have enough self-worth to be kind to one another.” I’d say some things like that once in a while. I wouldn’t harp on it. It wouldn’t be every day, but they would get the gist that I’m very unhappy, we’re very unhappy with how things are, okay? The kids are after each other just before dinner, throw out the white flag, say, “Come on, John, get in the car.” Take your husband out and get a bite to eat. Let the kids stand there and look at each other and make sure they clean up the kitchen when they’re done with whatever they did, that kind of an approach. What do you guys think? Doug: Well, I’m raising an eyebrow. Like you said that we would, both Andrea and I did, in the fact that you said it’s not going to get better, even if you apply these principles. Why is it not going to get better? Dr. Leman: They’re exhibiting competitive behavior. Okay? I did say it’ll get better over time, but it’s not going to get instantly better. She’s doing everything she should be doing. She’s holding both of them accountable. She’s not taking sides. She realized this has gone on forever. If it’s gone on forever from day one, it’s not going to change right now. They’re in the height of adolescence. This is when kids are probably the meanest to each other. Those ages are tough ages. I tried to call a spade, a spade and say, “They really do love each other.” If somebody from the outside comes in and tries to hurt one another, they’ll be the first to defend them. And they will be in each other’s wedding someday. So stay the course, do the best you can. When it gets too much, you put them outside or you take a powder for a while. Let them suffer the consequences. Let them understand you’re unhappy. Andrea: Is there any creative thing that they could do as parents with their kids to put them in a situation where they have to depend on each other a little more? I don’t know, like, “Okay, we’re going river rafting. And if you don’t do your part, this is scary, and everybody’s…” Things that pull people together. Dr. Leman: You got me laughing because that’s the last place I’d take them is river rafting. I wouldn’t take these two miserable kids to anything, let alone river rafting. That costs big money. It’s a great adventure. I know where you’re going with it, trying to put them in a situation where they need each other. Well, they do need each other. They really do. They haven’t figured out that fighting’s an act of cooperation. If one of them decided not to fight any longer, think about this, if one of them, either the 13-year-old refused to fight, or the 15-year-old refused to fight, guess what? There wouldn’t be any fighting in the family. It takes two to fight. You have to know exactly what to say to escalate the battle. And these kids are really good at it. So, again, “If you two want to fight, fight outside.” I’d grab them by the arm. I’d put them outside. I’d lock the door. You say it’s raining. I don’t care. I put them outside. Let them argue in the rain. A guy made a million dollars, singing a song about singing in the rain. Let them go fight in the rain. It’s okay. So there’s there’s action-oriented things you can do as a parent that just says, “Hey, you crossed the line here.” Okay? But, again, I wouldn’t look for a Cinderella story here where everything flips in short period of time. Doug: Yeah. I have a question about how I can make it more peaceful. But before I do that, I don’t want to forget, you get a few more days that you can get the book Intimate Connection for $1.99 between now and the end of November of 2020, wherever eBooks are sold. Dr. Leman, my question for you is, who is the intimate connection for? Is it for healthy marriages? Is it for those that are just slightly off? Would it help people that are in divorce? Who’s this book for? Dr. Leman: Well, I think it’s a marriage book that anybody about to get married ought to read. If you’ve walked down the aisle, and you’re finding that marriage isn’t exactly what you thought it would be, it’s for you. If you weathered the storm for over seven years… And by the way, that’s the average marriage today in our country, lasts about seven years, and you’re done. Or if you’ve been at it a long time, and it just seems like it’s hopeless, The Intimate Connection is a wonderful resource. It gets you down to the brass tacks real early in the book about what a good marriage looks like, gives you ways to get there, and I think more than anything else, it gives you hope that things could change, if you’re willing to do some change on your part. Doug: So get it wherever you get your eBooks between now and the end of November of 2020. And now, a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: Parents, in life, your son, or daughter’s going to run into bad things, bad situations, bad environments, bad friends. And as a parent, it’s real easy to feel like you’re the puppeteer, and you’re going to pull strings and just make things happen. Sometimes kids really have to figure out that maybe the kids they hung around with weren’t the best. In fact, I know a young lady, she’s just 14 years old, who told me, she said, “I think I want to enjoy meeting some new friends this year. I think some of those older friends have really taken me down.” And I thought, “Wow, what an insightful young kid.” If there’s a kid your kid’s running with that you’re suspect of, have them over to the house, bring them over for dinner, eyeball them, and make sure that you’re eyeballing appropriately, that you’re really seeing things as it is. Get your husband’s opinion, older sister, older brother, anybody. Am I saying to let your kids just run wild with kids that are a poor influence? No, I’m not, but I’m saying you just can’t pull a rug out and try to control every kid’s friendship, or it’s going to backfire. Doug: Okay, Andrea, let’s be honest. If these were our children, the question I’d be asking you, Dr. Leman, is, “I got to get some peace around here. This is just driving me nuts. I can’t even handle it. How can I get some semblance of peace? I’m just tired of the bickering.” Dr. Leman: If you want behavioristic measures to deal with kids, again, listen to what mom says about her children. Okay? This is a quote from Sommer, “They’re horrible.” You got horrible kids. As soon as they start horrible behavior, if I’m the parent, I’m putting them outside. Okay, I’m physically putting them outside. If I, as a mom, can’t do it, and dad’s nearby, he can do it. I just tell them, “You can fight all night out there. You can yell and scream. You can hit each other, do whatever you want to do.” That’s how I would deal with it. In other words, you can’t fight in the house. You want to fight? You have to fight outside. That’s how I’d deal with it. But, again, you just got to realize this has gone on from birth. And obviously 15-year-old feels threatened. If there’s ever a conversation where she’s really open to what you’re talking about, you need to explore why she feels the way she does. “Well, he bothers me. He’s always here. He’s always doing this. He’s always doing that.” “No, honey, no, you were the queen. And then he came along, and you decided there wasn’t enough love in mom and dad to share with little brother, that you needed all the hugs.” She needs to be pointed out, the 15-year-old, how selfish she is. She’s a selfish 15-year-old girl. She cannot be a pleasure to be around. I can’t imagine that she’s hitting it off on all eight cylinders in school, because that would get a little old. She must be a drama queen. I mean, so that conversation comes, but only after you have willing ears on the other side of the conversation. It’s not something as a parent, you’re just going to magically create kids who are kind to each other. That’s why I say it’s got to run its course, which it will. But at some point you have to have that conversation about your selfish nature. For both of them, they’re both selfish. Fighting’s an act of cooperation. Kids need to understand that. Doug: Yeah. So, Andrea, you are a little more tenderhearted, compassionate. Could you put John and Carly outside when they’re fighting, say, “You can fight as much as you want, but get out of here and do it.” Andrea: Well, it’s hard to imagine that ’cause I haven’t had to deal with that. I think that if I was fed up with it, I could. Doug: What would you need to be able to be that? Andrea: To be fed up with it. Doug: So just, “I’m done, and I can do this.” Andrea: Yeah. Doug: Okay. Andrea: Yeah. Doug: Great. Wow. Don’t do that to me. Andrea: I mean, if it was 20 degrees outside, that would be a different story. Doug: Well, Sommer, we really appreciate your question. And, again, I couldn’t encourage you enough to go get the book, Have a New Teenager by Friday. So much of this is about having the confidence that, “I can do this, and it’s going to turn out well for me.” I’ve said repeatedly, the best thing about doing this podcast and these books is how much it’s helped my parenting and Andrea’s parenting to know that we can do these things, and it works. I’m just telling you. And you don’t have to do it very often. You just have to do it one, maybe two times. In your case, you’ve done it a whole bunch, so you’ve got a few more attempts to change it. But for most of us, it’s surprising how few times you have to put them outside for them to get the message that Mom’s done, Dad’s done with this. So I encourage you to get that book, and you can get Intimate Connection between now and the end of November of 2020 for $1.99. Well, it was great to be with you. Oh, and I want to remind you, go to birthorderguy.com/podcastquestion, birthorderguy.com/podcastquestions, and put your questions in here, and we’d love to answer it for you. Well, it was great to be with you and add to your parenting toolbox so that you can love those kids more and more. Andrea: Thanks for coming along with us today. Doug: Have a great day. Take care. Andrea: Bye-bye.
27 minutes | 2 months ago
How do I get my spouse to be on the same page in parenting? (Episode 340)
Do you and your spouse disconnect when it comes to parenting? Listen in to today’s episode to discover how to communicate and cooperate with your spouse when it comes to parenting. **Special Offer– Nov 1 – 30: The Intimate Connection ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
20 minutes | 2 months ago
How do we parent our kids through their quarantine depression? – Ask Dr. Leman 158 (Episode 339)
Are your kids ignoring responsibilities and withdrawing to their rooms during quarantine? Listen in to today’s episode to learn more about how you can parent your kids through their quarantine blues. **Special Offer– Nov 1 – 30: The Intimate Connection ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: Today, we get to talk about how do you deal with children who won’t do anything and they’re in high school and college and you have no recourse and no idea what to do to get them motivated? That’s the question that Danielle asked that we get to ask Dr. Leman. Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: And we are so glad that you are with us. It is great to be with you again today. I would like to welcome everybody who is a first-timer here and want to let you know that this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. Dr. Leman, it is so great to be talking to you today. I must admit. Dr. Leman: Yeah, 2020 has been interesting. Hasn’t it? It’s caused all kinds of problems across the board for Americans and people, quite frankly, all around the world. So we’re learning as we go. And I can tell you as a guy who has seven schools in two states, our schools have been open. We’re dealing with things that come up individually. We’ve had great success. Our scholars are so glad to be back in school and putting a sense of normalcy into people’s lives. But as you know, in a lot of areas there isn’t normalcy. Kids are at home, under foot. Parents are trying to juggle jobs and remote teaching and learning and doing work from home. So it’s really been a test of the grit of the American people, for sure. Doug: Well, that’s just a perfect lead in to what Danielle’s question is. So here is Danielle’s questions about how do I deal with this quarantine and all this craziness. Here she is. Danielle: Hi, Dr. Leman. I had a question. I have two older teens. One’s in college and one’s a senior in high school, presently quarantined due to the COVID virus. And we don’t know how to get them to help us around the house. They pretty much are holed up in their rooms, depressed and miserable, and it’s very difficult to get them to get outside, to get any exercise or to help around the house. Obviously we have nothing to use as leverage as they can’t go anywhere. They can’t use their car. Any suggestions on how to get a more positive attitude out of them and to get them to make the best of the situation? Thank you. Dr. Leman: I love the question. That’s a great question. So if I got this right, we’ve got the college student and the high school junior who are quarantined, which basically means they’re probably hanging out in their individual rooms most of the time, and they don’t do a lick. So let’s give these guys a name. We’ll call them the slug and the manatee. The slug and the manatee care about themselves. They live rent free in a place where they have, apparently, laundry services and food services available to them. Internet comes with the package I’m sure. And mom says, “I don’t have any leverage.” Well, Danielle, let me tell you something. I think you’ve got all kinds of leverage. I think starting tonight when you and your husband are about to eat dinner or think about dinner, that you get in the car and go out and find a place to get a bite to eat. If your town is on lockdown to the point where it’s only take out, then take it out. Find yourself, depending upon the weather and all that, find yourself a nice place outside to enjoy your dinner together. Or if you must, find a picturesque place someplace. Sit in your car and have your dinner. Let that be the first volley that is a shot across the bow of the good ship Family. It’s a warning that things are about to change for the slug and the manatee. What we’re talking about at almost an adult level is what I call the bread and water treatment. You don’t give them anything really. I mean, there’s water for the taking. There’s food in the refrigerator, I assume. I would just completely back off. I wouldn’t wash a piece of clothing of theirs. If dishes and things like that are a problem, I would make paper plates available to them. And that’s it. I’d let them know you’re very disappointed with their juvenile behavior and make sure dad chips in as well. Just make it known that you’re very, very unhappy. Okay? Don’t say you want things to change. There’s no ultimatum. There’s no anything, but there is no money given to them for anything. Okay? They are on their own. They are living in your home and there’s not going to be any communication, quite frankly, very little. Again, the effect that I want to go from you, the adults, to your two children, and you’ve chosen nice names, slug and manatee, let them get the message that things are very, very upsetting to mom and dad. You say it once. You don’t continue. You don’t nag. You don’t try to cajole. You certainly wouldn’t bribe or anything along that line. And by the way, there’s a book that’s very apropos for a situation like yours. If you’ve never read, Have a New Teenager by Friday, it’s an award-winning book. It really helps parents see that even though your kids are older, you haven’t handed over your command of the good ship Family to anybody, especially them. Andrea: Dr. Leman, I’m curious why you say there’s no ultimatum and little communication about what’s going on. Dr. Leman: Ultimatums are just going to drive them… If they’re rebellious, it’s going to drive them deeper. It’s not an ultimatum. It’s just stating a fact that you’re very unhappy. Again, keep in mind that kids want to please parents. If your kid, parent, does not want to please you, there’s something seriously wrong with your home environment, that you’ve helped create for the most part. So it’s on you. But my point is that kids don’t like it when they see action on your part. And action on your part is when your 17 year old, your junior in high school comes down the stairs and says, “Hey, I’m starving. What’s for dinner?” “Oh dad and I had dinner, honey, dinner’s over.” Again, that’s a shocky that gets, “Well what about us?” “Oh, what about you, honey? You’re fully capable of taking care of yourself.” “What is that supposed to mean?” “Well, you can tell I’m not real happy and neither is dad about how things have gone on around here.” And you can give them the, “You haven’t lifted a finger to do anything around here. From now on you’re on your own. We’re done.” You say it with that tone. It’s going to get 17 year old’s attention. So believe me, they’re taking you for granted. They’re using you as a parent and you weren’t put on this earth to be used. And hopefully the outcome of this will be that these older kids are going to come around with, “Mom, I’m sorry. Dad, I’m sorry.” And you’re going to hear those magical words. “What can we do to help?” And when they say that, have a long list. Okay? Don’t make it a short one. And let them know that all these things, that you do daily, “for the family,” apparently, they are seemingly very ungrateful for. If there’s one thing kids need to be taught it’s to be grateful. And your kids are not. Doug: Why a long list when they walk down and finally want to help out with the family? Dr. Leman: Because they have to see and hear the many things that go on in this family that apparently are unnoticed by them. These are things that they just think, mom and dad, is just part of the deal. They do everything. Well, make that a long list. And it can include washing the car or again, depending upon the season where you live, shoveling of snow or raking of leaves or yard work. Name it all, on and off. But the message is, “We’re done. We’ve had it.” And that will move the kids. It’ll move them one way or another quickly. Doug: How are they going to respond if I’ve always been coddling them, or mom’s always just done all the work around the house? And now we’re going to demand them, to do this. What does that look like? Dr. Leman: Well, you remember, I’m sure, that one of my little favorite things is, do you want to slow leak things to death or would you rather force a blowout? This blowout, so to speak, is probably going to get them talking as brothers. And they’re going to figure out that they’re going to have to alter some of their behavior. What you have to keep in mind is that mom and dad have nourished and encouraged this kind of behavior. Or we wouldn’t be talking about a slug and a manatee. We’d be talking about kids who are saying constantly, ‘Hey mom, well, what can I do today? What you need help with? Do you need me to run to the store? Whatever.” I mean, the kids are in lock down. The family’s locked down. And in cities and towns where this is happening, people are stepping on each other. They’re in their own way. They’re… All kinds of relationships are being tested. So I’m not pretending it’s just going to be easy. But I’m saying there’s got to be a blowout to create some inertia on their side to start doing some heart searching and saying, “You know what? We better step it up here. This isn’t good.” Doug: Andrea, you’re the resident mom here. Right? So now you’ve got to, for the next three nights or two nights, decide you’re not going to cook anything for your kids. You’re going to go out to dinner with your husband. You’re totally going to ignore your kids. And you’re just going to walk up and say, “I am very disappointed and walk away.” Dr. Leman: Sooner or later that kid’s going to have a conversation with you that says “What’s going on here?’ Okay? Now it’s time for talk. Now it’s time for, “I’m not only disappointed, but I needed to hear something from you guys because I’m way beyond it. I need some help. I’m not your slave. Okay? And you guys seem to only worry about your remote learning. I realize it’s not fun. I realize it’s not fun being cooped up in your room. I get it all. But you have to understand that we’re in the same predicament here. But we’re doing it all. And what I’m saying clearly is we’re done doing it all. So you’re either going to pitch in and become a part of this family and in doing so you will receive some of the benefits of being in this family. And if you choose not to, we’re going to continue on this terrible course.” So it’s straight talk. It hones right in on the problem. “You guys, aren’t doing your fair share.” And when the kids come around, which they will do, then you begin to do things that you might normally do as a mom or a dad as part of your responsibilities in the home. But there’s no reason why a 17 year old or a college student couldn’t be doing laundry for the entire family as part of their responsibility. It doesn’t have to be mom or dad. So there needs to be a redistribution, if you will, of the work that gets done. Andrea: And as mom, this would probably be hard, but I think that the outcome will be worth it. So it’ll be hard to hang on for a couple of days and watch them either get really angry. But hopefully like dr. Leman says they will start to come around and say, “What is it that we need to do?” Doug: But what about- Andrea: We created this. Doug: But what about that first conversation? How are you going to get the courage to do that? Andrea: Oh, I can do the first conversation. It’s the follow-up. Doug: It’s the follow-up? Andrea: It’s the long-term over a couple of days, still not giving in when they’re like, “What? Mom, I don’t know how to do my laundry,” or whatever it is. Doug: Ah. Andrea: Yeah. It’s not the first thing. Because that’s usually where the emotion is loaded. Doug: Ah. It’s the later on when you’re softer and they’re working you over and all that kind of stuff. Andrea: Exactly, because they are going to try and work me over. Doug: No, not our children. Well, before I forget, because I often do. I want to make sure I get in here about the ebook special that we have right now, which is a great one, which is Intimate Connection, which you can get for $1.99 between now and the end of November of 2020. And Andrea, somebody wrote in about this book. Andrea: Yeah, real world help for your marriage relationship. Dr. Leman is great, funny, insightful and on-point. Priceless information to help married people with life together. And they just had their initials, K.G.B. Doug: K.G.B., great insight on that as well. So if you want it, because I was just thinking to do this, you have to be on the same page. Don’t you, Andrea? If your husband is backing you- Andrea: If you weren’t backing me and I was trying to do this with the kids, that would be nearly impossible. Doug: Which is why we recommend the book Intimate Connection. Right? Get you and your spouse together so that you can be closer together so that you don’t, as the kids attack you, you can do that. And now for a no nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: You know, I get questions all the time about building up my child’s self esteem. Hey parents, listen to me carefully. You don’t build up your child’s self esteem. Whew, glad that’s over with. They build it up. They tell themselves, “See, I can help. I can do.” And so give kids an opportunity to give back to the family. As you do that, and they complete even little minor tasks, they’re telling themselves that “I’m competent.” And one of the things you want to do with a child is make sure they feel accepted, that they belong in your family. But competence is really important. That gives them the energy to move forward and tackle new projects. Don’t sell competence short because competence matters. Doug: Alrighty. So Dr. Leman, another question that I think a lot of parents are going to have… I would… Is “Do I stop paying for things like their phone? And do I… I can’t shut the internet off because of the remote learning, but do I pay for their phone or do I make them start paying for their phone?” Dr. Leman: That’s all a part of when I say, “You don’t give them a dime for anything.” So yeah, you cut that out. But I want to point out that for you ladies, this kind of situation is a perfect situation for you to show your sons that women are to be respected and listened to. Okay? You want to do your future daughter-in-law a great service. I mean, I wouldn’t want to send either of these boys into marriage, quite frankly. They’re both going to be pretty lousy husbands. Because I think they see women, particularly in this case, their mom is their personal slave who does all these things for them. So keep in mind that, moms, you represent all of womanhood to your sons. Dads, you represent all of manhood to your daughters. Those are the key relationships. So I know this is tough. It’s tough for a mom to say, “Enough’s enough. Time out. I’m done.” But this is a beautiful opportunity to teach your kids about the loveliness and the inherent worth of a woman, namely you, mom. Doug: Amen. What about mom and dad hanging around the house? You know, if she’s saying they’re moping around the house, do mom and dad, are they just lively and gay around the house? Or are they just leaving the house and having fun without the kids? How do they, how do they act around home? Dr. Leman: Well, you can only leave the house and have fun without the kids so many times in a given week, but I would encourage that as much as possible. But in the meantime I would do what you normally do. If you’re used to watching your favorite TV shows or whatever, or maybe reading is your thing and whatever it is, continue to do it. But if there’s conversation generated by either of your sons, you’re polite. You’re not snarky. But you’re not over-friendly. There’s a neutral tone to your voice. They need to feel your uncomfortableness, your unhappiness. Doug: You know, it does make sense because Andrea and I may have had a little disagreement recently or not. And I think it is her tone of voice, at times, that can snap me out of it. Right? When she gets that little, “I am displeased in you, Douglas Terpening. That sort of helps me. I could totally see that. Not that we ever have any problems, Dr. Leman, at all. Andrea: None at all. Doug: None at all. Well, Danielle, I hope this helps you with the slug and the manatee to get them out of their room and actually helping you take out the trash and mow the lawn and do some of the dishes. And it sounds like you get to go hang out with your husband a little bit more, which may not be the worst thing in the world. And we love your questions. So please, please, please go to birthorderguyguide.com/podcastquestions. And you can leave a question right there and we’ll answer it right here on the air. And as a reminder, you can get the book Intimate Connections, the e-book for a buck 99, which is a deal, between now and the end of November of 2020, wherever e-books are sold. Well, it was great to be with you and add to your parenting toolbox that you would love those kids more and more. Andrea: Have a great day. Doug: Take care. Bye.
21 minutes | 3 months ago
How are we going to have a great Holiday this year? (Episode 338)
The holidays are just around the corner, but this year is going to look different for many. Listen in to today’s episode to learn more about how you can still have a great Holiday despite the challenges of 2020. **Special Offer– Nov 1 – 30: The Intimate Connection ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: Woo-hoo. The holidays are coming just around the corner. I can’t wait for pumpkin pie and famous bread and all the good fixings that come with it. But I must admit, I think this holiday season might be totally different than years past. So I get to ask Dr. Leman, who is the master of fun, Dr. Leman, how do we make the holidays great this year? Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: And we are so glad that you are with us today. If this is your first time with us, I just want to let you know this is for your education and entertainment purposes. Only if the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. Well, Dr. Leman, I can already taste the pumpkin pie in my mouth, but I’m worried about the holidays. How do I make it great? You know how to throw a party just by walking down the street. How do we make the holidays great. Dr. Leman: Well, that’s a great question. Before we answer that, let’s look at where we’ve been. Our children have been cooped up, many of them, across the country since March. Okay. They’ve experienced an education or a non-education like they never have before. They didn’t have a summer, they didn’t go to camp. They didn’t do their lessons that they normally do. Swimming lessons, you name it lessons. Almost everything has been just shut down. And so now as we approach that time of year, that we all love that is the holidays, I think it behooves us as parents to really work overtime, trying to face the holidays with a smile on our face and get together, okay, now some people’s ears just went right back, get together with those we love. Okay. So a lot of people are thinking these holidays are going to be distant we’re not going to see each other. I question why you would go that way. What I’m saying is I think people ought to go out of their way to try to figure out, “Okay, how do we connect as family and friends in a smart way?” Okay. And I know at our schools, we take every precaution you can take. At home we do the same, and life goes on. So I think putting fun and letting kids be a part of that decision-making process. I mean, if you start a conversation at dinner with kids, “I’m thinking about Thanksgiving here coming up real soon, what would you like to do special? What would really be fun?” And let them be a part of figuring out what to do. Ditto Christmas. Okay. And the Leman family has been known at Christmas time to get in a party bus and go out and handout everything from cash to food, to hand warmers, to socks, to you name it, with the emphasis on giving to other people. And so I know ourselves, we are going to be gathering in November and December at our home, which means all of our five children are coming to Arizona and we’re going to celebrate. We’re going to celebrate the holiday season. We have much to be thankful for as we look around at many places that you scratch your head and say the world’s falling apart, but it’s only going to fall apart on your level if you let it fall apart. So we’re going to get together. We’re going to party and we’re going to have fun like we normally do. For example, one of our children or Sandy or I have a birthday, it’s very frequent that we will have a parade. And this summer Hannah turned 33 years of age on June 30th. We paraded through our neighborhood with crazy hats, kazoos, noisemakers. We’ve done it for years. We’ve done it since she was a little kid. She’s 33. She still looks forward to her parade. So have fun. You invent the fun. Okay? You do it the way you think your family should do it. Now, if you’re an old screw, just say, we’re not getting together. We’re afraid of COVID. Well, have a nice year. We’ll talk next year. Maybe we will get you to change your mind next year. But I think you are the one, fun is F-U-N that U part right in the middle, U, you’re the one that makes it fun. So figure it out and involve your kids in it. Enjoy each other. Doug: So Dr. Leman, what about for the parent who’s like, “I’d love to create some fun, but I just got to be honest. A, it’s kind of not my personality and B, I am kind of overwhelmed right now with all that’s happening.” How could you help them figure out how to add some fun into this? Dr. Leman: Well, I guess the first thing is to admit that you’re not much of a fun person. And does that really, does that line up with your faith? Does it line up with your calling? Does it line up with any commitment to your family or your community, or to your church? I mean, people are going to hide out. You can go through life scared. You can go through life as a wallflower. I remember working with a lady once, I’ll never forget her because she dressed in camouflage almost like she wanted to blend in with the earth, and I invited her to a party. And she said, I asked her if she’d like to go to a party. She said, “What kind of a party?” I said, “It’s called life. Lady, you got to get off the wall.” And actually that was a case that worked out very well. Lady made some substantial changes in her life and she did a 180, but there’s always going to be the Debbie downers who quite frankly get some psychological jollies out of being Debbie downers. Andrea: I’m thinking of a parent who maybe has teenagers and the culture in their home has been kind of independent. And the teens are up in their room doing their online school. And mom and dad are at their desks doing their online work and to suddenly turn the tide of like, “All right, we’re all going to get together and we’re going to have fun.” And I can see blank stares right now of the teenagers. Like “What’s just happened to mom or dad?” How do you turn the tide and create a new culture? Dr. Leman: How many in this family, I’m talking to the family you just described, are sick of doing what we’re doing. Let me see hands. Okay. So there’s, mom’s hand handed, dad’s hand and the two kids that are up doing their remote education. They’re bored silly, too. Now here’s the question, will the four of us, I mean, do we really want to continue doing this or do we want to add some fun to our life? Now if the four of you can’t figure out what would be different, in certain parts of the country there’s still some fall left. There’s still some color in the trees. When we were little, we would take kids on a ride. Okay. I’ll never forget one of my adult daughters calling us up and saying to their mother, “Mom, I’m becoming you. I just said to my husband, ‘Do you want to go for a ride?'” But even going for a ride and going to a town that’s 50 miles away and getting an ice cream that is famous in that county is better than sitting home looking at each other. Okay. It does put you in the car. There is a time for talking to each other. I mean, we were built to be relational people. We weren’t built to be by ourselves. So again, there are some who are just stymied by all this they’re paralyzed. They’re like the rabbit in the middle of the road that has the headlights on them. And that poor little bunny doesn’t know to turn left or turn right. And I’m not sure that myself or anybody else is going to get them off that little rut in life. But if the four of you can figure something out, then that’s pretty sad. Doug: Well, and to be an encouragement, the Terpenings, we really try to have fun. We really do. And if I were to tell you some of our … doesn’t matter. But I will tell you from experience, if you try and get four people to agree, to go do something who historically don’t go do stuff, it is painful. So just because you get silence from your kids does not mean that they don’t want to go do stuff. And they might even, right, Dr. Leman, they might even give you lip like, “You’re kidding me. We’re driving 50 miles to go get Salt and Straw ice cream.” Once they get through it, you’d be surprised what they say. Andrea: I remember one of the car trips we took early in the quarantine, Doug said we were going to go to In-N-Out. And it’s like an hour and a half drive. And so he told everyone in advance to pick a song they liked to play in the car. And then we get to talk about why everybody liked their song, but it gave us something to talk about and fun to do as we were driving. Dr. Leman: There you are. The creative Terpenings strike again. Our culture, our children are used to being entertained. Okay. You see the vans with a video in the back and you got the three-year-old and a four-year-old in the car seat and they’re watching the video. I get it. Mom and Dad want peace and quiet. I get it. But we’ve trained kids that they will always be entertained. What’s healthy is for kids to figure out that they can entertain themselves. I know we’re going to have a pumpkin carving contest. We’ll carve pumpkins and some will be, and I’ve got some really artistic people in our family. It’ll be fun to see. My wife is in love with pumpkins. Okay. So we’ll have pumpkins all over here that look really weird and it’ll be fun to have them. Well she’s always, Sandy’s very creative and she always has the grandchildren over. This summer, we tie dyed shirts together. We always do things. I have a hard time understanding why people can’t come up with things that are fun to do. It’s pandemic time in New York where I live in the summertime and the governor there is outrageous. He’s just issued an edict that he’s authorized police officers to fine people $1,000 for not having their mask on in public, outside within six feet of another person, you get $1,000 fine. Well, I’ll tell you what I did. I took two high school buddies of mine and we went out and we got a fishing guide and we went out on Lake Erie and we caught walleyed pike. And we had a great time and you have to make your own fun. There are times you need to get away. Every mom needs to get away from her children. Every dad needs time for himself. Kids need time for themselves, but we need play time together. So you’re the curator, folks. You’re the one … God gave kids parents for a reason. Doug: I think a big question that a lot of parents are asking these days are, “Do my kids actually want to be with me?” Especially as they get older. What would you say to that parent? Because I’m like, if I tell my kids were jumping in the car and go into Salt and Straw an hour away, they would hate me. Which I think a lot of parents are concerned about. Dr. Leman: There’s sometimes as a parent, you make a decision that involves your kids, that your kids have no interest in whatsoever. But I think you’ve already alluded to this, Doug. Sometimes once they go and do it, it’s fun. I tell a story of one of my books about going to a graveyard, taking the kids to a graveyard. And there were only three kids at the time and they were in the back. And now that I recall, I was waxing and waning about this cemetery we were going to go to, because all of my Leman forefathers are buried there. And to show you how long ago it was, they were on their Walkmans. And so I’m waning and waxing about Leman history and who these people are, I look in the mirror, in the rearview mirror, and the three of them got headphones on and their heads are bopping around. They’re not even listening to what I’m saying. So we get to the cemetery and it’s like, “Oh, now what are we doing?” And they get out and they look tired. They look like they’ve been dragged through. “All right, what are we doing here? All these tombstones.” And I said, “Well, this is where the Leman’s were buried.” And my daughter Kristy, “Well wait, what does that mean? You mean, there’s one of these markers like this, that’s got our name on it?” “Yeah.” All right, cool. I said our job’s to find it. And the three of them took off running and it wasn’t too many minutes later when I heard that same daughter say I found them. I found them. And it was fun for these kids, I think, to go and look at those tombstones with all these different first names with that similar, last name Leman carved in granite. So again, I think you sort of take the bull by the horns. You make it happen. Can you make somebody be happy? You can’t. But you can be happy. You can be upbeat. You can ignore some of the cheap shots or the ankle biting that might be going on in the back of the van. Doug: When we come back, I want to ask you a question about holidays, about buying stuff for them and your attitude. But I don’t want to forget to mention this month. It’s a brand new month of November and we have a new book out it’s called Intimate Connections for a buck 99, between now and the end of November of 2020. So Intimate Connections. And Andrea, Jacqueline wrote in and said this about the book. Andrea: Yeah, Jacqueline says, “A must read for men and women in any relationship. I wish I had read this book 40 years ago.” Doug: Well, Dr. Leman, how is Intimate Connections going to help us? Dr. Leman: If you don’t have the intimate connection and most of you don’t, let’s be real frank here, you’re going to go through dinners where you hardly say a word to each other. You talk about the things of the day. There’s never a real gut-level feeling or emotion expressed. There’s not that intimate connection. There’s not that I know every word you’re going to say. I can tell when you’re going to tear up, you just don’t have it. You never had it. Okay. And there’s others who know what I’m about to say, you have the intimate connection. The two have become one. It’s a wonderful experience to be so close that we could separate you for three months and, and then bring you back together and you’d pick up exactly where you left off. It’s a book that tries to get through the superficial, how are you today? I’m fine, to a much deeper level of communication. Doug: Well, you know where to go anywhere. I forgot to mention these are eBooks and wherever your eBooks are sold, however you get them Amazon or Barnes and Noble or wherever, $1.99 between now and the end of November of 2020. Dr. Leman, two more questions I have for you is when you’re in the car, driving to Salt and straw, since that’s the one we are highlighting here and the kids are all grumbling, how do you make sure that your attitude stays joyful in the midst of that? How do you not let them drag you down into the humdrum? Dr. Leman: Well, this is a little embarrassing, but when the kids were little and they’d get their dog and pony show mode where, “He touched me” and “No, he said this,” and they’re just trying to drag you into it, I would turn the radio on loud and put all of it in the rear speakers. And they will howl like baby pigs who were stepped on. They will squeal. They hate that. Number one, they hate my music. Okay. Number two, it’s really loud. And you only have to do that once in a while. It’s temporary. I’ve got a friend who, when he had small kids, he had driven across the country with the kids. He says, next year, I’m putting the kids in the van. We’re just going to drive around Tucson all day long. We’re going to go to a Motel 6. Then I’m going to get up and do the same thing the next day. I could save myself a lot of stress by just driving around Tucson rather than going across the country. I still laugh about that to this day. But hope you got that. Doug: Yeah. Here’s the second question. So most of us are taught if I buy my kids more stuff at holidays, then it will be a great holiday for them. I’m going to get them to the new blah, blah, blah, or more of blah, blah, blah. Where’s the line between too much and too little on that kind of thing? Dr. Leman: It should be skewed toward too little. I’ve mentioned this before, but I think it’s great as we get close here to Thanksgiving and I would have a conversation with the kids at a breakfast, maybe on a Saturday morning, it says, “Hey, listen, tomorrow morning or tomorrow evening,” whatever, you pick your time. “I want you to all bring your Christmas ideas.” Okay? “Bring ideas, Mom and Dad are going to bring paper and pencil and we’re going to discuss the upcoming holidays.” And that will put the kids in third gear. And then some. What do kids love thinking about? Christmas presents and their Christmas list. And they all come expectant, and Mom and Dad got the paper and you start with the oldest. “Okay, let’s start with you, Nathan. Tell me what would you like to give to others this Christmas?” And it just sort of shocks them all. They go, “Wait a minute, hold on. I’ve had nine hours of anticipation of this meal. I thought we were talking about our lists.” “Yeah, we are talking about your list, your list. What are you going to give to Grandpa? What are you going to give to Grandma? What are you going to give to your aunt? What are you going to give to your cousin?” Whatever. “What are we going to do as a family for other families?” So if you go into it with that idea, the kids will probably temper their own hedonistic needs when it comes to, I want, I want and keep in mind, there’s always a difference between what kids want and what they need, but it’s overkill in too many families who give kids way too many things. Doug: Ken, I’ve heard you say repeatedly that it’s about experiences and time with family. And Andrea is the queen of this. She demands that in the holidays that we get out of puzzle or two and find a good book to read and I always grumble about it and then halfway through it, I think, wow, this is really fun just to sit here in the living room as a family and do these puzzles and things. You’re right. Andrea: Well, and that’s one of our traditions every year is to get a family puzzle as one of our family gifts. So we have a new puzzle to do. A good one. Not a really cheap one, but you know, a good quality puzzle that snaps together. Doug: Well. I hope this helps you get ready for the holidays. And we’re all excited to hear about how many of you go out and get ice cream an hour away, which is a brilliant idea. And it really does give you a chance to talk. Two quick reminders, Intimate Connections between now and the end of November of 2020, wherever eBooks are sold for $1.99 and you can get Dr. Leman Have A New Kid, DVD series, six part series at drleman L-E-M-A-N .com A great, great, great gift to those that are struggling or those that are new parents that want to learn about how do I do this? It’s a great, great foundational piece. Well, we thank you for being with us and we look forward to the next time we get to hang out with you and add to that parenting toolbox so you can love those kids more and more. Andrea: Have a great one. Doug: Take care. Bye-bye. Andrea: Bye-bye.
31 minutes | 3 months ago
My 9-year-old has explosions and my 2-year-old is mimicking. Now what? – Ask Dr. Leman 157 (Episode 337)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “My 9-year-old has explosions and my 2-year-old is mimicking. Now what?” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Oct 1 – 31: The Birth Order Book ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
28 minutes | 3 months ago
Training Your Last-Born to Become a Go-Getter (Episode 336)
How do you help your youngest become successful like their siblings? Listen in to learn more about how to motivate your last-born on this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Oct 1 – 31: The Birth Order Book ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: The baby of the family, the spoiled one, the one that gets away with murder. How do you raise that last one, when you’re like, “It’s the last one. Let’s just love on it. Let’s not push too much”? How do you change your last born, train them up to become a go-getter? That’s the question we get to ask Dr. Leman. How do we raise our last born well? Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: And we are so glad that you are with us today. And if this happens to be your first time, welcome a bazillion. And we want to let you know this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. Well, Dr. Leman, our question for today is training up your last born. And just for the record, where are you in the birth order? Dr. Leman: Well, I’m a baby. I always said my litmus test when I do television, or radio for that matter, is to get the host to laugh at what I say, or specifically on TV to hear the audio guy or the lighting guy in the background or the cameraman, or woman, laughing as well. So babies of the family grow up. They have natural competitors, natural prey, if you will, above them in the family. If you’re the baby of the family, chances are you have several parents, more than two, because those siblings become pseudo parents, in many ways. They’re in charge of you. They get in trouble for what you did. Many of them are born leaders. And so where does that leave you as a baby? And I guess that’s the question of the day, Doug, that you posed to us is how do you get this baby to suck it up, become a leader, become involved, be successful? And I think quite frankly, if I had to answer that question succinctly, I would say, “Well, in many ways it sort of takes care of itself.” And the reason I say that is that a lot of times babies of the families get discounted. In other words, you’ll hear siblings say, “Oh, don’t pay attention to her. Don’t pay attention to him.” And they are the ones that probably are the late bloomers as they grow up. They figure out, “Wait a minute. I know a few things.” A lot of us will develop the attitude. “Okay. Game on. I’ll show you.” So they tend to be late bloomers. So like I say, I think a lot of it naturally takes place as the youngest grows older. Andrea: So you’re saying that it might be more our perspective than their own perspective? Dr. Leman: Right. Andrea: That we think that they’re not a go-getter. Doug: Then why do we think that babies are the goof-offs, the undisciplined ones of the world? Why is that the stereotype that we have for the youngest? Dr. Leman: Well, this is going to sound contradictory of what I just said, but they are out there a little bit. They are the most likely to be the comedian of the family, for example. And, again, keep in mind, everybody’s listening now. We’re not talking that all babies are the same here. Okay? There are a lot of variables that create that youngest child, and it’d be a functional firstborn and all those kinds of things. We won’t get into that right now. But just keep in mind that we’re not trying to paint the brush so wide that it encompasses all babies of the family. But they don’t always give themselves credit. It’s easy for the baby to lay back and let the others take over. And that becomes the easy way out for them. But like I say, over a period of time, a lot of babies figure out, “Wait a minute, I’m more capable than I thought I was.” And again, some of them develop that attitude, “I’ll show you.” So babies of the family can become very, very successful in life. Ronald Reagan, baby of the family, former CEO and chairman of the board at Southwest, one of my all-time favorite people I’ve ever met in life, Herb Kelleher, baby of the family, youngest of four brothers. But if you look at Herb Kelleher as an example and Southwest Airlines, I love to make the point that that’s a fun airplane to fly. He made it fun. How the principles that he guided Southwest Airlines were, were very controversial and different. So babies tend to put a little bit different spin on things. So the goofiness, the humor, the play it by ear mentality is stereotypically true for most babies, but it can also be turned into great creativity and getting out of the box. And you can lead from the bottom of the family as well as you can from the top. Doug: So this is to help parents that are dealing with the last borns. One of the dangers that we’ve talked about and Andrea and I have seen, at least I’ve seen, is that sometimes we’ve used the tree analogy that the tree is so full, and there’s no room for the last borns. And they kind of just drift off out of the family because the older two have dominated all the oxygen in the room or whatever you want to say. How do we make sure that that doesn’t happen to our youngest? Dr. Leman: Well, all I have to do is look in the mirror to answer that question, Doug, because if you remember, I had two very successful siblings above me. I’m the baby of the family. I graduated fourth in the bottom of my class in high school. I couldn’t get in college. When I got in college, I got admitted on probation, but I’m a typical baby of the family that grew up, that matured, that figured out, “Wait a minute, I can do a few things in life.” And you’ve heard me say that it was an old math teacher who encouraged me. She was the one that said, “Kevin, I’ve seen you take over classes. I’ve heard teachers talk about you in the teacher’s lounge for years. Have you ever thought you could use those skills you have for something positive?” Well, that was my journey. And I think it’s a journey of a lot of youngest children. Now, back to parents, lucky for me, I never felt like my parents didn’t love me. So they did a great job of loving me anyway. My mother would laugh at my antics. She told a story about when I was three years old, she had me on a dog run from a maple tree to an elm tree in our backyard. And I remember I was probably about 40 years old and I was kidding her. I said, “Mom, what’d you think, I was part Weimaraner?” And I would get her laughing so much. And she said, “Well, if I didn’t have you on that line, you’d run away.” So I think the parent that loves their kid anyway, is the parent who will see that their kids who they see or they view as maybe not as successful as they should be, with time and patience on your part and encouragement on your part, those kids can learn to fly. Doug: Well, is that the key to raising the youngest is patience? Because how often do we compare, regretfully, our children, right? That the youngest does feel like a goof-off? Dr. Leman: Well, I think what happens is we get wore down as parents. Think of the effort you put it under the firstborn and the worry and the concern. And ask yourself as a parent, were you more worried about little James or your youngest child? And see, it’s very natural for parents just to lighten up as you go through the birth order, and you learn that things like dirt will not kill. And you roll with the punches a lot better as a parent, by the time your youngest is born. You’re not as worrisome. And that helps create the personality where the child is a lot more loose and not so uptight as maybe a firstborn sibling is. So, again, I go back to in many ways, this sort of naturally works out for a youngest child. Babies do well in life. Babies have high personal skills. Think of your high school classes, everybody, the high school you grew up in. I want you to think of the stars in your graduating class. If you can’t remember, get the old yearbook out and take a look. And have you ever done a little research to see what happened to those people? I know this is a sample of one high school, but I look at some of our leaders, and a lot of them didn’t do much in life. It was kids from the middle of the pack. And maybe even some like me that were at the bottom of the hill that actually did a little better than some of the others. Doug: How does that relate to the last born? Are you just saying that don’t discount where they are today or? Dr. Leman: Well, I’m saying what does it take to do well in high school? Okay, let just use high school as an example. What does it take to be successful in high school? Literally, in general, you got to be really good at following the rules. If you follow the rules, you’re going to what? You’re going to do your homework, you’re going to pay attention, you’re going to become involved, you’re going to do all these wonderful things. And so how much creativity is there in that? I don’t think there’s that much creativity in that, following the rules. I mean, I’m old as dirt, and I still say I never been real big on rules. And I haven’t been. In my relationship with my Maker, I’ve had that discussion with God, lots of times, that, “I should be more conscious, Lord, of Your rules because Your rules are good for us.” I’m not a real rule-oriented person. But what I’m saying is that high school and early years is not always a great predictor of the kind of person that you’re going to be at age 35 or 40, the kind of parent you’re going to be. So I think those of us who grew up feeling loved and accepted for who we are… Now, you’re asking how do we help a baby? Listen to those words, for those of us who grew up feeling accepted for who we are, by our family, by those primary people, our mom, our dad, those significant people in our life, those are the ones who will do life well. Andrea: So I hear you saying that maybe those babies, it’s going to be a while before you see them balloon, so to speak. But like Doug said earlier, be patient. And it might not be until after college or whatever, that they start to settle into whatever their strength is and really start to bloom. Dr. Leman: That’s right, Andrea. I’m sure there’s parents right now, listening to us, saying, “Leman, would you just tell me what to do with my baby of the family? He doesn’t pick up after himself. His room looks like a tornado hit it. He does get away with murder.” And I go, “Wait a minute, time out. He gets away with murder? Are you an authoritarian parent, or you’re a parent in authority? If you’re a parent in authority, hey, this is on you he gets away with murder. You need to hold him more accountable.” And so there’s teachable moments in the life of the baby of the family, where sooner or later, everybody sort of figures out what that baby’s gig is all about and they don’t get sucked into that web. They don’t get sucked into that trap. And they figure out the baby, and pretty soon the baby figures out, “These antics, I’m fooling myself here. Life’s going by. I better get together.” And so babies do change. Youngest children have, again, high personal skills. They do well in sales. So some of these kids that you older siblings are going to write off, be careful because they might go flying by you before too long. Because they have to know how to get around people, growing up as a baby in the family. It’s like a maze. And that youngest child figures out how to get through that maze, how to get around other people. So do they become manipulative? Yes, they do. Are they social butterflies? They certainly are. And they learn to navigate the many waters of life pretty good. So every birth order has its pluses. Okay? One isn’t inherently better than the other. But the entrepreneurs, where do you suppose entrepreneurs come from in the family? They’re not the firstborn children. They’re more likely to be the CEO of a big organization, the president of this or that, but your entrepreneur, there’s your middle child. There’s your baby of the family who does things way out of the box. Doug: When we come back, I want to ask you about how do we help make sure that our oldest don’t resent our youngest? But I want to talk about the latest offer from our friends at Revell Baker Book. It is The Birth Order Book for $2.99. You can get it between now and the end of October of 2020, wherever your eBooks are sold, for a mere $2.99. And Dr. Leman, when did you write The Birth Order Book? Dr. Leman: It was written in 1984. It was published in 1985. It followed the million seller, Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours. But the nice thing about… In fact, if someone has a copy of the original Birth Order Book in prime condition, you have no idea how much that baby’s worth. That’s a tough book to find, in a hardback. And it had three little eggs on the bottom of it. It was a white cover with black lettering, and the three little eggs. And who should pop out of the third egg but a caricature of me? Yes, it’s really funny. But that book was revised three different times, twice, significantly major. And the last time was a whole overhaul of the book where 70% of… And those of you who can download this book for $2.99, listen to what I’m about to say. You read the book years ago, okay? That book has 70% new material in it, the book that’s out there now. So it’s been in so many different languages. It’s a book that’s loved by everybody. How you can not like The Birth Order Book is beyond me because it’s engaging. It’s fun to read. It gives you a handle on how to view people in your family, how to look at yourself, your marriage, how you rear your kids. It’s like an all purpose flour. It can be used in so many situations. So don’t be afraid to download that puppy and suggest it to your friends and your kids. Kids love that book. Kids who do reports on it for school, I guarantee you they get an A, because the teachers find the topic fascinating, that these little bears, these little cubs can come out of the same den and yet be so uniquely different. Doug: It’s a great book. I highly encourage you. It is always fascinating to find out when coworkers of mine, what order they are in The Birth Order Book, and go, “Oh, that makes a lot more sense.” So you can get it now, wherever you get your eBooks for $2.99 between now and the end of October of 2020. And now, a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: Talk to anybody who’s successful, okay? I’ll let you define what’s successful. And ask them about the failure in their life. Truly successful people have had lots of failures in their life, but you know what? They’ve used those stumble blocks, those stones, as jumping off points, they’ve learned from their mistakes. That’s why it’s important for you as a parent to give your kids opportunity to fail. Failure isn’t fatal as someone once said. So don’t get your knickers in an uproar, okay? Don’t get those panties too tight. And sometimes you parents do exactly that. Okay? Let them learn. Remember, failure isn’t fatal. It can be good for you. Doug: So Dr. Leman, we were sitting around the dinner table yesterday, and the youngest said something like, “Well, I didn’t have to X, Y, and Z.” And the three just blew up, like, “I can’t believe it. You always have gotten away with murder, geez Louise.” Right? And that’s not the first time we’ve heard that. How do we make sure that our older children don’t resent that younger child? Dr. Leman: Well, I’m going to say this as clear as I can. Good luck. Yeah. Good luck with that because you are going to resent that baby because the baby… Again, the rules. The rules lessen as you have more children, they don’t increase. They lessen. You’re easier on the youngest child. “Mom, you never let me do that when I was eight years old,” that kind of thing. I’m just telling you, it’s a natural progression. I tell a story, it’s sort of a funny story about kids being the enemy. And I say kids go to bed with a plan. And they’re in bed, and an 11-year-old and 10-year-old sleep together in the same room. And they have a conversation that goes like this, “Hey, are you hungry?” “Yeah.” “Hey, you go out and tell Mom you want a treat. I ain’t going out there.” “No, you go there. You’re the oldest.” “No, no, no. Mom likes you more. You go out there. Tell her you just want a little snack.” “No, I’m not going out there.” And so they start to argue with each other. And the oldest says, “Wait a minute. What about Herbie?” Well, who’s Herbie? Herbie’s the four-year-old who’s sound asleep in the next room. So what do the two mobsters do at age 11 and 10? They go in and wake up little Herbie. “Herbie, Herbie.” “Wow. What are you waking me up for? I’m tired.” “Herbie, come here, go out and tell mom and dad you’re…” “I’m not hungry. I’m tired.” “No, you go out there and tell mom and dad right now you’re hungry. You want a snack.” And so there’s a little obedient Herbie, he’s being muscled by his older brothers, with his blankie in tow, and he comes out. And mom hears the little footsteps and turns and looks at her husband with astonishment, and then says, “What are you doing out of bed, Herbie?” “I want a snack.” “Oh, Herbie. All right, one quick snack. And then it’s right into bed.” I love to point out, and what do you see down the hallway? Two shadows creeping toward you. And what do they say when you say, “What are you two doing out of bed?” “Herbie’s out of bed.” And see, what I’m saying is oldest children sometimes use babies as fodder. And I like to say, if I’m teaching a seminar, why do they send baby Herbie out? Because if he gets killed, who cares? We don’t like the kid anyway. Doug: Andrea, does he sound like a resentful youngest to you, or is it just me? Andrea: Not at all. Not at all. Doug: Not at all. Oh, okay. Dr. Leman, have you been able to resolve your childhood issues? It sounds like maybe on this podcast you’re reliving. Dr. Leman: Well, no, it’s fun because I’ve told this, I think, a zillion times, but I talk with my sister, and she lives in New York, I live in Arizona, at least two times a week. And my brother and his wife, at least two times a week. During the coronavirus, we were probably speaking three to four times a week just because we all had more time. So I came from a very close family. And so to answer your questions, they still like to recount the antics that their younger brother did. They laugh with me, not so much at me anymore, but I respect them. And Sally, the oldest in the family, is as classy a lady as there is. My brother, Jack, was a devoted clinical psychologist for years and dealt with kids that were really tough to deal with. And so we’ve all been successful in life. But, again, we came from nothing. We had very few pennies in our family, but we did have a mom who was the rock of the family who was a great person of faith. And we had a dad who had lots of limitations, but we all knew that he loved us, despite it all. So, parents, those are the ingredients, the love, the acceptance, the affirmation, the communication that goes on. That pays off. I always tell parents when the parents are wondering what’s going to happen to this 12-year-old and 13-year-old who are at each other’s throat, it seems like, every moment of the day, and I say, “Well, I got news for you. They’ll be in each other’s weddings. And things will be better.” So that basic love, love permeates about everything there is to permeate in life. And if there’s love in a family, that’s going to carry you through. Andrea: Well, it’s been really fun to hear this perspective on the last born, on the baby of the family, and just how much their creativity come to full bloom and they can really go places with it when they get older. And, I don’t know, it’s just opened my perspective. So I really appreciate that. To close, I was wondering what are two tips you would give to parents raising their last born? You may have already said them, but two tips to take home. Dr. Leman: Well, that’s a good one, Andrea. And I think number one, for sure, would be to make sure that your youngest child has as much responsibility as they need to have in your family. That’s number one, is to keep them responsible. And maybe this is just one A to that is just be careful. You’re talking to a little person who can be very manipulative. They can play you like a violin. And just be aware of the fact that they have high social skills that might really test your mettle. And it gets back to loving them in a way that really is a guiding influence in their life. A baby sees things differently. I never forget in fourth grade, I won’t repeat what I did, but what I did was not the coolest thing I ever did in my life, but they put me outside of the room. And what did I do? Did I stand there? I mean, what do you guys think I did? This is a quiz. Doug: I think you went and found something to play with. Or you started acting out so they could watch you as you acted out in the back. Some sort of, something goofy. Dr. Leman: Okay. Andrea, what do you think? Andrea: You’re outside the back door? Dr. Leman: Yeah. I went home. I lived about a mile from school, fourth grade. So how old was I? 10 years old. I walked home. My mother was a working nurse. Now, when I grew up, all the kids, their mothers were at home in house dresses. Not mine. My mom was in her nurse’s uniform. She was a superintendent of a convalescent home for children. So they put me outside the door. I went home, I got my fishing pole. I walked about a quarter mile to the creek, and I went fishing. Was I worried? No, I went fishing. That’s the baby of the family, a little aberrant, a little off the wall. That little firstborn you put outside there’d be standing like a wooden soldier 20 minutes later. I could see Andrea out there. She’d be at attention. She’d be tearing up, thinking, “Oh, I’m in trouble. What am I going to do? Oh my goodness.” Me, I’m fishing. I still laugh about that stuff today. Doug: Well, thank you for that. As a fellow youngest in the family, I did hear some definitely bias towards youngest from Dr. Leman. I do not think he’s unbiased, Andrea. Andrea: I don’t think so. Doug: Yeah. So, everybody, just be aware of that. And if you want a clear perspective, go read the book, Birth Order Book for $2.99 between now and the end of October. And we hope that you can just love that youngest kid more and more and more. And learn how to accept them as they are, as Dr. Leman said, but give them enough responsibility. So it was fun to be with you today. And we look forward to the next time. Andrea: Have a great week. Doug: Take care. Bye-bye.
27 minutes | 3 months ago
How do I stop myself from reacting? – Ask Dr. Leman 156 (Episode 335)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “How do I stop myself from reacting?” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Oct 1 – 31: The Birth Order Book ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript
31 minutes | 3 months ago
Your Middle Child Needs to Feel Special (Episode 334)
Do you feel like your middle child is pulling away? ! Listen in to learn more about how to make your middle child feel special on this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Oct 1 – 31: The Birth Order Book ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: Oh, the middle child, the forgotten one. Andrea is a middle child. I’m a middle child and we can confess. Andrea: Oh, we feel forgotten. Doug: We are forgotten so often. Andrea: So I have to add in this next few weeks, we’re going to go over some of the birth order and we started with the middle child on purpose. Doug: Yes. Woo hoo. For the first time people are going to actually hear from us. So we’re going to get tips on what does it take to raise a middle child? Doug: Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: I’m Andrea. Doug: We’re both middle children and we are really glad that you are with us today. If you’re an older or younger, but if you’re a fellow middle. Woo hoo. Andrea: Go middle children. Doug: Go middle’s unite. [inaudible 00:00:47] welcome and if this is your first time, I’ll let you know this for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or a child, please go seek a local professional for help. Well, Dr. Leman, the question that Andrea has brought to us today is what about us poor middle children. What’s the tips on raising them? I thought she had a great [inaudible 00:01:12] your middle child needs to feel special or they’ll slip away. Help us. How do we raise our middle kids? Dr. Leman: Yeah they blend in. They can become beige. There’s part of the personality of the middle child. Many of them will let that happen without much of a fight. They just assume that the book ends, the first born and the youngest have it made and they sort of resolve themselves to an inferior position in the birth order. So their own personality does not lead to a lot of positives in a natural way. You got to sort of bring those positives out of the middle child. I remember one mommy saying, “Of all my kids, I could never figure out when things went awry with my middle child because I would find her whimpering in her room by herself. She wasn’t the one that came and said, “I feel sad or upset or I’m mad,” or whatever.” Dr. Leman: So again, a lot of middle children just sort of blend into the wall. So this is a good topic. I’m so proud of you guys as middle children saying, “Okay, if we’re going to talk a little birth order, let’s start with those neglected middle children.” They are the squeezed ones. I think everybody can see that. Again, your reality people is what you see from behind your eyes is a kid grows up behind the firstborn. There he is in the second position. Dr. Leman: He has three parents to start with or she has three parents to start. We’ve got mom, dad and older sibling. Depending upon the year gap between the first born and the second born, the more that statement is true. Because for example, if that child is four years younger than the first born, that’s a huge, huge difference. So the more gap there, the more influence that older sibling has over you. Dr. Leman: Now think for a moment, what are the personality characteristics that would describe your first born, your older sister, your older brother? Everybody think of that. Now those are probably areas that you as a middle child did not pursue. You went just in a completely different direction for survival, yes, but it makes sense. Doesn’t it? That role is already filled. So middle children, let me just say this, are the toughest to pin down. Dr. Leman: We say, “Okay, all middle children are like this.” Now we say all, we’re saying that with tongue and cheek because all middle children are not the same obviously, but when you look at them in masses, there are certain personality characteristics that seem to be pronounced within the middle child. So that’s number one reason why they’re so hard to pin down because they play off of what’s ever above them in the family. Dr. Leman: Let me give you a middle child who has an older sister who is rather introspective and she’s the quiet one. She’s not a leader, doesn’t seem to be a leader. She’s a quiet, follow the rules person. Books are some of her best friends. She doesn’t have a lot of social life. There you come along two years later. Middle child says to himself, “She’s a little on the boring side. Talk about beige layman. She’s beige and spades.” Dr. Leman: You know what? I think that’s an opportunity. That child, that second child, a middle child might leap over that firstborn. Now notice I said two years difference. If there’s a two year or less difference between the first and the second, there is a probability of that second child leaping over so to speak, taking over a leadership position in the family where they become more of a functional firstborn than they are a middle child. So let me just stop there and let you middle children interact because I could talk on this subject forever, but I’d much rather hear from you guys and how that makes sense maybe in your own lives, as you look at Doug and Andrea. Doug: Well, Andrea I think is a more pure firstborn because I have an older sister, three and a half years and then I’m the first boy and I was the first grandson boy. So I was the honored boy. Dr. Leman: Oh. You were a little kitten. Doug: I was little kitten. Yeah. So you can react to this more than I can. Andrea: Oh yeah. So yeah, my sister is two and a half years older than me. So I was trying to listen in like how does that fit with us? How did I respond to Emily’s, do things differently. I specifically, I remember when it got to sixth grade and we got to pick an instrument. She had picked flute and I really would’ve liked to play flute, but I thought, no, I have to be different. Andrea: So I picked the clarinet and I remember a particular sweater she got one year school shopping and she got the sweater and I loved it and it was in style, but I couldn’t get the exact same one. So I went and I got a blue one, but I never liked mine as much as I liked her green one, but I couldn’t have the same sweater. Dr. Leman: But listen, Andrea, how you lock in those choices. You’re very definite about that. I couldn’t do this. I can’t do that. That’s what happens to the middle child because they see those choices that that older sibling makes. I mean, they’re in granite. They’re in cement. They’re anchored and you just don’t dare go there. That’s why I can say almost assuredly that when you look at a family, the one thing we can really bet our house on is the fact that the first two kids in a family, especially if they’re same sex are going to be night and day different. Doug: So Dr. Leman help us as parents. We’re raising our middle children. What do we need to be aware of? How do we inadvertently parent them poorly or not ideally? Dr. Leman: What you have to understand is in the birth order itself, you have two little piglets who sort of dominate everything. That would be piglet number one and piglet number three. Let’s just say, make it easy. We’ve got a family of three. So the smart parent, the very best thing they can do to a middle child because what we do as parents is we call on the first born or we’re drawn to the baby of the family because they have an unreasonable need for attention many times and we skip over that middle child without even realizing it. Dr. Leman: So memorize this parents. Honey, I’d love to know what your opinion is about this. What do you think about this? Where would you like to go? What color do you like best? How should we spend our vacation this year? Tapping into those kids’ minds and letting them know that you care about their feelings is primary number one lesson for every parent of a middle child because they will slip away. They won’t always tell you how they feel. They’ll lock themselves into answers for their life just like Andrea just shared with us a few moments ago. Dr. Leman: So you got to get them out of that rut and let them know that you value them for who they are. So again, you want to treat your kids differently. So in treating your firstborn or your second born differently, I got news for you. Who wins on that? The firstborn wins. They get the bigger allowance. They get more privilege. They get to stay up later. So there’s some built in things within the family hierarchy that play against the middle child as well. So they get beaten up pretty good. They really do. Dr. Leman: The nice thing about middle children is when they get it from on top and they get it from underneath themselves, they become resilient. They become pretty adaptable people, flexible people. They roll with the punches. So with all this negativity we’re talking about for the middle child, those tough bumps in life I think helps strengthen the middle child to make them more courageous and able to persevere and develop an internal message that says, “I can do this.” So there’s some good news with the bad. Doug: What do we do towards middle children that is negative? Do we say things like, “Why can’t you be more like your older brother?” Or do we view them as lazy and not caring and not attention to detail? Dr. Leman: Well, anytime you compare children to each other, you’re doing somebody, both kids who does service quite frankly, but middle children can internalize that and then they start telling themselves, “I’m not this and I’m not that.” That’s why I say the positive affirmation for who they are is really important. So that means when you’ve got three kids and some psychologist on a podcasts says, “Well, you’re going to spend some special time with this kid. Hey Lehman, come to my house at 5:30 at night. It’s like a zoo and all the kids are either trying to finish their homework and I’m trying to get some help in the kitchen and I beat dad home by 45 minutes and I’m trying to get dinner on and I’m feeling the pressure and we’re yelling at each other and what do you want me to do? Take some extra time with the middle child?” Dr. Leman: It’s easier said than done what I’m saying, but those moments where you’re tucking kids in at night, I’d spend that extra time with that middle child. I’d tell them about your day and some of the thoughts you had and have a psychological transparency where you begin to foster a rather intimate relationship with that middle child, because I’m here to tell you he or she blocks themselves off from the rest of us in a very natural way. Doug: Well, and to that point, that’s kind of for me the annoying part. They block themselves off from us. You can just see them even when we ask them, “Well, where do you want to go?” The answer is, “Well, I don’t know. I don’t care. Wherever.” You’re like, “Dang it just tell me.” so how do we stop that from happening? Dr. Leman: In a functional way, you say, “Honey, when you decide where we’ll go, we’ll go someplace. In the meantime, we’ll just sit here and look at each other.” I mean, there’s ways of I always say force a blowout rather than a slow leak. Not that that’s a huge blowout, but no, we’ll wait. We’re patient. I want to hear what you want to do. Today is your day to pick where we go. They will let other people decide for them. They’re malleable. You ever see kids play with slime and how fluid that is and you could take slime from one hand and dump it in the other back and forth. That’s just a little bit like a middle child. Andrea: Which makes me think of something how I’ve heard that often the middle children are the peacemaker in the family. Does that go along with that? Because I can see a middle child not wanting to give their opinion about where we’re going to go eat or what movie we’re going to watch because they want to make sure everybody’s happy. Dr. Leman: Right. So they’ve learned when they express their opinion, older brothers, sisters, that that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. Why would you want to go there? So they’ve learned to sort of keep their opinion to themselves. What I’m trying to teach is we want these opinions out on the table. You have to encourage kids to give them to you. Again, in a very natural way, they fight against that themselves. But yeah, it’s very true. They avoid conflict. They’re peacemakers. That’s a wonderful skill. I’ve often said a middle management man. You can’t beat a middle child personality because they’ve negotiated their entire life. Doug: When we come back, I want to address what happens if we don’t get their opinions and we don’t try to draw them out so that we know from them? But before we do that, I want to share, this is one of the best things [inaudible 00:14:51] gives you guys offer for is the ebook is a birth order book for only $2.99 Between now and the end of October 2020. I’m just telling you, this is one of Andrea’s favorite books that she read and you read it in a flash. It’s only $2.99. Andrea, we got a little review here from someone on Amazon. Andrea: Yeah. Okay. Here. Very interesting and we’ll explain why your uncle or brother is the way they are. I have given this to many people and they are all fascinated by the info inside. Even those who pleasantly said thank you, we’re lauding how helpful and interesting the book is and figuring out why people do what they do. Doug: So Dr. Leman, why would I buy this book? Dr. Leman: Well, it’s a life-changer book. Now that’s a strong statement. Life-changer book, but it will change how you view yourself and how you view others around you. It’s a book that people buy in multiples. Of all the Leman books, that’s the one where it’s not uncommon for people to buy six of them at a time and give them to their friends or their work force people, their children. I think I’ve shared this with you before, but one of my editors who lived in South Carolina and she was really a top editor. Dr. Leman: She was with Thomas Nelson publishers, but her daughter was in a very serious automobile accident and she was hospitalized for quite some time, but she I’ll never forget her telling me that she for the very first time saw her daughter smile after this terrible accident reading the birth order book. I’ll never forget that. That’s a book that will put a smile on your face. Dr. Leman: It gives you insight into marriage, into yourself, into how you rear your kids. It’s sort of like an all purpose flour. You can use it in so many different situations. If you’re a business person and you’ve never read that book, oh my goodness. You have no idea what you’re missing. You’re a leg or two up on the competition by just simply reading that book. I always point out to people. Do firstborns by product like youngest children? No very, very different. Very different approach. Dr. Leman: So if you’re in sales, do you approach everybody the same way? I hope not. Am I suggesting in sales you say, “Excuse me, but what’s your birth order?” No, they’ll think you’re a nut, but what I’m suggesting is a conversation. Hey, where did you grow up? Where’s home for you. Oh, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Oh, cold country, huh? Yeah. Yeah. Yeah me and my brother. Okay. Bingo. I’ll already know he’s got a brother. Now is that a younger brother or an older brother? Oh younger brother. I’m the oldest. I’ve got two younger sisters too. Bingo. You know exactly as a salesperson after reading the birth order book how to approach that person in sales. Doug: So get it now wherever eBooks are sold till the end of October of 2020 and now a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: Hey parents, it’s grade time and the grades come home. Whose grades are those? You know the answer. But some of you say that’s a reflection upon me. So you do all kinds of things to help your child. You help your child by not helping your child. Again, as I’ve said on another tip, if you’re really in trouble, get yourself a tutor for your son or your daughter. Preferably someone just a few years older than them. Someone who can relate to them. Dr. Leman: We’ve seen these scandals where parents have paid billions of dollars to get their kids into prestigious schools. Does that make sense? How’d that work out by the way? Not very good. So remember, grades are a simple reflection about what your son or daughter has done in the classroom. Can you remind your kids of one thing? Yes. Here’s the thing. Honey, someday, someone’s going to look at a computer screen, see your four years of grades and they’re going to make all kinds of assumptions about who you are. So yes, grades are important. Now get to work. Doug: So Dr. Leman, you painted a picture of we’re all busy. It’s 5:30. We’re trying to get dinner on the table and then we’re trying to do homework or we’re running off to soccer. You say what happened? It’s hard to find time to connect with that middle child and ask them their opinions. What happens if we don’t do that? What’s the longterm ramifications? Dr. Leman: Well, the term to put a bluntly is you’ll never get to know your child and guess what? Your child will never get to know you because it is a two-way street. That will be the child that might not have a need to get together with family. That might be the child if you turn them off enough that you just don’t ever hear from them. There are families like that, we’re a real close family. Dr. Leman: So when I say things like that, it’s hard for me to feel that because I’ve never felt that in my life, but I sure have addressed a lot of people will feel isolated from their own family. So it’s just one of the crucial things you have to do as a parent. They have to get to know you and you need to get to know them. It’s easier to get to know the baby. Their mouth’s always running about something. Doug: I remember that you painted the picture for us a long time ago of a tree and as the tree goes up in this branch comes out here, that side of the tree is taken. So other kids will take different sides of the tree and different branches. If I hear what you’re saying is we can’t make all our kids play the clarinet. that We should let, we should let them choose. Maybe they don’t even want to do instruments. Is that what you’re telling us with the middle child? Let them be dance and not do music at all. Dr. Leman: So let’s take that analogy of the tree and look at it again. You see the trunk of the tree and the roots to the tree, that’s the foundation of your family. Those are your values, your beliefs, what you believe in, and as the trunk thickens and gets bigger and all of a sudden we have this first branch, there’s your first born, the other branch is your second born, your third born, et cetera. My question what are the nutrients to grow that tree? Dr. Leman: So the water that’s required in trees is the words. It’s the communication. It’s the love. It’s the feeling that makes us all a part of, in spiritual terms, Jesus talked about the vine and we all are part of that vine as a church. Well, we’re all a part of a family like that tree. Dr. Leman: You nurture that with words of encouragement and you trim the tree. There’s your vitamin N. That branch just doesn’t get to go and do everything they want to do. Sometimes you got to trim it back. Sometimes certain trees drip, if you know what I mean. I have a front sidewalk it reminds me of that every spring. Sometimes you have to put a bandage around that, on the limb to keep it from dripping where you don’t want it to drip. So again, as a parent, you’re the captain of the ship. You make those calls. Are we asking a lot? Yeah. When you decide to become a parent, you signed up for that, just like marriage. In sickness and in health. Doug: Yep. So Dr. Leman, one of the things that you said a long time ago that I have found true is that you can’t just sit down with a kid and say, “Okay, we’re going to have a heart to heart now.” That oftentimes they just kind of pop up whenever you’re doing some project and all of a sudden, or you’re doing something and then the kid starts sharing a lot with you. In my limited, I only got four examples, but I would say my middle two are the more random ones that it’s like, all of a sudden we’re doing something and all of a sudden we have this meaningful conversation where it seems like the younger and the older is far more willing to have those in a structured way. Andrea: Yeah. They’ll initiate it almost. Doug: Is that a trait of middle children or just the weird term? Dr. Leman: Yeah, I think so. I think one of the things you learn as a parent is to catch them on the fly. When you talk about random, a lot of parents would say, “Yeah my kid’s very random,” and some of them are just going all the time and they’re nonstop and there’s days that go by, I hardly say a word to that kid for whatever reason. But there comes a time, and usually it’s the end of the day, where kids settle in and there’s a smart parent that comes in and sits on the edge of the kid’s bed and just shares with a child. Dr. Leman: Some kids share easily. Some kids have a version of that, but you’re going to have to have times when you laugh, times when you cry, times when you communicate. Sometimes [inaudible 00:24:23] just very casually talk. You’re not going to force that relationship. It never works to force anything. Andrea: For our listeners, if there’s somebody out there that’s listening to this to this, then realizing, “Oh man, I’ve been neglecting my middle child and they are preteen, teenager,” what would your best advice for them to jump in without freaking that kid out? Like mom and dad are now grilling me with questions or what would be a good way to segue into building that relationship differently? Dr. Leman: I would do some self-talk as a parent to myself about how oblivious I’ve been at some things. Maybe just say, “What have I assumed about my middle child that I’m really not sure is true?” Make that list. That small list that you come up with is a fodder for you to engage your son or daughter in. Honey, you know the other day I was thinking and I always thought that you were maybe the most secure of all of our kids. You don’t whine like your little brother and you’re not bossy like your big sister. You just sort of roll along. But I’m just wondering, is that a fair assumption or not? I’d love to know your opinion on that. Dr. Leman: Again, I’m not trying to play shrink with you. I’m just curious. But see, that’s how I would approach things. All you do is give the child an opening to share about what’s really going on in their life because the middle child will hide out and they’re so adept at making sure everybody else is happy because they hate disapproval and conflict that you can miss, hey, is my middle child okay? So you just set up situations like that. They’re very casual. Again, it’s not forced. It’s just an opportunity to share. Andrea: It reminds me of some earlier podcasts we’ve done on not asking your kids questions, but how to draw them out. So that might be a good one to go back to. Andrea: I want to go back to something you said, Dr. Leman and then we should wrap this up is that the idea of sitting down with our middle child, I’ve done it with one of our middle child and said, “Isn’t your older brother a little over the top?” Like everything has to be done, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah,” like you suggested. I think I even copied you verbatim. Like you said, the kid’s eyes lit up and he’s like, “Really dad? Yeah.” Dr. Leman: I’m so glad you reminded me of that because you struck gold on that, Doug, because that’s the clincher folks. I’m just telling you. When you say that kind of thing like Doug just said. Honey, can I ask your opinion about something? Is your older sister a little over the top or is it me? Every cell in that kid’s body says, “What did you just say?” That is the best words. That’s better than Christmas is tomorrow. Somebody finally understands what I’m up against. That might be the clincher that brings that kid to tell you what’s really going on in their life. Doug: Well, and I set that middle child free to not have to be like perfect older brother. Like Dad actually has critique about older brother? I thought dad idolized older brother. It was like, “Nah, I get annoyed when he does that to me too.” I mean, he was like, “Wow.” Andrea: I am a little confused about our family’s birth order and who’s who, so I’m just going to ask real quick before we end the podcast. We have boy, girl, boy, girl and they’re all about two years apart. So does that make first girl like a firstborn personality? Dr. Leman: Well, your born daughter can be a functional firstborn, but that is dependent upon how strong of a firstborn, in your case, James would be your oldest son. Andrea: And he’s strong. Dr. Leman: Yeah. Andrea: Anna is a functional middle. Doug: Oh, she’s a peacemaker, conflict [crosstalk 00:28:37] Dr. Leman: Yeah. Okay. But there’s your reason why I want people to see. If firstborn is really your typical strong dug in firstborn, that’s less probability that that girl is going to become the functional first born, although she could in some other situations and more than likely that she becomes a middle. When you say you’re confused about your family, let’s just move down to child number three, a boy. There should be an alliance in your family and is the Alliance in your family between boy number one and boy number two or is it between boy number one and baby girl? Doug: Oh. Andrea: Oh definitely. Doug: Definitely. One and four are definitely alliance. Dr. Leman: So the two in the middle should be opposites. Doug: They are. Dr. Leman: With that being said and see, I would tell anybody to take a pen and a piece of paper and just diagram it. Put their names down or if you want, just boy, girl and sometimes you can just look at it and say, “Our family makes more sense than I thought.” Doug: Yep. Okay. Well, I got to wrap- Andrea: This is so fun. So thanks for talking about us middle children today. Doug: This is why I encourage you to go get the birth order book because it’s not just it’s like this is oldest, this is middle, this is youngest. He also talks about what to do, what not to do, but then also variances and why there’s variances within there. It’s absolutely fascinating and super helpful. If you’re a middle child who feels lost like, “Well, there’s nothing about me. I’m just night.” No, there’s way more in there about it than you realize. Doug: So you can get it now between now and the end of October of 2020, wherever e-books are sold or $2.99 to get it now. Well, it was great to be with you and yay for us middle children that we got to go first. Thank you Andrea, and we look forward to the next time we get to hang out with you and add to that parenting toolbox. Andrea: Have a great week. Doug: Take care. Bye bye.
20 minutes | 4 months ago
Will I hurt my child if I let them cry without immediate comfort? – Ask Dr. Leman 155 (Episode 333)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “Will I hurt my child if I let them cry without immediate comfort?” Listen in to find out Dr. Leman’s response on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Sep 1 – 30: Have a New Sex Life by Friday ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** **Special Offer– Oct 1 – 31: The Birth Order Book ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Andrea: My little baby girl is crying and crying, and I’ve been told I should comfort her right away, and I’ve been told it’s okay to let her cry it out. Which one should I do? Let’s ask Dr. Leman today. Doug: Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: And we are so glad that you were with us today. Welcome, if this happens to be your first time, love to let you know that this is for your education and entertainment purposes, only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. Well, I am so appreciative of this question today. It’s an audio question that you can leave at birthorderguy.com/ and put just about any number. This episode is 333 if you want to. And at the bottom, those little microphone and you can leave your audio questions. So let’s jump into it today and hear what we are asking Dr. Leman. Speaker 3: Hi, Dr. Leman. I’m a first time mom of a two-year-old son. So the other day I came across a book and it was speaking on the brain wiring of newborns, how depending on how quickly a mother responds to her baby’s cries and needs, will wire their brain to let the baby know if they are worthy of love and valuable, and if they have a secure foundation. And of course, meaning if the mom doesn’t respond, then that kid is not valuable and it can affect their relationships early in life. So of course, after reading that, I bawled my eyes out because I was raised on the cry it out method. And I think also being a first-time mom, you kind of think, “Is this newborn manipulating me?” Which I know it sounds funny now, but anyways. I just wanted to see what you thought about that, because I’m sure there’s a healthy balance, but also want to know if you believe that, and if you do, how do you also take today and make sure that kid does feel secure? Again, I don’t see any signs of my son feeling insecure. I have changed a lot of my ways since becoming a new mom, but at the same time, I don’t want his brain to be wired this way. So what is your advice and take on all of this? I appreciate it. Dr. Leman: Well, let’s start with a disclosure. I never enjoyed physiology, so not claiming to be an expert on how your baby’s brain is wired, et cetera. But when you talk about responding right away to a child’s cries, to me, it’s situational. If it’s bedtime, for example, or nap time, and you have fed your baby, nursed your baby, changed their pamper, tucked them in, and laid them down and they cry, I would let them cry. Okay. So I’m sort of where you were. You said your growing up, that was sort of your attitude into motherhood, and that would be mine. So in situations where you’re laying a kid down for a nap or night-night if the child cries, I wouldn’t go in there. Now, all you mommies that have little infants have monitors, where you can see what’s going on. A child can roll over and get their arm stuck, or you name it, that’s why you have monitors. So obviously, the safety and wellbeing of your child is always a number one. But crying with a child, can be very purposeful behavior on an infant’s part. They learn that they cry this nice warm body comes and picks them me up and pats my back and rocks me. And if you want kids to go to bed at night and stay asleep, you don’t go in every time a kid whimpers and try to comfort them. What gives kids security is routine. And since you’re a first-time mom and your child’s two already, you’ve developed a sense of rhythm with that child. It’s the infant-mommy dance, so to speak. And you get to know your kid and you get to know the signs of when it’s time to lay your child down for a nap. And you get to find out quickly, does your child like a little music? Does that help them go to sleep? Do they have one of those little windup things that go above their head that plays a very soft little melody as they fall off to sleep? So my basic response to you is with all deference to a professional who’s written a book about how the brain is wired, so be it. Take that person’s information and do whatever you want with it. I’m not here to sit in judgment of that. But I can tell you that behaviorally, if you respond to every cry a child makes, you’ll end up with a cry baby. You’ll end up with a baby who’s crying all the time. So again, in general, I’m of the school of thought, let them cry it out. You’ve heard me on this podcast, many times, when kids are beside themselves and you put them in a room, you’ve heard me say, well, a kid will kick a door, scream, yell, they’ll do everything. What do you go in there and try to calm them down? No, you let them meltdown, and 15 minutes, 20 minutes, sometimes a half hour later, the kid will fall asleep on the floor. Not the end of the world. Hopefully, you have a fairly clean floor. But in general, that’s my take on crying. If the baby is in their playpen and the baby’s a year old or 13 months old and the baby all of a sudden cries, would I go in and check in the next room? Yes, I would. I’d check, see what’s wrong. Maybe they got caught in the net or twisted or something happened. So again, use your judgment. I don’t think this is rocket science, this kind of thing. I think my message to parents is, have a routine, get to know your child’s routine, and that child really sort of dictates the routine. If they start crying at every moment you rush in, all of a sudden, there’s no routine, it’s helter skelter. And the kid just becomes conditioned that, “If I scream, that nice warm body will come pick me up and rock me.” So be careful on it, that’s what I’m saying. Andrea: So you’re saying that if we give them a routine and we kind of follow what their routine is, but we let them cry a little bit, then eventually, they’re going to kind of fall into that and they’ll cry less. Dr. Leman: Right. And they’ll create their own routine. What I’m saying is, you sort of dovetail yours to theirs. Every child has a little different rhythm. Some kids will show signs. Some kids will rub their eyes. You’ve seen an infant rub their eyes, a toddler rub their eyes. And that sometimes is a clue that, “Okay, it’s nap time.” Where we get in trouble as parents, is when we break out of that routine. “I’m just going to run down to Starbucks and meet my girlfriend. Yeah, I know it’s nap time, but she just called and ooh, a Starbucks sounds real good right now.” And so you go, and from the time you leave your house till you get down to Starbucks, to the time you get back, it’s an hour and a half. Now you got the kid an hour and a half off schedule. Are you going to pay for that? In all probability, you will. So schedules are not to be militaristic to the second, to the minute, but keep in mind that your kid does have a very natural cycle that you want to plug yourself into. Andrea: So what about bonding in other ways? Dr. Leman: Oh yeah. Andrea: Nursing or you’re reading a book and you’re playing with the blocks. Are those the times that that child feels cared for? If I’m not going and picking them up when they’re crying, where does this sense that they’re worthy of my affection come from? Dr. Leman: I hope I’m not misinterpreted in this, but I don’t think your responding to a kid’s cry has anything to do with bonding. The bonding is, when you’re holding that child, when you’re reading this story to them, when you’re playing with them, when dad is throwing your infant three feet in the air, and you’re hoping he catches them, that’s all part of bonding. The snuggle time together, tucking them in, reading them a story, all the little tactual stimulation that you give kids during the day, is all part of bonding; the verbalization, the eye to eye contact. I mean, there’s all kinds of classic studies where if you deprive kids of tactual stimulation, you’re going to create all kinds of problems in that kid’s personality. Kids need softness, they need touch, they need words, they need vitamin E. All that’s a part of bonding. Just reacting to the cry is not bonding, per se. Andrea: Yeah. I hope this is encouraging to that mama, that cried after she read this book, because she’s used the cry it out method with her two-year-old that she has not done anything wrong. And it sounds like she loves this kid and she’s probably doing all those things you just described. Dr. Leman: Yeah. She’s being probably, a little reactive to reading that book. I can think of a few books you could read to be more helpful than that one when it comes to being a good parent, but she sounds like she’s a good mommy. And first time parents, I mean, if you look at how you reared your firstborn child, parents, okay. Everybody just think of how you felt when you brought that baby home from the hospital and all that, and compare it with how you were with a third born. You’ll see, there’s a remarkable difference in how you responded to things. You learn from being a mommy. You learn from being a dad. So it’s natural to wonder, you see these things. If I’m a parent and I read that, I think I’d be getting way ahead of myself by reading too much into that. Doug: So when we come back, I want to ask about the concept that we’re doing damage, psychological damage to our kids. But I am super excited about our friends at Revell-Baker and what they are offering you guys. Between October 1st to October 31st of 2020, you can get this book called The Birth Order Book for a mere $2.99. Andrea: An eBook Dr. Leman: That should never happen. You should not be able to get The Birth Order Book for $2.99 under any circumstance. And I can protest to the publisher and they say, “Leman, we’re in charge of these. So we love you. We love your books, but it’s available for 2.99.” So all I can tell you is, take advantage of that sucker. Strike while the iron’s hot. Andrea: Here’s an Amazon review: An easy and insightful read. Helpful in family life, as well as business. This was an impulse purchase at a big box store. And I had to buy a couple more for a friends. It’s an easy read yet, really accurate. I laughed all the way through it at the positive and negative attributes. I’m an oldest child and this book was pretty spot on. I have found this helpful in family life, as well as business.” Doug: So go get The Birth Order Book between October 1st of 2020 to the end of October of 2020, for a mere $2.99, wherever your eBooks are sold. And now, a no nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: Okay, parents, I’m going to give you a little guilt today. Your kid’s homework comes home. After dinner, the whining starts. “Mommy, I need your help.” “Honey, you can do this.” “No I can’t. I need your help.” And before long, these kids who have criminal type thoughts, are able to take you into their little spider web and chew you up. And before long, you will have finished 19 of the math problems. And I know the punchline here, you’re mad because you only got 14 of them right, you found out. Hey, listen, it’s his homework, it’s her homework. Give them a place to do their homework. Give them a time. Every kid’s different, some right after school, some after dinner, whatever. But stay out of your child’s homework. If you really need help, hire a tutor, and good luck. Doug: So Dr. Leman, one of the things that I think people would say, which is probably bad to use the word, I think, is this concept that we are doing psychological damage to our children if we let them cry. Where does that come from? Dr. Leman: I don’t know. Those are probably the same kind of parents that think that your infant ought to sleep with you, that your toddler ought to sleep with you. We read things like that into devastation of a child’s personality, you’re neglecting their basic needs. I mean, if you want to bring up a child, give them a sense of independence. Give them a room or a space, I know some kids have to share rooms. Give them that place that’s their own. Let them develop their own identity. That’s why we are always urging parents to treat kids differently. Why? Because they’re different personalities. What works for one, doesn’t always work for the other. So when I hear things about, you’re going to do psychological damage to a child, I mean, yeah, if you’re abusing a child, you sure will. Being neglectful as a parent, you sure will. Being demeaning, yelling, screaming, letting kids see things that are very inappropriate at a young age on a screen, yeah, those things will do damage to a kid. But letting a kid cry because they had a meltdown or when you tuck them in a bed, they cry, let him cry. And to read into that, that somehow you’re doing psychological damage, is bull crumble, in my opinion. Doug: Well, we let our kids cry out a fair amount, and you did a great job also, Andrea, of nurturing them and loving them, and especially when you’re breastfeeding them, and we would play on the floor with them. And I’m just telling you, last night, our 20-year-old, our 18-year-old, our 16-year-old and our 15-year-old, we were like, “Hey guys, do you want to watch a movie? Do you want to play around?” And literally, our 15-year-old said, “No, why don’t we just sit here and visit as a family?” Dr. Leman: Oh, gee. Doug: I was like, “Oh wow.” And our daughter whipped out a computer and started reading us all these jokes that were just hilarious. Well, clearly, our kids, they feel bonded. I mean, it’s antidotal that it’s just one family, but I’m just saying the other thing is, I think it’s what you said is our kids feel independent enough that they know who they are and they have enough self control to do what they want to do, which is a huge blessing at this age as well. Andrea: It’s really what we do when they’re awake and we’re active together, not during bedtime, that they know where we’re going to play a game. We’re going to laugh at the meal. We’re going to listen to funny music in the car or a story in the car, whatever fit where we are a family, and we go on walks or whatever it is. Not whether or not I run to them every time they whimper. Dr. Leman: Yeah. So I think predictability, the mundane and a schedule, and not a militaristic schedule, is a good way of creating a sense of security in your kids’ minds and hearts. Having parents that are on the same page, who really manifest the fact that their yes is a yes and their no is a no, I think builds character with kids and gives them a sense of security as well. Doug: Well, and this is why we do this podcast, because there’s lots of questions out there that all brand new parents have. And I really appreciate you leaving this question. It’s a great question that you’re asking and it took guts to do that. Kudos to you. But this is why I say, go grab one of the Leman books, Making Children Mind Without Losing Yours, Have a New Kid by Friday and this Birth Order Book. It just gives you confidence that you can do this. And I think the thing that Dr.Leman keeps saying is, the consistency, you being the parent, not authoritarian, not permissive. You do those things and all the rest of these other things that make you bawl your eyes out and think you’re the worst person in the world, it just gives you confidence that you are a great parent. And I would say, Andrea, then I’ll ask you, it gave us the confidence that we could just love our kids more, actually. Dr. Leman: Yeah. Well, kids, again, keep in mind parents, you give kids an opportunity to give back to the family. That gives them a sense of wellbeing as well. Even the three or four-year-old can help on load a dishwasher and dump garbage from a small container into the larger one. And there’s things that your children can do at an early age to give them the feeling that they’re giving back to the family, that they’re part of it. And we tend to write off the little ones and dump all the responsibilities on the older ones. And as kids get older, especially into high school, you got to lift some of those chores and let the littler ones pick up the slack. Doug: Well, again, thank you for this question. And if you would like to leave your own, you can go to birthorderguy.com/ and put just about any number, 333 on down. And there’ll be a microphone at the bottom, hit that microphone and leave an audio question and we would love the answer it. If there’s one that you’re like, “Hey, they haven’t answered this one,” feel free to leave it. And a quick reminder, you can get The Birth Order Book October 1 to the end of October of 2020, wherever eBooks are sold, for a mere $2.99 cents and it is a great, fun book to read. And we love being with you and adding to your parenting toolbox. And we look forward to the next time we get to hang out with you. Andrea: Have a great week. Doug: Take care. Bye-bye.
27 minutes | 4 months ago
Without a Relationship, We Have Nothing (Episode 332)
There will be times when your kids pull away from you, but maintaining those relationships is key. Listen in as Dr. Leman breaks down the four components of a relationship: trust, honesty, communication, and transparency. Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug Terpening: Do you know, Andrea, without this, we have nothing. And actually, if with our kids, we don’t have this, we ain’t got nothing. What is this thing that without it, we got nothing in our parenting that we need to hear from Dr. Leman? Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea Terpening: And I’m Andrea. Doug Terpening: And we are really, really glad that you’re with us today. It is such a delight to be with you. I want to let everybody know that if this is your first time, this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, seek a local professional for help. Well, Dr. Leman, here we are, the end of September. School is back in session and some of us are in quarantine, some of us are back in normal. What is it that you say, “Without this, you have nothing”? And what does it mean? Dr. Leman: Well, without a relationship with your mate, for example, you don’t have anything. You’re a paper tiger. You’re going nowhere. It’s going to incinerate before long and a lot of people are going to be hurt. If you don’t have a relationship with your son or your daughter, it’s going to blow up. Anger, explosions, tantrums, a feeling of betrayal and a separation, if you will, between parent and child. So, what’s in a relationship? Why don’t the three of us come up with some words that would describe a relationship? I think a relationship needs to have at least three components, and you guys can be thinking of others as I talk about this. Number one is trust. Number two, honesty. Number three, there has to be communication. And number four, there has to be a sense of transparency. Now when I say transparency, I’m not saying to parents that you have to share with your kids everything that’s going on. You just don’t. I always say, if God wanted us to know what the other person was thinking, he would have given us glass foreheads. So there’s the ability, hopefully, of a parent or a mate to use discretion when we talk about honesty and trust and communication and transparency. So there has to be some division there, and that takes us to the A word, which is authority. And as parents, you have to remember that you are in authority over your children. Does that mean you run their lives? No, it doesn’t. But it means you’re in healthy authority over your kids. For those of you believe in almighty God and his son, Jesus Christ, who are the same, by the way. If you’re a heathen, that’s a curve ball for you. You’ve got to ask yourself, does almighty God just pull strings and run our lives for us? No, he gives us that right. He loves us so much that we get to make choices. So in relationships, Andrea, you and Doug made choices every day and you made choices with your children. And it’s an art form, I’ve said many times, parenting, but what words? I’m just curious what words you would add to describe what a healthy relationship looks like. Doug Terpening: Bacon, steak, physical closeness. Are those them? Andrea Terpening: He stole one of mine. I was going to say communication. And now he’s got all the good ones and I can’t think of anything. Dr. Leman: I love affection. I think that’s part of a good relationship. Can you be overly affectionate? We haven’t used the word love, but can you love a kid too much? How do parents interpret love? I sat in a restaurant last night, and a young lady who had to be 18 or 19 years of age, I about fell over. Her mother came over to the other side of the table. There were just two of them eating. And she cut up her meal for her. And so nosy me, I kept my eye on this kid for the rest of the meal. And I thought, “I wonder if this kid is physically challenged or something’s going on, or in some way has some physical or mental disabilities.” Well, I watched and she was talking and laughing, having a conversation. Seemed very normal to me. So I’m wondering what that parent’s perception was of her role. I mean, I can understand cutting up a kid’s meal at age three or four. I just don’t get it at 18 or 19. Somebody help me out with that. So all these things that we’re talking about, take a parent to use good judgment in discretion and learning how far to go with trust and communication and transparency and honesty and affection. If you came out of a dysfunctional family where you never felt like you were loved and you never measured up, then this conversation’s already got you a little baffled because you grew up in a foreign land and we’re speaking a different language. Doug Terpening: Yeah. So in the area of parenting, this is one of your pocket phrases and it’s one that you taught Andrea and I. What I really liked about it as I was researching that I don’t think we’ve ever done a podcast on this, that you use the analogy that parents, this is how you can use it to help you out. That when your kid says, I hate you, or I don’t want to be with you, or they’re just uber disrespectful to them, you say, “Later,” when they ask you to go do something, the classic later. You tell them, “Without a relationship, we have nothing. And you can’t treat people this way and expect them to want to be with you or help you. Once we have a relationship again, then I’ll gladly help you.” And I thought, “Wow, that is such a good phrase to help us get the concept that we need to care about others.” Is that- Dr. Leman: Yeah. So if the Terpenings are coming to me behind closed doors and they say, “We’ve got a kid who was all of a sudden, terribly disrespectful to us and we just don’t know where to turn,” I might suggest, “Hey, Doug and Andrea, you didn’t give your son or your daughter bread and water treatment.” And the bread and water treatment basically is all of a sudden as parents, you do nothing for your child. You don’t give them lunch money. You don’t drive them down to the corner to catch the bus. You do nothing for them. They get, “No, I don’t feel like helping. No, I don’t want to get you a glass of milk. No, you can’t go to your friend’s house. No, you can’t have a goldfish or a puppy.” Whatever it is, it’s no. And that will rock a kid’s world. They don’t know what hit them. But it gets down to the fact that once the teenager or the young kid settles down, you have an honest communication with them and said, “Hey, I’m done. I ask you to do simple things. Your dad and I work our tails off to put food on the table, clothes on your back. We don’t feel like you’re appreciative of anything. So from now on, I’m just putting you on notice. We are out of relationship.” It’s like you’re out of sync. People’s hearts sometimes go into what they call atrial fibrillation. And it’s the heart’s out of sync and it doesn’t beat right and the heart races. And sooner or later, you’ve got to deal with that because it can cause disaster for that person, for example, a stroke or a blood clot, or you name it. So when things are out of sync, you can only let that go so long. Now here’s another Lehman pocket phrase. Do you want to slow leak it to death or would you rather force a blowout? I’d rather force a blowout because if you slow leak some of these things together, the damage is too much to recover from. So parents, you have to step up to the plate. Be the parent you need to be. Call a spade, a spade. Don’t be afraid to give your kid vitamin N. Now if you’re fearful, my kid’s not going to like me, you need to go read a Leman book and start there before we even have a conversation. Doug Terpening: Here’s the connect the dot moment for dense Doug. So we know that I’m the slow one on here, is that I know about the bread and water treatment and all those things. But what was helpful for me with this phrase, relationship, we have nothing, and add, if you can’t treat me well, what makes you think that you’re going to treat others well. And to tie this whole concept of helping, because we’re training up an adult, not a child, to say that the world is not about you and you need to have real relationships with real people and this is not how you treat people. Because someday when you get married, this is probably how you’re going to treat your mate. I don’t know if you’d say that to a kid or not. So I’m using a lot of words and I apologize. But for me it was really helpful to go, “Okay. Part of my parenting process is not just that they treat me well, it’s that they treat others well.” Dr. Leman: Right. Well, if you grew up in a home that was toxic and you saw your dad, for example, treat your mother like dirt and you marry, what’s the best guess of how you’re going to treat that bride of yours? Monkey see, monkey do. And it gets repeated over and over and over again. But we are so far off base with where we are today in America with rearing children. I always like to throw you Canadians in as well, because you’re not much better. We drive ourselves silly trying to make your kid happy at every turn. Again, I love these little one liners, but an unhappy child is a healthy child. Your job is not to create a happy child. Your job is to raise an adult so that when they leave their home, your home, you’ve equipped them to take on the tigers and lions of life because they’re going to be out there. Everybody’s not going to be like mom and dad. Doug Terpening: Right. Well, I think for me, it really helped me in thinking through like, I’m not just trying to get these kids to obey and treat me right. Absolutely, that’s part of it, but if they can learn to do it to me, they’ll learn to do it to others. And I’m trying to set them up for success because I think all of us that are in the workforce these days are like, I tell my kids all the time, I think 80% of most jobs today are just getting along with people because it is crazy out there that people just can’t even get along. And I thought, “Wow, we’re not teaching our kids this concept.” Like treat others with respect and you’ll probably do pretty well in life. So bread and water treatment’s not to be mean, it’s actually to set our kids up for success someday. Dr. Leman: Right. So talk to any employer, you parents. Y’all know employers. Just ask them a simple question. What’s it like when you hire people today? What are you seeing? What are the trends you see when you bring someone new into your business or company? And you’ll get an earful, because I talk with those business people all the time and they say it’s really hard to get good help. I know I’m in the education business. We have seven schools that are functioning beautifully, by the way, but we have teachers who flat out just quit because there’s not enough me time. Why would you take a job as a teacher and expect a lot of me time? I mean, we haven’t trained up a core of young people in our countries to have any type of a healthy work ethic. People bail out so easy. When challenges come, they don’t say, “Wow, I’m going to solve this puppy. I’m going to dig in.” They walk away. Whatever. Well if you’ve got a business, you don’t need anybody in your company with a whatever attitude. But that is the attitude that most people carry out throughout life today. Now, you get your kids involved in 4H or in other activities that really challenge kids, make them think and work, hey, you’re on the right path, parents. But again, I’m not a huge guy on activities. So I’m not saying enroll your kid in every activity. I’m saying, try to find an activity for your son or your daughter that will help challenge them and set them up for the real world. Doug Terpening: So Dr. Leman, I want to make sure I get in the ebook offer and then I’m going to ask Andrea a question for all the moms out there about connecting the dots, because they are, like my wife is 100 miles ahead of me. But I better do the ebook before I forget. Right now you can get, Have a New Sex Life by Friday, between now and the end of September of 2020 for only a $1.99, wherever ebooks are sold. And as Dr. Lehman has said, this is not about sex, but this is about communication and about your relationship. I didn’t even think about, it is talking about what we’re talking about right now, that it does help you make sure that you have a relationship with your own spouse. And if you can get it with your spouse, it’s way easier with your kids, isn’t it? So now go wherever you buy your ebooks between now and the end of September, Have a New Sex Life, a buck 99. And now a no nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: I get asked all kinds of questions about, at what age do you do this? At what age do you do that? Hey parents, it’s not a matter of [Spanish 00:15:27], for our Spanish speakers. You know what that means. That means yours. It’s really about maturity. Now my question is, do you give your son or daughter opportunity to grow, to make decisions, to learn? Is failure acceptable in your home? If that’s true, I got news for you, your kids are going to mature. They’re going to realize that life is not built around them and that other people count in life. So parents, take it easy. Take a big breath. Life isn’t going to be perfect. In our seven Leman schools, I have a sign, Leman Academy of Excellence, where learning is fun. Keep a fun, positive environment in your home, and everybody’s going to feel better about themselves and other people. Doug Terpening: Okay. Andrea, you’re the resident mom here, right? Andrea Terpening: So you want me to connect the dots between bread and water and without a relationship, we have nothing. Is that right? Doug Terpening: Or do you go, oh, I see how holding my kid accountable, saying no, helps them understand how to have a relationship and treat people well down the road? Like how they treat you. Andrea Terpening: Yes, absolutely. Doug Terpening: But what would you need to be able to go, “I am going to give them the bread and water treatment, because I know longterm, even though it might feel bad to the relationship for a couple of days, I can see longterm it will help them”? Andrea Terpening: Right. Well, if I feel like they’re taking advantage of me or they’re pushing me around or they’re making it impossible for me to do my role as a mom, then of course, I’m going to see that they need this bread and water, this accountability in their lives, because it’s affecting our relationship if they’re trying to push me around or take advantage of me as their mom. Dr. Leman: Andrea, you’re the better person of the three of us, but here’s my question for you. How long would you let a child push you around before you pulled up the bread and water treatment? Andrea Terpening: Well, you’re asking a empathetic. So I don’t know how long. It probably depends on how forceful they’re being and what kind of mood I’m in. Dr. Leman: That’s an honest answer. But I think for people like you, you’re what I call a positive pleaser. You would like the oceans of life smoother. When the rough seas come with your kids, your tendency is probably to, well, maybe he just had a bad day or whatever. And my admonition to parents is don’t let the cancer grow. Nip it in the bud, as Barney Fife once said. All the young people are saying, “Who’s Barney Fife?” Look it up. I’m not telling you. But I think the idea is to have kids really pay attention to the words you use as a parent. So you’re not calling them three times to dinner. You’re not telling them six times to pick up their room. You see what I’m saying? So if we can get a parent to be so efficient, that when they say something, a kid automatically says, “Uh oh, I got to get on it.” You see what I’m saying? So the quicker that response can come from a parent where, “Hey, I’m not taking guff from you, six-year-old,” the sooner you’re going to have a change in that child’s behavior. That’s a guarantee. Doug Terpening: And to your point, what I’ve seen, and I think you have at times too, Andrea, is when we don’t react but we actually think about it and we take our kids aside and tell them, “We are noticing this behavior. Is this correct,” oftentimes they are contrite to us. Or we’ll say, “Great. We think we see it this way. You think you see it that way. We’re going to,” we do … It is amazing though, but if we just brush it aside, you and I, Andrea, if we just like, “Ah, it’s not that big a,” it does grow. Doesn’t it? It doesn’t matter. It just grows, doesn’t it? Dr. Leman: Well, and think about a marital relationship for a minute, and your feelings are really hurt by your mate. Something is said, something is done. And you go to bed with anger in your heart. And we know that biblical admission. So if you fester, if it just doesn’t get dealt with, what do you do with it? Do you sweep it under the rug three days later and pretend it didn’t happen? Well, I think it’s a little bit like eating a pizza on a Saturday night. You ate the pizza at 10 o’clock, but 11 o’clock you still taste it. It backs up on you. It causes you to be irritable. And at even a subconscious level, you’re going to start taking cheap shots at your mate because you didn’t resolve what was obviously a problem in the relationship. It’s sort of like you have to clean filters. Filters are in washing machines and dryers and cars. Those filters are there for a reason. But there’s times you have to pull out the hose and clean up the filter and clean it out because you’re going to function better and all that garbage that you got out on the table, so to speak, and a got chance to vent and discuss and come to a solution, now you’re in a healthy mode again. And I think every couple, every parent has to realize there is a filter within you that has to be maintained and cleaned properly. Doug Terpening: Well, I hope all of your parents can add this pocket phrase to your thinking about parenting that without a relationship, we have nothing. And when your kids or your spouse or mate is in the same situation, then you can go back to this. But I think for us as parents, my encouragement just is like, oh, that’s right. We are raising up kids to be adults and how they treat others. And it really does matter. It starts in the home and it starts with how they treat mom and it’s how they treat dad. And that we can do this. And this is why I do this podcast, is to say, guys, if you need, and gals, if you need help and clarity, go read, Have a New Kid by Friday, how to help … I can never, what’s the children mind? Andrea? Andrea Terpening: Making your children mind without losing yours. Doug Terpening: Yes. Yes. Sorry. I don’t know I can’t get that book in my mind. And read those, read the birth order book, so you have the confidence to do this because there’s so many messages out there that tell us the opposite and so many messages that are telling us to live a different way. I’m just telling you, Andrea and I, we are having so much fun with our 20, 19, 17 and 15-year-old right now that it pays off in unbelievable spades for you. Andrea Terpening: Can I just say, I feel like I’m listening to this from the other side. I like to hear just this without a relationship, we have nothing. It just sounds to me like a foundation. And when I hear that, I’m not thinking about the bread and water coming down the road. I’m just thinking about building that foundation. And I don’t know, to me, that just seems crystal clear in my mind. If I can work on that trust and honesty and communication and transparency, then I think the bread and water will be few and far between. Dr. Leman: Yeah, that’s a good thought, Andrea. If you’re going to build a cement wall, that wall is only going to be great if the foundation is laid right. You put rebar in cement and within blocks, why? Why do you put that metal rebar in there? To strengthen what you’ve already built. So it’s pretty basic stuff, but relationships are so important. In the business world today, I’ll remind people that Herb Kelleher was one of my heroes. He is now deceased. He was Chairman of the Board at Southwest Airlines for years. And he had such great insight into people. He told me one day, he said, “Kevin,” he said, “at Southwest, we hire a personality. I can teach people the rest of the stuff, but I can’t teach personality.” So some of you have the gift of a very engaging personality and that’s going to help you throughout life. Each year kids are different. Some kids have very outgoing, they could be a snake charmer. They could talk their way through anything. Other kids are going to need some more self-confidence to even open their mouth. So again, remember, you’re the captain of the good ship family. And the question I always like to ask is, do you have a port of call? Do you know where you’re going on the ocean of life? When the storms come, and they’re going to come, do you have a game plan? How are you going to handle it? And are you committed as parents to each other? And those of you who are living in separate homes, you’re divorced and you’re remarried and all that, boy, that’s tough to do. But if you don’t pick up the phone and talk to each other and don’t let things slide, then you’re going to be in trouble, big trouble, and your kids are going to pay for it. Doug Terpening: So again, Andrea, I thought your points were great. And for lots of us, we don’t know how to do those things, to be honest. And this is where Have a New You by Friday can come in and help you really ask yourself the hard questions of life so that your life is just better. Spend the energy now. Okay, I’ve gone through enough. I’ve listed off like all of Leman’s books. Andrea Terpening: All right, honey. Time to wrap it up. Doug Terpening: I get no royalties. I get nothing from the books. I just know what they’ve done in our lives. I know how they’ve changed us. I could have my kids come out here and they would say, “It’s been great.” But you need to do it for yourself, and that’s why we do this, so that you can have a better and better relationship with those kids. So, a reminder between now and the end of September, you get to have, Have a New Sex Life by Friday for $1.99, wherever ebooks are sold. And I just can’t encourage you, if you heard this and something’s pricked in your mind, go read a different book, whether it’s about you or about how you’re parenting, and Dr. Leman [inaudible] will. We look forward to the next time that we get to add your parenting toolbox, that you can just love those kids more and more. Andrea Terpening: Have a great day. Doug Terpening: Take care. Bye, bye.
31 minutes | 4 months ago
We even took away hockey and our kids still disobey. – Ask Dr. Leman 154 (Episode 331)
It’s time for another Ask Dr. Leman: “We even took away hockey and our kids still disobey.” Listen in as Dr. Leman discusses the solutions to unrelenting disobedience on today’s episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Sep 1 – 30: Have a New Sex Life by Friday ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: You started to try some of these principles, B doesn’t happen until A, and you’re thinking, well, it’s not totally working yet. And still you wrap it up and you keep doing more and more and eventually you take away even the beloved hockey. That’s what Marcie, asked Dr. Leman, that we get to ask you today. Hi, I’m Doug Terpening. Andrea: And I’m Andrea. Doug: If this is your first time with us, welcome. But if it is your first time, I want to let you know this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please seek a local professional for help. Well, Marcie’s question comes and I don’t think I know where she’s from, but if she took away hockey, it was a pretty good guess she’s from Canada, don’t you think? Andrea: Yep. Or up in Minnesota or something. Doug: Minnesota. Probably not from New Mexico. But here we go, Dr. Leman, here is the question for you. Marcie: I have a seven year old boy, five and a half year old girl, a four year old girl and a two year old girl and we are having trouble with them cleaning up and listening. There is a deliberate defiance we’re seeing in them not doing what we’ve asked them to do. This has been going on for over a year now. We have used the consequence part of it, where if you didn’t clean up, then you’re going to miss an activity. Done it without warning, so they miss their hockey or they miss their dance class or their swimming lesson and it doesn’t seem to affect them. They might be a little bit frustrated for a few minutes, but the cleaning up part doesn’t change. We’ve taken all their toys away, locked them in a room and so that you can’t have them until you guys start listening. We’ve tried allowance, that wasn’t a motivational part to do their part of cleaning their room. We also have homeschooled the older three and so our seven year old has taken to not doing his school. We’ve taken away the things that were in his room like Lego or books that he would be distracted with instead of doing his schoolwork. Again, that’s not working. Both my husband and I are firstborn traits and so we’re doing our very best and being mindful of the fact that we could have more of a critical eye. However with them, we don’t really know what to do. Dr. Leman: Wow. First of all, let me tell you, you’re trying way too hard. Family life should not be militaristic. It shouldn’t be so over dominated with activities. I heard swimming lessons, hockey, the list went on. On top of that, you’re homeschooling kids. You do get an A for nailing a couple things just right. Your word defiance, when a kid is defiant, defiant, you know the parent is not in authority over the child. Think about that. Defiance has an attitude, an edge, a get back at. You’ve hurt me, therefore I have a right to strike back at you kind of thing. Tripe A stars for nailing the word defiance. We’ll get to that in a second. And then when you use the term deliberate, again, here’s another clue. When kids are deliberate, it’s a plan. It’s not something, it’s not a response. It’s not simply a reaction, although it is a reaction, that deliberate action on their part, but it’s purposeful. It’s planned to get back at and the kids for whatever reasons, we’ll get to them, don’t see yourself, a firstborn, critical eyed, as you might be, as anything other than the enemy. If we take a vote, a functional vote right now, it’s three to one or three to two. Now why isn’t it four to two? Because your little guy’s only two so I’m going to eliminate him for just a second. And by the way, you have two families, you have a firstborn, a middle child and a baby son and then you have the first born daughter who also happens to be the youngest in the family. The real problem here and you have to understand this. And when I hear you say, “Well, we tried this and we tried that.” That’s what parents who are not centered on the word authority do, they run from pillar to post. The word picture I have is the four little ponies are out of the barn and now we’re going to try to round them up and get them back in the barn. And like I say, we’re trying way too hard. Before we start talking about how do we get these kids to cooperate, to help, to listen and all those things, you guys have to work on fixing yourselves here. You are way too deep in authoritarian means with these kids. Your idea of consequence is that you’re the authoritarian, you tell the kids what to do and they’re supposed to fall in line and do it. That’s not how it works. They have to see you relationally in a way that they feel like you really care about them. Now I know this is a tough one, Marcie, because I don’t think the kids feel it from you. I think they see you as the big people who run things and there’s a big difference. What I’m going to suggest to you is that you and your husband get two copies of the book, Have a New You by Friday, two copies, and I want you to read them. And I want you to get two different colored highlighters and just highlight them and then exchange books. It could be the same color, but I’d like you to have your own books you can write notes in it to yourself because what has to happen here, we need to change. Basically change some things that you’ve thought about yourselves for years. You might also enjoy The Birth Order book, which gets into family systems a little bit. What did you learn about life from your parents? What is the perception that you took into child rearing that needs to be explored and looked at? I’m just telling you, this is what we’re talking about here is not an oil change and a filter. We’re talking about tearing down the engine and putting things back together again. And this is going to be tough for you guys because a knee jerk fashion, in fact, you’re not going to like what I’m saying. That’s a given. Who wants to hear this? I wouldn’t want to hear it and I’m saying it. I’m trying to be helpful by being confrontive with you to say, “This isn’t on the kids. This is on you guys.” You’ve created an atmosphere in that home that is not conducive to listening. You tell me, do you tell the kids just once to do things? No, you are on their case. You remind them, you coax them, you get angry, you say things that you don’t mean which creates guilt in you and then you go from pillar to post and start loving on him because you know you just made a fool of yourself. You really need to sort of stop and take a look at what’s happening here because at age is 7, 5 and a half and four and two, let’s add 10 years to that. Now you have a 17 year old, a 15 and a half year old, a 14 year old and a 12 year old. You’re going to have many an Armageddon evening, I promise you, if you continue on this way. You need to do some reading, some self discovery, some looking inward. If you’re a person of faith, I’d make this an item of prayer in your life every day. That Lord, help me to do things differently. And again, that little book, Have a New You by Friday, will give you some specific ways of trying to tame some of those ingrained tendencies that are very much a part of your personality. Again, you guys have bitten off an awful lot. You got four kids within five years of each other, you’re homeschooling, you’ve tried way too many things. It’s sort of like whack-a-mole, you make some headway over here and a whack-a-mole pulls up, whack them over the head. When does it stop? I hear the frustration in your voice. And again, if we looked at you and your husband, I think if we had a panel of people just look at you guys, people would say, “Wow, these are great people. These are people who care about their kids. These are people who want their best for their kids. These are people who want the best for their home. They want their best for their marriage. They’re good at helping other people. They’re givers. They’re not takers.” But the authoritarian just jumps off your question. It just yells, “Hey, we’re authoritarians and we’re thinking we’re moving toward being an authority.” And apparently it’s not working because you haven’t sat down and had a basic game plan. And I’ve said for years, that beautiful cathedrals are built one brick at a time. And I think you’d admit we live in an Instant Jello society where we want everything to happen overnight. And here I’m talking, I write a book called, Have a New Husband by Friday and Have a New You by Friday, Have a New Kid by Friday, Have a new Teenager by Friday. If it sounds like I’m a hypocrite, trying not to be. I’m all for behavioral change. And I really believe in most situations, behavioral change can literally take place in 48 hours, but we have so much here on the plate. I think you need a little time out yourselves to really talk about how we put things together. There’s resources there for you. I would start at the most primary level of your relationship and develop some kind of a system where if a parent is becoming too authoritarian, you have a code word, that backs that person off. But for example, when kids don’t pick up, leave it there. Leave it there. Don’t go in and pick it up for them or take away their toys because they didn’t pick it up. I know that’s a consequence. In some situations that works. In this, I think you have to start showing the kids that you are very unhappy, but not in an authoritarian way, in a position of authority because these kids that are running on a destructive mode right now will not like it when they understand that you are unhappy with them. Again, I know that was a long litany of things I just went through and we will now defer to our in residence, parents of floor, Doug and Andrea Terpening for their response. Doug: I, As a recovering authoritarian parent, it’s really hard to see that in yourself. On this side, it’s much easier to see it, but for these two, the book would be a huge help. But how do you really internalize this? How do you get the reality? Because everything they said, they sound like the model parent that everybody wants to be. Dr. Leman: Yeah. Doug, well take us into your journey. You just said it, you’re a reformed authoritarian parent. What were the things that you had to do to look at yourself? Maybe that would help, why don’t you share that? Doug: The honest truth is I think Andrea did, I think between you and Andrea, but Andrea every now and then would graciously be strong enough to stand up and tell me, “You are out of control here.” And she just said it enough times that eventually I realized that. And then listening to you helped me realize that my kids were setting up to rebel. And then, the other thing that really helped, we had some families that were a little bit farther ahead of us and the ones that stayed the authoritarian path, their kids uber rebelled and the ones that were on the authoritarian path and then calm down, their kids turned out great. And we just watched it in live, but I had to have Andrea and you helped me understand it. Yeah. Dr. Leman: Now friends, this is why I love Doug Terpening so much. This is not easy for a man to say what he just said. I always tell ladies with tongue in cheek, I think of your husband as a four year old that shaves. We’re pretty basic people. And with that basic maleness, lots of times it’s difficult for us to admit that we’re going down the wrong road. The self awareness thing and the coming together as a couple where you help each other to gain insight into what’s really happening here, keep in mind that perfectionism is slow suicide. The critical eye just destroys your child’s spirit. It makes them angry people who want to strike back. It just sets up a reaction rather than response. It sets up defiance rather than a listening heart or so these kids need ways of helping the family. They need to give back to the family because they’re going to become very selfish kids if this continues and they’re going to be bitter and angry. These aren’t kids that are going to look forward to time with mom and dad, when they have families. They’re going to be distant. They’re going to be well, we have to go see my mom and dad type of kids. That’s not what you want. I’m telling you as a dad who talks to his kids all the time, they call us. They initiate things with us. They want to travel with us. There’s nothing better than having that kind of relationship. Doug and Andrea are at the stage where their two older ones are really starting to spread their wings and they’re seeing that. They’re seeing the result of the kind of parenting that they did and their kids have profited from it. And so we want, Marcie, I know this is a tough one for you. If you’re not crying right now, or during this thing, then I’ve misjudged you. This is tough to take But I think you need to pull the rug out and start doing some things differently. (silence) Oh my goodness. There’s a lot of things that influence a young child’s personality, namely mom and dad and other siblings. I get it. I’ve written a few books on the subject, but you know the one that I discovered in private practice almost by accident, then I saw this tremendous trend, was the critical eyed parent. When you should it on your kid, I got to be careful how I say that, don’t I? You should do this. You should do that. What you’re really conveying to your kids is they didn’t measure up. Watch out for that critical eye. Yes, if you’re an engineer or a math teacher or a physicist, I know perfection pays off, but again, we do not need perfection in rearing our children. We need to pursue excellence. You can do this, parent. Lots of books out there that address this, including The Birth Order book. Sold well over a million copies for a reason. (silence) Well, it ain’t going to be easy, to put it bluntly. It really isn’t. I don’t want to be a forecaster of doom, but I’m just telling you, that’s why I’m saying, “Stop what you’re doing. Take a look at yourself. Do some reading. Let’s come together with a game plan.” Because they are who they are. It’s going to take steadfast commitment on the part of the parents to change the environment in that home. I’ve said many times, “You parents have all the gold.” Andrea: Can you paint a picture of what, okay, she drew a picture for us of what their house home is like, what would you say in a month, can you paint a picture of what it could look like if they were on the right trajectory? Dr. Leman: Well, I’m going to say some things she’s not going to like. The first thing I would suggest is you stop homeschooling. Oh boy, I can see the emails coming right now. Dr. Leman, you have no idea what our schools are like in this area. Hey, I happen to have seven schools. I know something about educating kids and there are charter schools around who quite frankly, biased opinion, do a pretty good job. Are there charter schools do a lousy job? Yes, there are. But I would find an environment for your kids to learn outside of your home. Andrea: And why is that? Dr. Leman: It takes the 24/7 being around the kids. Mom needs some relief here. She needs some time for herself. She needs to take care of herself. And right now, assuming husband goes out the door to work and maybe he doesn’t, maybe he works through home but if he goes to work and she’s with the kids 24/7 and we’re trying to reinvent the wheel, that’s an awful big assignment. If the ship is sinking, you don’t talk about repainting the ship. You get rid of excess stuff that’s on the ship so it doesn’t sink. That’s number one right there. That will eliminate a lot of problems. See, the perfectionism, I have to do at all, I have to control everything, everything’s got to come together. If you’re a betting man or woman, you’d bet against this one. Without some drastic action on their part, this one won’t turn around. Those kids will grow bitter and angry. Parents will suffer crisis after crisis as these kids get older. Like I said, this isn’t an oil change. This is a total overhaul of the family engine. That’s number one. If you can do that, that’d be a huge thing because see she’s letting go. And that letting go is going to be very difficult because the high need to control. If you’re a perfectionist, you want to control everything. Andrea: Okay. What’s number two? Doug: Activities. Dr. Leman: Very good. Very good. Dr. Doug. Yeah, limit activities. If you have four kids and they each had an activity, oh my goodness. That’s a lot on your plate. We got to get back to some basics here. I heard swimming lessons. Okay so the kids are seven, five and a half, four, two. Yeah, I can see the swimming lessons. That’s a good, healthy activity. It takes energy to do that. Mom gets to sit by the edge of the pool and watch or whatever. She gets a time to read a book, where the kids are under someone’s instruction for an hour or she gets to sunbathe, depending upon where you live, what time of year it is. Cut down the schedule, cut down all the shoulding in your home. We should do this. We should do that. Let’s let’s get out of the pie in the sky. Again, keep in mind the ship is sinking so we’re not going to rearrange the deck chairs, so to speak. She doesn’t need number three, number four, number five, number six. Number one and number two are huge. And it gives instant relief and she’s going to feel a lessening of stress in her life. She never mentioned the stress in her life, but I guarantee it’s there. And that stress, Marcie, will take its toll. Stomach disorders, back disorders, migraine headaches, you name it. It’ll pop out. Stress has a way of working itself out of the body into the extremities. Andrea: But what I’m hearing is giving up some control and need to do all these things, especially as the kids are so young. The other thing that I’m feeling because we’ve been here and actually those ages are pretty close to where our kids were in age span and I’m hearing and she didn’t describe this, whether or not she does, just getting on the floor and playing a game with them and enjoying them. And I’m still learning and have to tell myself sometimes, “Just stop and put your arm around the kid, tell them how much you love them. Go for a walk with them, play a game with them.” Because it’s easy to be busy getting stuff done. And it’s hard sometimes to look past a mess or an unfinished project and just get on the floor and hang out with them. Dr. Leman: And keep in mind that Marcie is probably 29 to 32 years of age, would be a good guess. She’s young, she’s active. Doug: Well, I’m going to wrap this up. I think we have given lots of good advice to our caller today. Andrea: And just in case she didn’t hear it earlier, I think just to remind her, Dr. Leman invited you, Marcie, to call back in in about a month and tell us how things are going, because we really want to hear how you guys are doing, answer your questions. Doug: And this is a great question. This is such a good question. Kudos to you for calling in and asking it. And as I hear in your voice, you can do this. If you’ve done all this already, you can do this. It’s hard work, but you can do it. Andrea: And you obviously really care about your kiddos. Doug: Oh you love them. Yep. If you have a question that you would love us to ask Dr. Leman for you, go to birthorderguy.com/podcastquestion or you go to birthorderguy.com/, this episode is 331, and there’ll be a little microphone there and you can click on it and you can leave us a question, which we would love to answer for you. And don’t forget, you can get the eBook, Have a New Sex Life by Friday, for a buck 99, between now and the end of October 2020, wherever eBooks are sold and we love being with you. Thank you for joining with us today. As you add to that parenting toolbox, you’re going to love them kiddos more and more. Andrea: Have a great one. Thanks, Marcie. Doug: Take care.
20 minutes | 4 months ago
Partner Care = Smart Parenting (Episode 330)
Does caring for your spouse really affect the way your kids respond to parenting? Listen in to learn just how crucial partner care is on this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast. **Special Offer– Sep 1 – 30: Have a New Sex Life by Friday ebook for $1.99 at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or wherever you get your ebooks** Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Produced by Unmutable Transcript Doug: I got to spend all my time taking care of my children, that’s all the time I have for sweetie. While I’d love to give you more, I can’t. The question we get to ask Dr. Leman today is, is it smart to invest energy into that partner? And does that equal smart parenting or is it better to give that energy to the kids? Hi, I’m Dr. Penny. Andrea: And I am Andrea. Doug: And we are so happy that you are here with us today. It is so good to be with you. Welcome. If this happens to be your first time, glad you’re here, I want to let you know this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help. Well, Dr. Leman, the question today is, do I have to really care about Andrea at all or can I just pour all my energy into my kids and that smart parenting? Dr. Leman: Well, before we get into that let me just remind people, you mentioned people who are new to us, do yourself and your friends a favor and yeah, us too I guess, by tweeting it out or putting it on your Facebook page that you found this podcast that you like. Hope you enjoy it, we try to be practical. We do admit we entertain you a little bit as we go along, but that seems to make the medicine go down a little easier. Dr. Leman: The question is, do I put all my effort into my children? If you do your kids will really turn against you someday because they’ll be angry that you didn’t put enough energy, time, love, and attention into your mate. We literally love each other and have each other’s backs in marriage, a lot of good blessings so to speak, fall off the parental mountain and onto the children. A reminder parents, your kids are always looking up. They’re watching how you talk to each other, how you treat each other, how you treat strangers. They’re watching how you handle curve balls. Do you hit it out of the park or do you strike out whimper and put your tail between your legs and walk away? Dr. Leman: You’ll never go wrong in investing in your marriage. I always say that marriage is like a delicate plant and if you don’t enrich it, you don’t water it, you don’t put good fertilizer around it and good soil around it, that’s going to die. And there’s nothing worse than getting into your marriage just 20, 25 years and realizing you don’t have much to talk about anymore because you put too much effort into the children. Again, you want a model openness, forgiveness, communication, closeness. Dr. Leman: I love it when I hear my kids say, “Oh, I think that is so cute. You did what? You got a what? You did what?” It’s not rocket science. What you put into it you’re going to receive back, so prioritize. Marriage partners are number one, kids are number two, other things are number three. If you just have that simple paradigm in your life, your relationship with your family is going to be better I guarantee you that. Doug: Dr. Leman, in full honesty that’s easy to say but really, really hard to do. Andrea, she’s a full-grown adult, she can take care of herself, but we got to get to piano lessons and we got to take care of their emotional needs. How do I balance that? Dr. Leman: Well, again a reminder, the kids self-esteem comes from kids helping themselves, let’s start with that. But to make this more interesting. I talked with a man just this week who worked on one of the Kennedy campaigns. He is a well-respected man nationally and internationally. He has an office in Washington and an office in New York to give you an idea. He has hundreds of people that work for him. And he shared a story with me about the fact that he was given an opportunity to have another political appointment. And he told his wife, he was really excited about it. And she said, “Well, I’ll tell you what? If you take that assignment, we’ll come together again after that assignment’s over.” Dr. Leman: Now, what did she do? She drew the line in the proverbial sand. And he told me, he said, “She looked at me and she said, ‘I know how you are in a political campaign. I will never see you so I’m not going to set myself up for disappointment. You just call me when you’re done.'” He had taken the job, he went ahead and took the job. And three days later he told this person that every one of my listening audience right now would know I’m talking about. He told him, “No, there are more important things in life than political campaigns.” And he went back and he became the husband he needs to be, and he still is her husband by the way. Dr. Leman: Again, I think we need to really put our money where our mouth is. I know some of these things are difficult. Sometimes you get in temporary situations, I know a lot of football coaches in the NFL. You’ve got to be a special woman to be married to one of those NFL coaches, because those guys literally are not home very much. But when you marry a football coach hopefully you know what you’re getting yourself into. Well, enough of that, what do you think? Doug: What are some tangible… You said that if the marriage is good there’s these things that follow them that are blessings, parenting blessings. What are some of those lessons that come from a healthy marriage and relationship to the kids, or to help us in parenting? Dr. Leman: Well, I think if you have honest communication between a husband and a wife, honest communication, then you’re going to have transparency. Transparency is a good thing. Now again, should kids know everything that’s going on in a marriage? Obviously not. Okay? But if there’s good communication your kids learn to be good communicators because they had parents who were good what? Listeners. You see, this all intermingles together. This thing of being a parent, being a marital partner, it’s hard to separate. It’s like many strands of twine just come together and build a strong bond for your family. Dr. Leman: And that’s very hard to unravel because it’s so tightly knit and there’s so many different strands. Every time you invest, every time you give vitamin E to a son or a daughter, for you newbies, vitamin E is encouragement. And the other thing your kid needs is vitamin N, which is no. And we think that creates a situation where you’re unhealthy authority over your children, which means you’re not going to take any gaff from your son or your daughter at any point. And there’s no doubt in the children’s minds who the heads, notice that’s plural of the family are. Doug: What about for that partner out there that is, they don’t have a good marriage, it’s struggling right now and they have teenage kids right there in the throes of all that craziness or busy-ness or they’re toddlers, either way. And now they’re sitting here going, “I love you Dr. Leman, but I can’t imagine spending the energy to fix my marriage and take care of my kids, that just that’s too much. Honestly, I just I’ve weighed the consequences and in my mind I can’t do all that.” What would you say to them? Dr. Leman: I would say you’re probably going to be divorced. And that oughta put some chills up some people’s spines because they’re saying that’s where we are today. But that’s why we do this podcast. I’m telling you, it’s the stuff you do from day one in the marriage that makes a difference. You don’t go 15 years into a marriage and then decide you need to fix things, that’s very difficult to do. If you’re in trouble, I don’t suggest this often to people, but go get some outside help. And I’ve written books like Have a New You by Friday. It’s a great book, I wrote a book for someone who wants to take a look at their life and be their own shrink. Dr. Leman: You are a product of your family. The stuff that you learned in your family is causing you dissonance today in your marriage. And your mate is the same one so if you both came out of dysfunctional families, should it be a surprise to anybody that you’re dysfunctional after eight or 15 years of marriage? No, but quite frankly the road back I think has to include God. I don’t know how people do it without faith. Being married to a woman is difficult or weird. They go party in groups of seven and eight, they hug anything that moves, they’re in love with her hair. Dr. Leman: By the way I have to tell you this. We had a bat in our home last night and Mrs. Up in Tin, isn’t real big on bats and she knew that that bat was going to end up in her hair. And so she went and she got a hat I use for fishing when I’m out in the boat to keep the sun off my face, a wide-brim hat. And she sat there watching America loves talent or whatever, that thing, America’s Got Talent. While they had her I took a picture of her and I sent it to all of our kids. And one of our kids said, “The bat whisperer.” Well, I don’t know why I told you that funny little story but to me it was sort of cute and funny. But you know if you can laugh at yourself that helps? Don’t take things so seriously. Dr. Leman: But you know what? If you’re at rock bottom, seek some help from someone who wants to get rid of you, some of them will sit down and hear you out. Your marriage is competitive, you’re trying to win things that’s why you fight. Fight that leads to that cooperation. And I wrote a book called Sheet Music. If you’ve never read Sheet Music you are missing something. That is one of the best marriage sex books ever written and it’s numbers prove that. Get a copy of Sheet Music, sit down and read it together, highlight it. Just commit, don’t be pointing a finger saying, “Hey, we both aired here and we both want it to be better so let’s just make it a priority in our home and start one brick at a time. And as I’ve said many times, beautiful cathedrals are built one brick at a time. Doug: Dr. Leman I’ve heard you say this more often than I can remember. It’s like, you start with you not with your spouse. If I was supposed to start with me, it’s really hard for me to do it by myself. What books have you written that would help someone who is trying to get out of this? Not so great spot with their spouse or would they want to stay in a great spot with their spouse? Dr. Leman: Well, I think the Have a New You by Friday and The Birth Order Book are the first two that come to mind. But so couples I’ve found there’s sexual problems in the marriage, and if there’s sexual problems in the marriage there’s communication problems in the marriage. Reading that book, Sheet Music and Have a New Sex Life by Friday are probably a couple I would certainly read. Books are basically cheap, therapists are very expensive. Dr. Leman: And the question is, do you really need a therapist or is it something you can work on? You have the power within you to change your behavior. If the relationship is going to change your behavior, Doug, has to change. Andrea, your behavior has to change. The relationship doesn’t change by one person changing, both people have to change. Make it an assignment and you’ll eventually receive the blessing of that but so will the people around you, namely your children. Doug: Well, this is a perfect segue into the ebook that we get the offer to you this month of September, which is what you just said, Have a New Sex Life by Friday. You can get it now wherever your eBooks, starting now to the end of September for only a buck 99. And Andrea, do you want to read what Timothy said about this? Andrea: Yeah. He says, “Every couple should get this book. If you love your wife or your husband get this book and learn how to treat and respect one another. You will learn things you did not know then practice it.” Doug: Dr. Leman, is this book only about having a sex life or is it something more than that? Dr. Leman: No, it’s a marriage book. But like I say so many parents just struggle in this area. Like Andrea just read it’s very well received by people, they like it. It’s practical. I share a lot of personal things in there as well and there’s a lot of laughs in the book. And when laughter is there it helps, I think. Doug: Well, my recommendation to everybody, you can get it now for a buck 99. Read it, you’ll be blessed beyond. Also, I want to mention that a couple of little while ago we talked about who could call in and describe Doug and Andrea Terpening. And Mrs. Terpening and the Terpening kids listened to all of your voicemails that you left for us and I’m super happy to announce that Bethany Evans, you are the winner of trying to describe what Doug and Andrea look like. And so you’ll be getting an email from us about which Leman book you’d love to get. Now, a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman. Dr. Leman: Hey parents, I’m going to ask you to do something really simple. Just stand up and be the parent you need to be. I’m walking through a grocery store. There’s a four-year-old in a car with a young mommy. And every time the cart stopped, the child began to point, “I want that, I want that.” “No, honey, this is what…” “No, I want that.” A little fussing and before long what mom didn’t want, she said she didn’t want is in the cart. For the life of me, parent, every kid needs vitamin N which has no. If you don’t assume your authority your child is going to steal it from you and you’re going to create a little brat to put it bluntly, okay? There’s a reason people look at you sometimes in the store, believe me. They’re shaking their heads saying, “I cannot believe that mother. Who is an authority over who?” Don’t ever forget it, you are an authority over your children, not as authoritarian, but you are an healthy authority. Utilize it, its free. Doug: Here’s a question that sometimes I wonder, how much affection should I show around my kids? Dr. Leman: Oh, absolutely. Sometimes the kids will pretend they don’t want to see it, they’re a little embarrassed or whatever, but affection is always great for kids to witness. Andrea: Why is it good for them to see that? Dr. Leman: Affection shows closeness, it shows vulnerability, it shows caring. Make yourself a list parents, of the virtues you’d like to see your kids have and see how that simple expression of affection encompasses many of those values you say you want in your kids’ lives. The old song, people who need people are what? The luckiest people in the world. It’s not a sign of weakness that you need someone in your life. And some of us have lost friends, we lost a dear friend recently. They’re married forever and everybody describes this woman as wonderful, caring, helpful, compassionate, affectionate. And what a nice thing to say about somebody as opposed to hard-nose, critical, mean, knows everything, never says they’re wrong or sorry. Those teachable moments in the home, just those little simple caresses and little pats, they communicate that we care for each other in this family. And kids are very quick to catch onto that. Doug: I think here might be my final question. You said that we are a product of the family we grew up in. If our marriage is dysfunctional, how much are we setting up our kids to have a dysfunctional marriage versus if we can try and get as healthy as we can or good to marriage? How much is our marriage going to equal our kids’ marriage? Dr. Leman: Well, I think if you look at it like this, if you and Andrea have a good, healthy marriage, okay? You’re setting your kids up for success with the opposite sex. Will that always happen? No, because your kids have free will. And some kids even in a loving, transparent, warmth family, for whatever reason they felt like they had to be the dominant one, the winner. It just went on and on and on. Dr. Leman: And so again life isn’t prescriptive, Almighty God made us all different and gave us all different gifts but what we do with those gifts and how we utilize those skills makes all the difference in the world. You’re still safe. The best thing to do for your kids is to love them, let them stay on their own two feet, hold them accountable, listen to them, love them, communicate with them, it’s pretty simple. Again, none of this is rocket science. Doug: Well, thank you, Dr. Leman. And if you’re one of those individuals that’s in a marriage that’s struggling, I can’t recommend enough these great books for you to gain and grow for your own sake. Right now you can get Have a New Sex Life by Friday, which is about more than just sex for a dollar 99 between now and the end of September of 2020. Wherever you get eBooks go and get that one. Have a New You by Friday and The Birth Order Book are absolutely excellent books for you to get as well to really understand you more and understand your spouse more, which really does help when you begin to understand them. Well, it was great to be with you. We love hanging out with you and helping you add to this toolbox so you can love those kids more and more and we look forward to the next time we get to be with you. Andrea: Have a great date with your spouse this week, and bye-bye. Doug: Yeah, I like that nice throw in there. Alrighty, take care. Bye.
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