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World Wise Words Group

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Grayson Brown
Grayson Brown

When I Feel Naughty Robin

Having been nurtured at the earlier, more dependent stages, the child is starting to explore the larger world, wandering further and staying away longer from the safety of a parenting presence. To the extent that dependency needs have been fulfilled, the toddler now starts to bring boundless energy to the flight to freedom, as she asserts her separate self-identity. Tentatively, the child is learning the safe and appropriate range of autonomous individuality, her freedom to want and feel differently from Mother. Efforts to differentiate begin in earnest, so the child now needs support in the shape of being let go of, yet warmly received when she runs back to the parent's side. The parents act as a safe "home base" for the exploring child.

when i feel naughty robin

Indiscriminate permissiveness is not an alternative; it is not OK for the child's behavior to be damaging to herself or to the parent. This is the age when kids begin to need to know you through your boundaries. If you can set strong limits non-violently and non-abusively this sets a powerful example and helps them to feel your strength and your presence. Without realistic interpersonal boundaries then you don't seem "real" to them and they feel lost, confused and sometimes angry. They may provoke you, searching for your solidity. Opportunities abound at this time for the child to acquire a healthy relationship to the notion of interpersonal boundaries.

Core beliefs arising from positive experiences at this time include: I have the right to be free, to be autonomous, to make my own decisions. I have the right to be assertive, to be different, to stand out. I have the right to strongly and vigorously express who I am, my feelings. I have the right to be unique and creative. I have the right to my own space and privacy. I can approve of myself even when others don't approve of me.


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