Calling all you seasoned professionals...
Ok, *hypothetically speaking* if you as a parent made a small error in judgement and it had a negative effect on your children, how much of responsibility do you take upon yourself? For instance, lets say you allow them to stay up past their bedtime or eat a whole candy bar. Everyone involved knows that there are going to be reprocussions, but you let it happen anyway. Maybe it's because the only way some kids learn that they shouldn't drink a two liter of soda in 20 minutes is to do it (hopefully only once.) Whatever. The reason doesn't matter, the damage is done and now poor behavior ensues. Now, to a certain point, as a rational adult you know that it's your fault. You allowed the initial conditions to exist and to catalyze into a problematic situation, but I'm having a hard time exclusively blaming myself. My son wants to be treated like he's 13 instead of a 10 year old. In my mind, that means there should be less of the, "I'm sorry Habtamu, I really shouldn't have let you watch 2 hours of TV. That was my bad choice. I know it's my fault you're cranky now so you go slam some doors until you feel better," and more of the, "Well, what did you think was going to happen? Did you think you were going to feel *better* after watching that much TV? Now get outside and ride your bike or something. Oh, and if you stomp out of the house you can kiss your precious TV goodbye for the rest of the week."
So when do you admit that you really should have nipped the problem in the bud versus letting a child learn the consequences of a given situation? Is a sign of weakness to share the responsibility or does it take the edge off the consequences? Should I go into referee mode and just make the call? Does it complicate the situation too much when there isn't a single point of blame? I don't know. What I do know is that admitting some fault does diffuse the rebuttal and defensiveness.
Now I'm not talking about enticing my child to fail here. Obviously I wouldn't leave a handgun laying on the table then act surprised when there was an incident. Unless you equate a pile of Oreos with a semi-automatic, which on some days is a totally appropriate comparison.
I want the kids to understand that not everything that goes wrong is solely their fault, and yet I want to teach them personal responsibility.
where do you draw the line?