Choosing Your Battles

Whoever said that parenting is tough is spot on target. It’s a fulfilling job but it ain’t easy. Raising a child takes a lot of patience and requires some sense of humor through the process. With all the things that we need to teach our child such as independence, values, etc. I learned that it helps to choose our battles.

When faced with a head on collision with Yui and I feel that I’m about to lose it, I consider these three things:

1. Will she learn from this experience?

2. Won’t she hurt herself or others?

3. Won’t this conflict with other things we’re teaching her?

Sometimes it can be tricky but if the answer to all three questions is YES, then I’ll let her have that round. There were times when I’ve applied this to her:

When we went on a trip to Singapore, I had our clothes planned out carefully since we only have limited supply. The morning that we’re preparing for Universal Studios, Yui insisted to wear her pajamas. Since this will not hurt her and we even saved one clean outfit, I let her have it. She also learned that in this family it’s okay to make your own choices as long as you live with it. Besides, it was a Kai lan pajama and didn’t really look much like pjs at all.

Grocery shopping is really stressful for us since our very hyper daughter loves to run around. When she refuses to listen and is becoming very difficult to deal with, we bring her home immediately. There are times though that giving her options and allowing her to make decisions make the trip more bearable. When she wanted Fruit Loops but we wanted the local version Fruity Loops instead, we make her choose between the Fruit Loops’ bird or Fruity Loops’ monkey (the designs in the packages). That way we see it as a win-win situation. She got her cereal and we got to have a somewhat peaceful trip and the cheaper cereal alternative.

Sometimes it helps to have different tactics on hand when you go on (grocery) battle. Through these trips I learned when to fight it with her, when to be more gentle and when to be firm even if it means cutting our trip short.

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