I was shocked to read in Kim Carollo‘s ABC News story, Kathleen Edward, Girl Taunted Online While Battling Huntington’s Disease, Dies, that a 33-year-old woman and mother taunted her 9-year-old girl neighbor, Kathleen Edward, with such spite.
Social development is not an automatic result of being an adult. As parents, we have a responsibility to continue our own learning, growth, and development, not just for our sake, but for the sake of our kids.
Regardless of how essential, and beneficial, it is to be civil in our society, we could use more skillful training in it. Lecturing about and mandating civility and compassion will not accomplish it. Instead, asking reflective questions will get adults and kids to evaluate their own behavior and make changes.
When you find yourself or someone about to do something destructive, ask:
- What is the best way to respond in this situation?
- What can I do to get what I want?
- How could I turn this situation around?
- What would be a win-win for everyone?
- What could I do differently?
Too often, there is no time for asking and listening, only reacting and escalating. If this post has given you a chance to reflect on your own choices, please comment and share.