Oh dear, that awkward moment when your child behaves badly in a public sphere and you literally want to disappear. This scene is familiar to must mothers and we often find ourselves telling the child before leaving home that we expect them to behave properly to greet and act nicely. However, most times, the child forget to greet, gets upset and starts acting out. In some cases, they even ask rude questions or behave badly. I have learnt to not over flog myself when this episode happens, I simply follow the following steps consistently and pray that the child learns to behave properly as they grow older.
1.Correct immediately-If my child is badly behaved, I immediately explain why that behavior is unacceptable and tell her the proper way to behave
2.Apologise- the next thing is to get the child to apologies to the person involved.
3.Praise your child for all the things she does well and tell her that you know she can be better next time.
4.Protect your child from collective condemnation-yes, your child might have behaved badly does not mean your child is a bad child. Don`t let the public or on lookers descend on him or her, protect your child, you may even have to remove them from the situation.
5.Revisit the issue at home and gently explain what she did wrong and how she should behave next time.
Children grow and with each growth comes better behavior so don`t expect the little ones to behave perfectly and when they act wrongly, don`t bring the whole world on them knowing that if you keep correcting them, they will grow up to be properly behaved.
Opinion piece by Ejemai Olayemi
image from wivesroundtable.com.ng