I've got supper on, so I thought I'd take a minute to blog about week 8 in the FreePlayLife challenge.
This week we're focusing on not being sorry. Or not saying sorry for every single thing. You certainly don't have to apologize for everything that you do that somebody else may not like. I don't really relate to this so much because I am not an over apologizer. I mean, there are times where I apologize just because I feel like it would make the situation better, or ease tension, or maybe prevent a loved ones feelings from being too trampled. I know some people that are just so afraid they'll offend someone that they just apologize for everything. I can't imagine being like that.
The only place in my life really, that I could apply "don't say you're sorry" to is with my kids. And this is something that I have been working towards for a while now.
Whenever a sizeable group of children are playing together, if one of them gets hurt at the hand of another, that child's parent makes them say they are sorry. Once that "sorry" is uttered and usually demanded to be done in a respectful manner, the offended child and parent instantly relax (some) and then we can carry on with playground business as usual. But was that child really sorry? In most cases, I would say no. If someone apologizes to you because they were made to, why does that make it all better? I know, I know, some of you are going to say that it's teaching the child to be responsible for his/her behavior and be polite. It's a social custom, yada yada...
But that doesn't mean that a child should be forced to say sorry. If my kids are fighting and they are angry at each other, I know that making them say sorry is just a candy coating. No truce was called and there will be payback. I feel like it is only when I allow my children to be apart for enough time that they calm down and then we address the fuss, that they can calmly talk it out and we can provide insight for them. But they are probably even then not sorry for getting violent with each other, because at the time, that's what they felt like was needed.
Alot of the time, "im sorry" just seem so generic. If me and my husband have a tiff, if I feel the need to make amends, saying things like "I didn't mean to hurt your feelings when I said that and I shouldn't have acted in anger..." means more than "I'm sorry I yelled at you." Even though I am sorry that I did, sorry is just so overused now, you just have to dig deep to find the words to really connect.
So when my kids behavior is less than stellar towards each other and sometimes other kids, I usually do the whole.. "so and so, we don't treat other people that way. Do you need to be separated from everyone else until you can behave appropriately?" and then I might address the offended child and say "are you ok?" to let them know that I am aware that they may have gotten their feelings or body hurt.
I do understand that not everybody is going to feel this way. But it's how I am applying week 8 to my life. Stop being sorry, start being real!