Defeat Parent Deafness

By Jackie Saulmon Ramirez | July 12, 2012

When I was a teenager my mother would walk through my bedroom and say, “Shoes.” You heard me correctly— one single word was all she might say, but then 45 minutes later she would come again swinging a switch or a belt and would not stop until I fully understood that I was supposed to put away my shoes from the back porch.

How was I to know? I never ignored her orders or put off doing a chore, ever. I had done as she asked by removing my shoes at the back door and didn’t make tracks going to my room. Never mind there were other people’s shoes there… my shoes were the problem.

Yes, my mom had a problem, it was called abusive behavior. BUT— she had the right idea; saying as few words as possible so children do not become parent deaf. Being parent deaf occurs when a parent or other caregiver explains, lectures, nags or talks too much for any reason. It becomes, “blah, blah, blah…”

Sometimes we do talk too much, there is so much we have to teach our kids; we have to tell them about being safe, we want them to understand why we have a rule, we repeat what they say to them to make sure we understand them or we ask too many questions.

When my girls were young I read about Native Americans and how they used so few words in their cultures. It made sense and I liked the idea so it fell in line with new parenting information that surfaced. Using few words has served me well in my parenting tool box. How about giving this tool a try; the only thing you have to lose is your voice.

Copyright © 2014 Jackie Saulmon Ramirez. All Rights Reserved.

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About Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

Jackie has volunteered for more than twenty years for children and family issues. Currently she writes for parents in the "Reminder" and "Parent Rap" Facebook page. If you are interested in receiving the "Reminder," send her a message.
This entry was posted in How-To, Parenting and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Defeat Parent Deafness

  1. It’s interesting. I feel so much about how important it is to talk to your children and encourage them to express themselves. You seem to be saying different.


    • Jackie Saulmon Ramirez says:

      It’s important for us to talk with our children about everything. The key here is ‘talk with.’ How else can we impart our values, instructions, rules, etc? My point is not to talk too much or to lecture. Kids start to roll their eyes after about 10 words– unless you have their undevided attention. As parents who want our children to LISTEN, we must be careful not to bore them to tears or drive them away with the Sunday morning sermon. Think like an editor. Leave out the unnecessary fluff and get to the meat of your editorial. All I would ask is for parents to gauge their words carefully; think of them as currency. Spend wisely. Does this answer your comment? Thank you for taking the time to write!


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