Regardless of how you raise your children, you will be subjected to criticism. Even if it’s unintentional, hearing criticism about your parenting from a close friend or relative can be demoralizing. Occasionally, a piece of advice is valuable and worth savoring and implementing. In this article, you will learn what you can do when others criticize your way of parenting.
When it comes down to it, knowing what to listen to and what not to listen to is the most critical step. The following questions will help you distinguish between helpful advice and hurtful criticism, as well as teach you how best to respond to others who give you advice.
Vocalize Your Requirements in Terms of Assistance
Getting a bad response to a request for aid is difficult. When you ask someone for their opinion, don’t blame them for having one.
- Don’t just ask for advice; be precise about what you want from your friends or family.
- You should be prepared to get advice if you ask someone for it: Vulnerability is a necessary part of asking for help. You must be able to accept that your family member will tell you something hard to hear.
- Get in touch with persons who have dealt with the same experience in the past and learn from them. Many of your friends and family members are excellent sources of information on a wide range of subjects.
What Is the Goal?
Take a breather when someone offers you unwanted advice, making you feel like they squirted lemon juice on your open wound. Look into the person’s heart and see if you can understand what they’re saying. What’s the motivation behind their outpouring of concern for you and your loved ones? In what ways did they try to convey their feelings through their words?
Set Clear Boundaries
Refrain from being unduly defensive if they seem sincere in their intentions. Weigh their opinions: Is there any truth to them? As a result, put them to use or (gently) reject them. Instead of listening to what they have to say, listen to their heart.
This person may be hurting you, or their advice may be well-intentioned yet undesirable. Set limits with the advice-giver if you can’t let go or disregard their suggestions.
Is it possible that I’m misinterpreting something?
Advice might be misunderstood at times, and it’s simple to get it wrong. A gift can take on a life of its own when we infuse it with significance and emotion we didn’t intend. We rehearse the exchange in our heads, and this might lead to an exaggerated interpretation of what was said.
This is especially relevant in our modern age. Reading between the lines makes us significantly more inclined to fill in meaning that was never intended.
Pay Attention to What’s Being Said
Active listening is especially important in discussions about parenting styles. Using both verbal and nonverbal indicators, validate your understanding of what the speaker is saying. Take care not to misread another person’s words when communicating via the internet.
We cannot discern the inflection and tone of voice of our friends and family members. So, if you see anything on Facebook or receive an email that makes you wonder, “Was that directed at me?” or makes your blood boil, either let it go or find a way to calmly talk to the individual. As a result, you could be relieved to realize that you were wrong.
Is this a defensive reaction?
To wrap things up, take a moment to think about what the individual is saying. Possibly this is a sensitive area for you, or you have a personal problem with the person rather than the advice. As parents, we sometimes have our defense mechanisms in place to protect ourselves and our families. We could be annoyed by our children’s misbehavior, so we raise our defenses. In addition, we may believe that our loved ones are always criticizing us. Now, every remark is like a knife piercing our hearts.
Observe Instead of Reacting
It’s difficult, but give it a shot: Listen without defending your parenting decisions. De-escalating a problem can be as simple as being honest with the other party. Perhaps you might explain to your loved one that this issue makes you uncomfortable or that you’d prefer to hear words of support rather than advice at this time.
Think about what’s going on before you react the next time your steam rises when you hear what you think is a judgment of your parenting skills. Think before you speak, and you can come up with some helpful information and prevent a fight.
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