The Paradoxes of Gentle Parenting: A Series
As tiger parents, we often deal with discipline issues head on.
We react to rebellion with restrictions,
sassiness with sternness,
tantrums with toughness.
Gentle parenting encourages a completely different approach.
It teaches us to respond to rebellion with relationship,
sassiness with sympathy,
tantrums with loving presence.
Such responses seem so contrary to our common sense, or at least to our common practice. It seems too free, too soft, too yielding to deal with the harsh realities of raising children.
But therein lies the secret of gentle parenting: it is strong… like water.
“Water is fluid, soft, and yielding. But water will wear away rock, which is rigid and cannot yield. As a rule, whatever is fluid, soft, and yielding will overcome whatever is rigid and hard. This is another paradox: what is soft is strong.” ― Lao Tzu
Gentle parenting patiently erodes walls that have been erected, seeps into and breaks through hardened hearts, and nurtures life even in the harshest conditions.
It does this not through rigidity, authority, or a sense of warped justice, but through softness, kindness, and compassion.
The paradox of gentle parenting is that its very softness is its strength.
In order to explore more about this strength through softness, I will be launching a series about the paradoxes of gentle parenting. Join me as I unpack some gentle parenting principles that seem irrational on the surface, but actually address the underlying issues and needs of our kids.
Stay tuned for the first post: “Paradox #1: There’s No Such Thing As Misbehavior“