Do you get constantly surprised, shocked and panicked by your child’s behaviours that do not make sense to you? Perhaps they even make you feel uncomfortable in front of people, because you don’t know how to deal with situations and things that they present in front of you.
Until you ask them what their intention is, you simply have no idea. Sometimes even they cannot explain why they are doing what they are doing.
Because we don’t know what else to do, we automatically react to them. We stop them from dealing with the situation they are in their own way. We could undermine their curiosity and questions.
When my son was young, in very serious or intense situations he would laugh loudly, for instance when he witnessed a friend in an accident. It was awkward, especially in the most “inappropriate” situation of someone getting hurt. My automatic reaction was “stop laughing, you are so rude!” I was more concerned about how other people were perceiving his behaviours.
At this time, the question “what is he doing?” came to my mind and I looked at him again. His face was laughing, but he was trying to make himself laugh. His laugh looked like it could turn into crying at any moment. I instantly realized he was scared of his friend’s pain and overwhelmed with the feelings of the people around him. I realized he was trying to make this heavy situation lighter, by laughing.
I was aware that some adults did not feel comfortable or were even upset by his behaviour, especially the parents of the child. I told them how scared and nervous my son was, so they would not get even more upset on top of what they were experiencing about their own child. I told them because I wanted to avoid my son being unnecessarily labeled an inconsiderate child by the parents.
I told my son that I was aware of what he was trying to do and how people could perceive his behaviours. I am glad I didn’t reprimand my son right away, because instead I was able to learn something new from him.
Some may say that children who behave “inappropriately” do not have empathy, social skills or emotional intelligence. Or are they that evil? No. Surprisingly, a lot of them are well aware of other people’s emotions. However, they do not choose to share that energy. They try to change it to something else and they do so instantly without thinking.
In this case, laughter released fear and pain for him and for some children. I wonder how children and their bodies know what to do to release stress instantly and unconsciously. They just know what to do. Their bodies know that dwelling on a certain emotion does not benefit themselves. How they do it depends on the individual.
“Disruptive” or “inappropriate” behaviours of children have a possibility to change the current energy of people that they are with at that time. And if your child is unpredictable, inconsistent and on the move, they may be reacting to or trying to change the existing atmosphere.
If you see them from this perspective, they are a great contribution to us, because they are a walking catalyst of change.
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