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Interesting books to help you understand and raise your Spirited Children.
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My oldest son was a toddler full of energy and very curious,
he would ask endless amounts of questions and demand my attention all the time;
he also wanted to touch/taste everything. His reactions tend to be on the aggressive side,
and by that I mean, he is not a big fan of “using his words”, especially with
Somebody once told me that he was a very “spirited” boy and
somehow that didn't sound to me like a positive thing, but now I understand
where that term is coming from. According with the API (Attachment Parenting
International), the simple definition of the spirited child is simply that
he/she is more. More intense, persistent, sensitive, energetic, perceptive and
uncomfortable with change among other things.
It is not easy to treat a super energetic, strong
willed kid, when you don’t have the knowledge/ tools; this totally leads to
frustration and shame when you feel like it is your fault, and you are failing
as a parent because you do not know how to handle it. First of all, be kind to
yourself and give yourself some credit.
In my case, I have
done my research trying to understand my complex lovely son; first of all I
have taken notice of his strengths, try and turn the negative into positive.
Many times, these types of kids seem to be strong and tough on the outside, even extroverted, but are
really sensitive. If you pay close attention and listen you will most likely
find a gentle soul.
I’m not going to
pretend that the high levels of energy are just going to disappear; the fact is
your kid needs to release that energy somehow, channel it, and use it in a good
way. Remember, it is not just that they
want to move, they need to move!
I recently learned something from the book “Parenting from
the inside out” from author Dan Siegel, which changed the way I see my kids
completely. Turns out the part of the brain in charge of reasoning is among
the last to mature and it really does not reach full maturity until at least
So, the first areas of
the brain to mature are those with the most basic functions, therefore, we
should not expect our little kids to have very civilized sophisticated
reactions to frustration, for example.
Good news is, by the
age of 3, children develop empathy, so you can try and show your child how
his/her actions make you feel, this helps kids understand you by mirroring
their emotions in yours.
I know it is difficult, but, try to embrace the uniqueness
of your spirited child, the intensity with which he/she lives life. Here are
some good books to help you with your journey:
Parenting from the
inside out b, Dr. Dan Siegel.
Living with intensity
by Susan Daniels.
You can’t make me (but
I can be persuaded): Strategies for bringing out the best in your strong willed
child by Cynthia Tobias
Born and raised in Mexico; single mother of two fun silly boys.
The North Shore has been my home for over 10 years and I love it! I am constantly looking for fun (preferably free) activities for my family as well as new ways to channel that extra energy that my boys always seem to have.
Writing is the best way to express the challenges and joys of being a mother and I do it in the hopes that this will help other parents as well. I hope you enjoy my blog!
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