Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Discipline and Peace in the Home

I have tried very hard to make my home my sanctuary. A place that I can rely on as a safe haven from my anxiety. A place that promotes peace and love. However lately I have noticed that delicate balance shifting. As my sweet little baby girl has been growing up and turning into a full blown whining, tantrum throwing two year old, I find myself struggling with discipline. Specifically, the balance with myself and my spouse. 

As new parents we are both trying to figure out our parenting style and come up with a consistent method of discipline, but it gets difficult. When you feel like you have no idea what you are doing, or feel like you don't know what you should do, and the whining and crying doesn't stop, it can be FRUSTRATING. When I am alone with her I can handle the time outs and there are no anxiety related problems. But when my husband is disciplining her, I get very uneasy. I don't like feeling out of control and I don't like seeing Mr. T frustrated. Even if he isn't frustrated, I am worried that he will be.

We don't spank and we try our best to keep our cool and not raise our voices. But I am still worried about losing that peaceful spirit we have whenever a tantrum erupts or maybe when the 5th tantrum of the day erupts. We'll take turns when we've had it to get refreshed. Sometimes I will even walk outside and take a few deep breaths.

So I am not sure where to go from here. I guess this is more of an observation post about new triggers in my life. As my life is changing and I overcome old triggers, new ones are developing.

I've noticed that any disruption of the peace in my home is a cause for me to feel anxious, not just discipline. But this particular instance is a daily occurrence right now.  Looking at the bigger picture, I feel that I need to learn how to better deal with confrontation in general.

Anyone else have any suggestions or any stories of similar triggers?



snobby brit said...

I can sympathise, I did not realise I used my partner as a security blanket until he was in a mood with me after an argument whilst we were out during a weekend away with friends. Its then that I started to feel extra anxious because he wasn't available to me and I therefore wasn't in control of the situation. I see you as suffering from the same issues albeit slightly different. Your daughter is changing the dynamics that you have tried so hard to establish and I agree with your observations that it is a lack of control which makes us feel more anxious. Do I have an answer? no not really, but recognising it is part way there and you should be able to at least self talk.

Jade said...

I can totally relate with not liking seeing my husband upset. I think it goes along with my perfectionism and wanted everything to be perfect.

Alicia said...

Hello. I enjoyed your post. Even though I'm not a parent yet, it must take a lot of patience when your are raising kids. I admire those who have the patience and compassion to be good and thoughtful parents. I wish you all the best.

Chris said...

As an anxiety sufferer and a new dad I can definitely relate. Things have gotten better over the past couple of months, but during the first month or so anytime my little girl cried for more than a few minutes my anxiety would go crazy.

I would get very upset and be very short with my wife. It got frustrating. But as time has gone by and I am getting used to the crying, it's not nearly as bad.

Paul Dooley said...

Aimee, boy do I know what you mean.

I have a four year old and he is tow arm fulls.

I notice that I get frustrated not so much with my son, but with my wife because of our differing opinions about how to discipline our horned angel.

It's hard for sure, but the most critical thing is that you and your spouse keep the lines of communication open.

If something happens that you don't like, or find problematic in some way, then get on it and have a chat.

This is the best way to avoid trouble, and more anxiety, down the road.

Great post.

Paul Dooley

Anxiety Girl said...

Hi Aimee,

Thinking about you and wondering how the pregnancy is going? Hope all is well as you work hard to grow that sweet baby!

Cindy said...

I'm happy to have stumbled across your blog. I also cope with anxiety and have for 10 years. Looking forward to reading more of your posts.

Meredith said...

Hi Amy! I hope your pregnancy is going well. You must be due pretty soon! I would really love to hear how your anxiety has been this time around. I am 10 weeks pregnant with my 3rd and am a little nervous about how things will go! I would love to hear any tips you have! : )

Jason Hill said...

Hi Aimee,

I also have young ones at home; a boy 2 and a girl 4. I have also been an anxiety, panic, phobic sufferer for almost 16 years. I have been to therapy (and still go) numerous times for my anxiety. The one thing that my therapist has repeatedly tried to instill in me is accepting my anxiety. He actually encourages me to get in situations were I am triggered such as the terrible two's tantrumns. I will say that this is not an easy thing to do and can be quite frightening at first. However, many therapists agree that the only way through anxiety is acceptance(have you checked out ACT of Acceptance?). I hope this helps as we can't always have peace in our home and will always be surrounded by triggers.

Take Care

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