Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Different Kids- Different Epectations?

Twenty percent of families have one child, that means the other eighty have two or more children.  If Cecily had come first she may have challenged us enough to stick with that 20%, but fortunately we had Cole first.  Although there are a great many similarities between my two children, they really are quite different in their personalities.  Cole's calm demeanor perfectly balances Cecily's much more intensely demanding but fun personality. Though we have always been challenged by Cecily, it has been made more manageable since her brother did not require our attention in the same ways.  There are ways in which he is challenging, they are just not something that needs constant and continual reinforcement every day. 

 Cole was hospitalized very suddenly on February 15th.  For the four days he was in the hospital, I stayed with him.  Then after he was released he had a series of doctors appointments, additional complications and many missed days of school.  In short he had total parental attention for nearly three weeks.  Guess what?  He not only liked it, but decided that acting out and mimicking some of his sister's behaviors would be good ideas to keep the focus on him.

It created havoc in our home!   I can't have two children that are the same, the balance is completely disrupted.  Cole is finally looking and feeling better, so it is time for him to revert back to his former self.  Well it was not occurring naturally, so we had to speak to him about his behaviors.  Trying to explain that even though the rules are the same for both children our expectations clearly are not.  That may seem harsh but there are several reasons why we have different expectations in some areas of our daily life.  Quite clearly age plays a factor.  The main reason that expectations vary is that  frankly my children are made up very differently.  One is much more impulsive and vocal, one is more responsible and able to follow directions very easily, one has a natural ability toward athletics while the other must work harder, one can handle pressure while the other one folds under it, one can self entertain through play while the other prefers engagement. 

Though we are a family unit and the children are growing up in the same home with the same parents and the same rules, they are not developing personalities that mimic each other.  Do you feel children should be treated the same?  I am positive that we are not doing the very best in all situations, but I do know that we are trying to do what we hope is right for our children. 

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