With this in mind, I am thoughtfully aware that true communication is a miracle. This is especially true when it comes to interactions with our children. For when we, as parents, speak too much, our children will listen less. They may become what Kathryn Kvols , author of Redirecting Children’s Behavior, refers to as “parent deaf.” When we speak too much to our children about a problem, or what they forget, we also become a nag. In addition, speaking and explaining too much invites our children to argue with us and defend their own position. They may no longer be interested in what we have to say or why, but only in making their own point. Everyone is speaking, no one is listening, and communication is lost. The ancient Greek proverb has been forgotten.
Instead of speaking too much and lecturing to our children, Kathryn Kvols recommends using a signal. By using a signal, Kvols suggests that we will avoid arguments, nagging, and creating parent deaf human beings. A signal may be developed between you and your children. It is agreed upon as a fun, “secret code” manner of avoiding conflict for reoccurring problems (it also works with spouses and partners). A signal can be used with a child who constantly forgets a lunchbox or homework each morning, or forgetting feed the family pet, or take out the trash. By using the signal, parents can be reassured that they are supporting their children, without creating an argument and conflict.
Perhaps only then, when our children do actually listen to us, what they will hear instead is that we will support them and love them unconditionally.