My kids are really sensitive, especially my son, and it’s never more evident then when he’s in trouble. When he was younger, I remember that he had done something to warrant being punished, which in our house meant the naughty step. I don’t actually remember what he did to warrant the step, but I do remember the look on his face when I put him there. He looked devastated. Four and devastated. Poor little dude broke my heart.
After his time was up, he came over to me, and gave me a big hug and a kiss. While we were hugging tightly, he started to cry and he said, “Mommy, do you still love me? Do you still love me when I do bad stuff?” I may or may not have started to cry at this point (Read: Hello ugly cry).
So I looked straight at him, and said, “Look at Mommy and listen very carefully, ok? Mommy loves you always, no matter what.” And I asked him to repeat it, and so he did. The rest of the day, I could hear him talking out loud, to his toys, telling all his stuffed buddies that his mommy and daddy love him no matter what, even when he is “super bad”.
No matter what. That’s the little love mantra that we share with both of our kids – no matter what. Because regardless of what my kids say or do, and regardless of their age or their attitude or choices, I want them to know that I will always love them, always, no matter what. And so I say it to them every single day.
No matter what.