We’ve all had it happen: Grandma says the kids were perfect angels for her all weekend, and then they’re crying and fighting as soon as we get them home. Do we really have to be “safe spaces” for our kids’ worst behavior and most negative feelings?
We know we have to be our kids’ soft place to fall. We understand why they absolutely fall apart after a long day at school. But does it really have to be Mom who always gets the worst of it?
Our listener Michelle wrote in to say:
I have been pondering something I call the "Safe Space Paradox,” or why children behave so differently around their primary caregiver. I am repeatedly told by grandparents, teachers, my husband, that my children were "perfect angels" for them. And yet the minute I open the door it is a cue for my children to resume the whining, fighting, and crying.
I understand this is because of the deep emotional connection children form with their primary caregiver. But is there any research on ways to actually improve this? Or that I can actually enjoy this precious side of my children?
In this episode, we discuss
For more on "after school restraint collapse," check out our episode "Why 5 to 8 p.m. Is The Worst: How To Handle the After-School Crankies"
Here are links to some writing on the topic that we discuss in this episode:
Lauren Cahn for Reader's Digest: Here’s Why Kids Behave So Much Worse Around Their Parents
Fern Weis for Motherly: The real reason your kids act worse for you than anyone else—and how to help
Beth Shaw for Psychology Today: When Trauma Gets Stuck in the Body
Special thanks to this month's sponsors:
Home.Made. Podcast is a terrific new podcast offering stories about the meaning of home in America. Subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts!
Indeed is the only job site where you're guaranteed to find quality applicants -- or else you don't pay! Upgrade your job post with a $75 sponsored job credit through March 31st at indeed.com/laughing.
KiwiCo projects make science, technology, engineering, art, and math super fun. Get 30% off your first month plus FREE shipping on ANY crate line with code MOTHERHOOD.
Peloton has a workout for every goal, day, and mood: everything from boxing and dance cardio to yoga and meditation. Visit onepeloton.com to learn more.
Thrive Causemetics high-performing beauty and skin-care products are made with clean, skin-loving ingredients. Get 15% off your first order at thrivecausemetics.com/whatfreshhell.
Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices