Sunday, November 7, 2010

Tough love

Ms. L comes over to do speech therapy with Reagan on Monday mornings.  She has believed in my little girl right from the beginning and has been a great source of information and support.  We are currently working with Reagan choosing between two items using both her eye gaze and hand to "tap" the picture to let us know her choice.  Reagan has shown us that she knows the name of this game by choosing the correct picture when asked to show us her baby, ball, lovey, etc.  This girl, she's a smart one, but let me tell you she is also very stubborn.  I am still trying to figure out which parent gave her this great trait!

During the last session Ms. L worked with her to make choices between her toys.  Reagan fussed a little but played along.  After about 3 rounds of this choice making, she decided she was done making choices and had enough.  So, Ms. L told her that she could take a break and watch her favorite tv show but she would have to choose that as her activity.  She showed her the dvd case (which we know she understands) and her lovey and told her to make a choice.  This is when she really showed her temper.  Usually when this happens, I quickly cave because who likes to see their little girl unhappy?  In the past I have helped her by showing her what I need and then I turn in on, hoping that if we walk through it together enough, she would start doing it on her own.

But, Ms. L's philosophy is that Reagan has learned that she doesn't have to choose because gullible Mommy will give her what she wants in the end (tv) without working for it.  We endured 25 minutes of a screaming, crying, unhappy Reagan.  It was awful. Completely heartbreaking.  We continuously explained to her that she just had to show us what she wanted.  We let her walk away and she would always come back and just tell us how mad she is and then walk away again.  In the end, she ended up making the decision and the world was a happy place again.  Since then, we do this every morning and she has gotten much better about choosing.  It's hard to give tough love, to do things with or for your children that don't make them happy but you know will make them a better person in the end.

Listening to Ms. L give her instructions on choosing a toy

Playing with her toy after her decision 

Using great eye gaze and hand touching of the picture to let us know her choice


  1. Yeah for you both! Tough love is just that, touch on the parent, but she is lucky to have a mom that respects her enough to give it!!! Mrs. L sounds awesome!

  2. I second what Colleen said. You are doing such a wonderful job, Dawn. I probably give in to Abby way too much.

  3. I guess that I should clarify that we still have our moments, or lots of them, where I give in b/c who wants to see her suffer any more?

  4. oh that is tough. I am so guilty of giving in just so that he can be happy and not have to suffer, especially when we are out in public. It has been very hard for us to find a new discipline balance. Kuddos to you momma, good job!!