Boy sitting on moms lap upset

When Empathy Doesn’t Work: when-empathy-doesnt-work-q-a

A Parent Q & A

A question from a parent:
 “My child has responded so quickly to the new tools you introduced me to, and to the use empathy, but what happens when it doesn’t work? 

My Answer: 
When parents say “Empathy doesn’t work!” I, like Janet Lansbury, who wrote the article I shared on Facebook today, When Empathy Doesn’t Work, wonder what’s behind your empathy?

Authentic parenting tools require you to look at your true motivation for using them.
Are you using empathy to motivate a child to “stop it?”
Are you using empathy as a way to force your child to calm themselves?    

The way empathy works is for you to extend empathy with no hidden agenda.

Empathy is like the railing on a bridge between you and your child. It gives a child a place to hold onto as they enter the fog of their feelings. Empathy sends the message that crossing the bridge into feelings is safe, even though the destination is unknown.

When you’re neutral and have no agenda, the empathy you use is sent with a clarity that there are no expectations here, just a true desire to connect and understand.
That’s how you make empathy work. 

Just something to ponder as you parent. 
Now go hug your kids!

We’ll talk again soon,

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