What do you say to your child when they are hurt by bullying? Learn more about how you should respond on this episode of Have a New Kid by Friday Podcast.
Show Sponsored by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing
Produced by Unmutable™
Doug: Your daughter walks in the door, tears are streaming down her face, and she just walks right into her room and slams the door. Later on you get to talk to her and you say, “What’s wrong?” She says, “Someone called me fat at school today.” What do you do as a parent? How do you respond to them? What’s going on with that kid? That’s the question we get to ask Dr. Leman today.
Hi, I’m Doug Terpening.
Andrea: And I’m Andrea.
Doug: Boy, I started that one off kind of on a dour note, didn’t I? But we’re really glad that you’re here. So I’ll say woohoo. And we want to let you know, this is for your education and entertainment purposes only. If the subject matter raises any concerns for you or your child, please go seek a local professional for help.
So definitely I have a quick funny story, maybe this isn’t funny, but I’ll tell it anyways. So we always go camping at the same spot as a family, and we raft down this little river part, not very long. And so we made a river raft, song and I’m offended at my children because when they came to the song that’s part of me, listen to Andrea’s already laughing. When they come to the part of song that’s about me, I am called Huge Butt by my children, who knocks all the children off the raft.
Andrea: That’s because you’re dragging on the rocks.
Doug: Oh, look at Andrea’s even adding to this, Dr. Leman. Help me. This is how I get treated around here.
Andrea: It’s just perfect, because this is the last day they can call in and describe us.
Dr. Leman: Oh, yeah.
Andrea: You just gave away a little piece.
Dr. Leman: Yeah. Wow. Yeah. Boy, I hope people were listening to that, but yeah, we want to know from you. I don’t know about you, but I listen to radio and I listen to a program and I don’t know what the person looks like, but I have in my mind what that person looks like. And then I meet that person someday and I go, “Oh, Whoa, wow.” I get the voice. But I didn’t think that he or she looked like that.
And so we want to know what your perception is of what Doug Terpening looks like, and his wife Andrea. I’m not going to call her lovely. I’m not going to call her pretty. I mean, I could call her Old Dog Face to throw you off if I wanted to, but that wouldn’t be kind, would it? But we want to know how tall is Doug? How tall is Andrea? What do they look like? What are their facial features like? What’s their body type like? I mean you name it, put as much detail it as you can, and they will pick a winner. And we will send you a copy of my newest book, which is a good one, why Kids Misbehave and What to Do About It. So have at it. We want to hear what you have to say about what the Terpenings look like. That’s T-E-R-P-E-N-I-N-G. A terpening. I’ve said this so many times, but a terpening sounds like it’s a little animal that lives in Australia under a rock, a terpening. Are there a lot of terpenings in the country?
Doug: No, there’s not a lot.
Andrea: Not that we know of.
Doug: Not a lot.
Dr. Leman: Where did that name come from? Do you know?
Andrea: We think Dutch.
Doug: We think it’s Dutch, but it’s kind of…
Dr. Leman: Terpening.
Doug: My friend just came back from the Dutch and they said that it’s like a phrase for someone who is frugal. Is that right, Andrea?
Andrea: Like the Dutch.
Doug: Like the Dutch.
Andrea: Penny pincher.
Doug: Penny pincher.
Dr. Leman: Penny pincher. Are you a penny pincher, Doug?
Doug: Well, in every family there’s a spender and a saver, right? Let’s just say Andrea does a better job of making sure the money lasts to the end of the month. We’ll just say that. How about that?
Dr. Leman: Okay. So one of the descriptions could be that her gray matter is larger than yours. I’m amusing myself now. I can’t wait to see what you guys say. Take the time to tell us what you think Doug and Andrea look like. I think it’d be fun. We’ll read some of them on the podcast. You might get a kick out of them.
Doug: We’re making this up on the fly as we go, Dr. Leman, but could they post those even do your Facebook account or not? Or would that be a bad idea? Should we make them leave an audio description?
Dr. Leman: Oh, I don’t care. Sure. Whatever.
Dr. Leman: On my Facebook, Dr. Kevin Leman Facebook, there’s like 78,000 people on there. So help us spread the word about the podcast. It doesn’t need a lot of fanfare, quite frankly, because we know a lot of people are on that every day. But help your friends out say, “Hey, I listen to this podcast. You might like it,” and share it with them and help us grow our audience. That’s always fun to see.
Andrea: How do they leave an audio description?
Doug: So you go to-
Andrea: podcast questions?
Doug: Go to birthorderguide.com/podcastquestion. Or you can look at the latest episode and at the bottom of it. So you can go to birthorderguide.com/320 or whatever number less than that. And there’s a little microphone and you can click right there, and you can leave your description. That would be great. It’d be fun. Are the two of you done insulting me by the way, can we move on now? Are you done? Or is there anymore?
Andrea: Did I insult you?
Doug: You said that my butt dragged on the rocks and that’s why I was called-
Andrea: I was just giving a description of what happened when we were going down the river.
Doug: Oh, okay. Thanks. Yeah, great. I love you, both of you, so much. Alrighty. Well, so Dr. Leman, maybe we should change the question from my child came home crying because she was called fat to Doug came home cried because he was called fat by Dr. Leman and his wife. How do you help our children when they have to experience these kinds of-
Dr. Leman: Well, let’s start off with a multiple choice. You heard Doug’s description. Your kid comes home in tears and goes right to the room and slams the door. And he asked the great question, what do you do? Well, here’s a multiple choice. You go in and sit on your child’s bed and said, “Honey, what happened? What’s wrong?” That’s A. B. You come to the door and you knock and you say, “Honey, can I come in?” Or C. You do nothing. What is the proper answer?
Doug: Oh, Andrew, you’re the one with more gray matter. Why don’t you answer? A, B, or C Andrea.
Andrea: I’m going to go A. I’m going to come in and sit down with them.
Doug: She’s wrong, Dr. Leman, tell her! Just nail her.
Dr. Leman: She is wrong. Do you want to take a guess?
Doug: C, you wait for them.
Dr. Leman: C, C. And that’s just the mother in her, okay. Her little chick is wounded. That little dove’s got a broken wing and mama bear is going to run over there. I really don’t mind the idea of the parent coming in and sitting on the edge of the bed. But I really don’t like the idea of just walking in there and sitting on the edge of the bed and saying, “What’s wrong?” because that’s not going to get us anywhere. So you need time to really think it through as an adult, what should I do? Okay. And if in doubt, do nothing for a while. And that child needs some time to comprehend what’s happened and have a little cry and get themselves back together, okay.
There is a time where just simply saying, “Honey, can I come in?” or knocking on the door, and this might be late that night, it might be the next day. But there is an appropriate time to just come in and gently sit in the bed and say, “Honey, I don’t know. You seemed awful upset. Is there anything you want to talk about?” That’s all. And if the kid says, “No, I don’t want to talk about whatever.” Do not resist that one bit. Say, “Honey, that’s fine. Maybe another time,” and leave. So after all the emotion gets subsided to the point where she isn’t crying and you feel like you got a handle on things, then I think you’ve got to give the kid a pocket answer.
And you have to understand that when a kid is snarky and nasty and calls a kid a name, whether it’s fat or four eyes or something worse than that, you got to remember the kid that’s doing the talking is a kid who doesn’t like himself to begin with. And my classical go-to line for kids is to say to that kid, “Whoa, I didn’t realize you felt so bad about yourself.” That’s the antidote for the kid who’s being snarky with your kid. And your kid has to have that in their repertoire of behavior. So when those curve balls come rather than look like a deer that’s frozen in the middle of a highway, they have a response that’s almost memorized. It comes out that easy. It’s a wonderful way of fending off the people who want to tear you down.
Doug: So Andrea, as the resident mother here who failed the quiz, just pointing that out.
Andrea: Yes, thank you for reminding me about that.
Doug: Yeah, I’m not rubbing it in. Could you wait if your baby is over there crying in her room or his room?
Andrea: It’s awful hard. Because you want to come and comfort them. I like what you said, Dr. Leman about giving myself time to think so that I’m not just reacting, and giving them time to think.
Dr. Leman: Well Andrea, let me tell you, I know you well enough to know you could pull this off really easy. And even if you went in there, if we allowed your answer to be the correct one, and you went in there and you sat on the edge of the bed, and you just simply patted your daughter a couple of times on the shoulder and got up and left, that would be okay. Because you’re showing by way of your action that I’m here, I’m available, and I’ve got compassion for whatever you’re going through. Does that make you feel better?
Andrea: Yes. Thank you.
Dr. Leman: Just no words.
Andrea: Okay, no words. Just pat them on the shoulder, let them know you’re there, that you recognize they’re hurting, but don’t try and dig out what’s going on.
Dr. Leman: Right. Exactly.
Doug: What’s interesting about that advice. I rarely agree with you on what you say, Dr. Leman, but since I’m already in trouble with Andrea, I’ll just keep going. Andrea is amazing, and if the kids are hurting they go to her. But one of the things that we all sort of fear about mom is, if we are ever hurting or sad or negative we almost aren’t allowed to be that, because mom’s going to come in immediately and try and comfort us. That we don’t even get a chance to process it ourselves in a sense. And so some things that are a molehill feel like a mountain at times. So it is interesting.
Andrea: Oh, that’s good for me to hear.
Doug: But if we wait, then we come and come to you. Huh.
The ebook offer from our friends at Revell is When Your Kid is Hurting, for a dollar 99 between now and the end of July of 2020. When Your Kid is Hurting for only a buck 99, Andrea.
Andrea: This is one of your newer books, isn’t it Dr. Leman?
Dr. Leman: It is. So go ahead and read the Amazon-
Andrea: Okay, here’s a little review here. She said, “I love it. This book is great. It has a lot of helpful information. I just love Dr. Leman. I was not disappointed.” And BJ said, “When someone you love hurts, hurting parents of hurting children need to read this book.”
Doug: So if you have a hurting kid and you’re wondering, how do I deal with the wounds of life, you can get When Your Kid is Hurting for a buck 99, between now and the end of July wherever eBooks are sold. And now a no-nonsense parenting moment with Dr. Kevin Leman.
Dr. Leman: Hey parents, we’re pounded with opportunities to help other people. If you’re a TV watcher, which I’m somewhat ashamed to tell you, I do watch TV. You’ll see these ads where you can help wounded veterans or families who’ve lost men or women on the battlefield for only $11 a month or $19 a month. Or we see ads for St. Jude’s Hospitals that treat kids who have had major disruption in their lives. There’s opportunity to give to people everywhere we look.
And I think it’s important that kids learn that they are not the center of the universe and giving is part of life. If God has blessed us in any way, with whatever we’ve got, and we share that with other people, I think it’s important to have kids share in that. They have allowances. I know we’ve gone out and literally ministered, if I can use that term, to homeless people. We’ve had our grandchildren with them. We’ve had grandchildren actually give the gift that’s in an envelope to the homeless person. Because I want our grandchildren, our children to see people just like they live. And everybody doesn’t live in a four bedroom home with premium wifi. Trust me. So giving is part of our responsibility to help others in need. It’s a great lesson for your kids to learn. Who should they learn it from? You.
Doug: Well, it is a joy to be with you. And if you have a hurting kid, you can get When Your Kid is Hurting from now until the end of July of 2020 for a buck 99. We look forward to the next time we get to hang out with you and add to that parenting toolbox so you can love those kids more and more.
Andrea: Have a great week.
Doug: Take care, bye.