Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The grace seat

Does anyone know the statute of limitations on a child-imposed gag order?

Me neither. But I'm pretty sure it has run out. If not, just don't tell those involved and no one will get hurt.

In the spring, The Good Doctor and I attended an adoption summit. We split up during the break-out sessions so we could get more bang for our buck. I attended a session on loving your hard-to-love child. The speaker was excellent as was the topic. At the end of the session she held a question and answer time. Since she has a large household with many personalities and issues resulting from kids from hard places, one of the questions that came up was about handling sibling conflicts. I took copious notes as she answered, knowing that this was going to be a great idea to try out at home.

It didn't take long before I had my chance. I stalled the two offenders just long enough to grab my notebook for a hidden refresher course.  And then we began...

First, I sent the two children (for simplicity's sake, let's just call them Child A and Child B) to the grace seat. In your home, it may be called a love seat, or even a sofa, but thanks to this wonderful speaker, we now have a grace seat.

Next, I gave Child A and Child B a list of questions that they were to discuss together while on the grace seat and told them to let me know when they were ready to discuss.  The list of questions, again thanks to the speaker (or at least to the best of my note-taking abilities), were as follows:

1. What happened?
2. How did you feel?
3. What was your part?
4. What do you need to apologize for?
5. What would you do differently next time?

Lo, and behold, it worked. They discussed together, they called me when ready, the three of us had a delightfully eye-opening conversation, and we were ready to continue our day...

...when Child A blurted out, "You can't tell your parenting class about this."

Child B added, "Or Facebook."

And the final blow from Child A, "And not on your blog, either."

But like I said, I'm pretty sure the statute of limitations has run out.

*With thanks to Susan Hillis for this most excellent idea.

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