One of the hardest things that we as parents have to teach children is how to admit when they are wrong. This is something that most adults do not even like to do, so it is a very hard concept for children to learn. Now factor in that as parents we all make mistakes and do things wrong. So this means that we are going to have to be open and honest with our children and admit when you do something wrong. This teaching process will not be easy, but is any aspect of raising a kid easy?
Of course there are times when telling your child that you were wrong is going to be easy. If you were disagreeing with your child about a fact and you look it up and find out that you were wrong, it is pretty easy to apologize and state what the true fact is. However when you have gotten angry and said something that you regret, it can be hard to accept that you were wrong. Pride can get in the way of you saying what you need to say. I know I’m guilty of this from time to time, but have moved past this conditioned behavior.
As parents we must stop letting pride get in our way and we must start living the way that we want our children to live. The one thing that children do better than anything else is mimic the adults that are in their life. Here are some helpful tips to help you when you are trying to admit that you are wrong to your child.
Be Honest with Your Child
Tell your child the truth without making excuses. Instead of saying “I’m sorry I yelled but you made me really mad.” try saying something like “I lost control of my temper when I was angry. I am sorry that I yelled. I am working on this and hope that it is not going to happen as often as it has in the past.” This shows the approach that one should take to avoid conflict, which your kid will pick up on. As soon as I began saying this to my children, they would reply with their own apology for doing something wrong.
Do Not Allow Your Child to Make You Feel Guilty
Some children are great at making their parents feel guilty. It can result in you feeling like you are never able to do anything right or that you are a bad parent. I have one child who makes a big deal out of every time that I try to do the right thing and admit that I am wrong. What I have reminded him is that he does not want me to make a big deal out of what he does wrong so he should not do that to me. This generally stops his behavior quickly.
Follow These Same Rules with Your Child
If you have fought over something with your child and have proven them to be wrong, use the same grace that you want them to use. Tell them that this is why it is silly to argue over something unless you know the facts for certain. Also remind them that you are showing them grace and that it no longer needs to be discussed. Doing this will give them a great example for how they should treat you when you have admitted to doing wrong yourself.
Admitting that you are wrong is hard at any age. This is why we live in a society where people tell so many lies. Instead of getting worked up about learn how to admit your mistake, ask for forgiveness if needed, and move on.