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What does the word co-operate mean to you?

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  • What does the word co-operate mean to you?

    The author asks this on page 16 and I find myself quite surprised by what it originally meant to me until after further on co-operate by the authors. So, I ask you, what does it mean to you? And for those who have read up to this point, what did you find enlightening about this section? I look forward to your thoughts.

  • #2
    I am a first time mama and a single parent of a 7 week old baby boy named Wyatt.

    So, first I want to thank you Steph for your efforts in getting this book group started. I'm a avid reader and am grateful for good AP book guidance!

    I finally got some time to sit and read the first chapter and have been meditating on what "co-operation" means to me. I firmly believe it is working together,but I am trying to understand this on a deeper level and I keep coming up with this faults:

    -working together without anger or resentments
    -working together without attachments to our thoughts and beliefs and keeping an open mind
    -keeping it fun

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    • #3
      and...KEEPING IT SIMPLE!!!!

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      • #4
        So different than what we grew up with!

        Originally posted by dharmagrlpa View Post
        -working together without anger or resentments
        I found this very interesting when you wrote this but it makes complete sense. When I think of the traditional thoughts out there right now in which they believe they working it out together it is with this undertone of anger or resentment.

        Originally posted by dharmagrlpa View Post
        -working together without attachments to our thoughts and beliefs and keeping an open mind
        Yes, I agree, very key. I believe a lot of parenting techniques right now believe they are working together but it is with a little manipulation underneath it (time-out, praise and rewards, etc.). Many times we do approach our children in this manner of believing we are finding a solution with them but in reality the solution has already been thought of in our head and we wanting the child to come to the same one.

        Originally posted by dharmagrlpa View Post
        -keeping it fun
        The author of Playful Parenting would agree with you on this one. Sometimes it's hard to keep it fun, what do you think we could do in those situations?

        Thank you for continuing the discussion on this!

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        • #5
          You are so right. Sometimes we make it complicated or talk too much in trying to explain... no wonder our kids get confused! LOL

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          • #6
            For me, it found it fascinating that when I was first thinking of this meaning it had a lot of thought processes from my childhood. It meant to do as you are told, to listen to the parent, etc. I wasn't comfortable with this thought process. As I continued reading it articulated in better format that really cooperation means working together in an open-ended relationship. I know my whole parenting philosophy and mindframe (and actions) is to work with my daughter but I found it interesting that when I thought of the actual words for the definition it was completely different than that.

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            • #7
              After much thought, I believe I have been using co-operate and compromise interchangeably when it comes to parenting. I'll have to watch how we do things over the next several days to see what I might be able to improve on.

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              • #8
                After reading through that exact part I decided I really needed re-evaluate whether I was using cooperation or compromise also. I chose, as a way to remind myself, to say "I am looking for co-operation not compliance." It really helped to put me in the mind-frame of creating things together and not forcing my child to compromise within my limits. So, for example, my daughter and I sat down together and wrote up a list of things we each valued about keeping her room clean. I wrote my top 3 and she wrote her top 3. We were able to work together to get both our needs met. Now she is prideful (most of the time) in what she values in the cleanliness of her room. It really helped me!

                Thanks for getting this started!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by dharmagrlpa View Post
                  -working together without anger or resentments
                  This was an interesting one for me, because sometimes I find that I'm just so tired of "debating" something that I just say "OKAY, FINE!" and do what my daughter wants, but not without some resentment. Just as an example, today she wanted to play outside. She was having meltdown after meltdown, nothing else would make her happy. We have biting flies this time of year that swarm me and leave me with blood running down my scalp and neck. I don't want to be outside. I'm pregnant, so I don't really want to douse myself in bug spray. The natural bug spray works okay (fewer bites, less blood), but I had just taken a shower and we have somewhere to go this afternoon. If I used the spray then I'd have to take another shower and we'll probably be late. But after an hour of whining and unrelenting nagging ("Mommy, I want to go outside. Mommy, it's warm outside. Mommy, the sun is shining. Mommy, you should let your kid go outside. Mommy, I don't want to go by myself. Mommy, kids like to be outside. Mommy, I want to pick flowers. Mommy, it's important for parents to take their kids outside. Mommy, just for a little bit"), I finally gave in and went outside. I used the natural bug spray, so now have only a few itchy bites - but I had to change my plans for later in the day so that I can take a shower. I don't think that we were co-operating, because my needs were clearly not being met and I was feeling some resentment about it.

                  On the other hand, she's 4. And I think it's a little unrealistic to think that she can consider my needs all of the time. I struggle with exactly when it's appropriate to set a hard personal boundary in the framework of our discussions (as in, I'm not going outside so we need to find a solution that keeps me inside), when I know that that boundary is really going to keep her from getting what she wants / needs (as in, she isn't really developmentally ready to go outside by herself).

                  Just my musings for the morning.
                  WBB

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                  • #10
                    LOL... Marianne, your post made me smile because I can totally relate. Since really re-defining co-operation I have been able to better define what I want. My 4-year old dd likes to keep her room messy and it was driving me nuts. When I starting reading this book I realized that I am the one defining clean for her instead of working with her to define clean. I look at her dad and the way she prefers to keep her room is also the way he likes to keep this things (in piles, no files or folders for anything). When I realized this I was able to define to her that I need to be able to vacuum her room at least once a week so that the hair, etc. doesn't build up on her floor. When I was able to define to her exactly why I wanted a cleaner room she was able to think about us cleaning up her room at least once a week so that I could vacuum. In her words, "That's okay mommy. You can just only vacuum Hannah's room once a week." So, we have adopted that approach for two weeks now and I must say it is working quite well for the both of us. She has her room to keep tidy in her way but the rest of the house she knows we have to work together to keep it to clean since we are sharing space. I think with this it has given her more autonomy as well as met my need for being able to maintain a certain level of cleanliness in the house. Prior to reading this book I would have been attempting to work out a solution with her but it wouldn't have been in a co-operative manner as I am reading even though I would have thought that was what I was doing.

                    I too am loving this discussion.

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