“Go to your room” we yell, thinking that this will be a great punishment. The child sulks, maybe even cries as they run up the stairs to their bedroom.
Within minutes we realise it is quiet and we wonder ‘what’s up?’
We are still upset with their behaviour and are just glad for the break so we don’t tempt fate and decide to leave well enough alone.
After a time we realise it has been way longer than we said the time out needed to be so we tell them they can come down. They say “ok” but stay in their rooms. Why?
We sneak up the stairs and creep over to their door and stand there to hear what is going on. Then it hits us. Sending them to their room was not a punishment but rather a reward as they are playing with their toys that are now all over the floor again.
Here is where we have to stop and remind ourselves why we had a family.
Our job is to love, teach and raise children to be all that they were meant to be. We need to stop and understand what a bedroom is for and not allow it to become a retreat from a nagging parent.
If we allow toys, televisions, video games all to be in a space that is meant for sleeping instead of having those items to be in the living space where ‘family’ should be together, we have taken away our opportunities:
- To learn how to interact and be with others face to face
- To learn how to handle social media appropriately
- To learn how to settle fights that might occur between siblings
- To learn how to spend quality time with family
- To learn how to share
- To learn how to work together to accomplish a common goal such as dinner time
I guess the thing we should be asking ourselves is why have we allowed them to turn their bedroom into their own private little haven? The simple answer is: because it’s easier.
After working all day, then coming home to housework and dinner it is easier for us to just allow them to be in their rooms and out of our way. If they are quiet and in their rooms we don’t have to hear them fighting with their siblings either that’s the last thing we want to hear.
Although it might be the quick and easy answer this line of thinking has caused a generation of people who do not spend time with family, a generation of people who feel entitled.
They can lock themselves away in their own room, play video games, talk to their friends, maybe do home work, or check out their social media accounts undistributed without any responsibilities to you, their siblings or the family unit.
When they do come out it’s usually to ask when dinner will be ready, if their laundry is done or if they can go out with friends.
It is not to come play a game with a sibling, or to have a talk with their parents or to help with dinner. And the only reason why is because they have never done any of that before because they had a wonderful cozy bedroom that they didn’t have to come out of.
It happens slowly by allowing first the toys, then a computer, than food into their bedrooms and before you know it you haven’t seen your child except to run in and out of the home. Don’t let bedrooms become something they shouldn’t be.
If you have a family, you did so because you wanted ‘a family’, not some strangers that live in their own private world called the bedroom.
What do you have in your kids bedrooms, does it work for your family, can you relate to this? Please share in the comments below.