Take the Toilet Paper Test
Do you prefer that the toilet paper roll be pulled from the bottom or the top? The answer to that question may tell you more about your parenting than you might imagine! Think I’m pushing it here? Consider this.
Many of us have preferences about how we want things done. Maybe we want our shirts folded a certain way, or the counters cleaned with a particular substance, or the vegetables cubed a certain size. And that’s fine. You’re entitled to your preference.
But what happens when someone in your family prefers things a different way? Maybe your spouse likes the veggies stripped instead of cubed. Maybe she likes her t-shirts rolled, not folded. When other adults have different preferences from us, we tend to find a way to respect that – or at least agree to disagree.
But when our kids see the world differently, we often tend to correct them, instead of recognizing that they might have a different preference. Not only does this add an extra level of correction that our kids could do without, but it takes away their sense of control – and seriously, we want them to start feeling MORE in control, not less, right?
Besides, wouldn’t you rather have the laundry folded, than worry about whether it’s folded just right? I know I would!
So take the toilet paper test: if you REALLY care whether the toilet paper roll is pulled from the top or the bottom, it might be a sign that it’s time to chill out a little. Maybe you can start by asking your child what he prefers!
(P.S. My kids roll from the top, and my spouse rolls from the bottom. Secret to my success: I honestly don’t care!)