With that scene I wept. All I could think about was the utter rejection that little boy felt and the fact that he would have this pain on his mind all during the day. How much was he going to take in after what he had just been taught by his mother?
So what should have happened? Your children will frustrate you at times and the feeling of anger and disappointment are normal. It’s what you do with them and how you respond that is important. You are the one that is teaching your child how to respond in various situations. They will mirror back to you what you do to them. If you show love, appreciation and forgiveness, you will reap that back.
Regardless of what this child did that embarrassed his mother he was seeking reconciliation. He was extending an olive branch to her. In actuality, when the child was acting badly at first, she should have taken him to a private corner of the play ground, bent down to his eye level, looked him right in the eyes and said, ‘What you just did made me feel very angry or hurt.’ Then had him apologise. To which she should have said, ‘I forgive you’, and then given him a hug and a kiss. When the boy was running after here, she should have stopped, taken him off to the side and then gone through the above. Eye contact is very important in the process of having them say I am sorry which makes them take ownership of their actions. But you saying, ‘I forgive you’, releases them from the shame and restores relationship.
Parenting is an emotional business. But as much as possible send the message of love, respect and acceptance to your children. What that little boy experienced was rejection and disapproval. The problem with that is it leads to behaviour that lashes out, is belligerent and rebellious. What every child longs for is tangible love that is kind and keeps no records of wrongs, a love that never fails.