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'The children have been very good, they have behaved phenomenally', is the phrase that my in-laws and my mother repeat every time they stay with my children one afternoon. I, who can't quite believe it, look at them sideways and insist on doing a small third grade: 'haven't they screamed? Haven't they hit each other? Have they eaten everything? Have they picked up their things? homework?' The answer is usually yes, yes, yes, yes.
In those moments I have a double feeling, on the one hand joy because his behavior was faultless and, on the other, a certain indignation ... 'but why isn't it like that with me? I wonder.
A false report went around the world stating that children behave 800% worse with mothers and that is, the joke seemed so real that many were bitten. In short, he posed that eternal question: Why do children behave worse in the presence of their mothers?
A couple of years ago a study emerged (which turned out to be false although it is still around the Internet), which was published on the American website Mom News Daily. Many took that as true and it is that ultimately, it was not unreasonable. According to this false report that claimed to come from the Department of Psychology of the University of Washington, children behave 800% worse in the presence of the mother and, in children older than 10 years, the percentage doubles to 1600%.
An invented doctor of psychology, Dr K.P. Leibowitz, stated that "What we found was that children as young as eight months could be playing happily, but when they saw their mother enter the room, they were 998.9% more likely to start crying, to release their intestines and to demand immediate attention. 1% was a child with vision problems who, once he heard his mother's voice, began to throw things away and asked for a snack despite having eaten ".
This joke launched by a parenting website seemed true because, in short, it is what many moms experience every day. We don't need a study to know this: children behave worse in the presence of their mothers. I have two theories about it:
- Trust: Our children spend a lot of time with us, this has been the case traditionally and, in many cases, even today, we are the ones who ask for reductions in working hours or organize our work to be able to serve them. This generates much greater trust towards mothers than with anyone else in their environment. This trusting relationship causes them to relax their behavior and, at times, give free rein to their emotions.
In fact, we do not behave the same way in all our circles and only with those people who are really very trustworthy, we relax and show our true selves, we bring out our worst genius or our most tender self. With children it is the same.
- Children demand our attention: our children, especially at very early ages, don't want to annoy us on purpose, they don't concoct ardices to drive us crazy. Certain behaviors such as crying, kicking or screaming, is nothing else, at certain times, than a call for attention to us. They need all the love and affection we can give them, even when we give them a lot, they need more.
They look for comfort and they look for it in us, because in moms they find that hug when they have a nightmare, that kiss when they have fallen or those words of encouragement when they have not managed to score a goal. In parents they look for other things: fun, exploring, games, experiences, advice ...
Mothers, in general, are that protection that our children innately associate with survival.
I want to think that if they behave worse with us, it is not because we are lax in education or softer, but because we are good mothers.
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