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Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Center of Attention

Being the center of attention is a sin. It is not seeking the interests others (Phil 2:4), and it is seeking its own (1Cor 13:5) It is not cute or sweet or just kids. Quite often what others see of your "charming," "outgoing," "talkative," affectionate," child is far from what you see in your home. They are not showing you those cute little dance moves or snuggling you when no one is looking. It is for the show of others. It is hard to believe it can be wrapped up in those tiny little bodies, with twinkling eyes and a killer smile. But it is.
Examples:
~Places his head in between your face and another person-usually an adult.
~sings extraordinarily loudly when others are around (we have a lot of music in our home but you can insert talks, tap dances, claps hands as you see)
~interrupts conversation you may be having to tell nonsensical story (I ask the sample lady at costco something about the product. Girlie interrupts and begins to tell a story-out of nowhere- about nametags at dance class. Lady at costco looks at me and her like we are nuts. Smile and walk away)
~begins being uncharacteristically affectionate with Mom in public
~chats and chats and chats and chats with acquaintances/strangers

Solutions-Part one:
In the moment, I will call her to my side and hold her hand. When I have a moment, I will lean down and whisper in her ear, "when you put your face in front of Daddy when he is speaking to Mr. X, you are being the center of attention." She knows it so she will usually accept the discipline of having to stand or sit by my side. If she persists I tell her she will choose a discipline when we get home. Now, how did we get to this spot? It has happened enough in our family circle that we have talked about wanting the attention of others. When X happened, you wanted everyone's eyes on you. The Bible calls that sin because you do not want everyone to have fun and have attention (or share or hear or xxx). You want all the fun and attention on you. That is inappropriate.

9 comments:

Bill and Christina said...

Great post Cate. Thanks for the great examples and how you respond to them. You are quick to notice when these things arise in your children and it is a great teaching. Your iron is sharpening my iron.
Christina

Dittmeier said...

Daily an issue in this house....nope, make that hourly.

Dittmeier said...

p.s...you're much more tactful than I am. I tend to just say, "Get out of the middle," loud enough for anyone to hear. (Of course, this is at home, not at Costco.) The bad part about that is, the moment she has gotten that from me, having disrupted whatever else was going on at the time, she's gotten her fix.

Kathy said...

I have to share what happened last night with this post. I got home and started reading my e-mails. There was an e-mail from one of Adam's teacher about how he always has to be the center of attention in science class and that it's been much worse this week. I was kind of upset knowing that he isn't improving in this area. I decided to skip the rest of my e-mails and check blogs. This was the first blog that showed on my dashboard so I went from "Adam is having a lot of problems with having to be the center of attention" to "being the center of attention is a sin." I read both the e-mail and the first half of your post to him. I figure it will hold more weight coming from someone other than me although you weren't specifically talking about a school classroom.

Anonymous said...

I am so tired of people telling me "it's normal every kid just wants attention." "don't stress about it and make it a big deal, she'll get over it" uggg! You don't see what happens at home nor do you know her background and where she came from. I know i can't expect people to KNOW what I have come to learn about RAD but i guess i do expect people to respect my the fact that she is my daughter and i dont have to explain every little thing i am doing and why i am doing it that way. I feel like I am sometimes under a telescope becasue so many were involved and prayed for this child which i am so gratefull for but the opions i can do without.

Simply Moms said...

Christina-it is hard. I know it is only what God reveals to me. I think that is why it is so important to have others around you. If a friend has the gift of discernment and you share the incident (or they witness the moment) sometimes they can give you insight.

And we all have our testimonies that will sharpen those walking this path! Thank you for yours!

Simply Moms said...

Angelia-that is so hard. I hate it!! There are times when tapping a pencil is just having fun and drumming. Other times it is waiting for mom to ask you to stop. As soon as you do, she's won! UGH! I go back and forth about what stopping the sin and feeding into the negative attn.

p.s. the words aren't always with the happy tone and loving eyes I strive for......usually more like knock it off-NOW! thank God for new mornings!

Simply Moms said...

Kathy-oh, I think it is anywhere-most especially in public. We are home schooling, but it comes up in church, shops, friends' homes, etc. I hope it touched Adam's heart. Please tell him Mrs. Johnson thinks he's a pretty special kid & knows he can make good choices!!

Simply Moms said...

Anonymous-oh the precious body of Christ! "They mean sympathy no matter how awkwardly they express it." I think one of the bonus lessons ;) the Lord gives us is how to respond graciously with the truth in love to those around us. Sometimes going deeper means sharing why their words are inappropriate. Other times it is to accept the comment with a "We know how concerned you have been for our family. Thank you for continuing to pray for us."

I think lately, too, it has reminded me that to bring my burdens to Christ. . . and to stay at home more. . . but that's just me